NEW YORK, April 21, 2022 – Renowned international music conservatory Manhattan School of Music (MSM) announced today that esteemed violinist and longtime concertmaster of the Met Opera Orchestra David Chan will lead the School’s prestigious graduate program in Orchestral Performance (OP). He will assume the mantle from current chair and OP co-founder Glenn Dicterow at the conclusion of the current academic year, which coincides with the conclusion of the program’s 30th-anniversary celebrations.
Inaugurated in the 1991–92 academic year, the MSM Graduate Program in Orchestral Performance is the first accredited degree program of its kind in the United States. Chaired since its founding by violinist Glenn Dicterow, the former 34-year concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, the OP program produces polished musicians of the highest artistic caliber who are prepared intensively in the orchestral repertoire for careers as symphonic players. Students are trained to participate fully in both performance and other nonmusical aspects of life in the modern orchestra, such as orchestra governance, artistic planning, community engagement, and audience development.
The OP program provides graduate students with individual instruction from some of the leading players on the classical scene, while allowing its students to form the core unit of key MSM ensembles, including the MSM Chamber Sinfonia and MSM Symphony Orchestra. Students are seated in leadership roles through competitive auditions.
Mr. Chan will join as Head of Orchestral Performance beginning on July 1, 2022.
“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome David to MSM to steer the incredibly successful OP program into its next 30 years,” says MSM President James Gandre, who recently led the School through a series of major campus improvements that were unveiled during the institution’s Centennial celebrations in 2018–19. “While it is a bittersweet moment, with Glenn [Dicterow] leaving the program following his permanent move to the west coast, we are elated that he is leaving this wonderful and singular program that he nurtured and helped build in the capable hands of David Chan.”
Mr. Chan, whose ongoing role as 22-year concertmaster of the Met Opera Orchestra continues to earn plaudits throughout the music world, is one of the most accomplished violinists of his generation and has also made a name for himself as an elegant conductor of unusual interpretive depth. The 2021–22 season marks his fifth season as the inaugural Music Director of the APEX Ensemble (formerly the Montclair Orchestra) and his fourth as Music Director of Camerata Notturna, one of New York City’s foremost chamber orchestras. He also serves as Artistic Partner of Mainly Mozart’s prestigious Festival of Orchestras, for which he recently conducted an entire festival combining musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the San Francisco Symphony, and another series bringing together members of the Met Opera Orchestra and the National Symphony Orchestra. All of these noteworthy achievements come while Maestro Chan continues to maintain a busy schedule on the podium and as an acclaimed soloist.
“Everything I have done and continue to do in my musical life has led me to this unique program at Manhattan School of Music,” says Mr. Chan. “I am so incredibly proud to take on the role that Glenn Dicterow has inhabited so fully for the past three decades. MSM’s graduate program in Orchestral Performance, with its 30 years of success and its track record of preparing so many wonderful musicians for a life in music, is distinctive in the world of conservatory education. I celebrate its past successes and look forward to what I know will be a wonderful future.”
Since the program’s founding 30 years ago, alumni of the OP program have earned hundreds of orchestral positions in orchestras across the U.S. and worldwide. Its faculty include musicians from the Met Opera Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.
“As the OP programs takes shape in its next 30 years, we couldn’t have asked for a more talented and creative artist and educator to assume its leadership,” says Executive Vice President and Provost Joyce Griggs. “David’s track record as a soloist, conductor, and concertmaster, combined with his belief in the OP division’s goals, the mission of MSM, as well as his commitment to our Cultural Inclusion initiatives, will enhance the students’ experiences and readiness as they prepare to embark on a professional career.”
