Eastman School of Music Posts and Musings

Opera Live in Your Home – in 1891!

These 19th century phonographs in the Collection Charles Cros, at the Bibliothèque nationale de France in Paris, were photographed by Sarah Fuchs Sampson, a PhD student in musicology. Beginning in 1891, anyone with a private telephone line in France could subscribe to the Théâtrophone — and listen to live performances of opera in the comfort…

A Barber Birthday Playlist

  Sunday, March 9, is the 104th birthday of one of America’s most popular classical composers, Samuel Barber (1910-1981). His String Quartet, Op. 11, which contains his most famous piece, the “Adagio,” was recently recorded by Eastman’s quartet-in-residence, the Ying Quartet, along with music by longtime Eastman director Howard Hanson. You can hear David, Philip,…

Celebrating Women’s History Month

  During the month of March, we celebrate the achievements of women throughout musical history. At Eastman, this takes its most visible form with our annual Women in Music Festival, returning for its tenth year from March 24-29, 2014. Begun in 2005 by Eastman professor Sylvie Beaudette, the festival not only exalts women as musical…

Meet the Masters

  This weekend, Eastman hosts two of the music world’s most famous performers: pianist Leon Fleisher (pictured above), who will perform the Brahms Piano Quintet with the Ying Quartet on Sunday afternoon’s Kilbourn Series chamber music concert; and violinist Itzhak Perlman (pictured below), who appears with conductor Neil Varon and the Eastman Philharmonia in Max…

Listen to the Winds

The Breaking Winds is an Eastman alumni success story — and a very unusual one, since they are a bassoon quartet. Brittany Harrington (BM ’10), Yuki Katayama (BM ’11), Kara La Moure (BM ’10), and Lauren Yu (BM ’11) are building a name for themselves in the music business, including YouTube videos (see the latest…

Happy Birthday, Renee!

  February 14 is not only Valentine’s Day, it is the birthday of one of America’s great singers, soprano — and Eastman graduate — Renee Fleming (MM ’83). Anybody who follows classical music is well aware of Renee’s busy international career, but we thought it was worth noting that this month alone — in fact,…

Dance Around the Maypole …

… to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Howard Hanson’s Merry Mount, which premiered at the Metropolitan Opera on February 10, 1934. A great success at its premiere – the cast and creators received 50 curtain calls, which is still a house record – Merry Mount was performed eight more times that season but then dropped…

Still a Musical Force

  During Black History Month, we’ll remember some of the African American composers and musicians who are part of Eastman history. One of the most prominent and respected was William Grant Still (1895-1978), often called “The Dean of African American Composers”; among his many accomplishments, he was the first black American composer to have a…