Success Stories

Explore Recent News and Success Stories about MSM Students, Alumni, and Faculty.

  • Dec 13, 2018Opera

    MSM’s recording of Cendrillion named to The Boston Musical Intelligencer list of top opera recordings of 2018

    Ralph Locke of The Boston Musical Intelligencer calls the recording a “fun” and “strong performance” by Manhattan School of Music students of this 1810 opera by Nicolas Isouard. The CD was released in May 2018 on Arkiv Music.

    Read the article here

    Buy the CD here

    Watch the video teaser for the MSM performance here

  • Dec 12, 2018Precollege

    MSM Precollege performances featured in the Young Artists Showcase on WQXR

    The respected classical music station WQXR (operated by New York City’s NPR network WNYC) is streaming performances by Precollege students at Manhattan School of Music. This Saturday-only program at MSM during the academic year, is for talented musicians ages 5-18. Featured ensembles on the WQXR broadcast initially on Dec 12, 2018, include the Precollege Philharmonic, Precollege Symphony, and the Senior Select Chorus, in a program of Arnold, Holst, Schubert, Reinecke and more.

    Listen here

  • Dec 12, 2018Piano

    MSM classical piano major Nikita Stepanenko (BM ’20) receives 10K scholarship as an “outstanding international student”

    Nikita Stepanenko, is a junior at Manhattan School of Music, and a student of Alexandre Moutouzkine. He is one of five students to receive the 10K scholarship from Boro, a leader in personal and auto loans for all college students, who gives this award to international students who have excelled during their educational endeavors in the United States. Nikita is from Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic.

    Read more here

  • Dec 11, 2018Jazz

    Album release: Saxophonist and composer Andrew Rathbun (DMA ’11), named a “rising star” in the 2018 Downbeat Critics Poll

    The album Character Study on Steeplechase Records “showcases a sound rooted in modern jazz, informed by classical composition.. a rare depth of lyricism, authoritative swing and compositional intelligence,” writes the online publication Jazz Fuel. The Toronto-native, who received a Doctorate in Music from MSM,  is joined on the recording by Tim Hagans (trumpet), Gary Versace (piano), Jay Anderson (bass), and Bill Stewart (drums).

    More about the release here

  • Dec 11, 2018Precollege

    MSM Precollege alumna Simone Dinnerstein receives rave review in The Washington Post

    The former MSM Precollege student performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. in early December. Patrick Rucker of The Washington Post writes “Dinnerstein is an artist of strikingly original ideas and irrefutable integrity. These attributes, combined with elegance and grace, lend her music-making its captivating beauty.”

    Read the full review here

  • Dec 10, 2018College

    More than a dozen MSM alumni and faculty nominated for the 61st Grammy Awards

    Congratulations to the MSM alumni and faculty nominated in nine categories for the 61st Grammy Awards, including best jazz solo (Regina Carter), best large jazz ensemble (Jim McNeely) and best classical solo vocal album (Anthony Roth Costanzo MM ’08). The awards will be broadcast FEB 10, 2019 on CBS.

    Read the full list of MSM nominees here.


  • Dec 9, 2018Contemporary

    Works by composer Scott Wollschleger (MM ’05) featured on “American Dream”, the upcoming release by contemporary ensemble Bearthoven

    American Dream, Bearthoven’s sophomore release (Cantaloupe Music), “is a reflection of the contemporary American state of mind. Rather than making a political statement, this album reflects the paradoxical nature of the ‘American Dream’ in our current era,” says the group. Consisting of three monumental new works by MSM composition graduate Scott Wollschleger, American Dream will be available on on FEB 8, 2019, with an album release performance at the Tenri Cultural Institute in NYC at 8 PM.

    More about the album here
    Tickets to the release concert here

  • Dec 6, 2018Contemporary

    New York Classical Week praises loadbang, a quartet of MSM alums, for its “relaxed mastery”

    The respected on-line publication New York Classical Week reviewed the first of three 10th anniversary concerts this month by the loadbang ensemble comprised of baritone Jeffrey Gavett (MM ’09), trumpeter Andy Kozar (MM’09), clarinetist Carlos Cordeiro (MM ’12), and trombonist William Lang (MM ’09). The four met as students while attending MSM’s Contemporary Performance Program.
    The DEC 5 concert at the Church of the Intercession in NYC included a work by MSM composition faculty member and alum Reiko Fueting (DMA ’00), who is on the artistic advisory board of loadbang. Also on their advisory board are MSM Faculty members Todd Reynolds and Mike Lowenstein. loadbang is also performing DEC 6 at the Jerome Robbins Theatre at the Baryshnikov Arts Center at 7:30 PM.

