MSM Voice faculty member Ruth Golden speaks to the magazine Opera News in a feature article about lessons learned by US music conservatories during the past year of online instruction.
Magazine subscribers may read the article in the September issue here.
The Park Avenue Armory Recital Series returning this fall will feature MSM Collaborative Piano faculty member Warren Jones accompanying mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton on November 9 and 21, as well as MSM faculty member Myra Huang on October 10 and 11, who will accompany baritone Will Liverman. The concerts will take place in two of the Armory’s period rooms.
The Park Avenue Armory Artists Studio series, launched in 2016 and curated by jazz pianist, composer, and MacArthur Fellow and MSM alumnus Jason Moran (BM ’97), is returning this fall as well.
More information on the Park Avenue Armory Recital Series here.
More information on the Park Avenue Artists Studio upcoming concert here.
9 Horses is an improvising chamber ensemble featuring MSM alum, faculty member, and 2018 GRAMMY nominee Sara Caswell (MM ’06) (Esperanza Spalding) on violin, Joe Brent (formerly of Regina Spektor’s band) on acoustic and electric mandolin, and Andrew Ryan (Kaia Kater) on bass.
Their latest recording Omegah will be released on August 7 on Adhyâropa Records, a double album that Sara Caswell describes as reflecting 9 Horses’s natural progression. “This record is the culmination of years of experimenting with band members, musical timbres, colors and styles. In a way, it portrays our group’s entire odyssey.”
Purchase the album on Basecamp here.
Watch a song from the the new album by 9 Horses here.
To celebrate his 10 years as artistic director with different orchestras in the United States, Felipe Tristán has commissioned two works from the composers Arturo O’Farrill (who studied at MSM Precollege, and has been a MSM faculty member) and José Gurría. Felipe is also preparing to record two albums along with a series of concerts that will close at Carnegie Hall on May 28, 2022, where he will perform the reorchestration of Canto a la Música by the Mexican composer Samuel Zyman, among other works.
For this, and for next year’s concert at Carnegie Hall, Felipe will visit Mexico to search for at least thirty voices.
The symphonic piece commissioned from Mexican-Cuban composer Arturo O’Farrill, an Afro-Latin jazz specialist, will premiere February 2022 with the New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Space in Manhattan.
Felipe is the founder and music director of the Symphony Orchestra of the Americas, an organization that promotes Latin American concert music as well as intercontinental dialogue and collaboration. He teaches conducting at the MSM Precollege program.
Learn more here.
The 2021 New York Guitar Festival (NYGF) will pay tribute to the iconic classical guitarist Julian Bream with an online series of concerts entitled “Remembering Julian Bream” from July 14 to 20.
Music include commissions by a group of stellar classical guitarists, lutenists and composers in honor of the late Grammy Award-winning concert artist.
MSM Guitar Department Chair David Leisner will perform on July 15 at 4 PM EDT.
Julian Bream is regarded as one of the most distinguished classical guitarists of the 20th century, playing a significant role in improving the public perception of the classical guitar as a respectable instrument.
Three video performances will broadcast each day of the festival at 3pm, 4pm, and 5pm EDT on the New York Guitar Festival YouTube channel found here.
Read more about the festival here.
The online publication Influencive founded by Inc. 500 Entrepreneur Brian D. Evans and Clinton Senkow calls MSM Precollege violin faculty member Elizabeth Faidley “one of the finest violin pedagogues in the world.”
“The world of music is one such that has welcomed innumerable talented beings so far, but a few rare gems have gone ahead in totally astounding the world with their expertise and genius in music. One such name that has been buzzing high in the American music scene is Elizabeth Faidley with her ‘The Elizabeth Faidley Violin Studio,'” writes Umesh Agarwal in the article.
A faculty member in MSM’s Precollege program since 2007, Elizabeth has also been called “amazing and inspiring teacher” by the New York Times.
Read the Influencive article on Elizabeth here.
Read Elizabeth’s biography on MSM’s website here.
Duncan Patton’s composition There Will Come a Time will premiere on June 17 at 7 PM during a full-length digital concert called You are the Light recorded and filmed at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City.
MSM’s Director of Choral Activities Kent Tritle is the Music Director and conductor of the event, leading the Musica Sacra choir with instrumental ensemble Rose of the Compass The concert also features Immigrant Songs by former MSM President Robert Sirota.
For more information about the concert, including a video teaser, visit this page.
The work “24 Preludes and Fugues” for piano by MSM Faculty member Paolo Marchettini, who teaches Music Theory at MSM, took more than a year to compose and is now published by the respected Italian publishing house Edizioni Curci.
“I’ve always considered the fugue to be one of the most pure musical forms,” explains Paolo in a video clip that can be seen here. “The possibility of being able to write an entire piece of music out of only one main idea has always been a challenge for composers of different times.”
Learn more about the composition here at the publisher’s website.
Watch Paolo play perform a portion of the work here.
