Fantasies and Mythology Musicians Unleashed Concert

April 13, 2024
Cape Ann Symphony proudly announces the Musicians Unleashed Fantasies and Mythology Concert on Sunday, April 14, 2024 at 3:00 PM at The Crowell Chapel, 3 Rosedale Avenue, Manchester-by-the-Sea. The ticket price for Fantasies and Mythology is $40 for Adults and $15 for Youth.  Call CAS at 978-281-0543 or go to to purchase tickets. The Cape Ann Symphony’s Musicians Unleashed programs were launched in 2019 and have become a wonderfully popular series with an overwhelmingly enthusiastic audience response.


Fantasies and Mythology celebrates the Woodwind section of the orchestra and features 3 accomplished Cape Ann Symphony woodwind players including CAS principal Flute Stephanie Stathos; CAS principal clarinet William Kirkley; and  Izumi Sakamoto,  oboe. They are joined by Hamilton resident Michael Bellefatto, horn;  and Sam Childers, bassoon and pianist Kathleen Forgac.  These 6 musicians will  present an afternoon of musical fantasies and works inspired by myths, legends and lore while exploring the magical sounds of the woodwind quintet and showcasing each of the instruments alone featuring works by Nielson, Poulenc, Mouquet, Debussy and others.


"We are excited to introduce our audience to the sounds of the woodwind quintet" says CAS principal flutist Stephanie Stathos, "We will showcase each instrument of the quintet in a solo work and then present them all together with the piano in a performance of the well known Poulenc Sextet which is a wonderful and well known piece that showcases the wind instruments in the orchestra. It’s filled with jazz rhythms and references which are juxtaposed with beautiful, lyrical melodies. We can't wait to share all this beautiful woodwind music with our Musicians Unleashed audience in the stunning Crowell Chapel performance space in Manchester!"


The program for Fantasies and Mythology includes Jules Mouquet's Pan and the Shepherd (flute and piano); Carl Nielsen's Fantasy for Clarinet; Debussy's La danse de Puck and Les fees sont d'exquises danseuses (piano); Wayne Barlow's Winter'sPassed(oboe and piano); Malcom Arnold's Fantasy for Bassoon; Mike Keegan's Gloach Horn (solo horn) and Poulenc's Sextet (winds and piano).




FLUTE: Stephanie StathosPrincipal flutist of the Cape Ann Symphony Stephanie Stathos earned her Bachelor of Music degree in Flute Performance from Boston University’s School for the Arts where she was a student of Doriot Anthony Dwyer. She currently holds the principal flute position with the Cape Ann Symphony and the piccolo position with the Lexington Symphony.  From 2003-2013 she served as the piccolo and second flute with the touring orchestra of the National Lyric Opera of New York. Ms. Stathos has been the featured soloist with the Cape Ann Symphony on numerous occasions, most recently in 2023. As a soloist she has also performed throughout the United States and Europe, recently performing Cimarosa’s Concerto for Two Flutes with the Orchestra Del Concentus Musicus Patavinus in Padua, Italy. Chamber musician appearances include performances with many of New England’s ensembles including Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Symphony New Hampshire, Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Concord Chorale (NH), Newburyport Choral Society, North Shore Chamber Music, and with vocalist Catherine Hammond, with whom she has done two recordings.  Also passionate about jazz, New Music and World Music Ms. Stathos has toured and recorded for the Green Linnet label with Argentinean vocalist Mili Bermejo and jazz ensemble Orange Then Blue.


CLARINET: Bill KirkleyPrincipal clarinetist of Cape Ann Symphony Bill Kirkley is in demand as an orchestral musician, recitalist, and chamber performer. His orchestral playing has been heard in some of the world’s great concert halls, including Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall in New York, Symphony Hall Boston, Orchestra Hall Chicago, the Royal Albert Hall and the Royal Festival Hall in London. One of the founders and principal clarinetist for Lexington Symphony, Mr. Kirkley is also solo bass clarinetist with Vista Philharmonic. As a guest clarinetist, he has been heard performing with the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, Boston Ballet, and City Ballet in NYC. Mr. Kirkley has been featured as a soloist with many orchestras across North America, including Cape Ann and Lexington Symphonies. As a chamber musician, he is the clarinetist for Triage New Music and Boston Musica Viva, the oldest contemporary music ensemble in the United States. Mr. Kirkley has worked with many of the leading composers of our era to realize their music. His recording of Camarata IV, a concerto for all the clarinets, was written for him by the esteemed New York composer Bernard Hoffer and was released in summer 2020 to rave reviews. Digging into the bass clarinet, he is also a member of Improbable Beasts, Bostons' premier bass clarinet ensemble of 15 solo bass clarinetists. Mr. Kirkley has recorded extensively on such labels as CRI, SEAMUS, New World, Albany, Naxos, and Centaur. His playing has been heard on WGBH Boston and the BBC London. If you play SimCity BuildIt! you’ve heard his playing behind the game. A performer dedicated to educating, he has served on the music faculties of University of Southwestern Louisiana, Brandeis University, UMass Boston, and is currently on the music faculties of Gordon College, College of the Holy Cross, and Groton Hill Music. As a long time member of the International Clarinet Association, Mr. Kirkley has presented and performed at ClarinetFest. He attended the University of Arkansas, Northwestern University and Southern Methodist University, where his major teachers were Robert Marcellus, Anthony Gigliotti, and Robert Umiker.