    Read the review here

  • Dec 5, 2018Voice

    Shaina Martinez (MM ’18) featured in tribute to Maria Callas at Carnegie Hall on Dec 21

    Soprano Shaina Martinez (MM ’18) is taking part in the Maria Callas tribute as a winner of the Talents of the World 2nd International Voice Competition. In 2018, she also won the Eisenberg-Fried Competion, 3rd place in the Concurso Internacional de Cano Lirico in Trujillo, Peru, as well as an award for the Best Interpretation of a Peruvian Art Song, for her selection, sung in Quechua. She was a featured artist this fall with the MSM Philharmonia (photo), under the baton of Perry So. The program of the Dec 21 concert at Carnegie Hall “reflects Maria Callas’s versatile voice and will include some of the best-known soprano arias and ensembles from Roméo and Juliette, Norma, Tosca, La Traviata, and others.”

    Tickets here

  • Dec 5, 2018Precollege

    MSM Precollege students and alumni named 2019 National YoungArts Foundation winners!

    Current MSM Precollege Students:

    Jason Arkins, jazz baritone saxophone – honorable mention Esteban Castro, jazz piano – finalist Ethan Furman, jazz percussion – honorable mention Abraham Gold, jazz piano – honorable mention Anton Kot, jazz percussion – honorable mention Cheng Io Lo, classical violin – honorable mention Abigail Nishiwaki, classical violin – honorable mention Satchel Peterson, jazz guitar – honorable mention Vittorio Stropoli, jazz piano – honorable mention Rebecca Webster, jazz percussion – merit Chelsea Xia, classical violin – merit

    MSM Precollege Alumni:

    Zachary Davis, jazz trumpet – honorable mention Joanna Lau, classical flute – honorable mention Patrick Leavy, jazz double bass – honorable mention Coby Petricone-Berg, jazz alto saxophone — honorable mention Nico Wohl, jazz guitar – finalist

    MSM Precollege Alumnus and current MSM College Student:

    Varun Das, jazz percussion – finalist

    Learn more about the awards here

  • Dec 4, 2018Jazz

    New York City Opera to present the world premiere of renowned composer and jazz pianist Ted Rosenthal’s first opera, Dear Erich

    This jazz opera is based on the family story of MSM faculty member Ted Rosenthal — letters written by Rosenthal’s grandmother in Nazi Germany to her son in Chicago, where he was studying, having left Germany only a few months before Kristallnacht. This heartbreaking yet hopeful story will have its world premiere with the New York City Opera at National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene on Jan 9 to 13.

    Tickets here
    More about the opera here

  • Dec 3, 2018Voice

    Musical arrangements by Judy Clurman to be performed by Houston, Boston, Toronto, and National Symphonies

    It is a busy season for MSM voice department faculty member Judy Clurman! Performances of “Songs of Freedom: A Celebration of Chanukah” arranged by Judith Clurman, Larry Hockman and Brian Stokes Mitchell will take place in December by symphonies in Boston, Houston, and Toronto. She will be Music Director and Conductor at Carnegie Hall on Dec 21-22 of the Essential Voices USA who are performing with The New York Pops; and “Eight Days of Lights” by Judith Clurman and David Chase will have its world premiere in December by the Boston Symphony Children’s Chorus in Symphony Hall, Boston.

    Learn more about Judy Clurman

    Carnegie Hall tickets here

  • Dec 2, 2018Piano

    Latest recording by MSM alumnus, pianist Xiayin Wang (BM ’01, MM ’03, PS ’04, DMA ’13) praised by Gramophone magazine

    Reviewer Jeremy Nicholas calls the recording “outstanding,” describing Xiayin Wang’s performance of Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concertos – No 1, Op 23; No 3, Op 75, accompanied by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, as “one of the freshest and most enjoyable accounts I have ever heard,” and her interpretation of Scriabin Piano Concerto, Op 20 as “among the most deeply felt and warm-hearted accounts you will hear.”

