Bow & Hammer

Creating access points for the modern adult to experience Classical Music.


We program (often underrepresented) works from all musical eras that highlight the relationship between our two opposing instruments (violin & piano).

We explore how individual components with diverse identities can work symbiotically to create an unforgettable performance.

We believe investing in camaraderie between diverse industries is critical to sustain a healthy community of artists and concertgoers.

We build a new perspective of chamber music through our community by stripping away preconceptions of collaboration in classical music and focusing on the communicative power of performance and social support.

Through balanced programming, multidisciplinary collaboration, and socially relevant presentations, Bow & Hammer renews the excitement of chamber music for those within and outside of the general classical music culture. Incorporating works from all musical eras, Bow & Hammer celebrates the unique strength between their two opposing instruments while embracing the flow of conflict and resolution necessary to produce a comprehensive relationship. Passionate about repertoire for violin and piano, violinist Kathryn Satoh and pianist Elizabeth Newkirk founded Bow & Hammer in 2012.

Bow & Hammer performs and holds residencies nationally and internationally. Their EP: Brahms & Milhaud released in 2015 on Bandcamp, and 2020 marks the release of their first album. Proud Chicagoans, Bow & Hammer has three curated series there: IndustryNight, Élevé, and Chamber Sundays. Their business innovation as musicians has attracted the attention of the Chicago Sun-Times, WFMT (Chicago’s Classical Radio Station), SCAPIRadio, and the Chicago Tribune, to name a few.

Bow & Hammer gained status as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization in 2016 through the active belief that musically they explore how individual components with strong and autonomous identities can work symbiotically to create a powerful and mutually beneficial experience. As artists, they believe that investing in camaraderie between diverse industries is critical to sustain a healthy community of artists and concertgoers. As people, they seek to build a new perspective of chamber music by distilling collaboration through classical music down to the powers of communicative performance and social support.

kathryn (kit) satoh | bow | violin

Kathryn Satoh is impassioned by genuine and purposeful human connectivity, and uses these characteristics to drive her artistic career. A collaborator to the core, she sees chamber music as a timeless manifestation of social progress.

Trained as a vocalist and violinist, she has worked with theaters, opera companies, composers, poets, actors, and multi-disciplinary companies to premiere, preserve, or adapt works of diverse genres ranging from cabaret bar songs to large scale symphonic orchestral repertoire. 

Ms. Satoh holds two Bachelor of Music degrees with distinction from the University of Colorado in Violin and Voice Performance under the teaching of Lina Bahn (Corigliano Quartet) and Patrick Mason. In the rare spare moment, she loves to read/watch memoirs, eat home-cooked meals (made by herself or others; she is non-discriminant), be outdoors, and embark on adventures with friends.

elizabeth newkirk | hammer | piano

Entrepreneur, activist, and musician, Elizabeth Newkirk encompasses thoughtfulness and artistry in all of her work, performances, and collaborations.  Inspired by the slow-food movement, she is dedicated to creating concerts that mirror the thoughtfulness and thoroughness of the food movement, creating connections and a camaraderie among other disciplines. 

Growing up on her family farm in Indiana, Newkirk came to Chicago to pursue studies in Piano Performance. She received her MM from Roosevelt University with a minor in Collaborative Piano where she studied with Ludmila Lazar, Dana Brown and Angela Yoffe. Receiving her BA from Columbia College, she studied under pianist/composer Sebastian Huydts and jazz with Dennis Luxion. Additionally, she has had the privilege to work with Mary Sauer, Cliff Colnot, and Sylvia Wang. When not in the thick of rehearsals or performance, Newkirk enjoys cooking, supporting her colleagues, and of course, running with her cattle dog, Lady.