Jorge Parodi is conducting the world premiere of The Threepenny Carmen as part of the Big Tent series in Atlanta, Georgia, overseen by Atlanta Opera’s artistic director Tomer Zvulun. The production is being held in a custom-made tent with open walls in the parking lot of the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta April 23, 25, 28, & 30 as well as May 2, 6, & 8.
In this adaptation of Carmen, Parodi oversees a cast of 13 performers, down from the usual cast size of 66. The Threepenny Carmen runs 90 minutes compared to George Bizet’s three-hour work.
Read more about the production here.
The New York Times has published a stunning editorial feature looking behind the scenes of closed theaters in NYC during the pandemic.
The text to the feature is a beautiful poem by Tazewell Thompson, Director of Opera Studies at MSM.
See the article here.
Jazz composer Elio Villafranca is among the recipients of the prestigious Guggenheim fellowship awarded this year to 184 artists, scholars, writers, and scientists. The grants of approximately $40,000 are given to those “who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts.”
“I am thrilled to announce this new group of Guggenheim Fellows,” said Edward Hirsch, President of the Foundation, “especially since this has been a devastating year in so many ways… The work supported by the Fellowship will help us understand more deeply what we are enduring individually and collectively.”
More about Elio here.
The respected Savannah VOICE Festival (SVF) has announced the expansion of its Board of Directors to include three new members including MSM Senior Opera Theatre Music Director, along with Michael Ching and Howard Watkins.
The Festival brings classical vocal excellence to the Savannah area through a two-week celebration of concerts, events and educational presentations during the month of August and throughout the year.
Susan Botti is one of fourteen composers selected to receive a 2020 Fromm Commission by the Harvard University-based organization’s Board of Directors.
These commissions represent one of the principal ways that the Fromm Music Foundation seeks to strengthen composition and to bring contemporary concert music closer to the public.
In addition to the commissioning award, a subsidy is available for the ensemble performing the premiere of the commissioned work.
Learn more about Susan here.
Kelly Hall Tompkins (MM ’95, HonDMA ’17) is one of six artists, hand-selected by the WQXR team, who are receiving an honorarium of $15,000 and a budget of up to $5,000 to engage collaborators and commission works. The artists will be able to take advantage of WQXR’s various outlets to reach audiences, too, via Greene Space performances, on-air curation opportunities, and much, much more.
“I am really excited for their support in bringing some of my projects to life, particularly in such challenging times,” says Kelly.
MSM College and Precollege faculty member Kariné Poghosyan (MM ’05, DMA ’07) is described by the publication as a “truly one-of-a-kind classical performer” who “inspires listeners with her vivacious, passionate piano interpretations of a wide range of classical music”.
The article also discusses Dr. Poghosyan’s weekly Facebook Live concert series that she began at the beginning of the pandemic. Her 45th concert in the series—dedicated to the music of Arno Babajanian—is slated for this Friday, January 22.
You can read the full article here, and follow Dr. Poghosyan’s Facebook page here.
MSM Musical Theatre faculty member Judith Clurman, the conductor and music director of the preeminent NYC chorus ESSENTIAL VOICES USA and record label Acis announce the release of America at Heart via streaming platforms.
The chorus is joined by Tony Award® winners Randy Graff, also a MSM Musical Theatre faculty member, and Brian Stokes Mitchell for a release in honor of the inauguration of the 46th President of the United States, on January 20, 2021.
Composition faculty member Paolo Marchettini will release his first album of five orchestral works on January 8, 2021. The album will be released by New Focus Recordings. Marchettini draws inspiration from Verdi, Frescobaldi, Morricone, and sets texts by Emily Dickinson in this collection of recorded performances by both American and Itl Orchestra della Toscana, the Orchestra Roma Sinfonietta, and the Manhattan School of Music Chamber Orchestra.
The album is available for pre-order here.
Kariné Poghosyan, a member of the Music History (College) and Piano (Precollege) faculty, will perform works by Beethoven during her weekly virtual concerts throughout the month of December.
Armenian Weekly writes, “In honor of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary, Ms. Poghosyan had originally scheduled her annual Beethoven’s Birthday Concert for Carnegie Hall. But, when that was cancelled due to the pandemic she was determined that the show must go online.”
The concerts are free with the option of sending voluntary contributions to the artist. You can watch them live each Friday at 8pm EST on Ms. Poghosyan’s Facebook page.
In a new interview with Joe Szekeres of OnStage Blog, Musical Theatre faculty member Randy Graff talks about teaching during a pandemic, the challenges and advantages of virtual learning, and the future of theatre.
“As an educator, I see my students finding imaginative ways to connect with each other and with students all around the country. Some are doing Zoom play readings, their own work included, and having group discussions after. Many are using the time to self-tape monologues and songs and get them up on their websites. They’ve started Youtube channels and some are Zoom directing as well. All motivated by the pandemic.”
