The principal violist of the San Francisco Symphony since 1976, Walther previously played in the Pittsburgh Symphony, Miami Philharmonic, and Baltimore Symphony. She replaces Roger Tapping, who joined the Takšcs in 1995.
Walther will take a yearlong leave of absence from the SFSO beginning in fall 2005, but she told the San Francisco Chronicle that she hopes the change will be permanent. "The door is open to coming back, but I'm planning on becoming a permanent member and doing this for many, many years," she said. "I'm really happy about this."
As a member of the SFSO, Walther has appeared as a soloist 47 times, performing the world premieres of Michael Tippett's Triple Concerto, Peter Lieberson's Viola Concerto, and other works. She has appeared with several leading chamber groups, including the Guarneri, Tokyo, and St. Lawrence quartets.
The Takšcs was founded in 1975 by four students, including violinist Gabor Takšcs-Nagy, at the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest. Two of the original members, cellist Andršs Fej_r and Kšroly Schranz, remain. Violinist Edward Dusinberre joined in 1993.
The Takšcs is quartet in residence at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and a resident quartet at the Aspen Music Festival and School; the members become associate artists of London's South Bank Centre in fall 2005. The final release in the group's three-volume recording of the Beethoven Quartets is due out on January 11.