    December issue of Gramophone here
    Buy the recording here

  • Nov 30, 2018Jazz

    MSM Jazz Saxophone artist in residence David Liebman featured on Talk Mode jazz podcast

    David is interviewed by host Eamonn Lenihan on the Talk Mode podcast, speaking about his projects, working with Miles Davis, hanging out with jazz saxophonist Charles Lloyd Sax, his appreciation of jazz saxophonist and clarinetist Sidney Bechet — and shares what he enjoys about teaching at MSM.

    Listen here

  • Nov 30, 2018Voice

    Carolina López Moreno (MM ’20) named one of 17 finalists in the 2019 International Collegiate Singing Competition (ICSC)

    Carolina is a first year Masters Voice student at MSM, studying with Shirley Close, and is currently appearing in the role of Mariuccia in the MSM Opera Theatre production of I due timidi by composer Nino Rota (DEC 6-9). The Bolivian-Albanian soprano, born and raised in Germany, won the First Grand Prize this year at the Berliner International Music Competition, and was awarded the Special Prize at the TV production, SWR Young Opera Stars 2018. The ICSC competition, presented by American Vocal Arts, will announce the winners in 2019. The “Audience Favorite Award” is selected by votes from the public — to vote, visit the ICSC website.

    Learn more here
    More about Carolina López Moreno here

  • Nov 29, 2018Strings

    MSM Artists in Residence, The American String Quartet (ASQ) featured in Carnegie Hall event celebrating the 125th anniversary of historic concert by Antonin Dvořák

    In 1893, Dvořák premiered original works on Beethoven’s birthday at what was then a newly opened Carnegie Hall. This important moment in musical history is being celebrated this Dec 18 with the concert “Dvořák at Carnegie Hall.” Featured performers include the ASQ performing Dvořák’s Piano Quintet in A major, Op. 81 alongside MSM alum, the celebrated Chinese-born pianist Tian Jiang (MM ’89).

    Tickets and more information

  • Nov 28, 2018Piano

    MSM alumnus Alexander Bui (BM ’16, MM ‘18) live on WRTI 90.1 in Philadelphia on Nov 30 at 12:10 PM

    The Vietnamese-American concert pianist is interviewed and performs works by Bach, Beethoven, Schubert and Liszt on Philadelphia’s jazz and classical music radio station. Alexander Bui’s solo graduation recital at Manhattan School of Music earlier this year was described by The Press of Atlantic City as “a dazzling display of virtuosity and temperament.” He was a semi-finalist on the hit TV show, “America’s Got Talent” in 2010, and his recent solo performance with Ocean City Pops was praised by the Ocean City Sentinel.

    Read more and listen

  • Nov 27, 2018Composition

    “Rainphase,” a composition by MSM student Salina Fisher (MM ’20) featured in Nov 29th concert celebrating the 125th anniversary of women’s right to vote in New Zealand

    The Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra is showcasing compositions by four women, performed by women, marking the year that New Zealand became the first country in the world to give women the right to vote. A New Zealand native, Salina Fisher is a composer and violinist studying at MSM with composer and singer Susan Botti. A composition by Fisher was recently performed by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra; She has twice been the recipient of New Zealand’s top composition award.

    Tickets here

  • Nov 27, 2018Woodwinds

    Monica Ellis (PS ’98) speaks to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about her journey to the world stage with the quintet Imani Winds

    For Monica Ellis, a native of Pittsburgh’s Hill District, the bassoon signaled a ticket to the world, a path through high school, college, career, fame, travel and purpose.

    Read more

  • Nov 26, 2018Voice

    Live multimedia extravaganza by countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo (MM ’08) “Glass Handel” finds common ground between music of Handel and Philip Glass

    Created to accompany his latest album “ARC,” the performance at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine on Nov 26 and 27 features choreography by Tony-award winner Justin Peck and live artwork by George Condo, produced from behind a backlit screen. Videos directed by nine artists will play, and audience members will be transported from one space to another, with all performers wearing costumes designed by Raf Simons of Calvin Klein. Produced in collaboration with Opera Philadelphia, National Sawdust, the art-fashion media company Visionaire, and Cath Brittan.