Read the full interview here.
MSM faculty member Kelly Hall-Tompkins (MM ’95, HonDMA ’17) and Tony nominee Daniel J Watts perform in the second episode of OneTable’s new series, PAUSE.
#takeaPAUSE with OneTable takes place on the first Friday of every month. In the series, creators mix ritual with innovation, asking and answering the questions: What do we do with the things we inherit? What can we gain from taking a PAUSE? How might we imagine the world not as it is, but as it could be?
“Watts’ spoken word artistry juxtaposed with Tompkins’ violin mastery intertwines modernity and tradition, all the while wrestling with what can come from pressing pause before we press play again.”
Learn more: https://onetable.org/pause/
Composition, Theory, and Skills Department Chair Reiko Fueting (DMA ’00) has received the Barlow Commission Prize from the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University. Fueting was one of fifteen composers chosen from 285 applicants from 20 different countries. See the full list of recipients here.
Fueting was also recently interviewed by Composium, a newsletter covering everything from music technology to film composition. You can read the interview here.
MSM faculty member, alumna, and renowned violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins (MM ’95, HonDMA ’17) will be a guest host on WQXR this Thursday, October 22 at 7 PM EST. For her guest appearance, Kelly has chosen works and recordings that inspire her by Mahler, Debussy, Brahms, Price, and others.
Ms. Hall-Tompkins is an entrepreneur who has been acclaimed for her “tonal mastery” (BBC Music Magazine), and named New Yorker of the Year by The New York Times.
Read more about the session here.
MSM piano faculty member Kariné Poghosyan performed at the fundraising event presented by the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Armenia to the United Nations. The concert raised money for the ArmeniaFund Humanitarian Relief Effort, with Kariné performing Khachaturian, Beethoven, Stravinsky, Debussy, and Chopin.
The event can be watched here.
Last month, the New York-based Horszowski Trio announced the appointment of MSM Precollege faculty member Ole Akahoshi to the ensemble. Akahoshi will replace cellist Raman Ramakrishnan, who performed with the ensemble for the past nine years.
Of his new position, Ole write: “I have been admiring the Horszowski Trio for many years and being on stage with them has always been a tremendously invigorating, inspiring, and highly gratifying experience for me.”
Read the full press release from The Violin Channel here.
Faculty member and alumnus Damien Sneed (’06) has been appointed an artist-in-residence at Michigan State University. According to a press release, Sneed will work with Wharton Center and MSU’s College of Music, helping to bring social impact programming to both institutions.
“I’m excited about returning to Michigan State University and the Wharton Center,” said Sneed. “We will be able to touch the lives of so many different people through the lyrics and messages in the music.”
Precollege faculty members Jane Olian and Donna Gill were interviewed by Margo Garrett of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Journal about creative collaboration and technology in the time of COVID-19. In the interview, Jane and Donna talk about how their work as teachers and coaches has changed in the wake of the pandemic.
Garret writes, “Donna and Jane both feel sustained by the fact that they are teaching in these days, that the students are ever hungry to learn, and that they themselves are doing OK—because they are teaching. Teachers and students need each other in these difficult days, it seems.” Read the full story here.
Musical theatre faculty member Or Matias was awarded a Special Obie Citation alongside Dave Malloy and Hidenori Nakajo for their Music and Sound of OCTET. The award, which was announced during the virtual ceremony on July 14, was given “for their collaboration in creating the soundscape that showcased the boundlessness of the acapella human voice”.
Later on in the virtual Obie Awards, faculty members Mana Allen, David Loud, and David Cady performed in a tribute to Merrily We Roll Along.
You can watch the full awards ceremony here.
Faculty member Damien Sneed has been selected as one of BET’s “Future 40”, which highlights a new generation of inspiring leaders and changemakers across entertainment, activism, sports and more.
“As a pianist, vocalist and composer, Sneed’s resume is lengthy as an emerging Black leader in classical music,” writes BET. You can watch the video feature here.
Musical Theatre faculty member Judith Clurman has been nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award in the “Best Original Song Category”. The song, entitled “A New Carol – The Holidays Are Here”, was co-written with Wesley Whately and performed on the Singing Christmas Tree Float during Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in November 2019.
Judith writes, “Thank you, MSM voice students, for constantly teaching me about acting through songs, and kudos to the Freshman Ensemble Voice Class for singing through the piece for me, when I first wrote it.”
View the full list of nominees here.
The Jazz Journalists Association has announced the winners of the 2020 JJA Jazz Awards, which celebrate excellence in music and music journalism in thirty-nine awards categories. Among the winners are the following members of the MSM community:
Terri Lyne Carrington (HonDMA ’20)
Musician of the Year
Lauren Sevian (BM ’01, MSM Faculty)
Baritone Saxophonist of the Year
Miguel Zenón (MM ’01, MSM Faculty)
Arranger of the Year
View the full list of winners here.