CELLO STREET (San Francisco, Calif.) has dazzled audiences on the streets and performances halls of San Francisco with their tantalizing arrangements of pop and classical works for almost two years. Working toward bringing together classical and pop music audiences, this dynamic quartet presents both genres with an innovative and fresh sound. Passionate about helping children and young aspiring artists of all genres, Cello Street Quartet often performs in local schools, and has recently become an affiliate of San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music in hopes of expanding their education outreach. Their energy has led them to many collaborations, including their recent pairing with the Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Matt Alber, with whom they are celebrating the release of their collaborative DVD “With Strings Attached.” All classically trained musicians, they hold Bachelors and Masters degrees from the Juilliard School, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Miami University.
MATTHEW LINAMAN (Cello) was raised as a competitive gymnast, and did not discover his love for music until a violin class in fifth grade. The following year in orchestra class he switched to the cello, and he never looked back. Now as a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Matthew has won multiple competitions, performed with several orchestras and collaborated with a number of inspiring artists and teachers. For Matthew, music is about communication. It is this passion for communication which has led him to a wide array of community outreach and learning Spanish and French. In his free time, he studies neuroscience and the learning process.
ANDRES VERA (Cello) is a native of Puerto Rico and has been a member of the Miami Symphony Orchestra for eight years. He is an active chamber musician and founding member of the Cello Street Quartet. He frequently performs with many Bay-Area singer-songwriters and chamber ensembles across the United States. Dedicated to helping others, he has travelled to Haiti with the Friends of Haiti for Music, an organization which provides music immersion seminars to the children of Haiti. Andres enjoys improvisational performance, creating enchanting rhythmic grooves, arranging new songs for the Cello Street Quartet and reading science and environmental news publications. Andres is a graduate of the University of Miami and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and is fluent in both Spanish and English.
GRETCHEN CLAASSEN (Cello) is a graduate of the Juilliard school and San Francisco Conservatory of Music. During her intensive chamber music studies at the SF conservatory, she became interested in baroque music and learned the baroque cello and the six-stringed viola da gamba. In addition to the Cello Street Quartet, Gretchen is a founding member of the baroque group, MUSA. She has performed with some of the world’s leading chamber musicians and continues to be in high demand as both a modern and baroque musician in the Bay Area.
ADAM YOUNG (Cello) is a current student at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He also plays piano and studies ballet. Through the conservatory’s inspiring baroque program, he has learned baroque cello and viola da gamba. He is fascinated by renaissance art and design and creates his own period costumes. A wonderful composer as well, Adam is the primary music arranger for the Cello Street Quartet.
MATT ALBER (Vocals) is a San Francisco-based independent singer/songwriter and two-time Grammy® Award-winning recording artist. In 2010, MTV introduced him to the gay and lesbian international audience by airing his romantic music video for End Of The World set in a 1960s Hollywood barbershop. Matt’s latest album, Constant Crows, debuted at #2 on the iTunes Singer/Songwriter Chart, and explores themes of brotherhood, spirituality, and romance. Alber’s newest project, “With Strings Attached,” is a live DVD recorded in San Francisco with the Cello Street Quartet- a recent selection of the award-winning Frameline Film Festival for Summer 2013.