    Tickets here

  • Nov 26, 2018Composition

    “Fall and Rise,” a composition by MSM student Nguyen Minh Nhat (BM ’19) to be performed by the Hanoi New Music Ensemble on Nov. 30

    Founded in 2015, the Hanoi New Music Ensemble is the first professional contemporary music ensemble in Vietnam. Its members are among the nation’s best professional musicians and teachers, and its mission is to present new Vietnamese music throughout the country and to represent Vietnam to international audiences. Nguyen studies with MSM faculty member and composer, Reiko Füting.

    Read more

  • Nov 25, 2018Opera

    Mezzo-soprano Susan Graham (MM ’87, HonDMA ‘08) stars in LA Opera’s “Hansel and Gretel” through Dec. 15 

    The Grammy-winning singer performs as the witch, in a cast that includes mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, sopranos Liv Redpath and Melody Moore, and bass-baritone Craig Colclough. James Conlon conducts this work by 19th century composer Engelbert Humperdinck, with a libretto by Humperdinck’s sister, Adelheid Wette, based on the Grimm brothers’ fairy tale.

    Tickets here

  • Nov 21, 2018Strings

    Pinchas Zukerman returns as Conductor Emeritus to Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa on Nov. 21 and 22

    The esteemed MSM faculty member, violinist, violist and conductor, will conduct works by Chausson and Elgar, and play viola in Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante, alongside renowned German violinist and his former pupil Viviane Hagner (PD ’00). Mr. Zukerman was Music Director of the NAC Orchestra for 16 years and returns several times each season. At MSM, he accepts a limited number of exceptionally gifted violinists and violists as private students in the Pinchas Zukerman Performance Program.

  • Nov 19, 2018Voice

    Tenor Simon O’Neill (MM ’00) featured as soloist with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra for Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Nov. 23 & 24

    The New Zealand-native, considered one of the nation’s best singers and one of the world’s best Heldentenors, speaks about his career on Nov. 20  at the NZSO event In Conversation with Simon O’Neill. On Nov. 17 & 18, Simon O’Neill was a featured soloist in performances celebrating the reopening of Manhattan School of Music’s Neidorff-Karpati Hall.

    Read more

  • Nov 16, 2018Voice

    Grammy Award-winning soprano Dawn Upshaw (MM ’85, HonDMA ’98) headlines New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s Winter Festival, “Music Speaks” in January 2019

    Dawn will perform in Maria Schneider’s Winter Morning Walks  — for which the soprano won her most recent Grammy for best classical solo performance — and Mahler’s Fourth Symphony. Xian Zhang conducts.

    Tickets here

  • Nov 14, 2018Composition

    Composition by Christopher Cerrone (BM ’07) receives world premiere by the Los Angeles Philharmonic on Nov 16 and 18

    “The Insects Became Magnetic” is scored for orchestra and electronics, and is a commission by the LA Philharmonic. Leading the orchestra is Roderick Cox, who was guest conductor for MSM’s Centennial Opening Day Celebration concert in Sept. 2018.

    Purchase tickets and read more about Christopher

  • Nov 13, 2018Contemporary Performance

    Alejandro T. Acierto (MM ’10) named Andrew W. Mellon Assistant Professor of Digital Art and New Media at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee

    After earning his MM in Contemporary Performance at MSM, Alejandro pursued his MFA at the University of Illinois at Chicago. His new position is a cross-departmental position split between Vanderbilt’s Cinema and Media Arts Program, and its Department of Art.

    Learn more

  • Nov 13, 2018Jazz

    MSM Associate Dean and Director of Jazz Arts Stefon Harris on the cover of Jazziz magazine

    The November issue of Jazziz magazine spotlights Stefon’s latest release Sonic Creed, recorded with his band Black Out. Music from the album is featured on the Jazziz playlist, “Music From The Magazine.”

    Listen here 

  • Nov 13, 2018Woodwinds

    Jingping He (MM ’19) appointed second flute in China’s Suzhou Symphony Orchestra

    Jingping He has been studying with Linda Chesis, as a student in MSM’s Orchestral Performance Program.

    Learn more about MSM’s OPP program

  • Nov 11, 2018Jazz

    MSM Jazz Arts faculty member Jon Faddis at Dizzy’s Jazz Club Coca-Cola on Nov 11

    The great trumpeter, educator composer, and educator is renowned for both his playing, and for his expertise in the field of music education. He’s playing two sets at this prestigious jazz club at Lincoln Center with his quartet, JFQ.