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Known as one of the most accomplished violinists of his generation, David Chan is also quickly making a name for himself as an elegant conductor of unusual interpretive depth. The 2021-22 season marks not only his 22nd as concertmaster of New York’s MET Orchestra, but also his fifth as the inaugural Music Director of the APEX Ensemble (formerly the Montclair Orchestra), with which he has earned high praise for innovative and adventurous programming, and his fourth as Music Director of Camerata Notturna, one of New York City’s foremost chamber orchestras. He also serves as Artistic Partner of Mainly Mozart’s prestigious Festival of Orchestras, for which he recently conducted an entire festival combining musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the San Francisco Symphony, and another series bringing together members of the MET Orchestra and the National Symphony Orchestra.
Increasingly in demand on the podium, Chan’s conducting engagements in recent seasons have included Belgium’s l’Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège, the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, and l’Orchestre Dijon Bourgogne in France; the Grant Park and Classical Tahoe summer festivals; the Juilliard Orchestra in New York City; and at Musique et Vin au Clos Vougeot, where the festival orchestra comprises musicians from the Metropolitan Opera, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic, and all of the top orchestras in Paris. As a soloist, he has appeared under the baton of such conductors as James Levine and Fabio Luisi, with orchestras including the MET Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Diego Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan, and Moscow State Symphony. He is also a dedicated chamber musician who performs regularly in the New York area and at all the leading summer festivals.
In addition to his concert appearances, Chan is active as an entrepreneur and creative director. In 2008, combining his interest in wine with his passion for music, he co-founded the Musique et Vin au Clos Vougeot festival in the Burgundy region of France. During his 13 seasons as artistic director of the festival, which pairs wine tastings with music, he oversaw its growth from a small, intimate gathering to a destination event attracting many of the biggest names in classical music, such as Yo-Yo Ma, Joyce DiDonato, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Matthew Polenzani, Emmanuel Pahud, Menahem Pressler, Cho-Liang Lin, Gary Hoffman, Marlis Petersen, and Ildar Abdrazakov.
A native of San Diego, Chan began his musical education at the age of four. After winning prizes at the Tchaikovsky and Indianapolis international violin competitions, he made his New York debut in 1995 at Avery Fisher Hall, and his Carnegie Hall debut in 2003, performing the Brahms Double Concerto with the MET Orchestra. A student of Dorothy DeLay, Hyo Kang, and Michael Tseitlin, he received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and his master’s from the Juilliard School. He is currently on the faculty of both Juilliard and the Mannes School of Music, and lives in the New York City area with his wife, violinist Catherine Ro, and their children Annalise, Micah, and Arianna.
In 1991, Manhattan School of Music inaugurated the Graduate Program in Orchestral Performance, the first accredited degree program of its kind in the United States. Chaired by Glenn Dicterow for its first three decades and soon to welcome David Chan as its newly appointed Head, the program seeks to produce polished musicians of the highest artistic caliber, who are prepared intensively in the orchestral repertoire for careers as symphonic players. Students are trained to participate fully in both performance and other nonmusical aspects of life in the modern orchestra, such as orchestra governance, artistic planning, community engagement, and audience development. Since the program’s founding, alumni have earned hundreds of orchestral positions in orchestras across the U.S. and worldwide. Its faculty include musicians from the Met Opera Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.
Founded as a community music school by Janet Daniels Schenck in 1918, today MSM is recognized for its more than 970 superbly talented undergraduate and graduate students who come from more than 50 countries and nearly all 50 states; its innovative curricula and world-renowned artist-teacher faculty that includes musicians from the New York Philharmonic, the Met Orchestra, and the top ranks of the jazz and Broadway communities; and a distinguished community of accomplished, award-winning alumni working at the highest levels of the musical, educational, cultural, and professional worlds.
The School is dedicated to the personal, artistic, and intellectual development of aspiring musicians, from its Precollege students through those pursuing doctoral studies. Offering classical, jazz, and musical theatre training, MSM grants a range of undergraduate and graduate degrees. True to MSM’s origins as a music school for children, the Precollege program continues to offer superior music instruction to 475 young musicians between the ages of 5 and 18. The School also serves some 2,000 New York City schoolchildren through its Arts-in-Education Program, and another 2,000 students through its critically acclaimed Distance Learning Program.
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