The WolfGang was formed in 1996 as a collaboration to perform music from the Classical Era on classical instruments. Oboist Stanley King, then Artist-in-Residence at the Schubert Club, invited Mary Sorlie (violin), Laura Handler (cello), Gail Olszewski (fortepiano), and Paul Jacobson (flute) to join him in a performance of a quintet by Johann Christian Bach at a Courtroom Concert in St. Paul. These musicians had played together many times in various combinations and ensembles. The performance on February 1, 1996 at the Landmark Center was a great success. The audience loved hearing this delightful piece so well-played on period instruments. The entire experience was so satisfying that they decided to form an ensemble to explore the early classical repertoire for this instrumentation. Shortly thereafter, they invited violist Steve Staruch to join them … the WolfGang was born.
The group changed a bit in 2011 when Steve Staruch took a year off and Jennifer Kalika joined the group as violist. Now Steve is an occasional member of the Gang, as a vocal soloist.
The WolfGang has performed in many venues in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area including: St. Paul Early Music Series, Northwestern College Faculty Artists Series and at the Hopkins Center for the Arts, Inc. The WolfGang has also been on the music series for St. Paul churches: Hamline United Methodist, Central Baptist, and Guardian Angels; in addition to Minneapolis churches: Plymouth Congregational, Bethlehem Lutheran, St. Luke’s Episcopal, and Mount Olive; as well as Bethel Lutheran in Northfield MN, Bethlehem Lutheran in Grand Marais MN, and Trinity Lutheran in Hovland MN.
The WolfGang was featured at the 2002 Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association convention. In 2006 they collaborated with Minnesota Public Radio and Barnes & Noble to celebrate the 250th Anniversary of Mozart’s birth.