KATE OWEN, a multidimensional artist, an accomplished cellist, singer/cantor, music teacher, vocal coach, choral director and organist. Ms. Owen is also co-founder, principal cellist and the Executive Director of the CAMERATA NEW YORK chamber orchestra in New York City (founded in 1999 in Vienna, Austria, re-established in New York in 2000). She has successfully organized and performed concerts, operas, dance and choral presentations to critical acclaim in some of the foremost venues in the world including Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, St. Jean Baptiste Church, Theater at St. Jean, Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Joyce Theater and music festivals in various Tri-State area venues.
Ms. Owen has produced concerts in collaboration with renowned artists such as soprano Aprile Milo, tenor James Valenti, actor Alec Baldwin, Saturday Night Live saxophonist Alex Foster, cellist Nathaniel Rosen, NY Philharmonic principal harpist Nancy Allen, NYP principal flute Robert Langevin, sopranos Katherine Whyte and Amy Shoremount-Obra; dancers from Alvin Ailey, Martha Graham, Harlem School of the Arts; young soloists from Mannes School of Music and Manhattan School of Music.
Recently, Ms. Owen has opened her music studio in midtown Manhattan OWEN MUSIC ACADEMY, where she teaches piano, voice, cello, guitar, violin and viola (in person and online instruction, all levels and ages).
On December 2, 2021 CNY celebrated the belated 250th birthday of L. van Beethoven by presenting his 5 piano concertos, in collaboration with Mannes Sounds Festival. In just one evening, Camerata NY fans had a chance to hear 5 brilliant soloists and the orchestra, in very impressive playing which reminded us yet again of Beethoven’s genius and his eternal legacy.
In 2019, the CNY had a Fundraiser Concert at Mr. R. Levinson’s residence on Upper East Side in New York City, where Ms. Owen presented eclectic array of pop, opera, Broadway songs. The concert was in collaboration with a world renowned saxophonist, SNL’s solo sax player, Alex Foster. The excerpts of this performance can be viewed online:
15min. version https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTcnQBB9ZOA&t=1s
4min. version https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nk5vDpCu3RM
Ms. Owen was born Katarzyna Anna Lisowska in Bialystok, Poland. At the age of 8, she joined the children’s chorus at a local catholic church in Czarna Bialostocka, where she and her family lived. With that chorus, she had her first soprano solo appearances at the weekly masses, as well as numerous concert tours in Poland. Ms. Owen thought herself to play the guitar when she was 9. Her mother recognized her musical talent and interest and suggested that she attends a boarding music school in a nearby city of Bialystok. At age 11, Ms. Owen started playing the cello and piano at the Primary Level School of Music. What was supposed to be just an introduction to the world of music, turned into a passionate musical pursuit. Ms. Owen went on to study the cello at the High School of Music in Bialystok, graduating with highest honors. During the high school years, she was touring all over Europe performing as a cello soloist, as well a principal cellist of various orchestras and choral singer with a world renowned female chorus Schola Cantorum Bialostociensis.
From 2004-2009, Ms. Owen was the Music Director of the Columbia University Glee Club Chorus, leading numerous performances of diverse repertoire from the Baroque to modern. In 2003 Camerata New York Chorus, founded by Ms. Owen was invited to open the Mid-America Season at Carnegie Hall. Ms. Owen was also the Director of Music at St. Lawrence O’Toole Church in Brewster, NY and at Sts. John and Paul Church in Larchmont, NY.
Ms. Owen received her Master’s Degree at the F. Chopin University of Music in Warsaw. She was the first ever cellist from Bialystok to be admitted to that university. She also received a Bachelors Degree from the Psychology and Pedagogy College in Warsaw, Poland. She continued her musical studies at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, Austria.
As a professional cellist, Ms. Owen has had a busy international career as soloist, principal cellist and chamber musician. She has given numerous concerts in the United States, Poland, Italy, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and Austria. Ms. Owen was principal cellist of various orchestras in Poland, including the ‘Collegium Varsoviense’ and ‘Modern Academy’ in Warsaw and the ‘Bialystok Chamber Orchestra’ (1st prize cum laude in the International Music Festival in Nerpeelt, Belgium). In 1997-9, she was principal cellist of the Ost-West Internationale Jugend Sinfonie Orchester at the International Music Festival in Altenburg, Germany, where she met her future husband, Mr. Richard Owen, Jr. She has participated in many cello interpretation courses lead by Victoria Yagling (Finland), Angelika May (Austria), and Tomasz Herbut (Switzerland), Wanda Glowacka (USA). Ms. Owen’s discography includes many orchestral CD recordings with ensembles in Europe and the United States.
Conductors with whom Ms. Owen has worked include K. Penderecki, J. Maksymiuk, M. J. Blaszczyk, A. Witt, A. Duczmal, J. Kasprzyk, T. Wojciechowski, H. Handt, D. Kram, R. Owen, Jr., D. Gilbert, G. Cortese, K. Rapf, G. Ortega, M. Spearman, M. Shapiro, B. Hoffman, A. Aibel, J. Somary, Dr. F. Jimenez and Felix Carrasco Cordova. Also an active free-lance musician, Ms. Owen has played at the Westchester Broadway Theater, 2001 Wagner Workshop Symphony Orchestra at Mannes College, Bronx Opera, Chappaqua Orchestra, The Westchester Chamber Orchestra, New York Concert Opera and The AmorArtis Orchestra, the Ives Festival Orchestra at the WCSU in Danbury, CT. From 2002-4, Ms. Owen was a principal cello-mentor in the Westchester Conservatory for the Performing Arts Mentoring Orchestra in White Plains. She was a member of the faculty of Bramson’s School of Music in Mount Kisco, NY.
Besides her solo appearances, Ms. Owen gives master classes in the tri-state area and is an active promoter of young talented musicians. Together with her husband pianist she performed many free chamber music concerts in her community to raise classical music awareness.
Ms. Owen speaks Polish, Russian, Italian, German, French, and Greek. In her leisure time she enjoys gardening, oil painting, and beekeeping.
Ms. Owen’s husband, Richard Owen Jr. commissioned long time family friend, Raymond Everett Kinstler, to paint the portrait of his wife (see above left). Ms. Owen is the last female painted by the master portraitist.