Edward Jacobs - On Balance (Eliot Heaton & Ran Cheng, violins)



Violinist Eliot Heaton is the Concertmaster of the Michigan Opera Theatre, Des Moines Metro Opera, and the Saginaw Bay Symphony orchestras. He has also performed as a soloist and as a guest Concertmaster with a number of orchestras throughout the United States. Eliot studied at Oberlin College and Conservatory with Marilyn McDonald before attending the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music for graduate studies with Kevork Mardirossian. He is active in chamber music and new music, and appears regularly on a many concert series throughout North America. Eliot lives in Ann Arbor, MI with his wife, Ran Cheng, and their two cats.

Ran Cheng currently performs with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Grant Park Music Festival Orchestra, Toledo Symphony Orchestra and is acting concertmaster of Lansing Symphony Orchestra. She is also a prize-winning laureate of several international string competitions. As an active chamber musician, Ran has been a guest artist at Chamber Soloists of Detroit, Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings, Anchorage Chamber Music Festival, the Geneva Music Festival and has collaborated with many world’s leading musicians, such as Ralph Votapek, Ani Kavafian and Clive Greensmith. Ran studied violin and viola at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and Oberlin Conservatory of Music. 


Edward Jacobs (b. 1961) began playing violin at age 8, but abandoned that at age 11—upon hearing a friend’s jazz quartet—in favor of the saxophone. Work at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (B.A., 1984) in jazz performance and arranging (Jeff Holmes) and composition (Salvatore Macchia, Robert Stern) was followed by study in composition (Andrew Imbrie, Olly Wilson, Gerard Grisey) and conducting (Michael Senturia) at the University of California, Berkeley (M.A., 1986) and at Columbia University (composition with Mario Davidovsky, Chou Wen-Chung, Marty Boykan, George Edwards) where he completed the D.M.A. in 1993. Jacobs’ work as a composer of both instrumental/vocal and electronic has been recognized by a Guggenheim Fellowship, and Charles Ives Fellowship of the American Academy of Arts & Letters.  The Academy’s citation reads “Edward Jacobs’s music masters the ‘virtual’ and ‘real’ sound habitats and embeds them into a unified and consistent single space with grace, broad orchestral imagination and expressivity. Jacobs’s music is immediately engaging, attractive and intellectually demanding.” Jacobs is Robert L. Jones Distinguished Professor of Music at East Carolina University, where his activities have also included the founding and direction of the North Carolina NewMusic Initiative begun in March, 2001.


On Balance - Edward Jacobs
*Recorded at home in Ann Arbor, MI, April 2020
Eliot Heaton, and Ran Cheng, violins
Mastered by Robert Scott Thompson, Aucourant Records.
Property of Shelter Recording Project, American Composers Alliance