OBOE: Izumi SakamotoCape Ann Symphony Oboist  Izumi Sakamoto’s musical studies began at the age of five, learning piano in her native Japan. She began playing the oboe at fourteen with her first oboe teacher, Masayo Miyata. Ms. Sakamoto came to the United States in 2003 to study with Keisuke Wakao, assistant principal oboist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Sakamato received her Master of Music Degree and undergraduate diploma in oboe performance from Longy School of Music where she performed as soloist for Mozart Oboe Concerto as a winner of Longy Concerto Competition 2010. She received her graduate degree in oboe performance from the New England Conservatory.
 A member of Symphony by the Sea and Haffner Sinfonietta, Ms. Sakamoto also has performed with the Plymouth Philharmonic, New Bedford Symphony, Lexington Symphony and Boston Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2009, she participated in the CD recording project with the United States Air Force Band of Liberty. Ms. Sakamoto has been a member of the New England Chamber Players since 2016. In 2020, she performed a piece written for her by Thomas Weaver for piano and oboe. She also has participated in various festivals including the Stamford International Music Festival in England.


HORN: Michael BellofattoHamilton resident Michael Bellofatto is an active orchestral musician in the Boston area and greater New England. He holds permanent positions as Principal Horn with the Vista Philharmonic Orchestra and the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra, and was recently appointed as Principal Horn of the Glimmerglass Opera Festival. He has served as Acting Principal Horn with the Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, and frequently appears with other professional ensembles such as the Portland Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Cape Symphony, and others. In addition to his orchestral activities, Michael is a member of the Innovata Brass Quintet and a frequent substitute with many of the area’s fine chamber groups and new music ensembles. He can be heard in the pit orchestras of musical and opera productions throughout the Boston area. Michael received his music training at Ithaca College where he studied with Alex Shuhan. Mr. Bellofatto maintains a small studio of horn students in Hamilton.


BASSOON: Sam ChildersSam Childers is a graduate of the University of Montana, where he was the recipient of the Candy Paris Honors Scholarship. While completing his undergraduate studies he was also a member of the Missoula Symphony and the Blue Mountain Wind Quintet. He then went on to study at the University of Michigan, where he was the recipient of the Hugh & Nan Cooper Memorial Scholarship. Sam is the bassoonist for the acclaimed Boston wind quintet, Vento Chiaro, with whom he also teaches and performs at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. He plays regularly with many ensembles in the area, including the Lexington Symphony, Plymouth Philharmonic, Cape Symphony, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and others. Sam loves playing in the continuo section for Emmanuel Music, the Marsh Chapel Collegium, and the Bach Virtuosi Festival in Portland, ME. Sam is a bassoon faculty member and chamber music coach at the Brookline Music School and he maintains a small private studio of bassoonists.


PIANO: Kathleen ForgacPianist Kathleen Forgac received an undergraduate degree in mathematics from Caltech and a Master’s Degree in Piano Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Jacob Maxin. She was a member of Cape Ann Chamber Music in Gloucester. Solo performances include appearances with the Long Beach Symphony in California, the New Hampshire Philharmonic and the Carlisle Chamber Orchestra. Among her awards are a silver medal from the Royal Society of the Arts in London, second place in the International Piano Recording Competition, and the Blossom School Accompanist Award. She currently teaches at the Russian School of Mathematics in Lexington and is the rehearsal pianist for Opera51 in Concord.



The Musicians Unleashed Fantasies and Mythology Concert is  Sunday, April 14 at 3:00 PM at The Crowell Chapel, 3 Rosedale Avenue, Manchester-by-the-Sea. Ticket prices for Fantasies and Mythology are $40 for Adults and $15 for Youth. Call Cape Ann Symphony at 978-281-0543 or go to for tickets.