Eastman News Highlights December 29, 2014

Here are some select recent clippings showing the variety of hits/mentions identifying musicians and scholars as Eastman School of Music alumni, faculty or students. (Note: Some links may have expired.)

Two Canns on Piano

(Highlands Today [Tampa Tribune] 12/20/2014)

Since they were children growing up in Avon Park after moving from Fletcher, N.C., the Cann sisters – Kimberly and Michelle – have bedazzled audiences with selections of classical and sacred music.

By the age of 18, Kimberly had already performed as soloist with five orchestras, including the Florida Orchestra, and soon won her first national piano competition, thanks to her musical education, including studies at the Van Cliburn Institute in Fort Worth, Texas, the Brevard Music Festival and getting a master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music in New York in 2006.

Good Vibes, Good Music: Chris Bates’ Good Vibes Trio, December 26 at Jazz Central

(Jazz Police 12/25/2014)

Assistant Professor of Music at St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, Dave Hagedorn teaches percussion, jazz studies and world music. His education includes a BS in Music Education from the University of Minnesota, an MM in Percussion Performance from the New England Conservatory in Boston, and a DMA from the Eastman School of Music. Among his performance and recording credits are two albums of duos with pianist Dan Cavanagh; tours with the George Russell Living Time Orchestra; recording with Debbie Duncan; and performances with David Berkman, Anthony Braxton, Gil Evans, Happy Apple, the Out to Lunch Quintet, Thad Jones, Clark Terry, Steve Turre, Kenny Wheeler, Anthony Cox, and Roy Hargrove.

My Instrument: The story behind a platinum flute
(Chicago Tribune © 12/19/2014)

Christina Smith has been principal flutist for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and was guest principal flutist on the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s recent European tour. She will reunite with the CSO and music director Riccardo Muti in late January for concerts at Orchestra Hall and then Carnegie Hall in New York. Although most of her peers play modern flutes, her instrument goes way back.

Instrument: It’s one of six handmade vintage Powells that was made by Verne Q. Powell, the founder of the Powell flute company. I believe the one that I have is actually the first of six that he handmade, and it was made in 1938.

Distinctive features: It’s unusual because it’s solid platinum, and flutes usually come apart in three pieces, but this one only comes in two pieces. They call it a one-piece body. It has a really long case because of that.

Its first player: This flute was made for a very famous flutist and teacher named Joseph Mariano, who was the flute teacher at the Eastman School of Music for many, many years. So it was owned by him. It was played by him. It’s kind of neat. We don’t have the history with woodwind instruments like Stradivarius violins do or anything like that, but it’s a very special instrument. For a woodwind instrument, something made in 1938 is very old to be playing today.

Renée Fleming to make Broadway debut
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/22/2014)

Opera star Renée Fleming and former Monroe County resident will make her Broadway debut this spring, playing “what else?” an opera star. The four-time Grammy Award-winning soprano will star in the comedy “Living on Love” at the Longacre Theatre beginning April 1.

In it, Fleming plays an opera diva whose conductor-husband starts to fall for a woman hired to ghostwrite his long-delayed autobiography. She retaliates by hiring her own ghostwriter, but also gets romantically attached.

Fleming, widely considered one of the world’s greatest sopranos, grew up in Churchville and is a graduate of Churchville-Chili High School and Eastman School of Music. She has performed around the world and serenaded Queen Elizabeth and President Barack Obama, this year became the first opera singer to sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl. She received the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor the government gives to artists, in 2012. (Related story WXXI)

Trinity United Presbyterian Offers Festival of Lessons and Carols

(Trib Live 12/20/2014)

Today may be the shortest day of the year, but the first day of winter will usher in the 65th anniversary of one of Uniontown’s longest-standing traditions. At 3:30 p.m., Trinity United Presbyterian Church will offer a pubic presentation of the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols — a Christmas tradition there since 1949.

Other guests from four of the nation’s leading music colleges — West Virginia University, Duquesne University, Oberlin Conservatory and Eastman School of Music — will join Trinity’s choir.

Hot tickets: Wind Symphony debuts Saturday at Kodak Center
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/21/2014)

The Great Lakes Wind Symphony, a new professional classical ensemble, makes its debut 7:30 p.m. Saturday with “An American Holiday of Music” at Kodak Center for the Performing Arts, 200 W. Ridge Road.

The group’s 44 musicians are a mix of players: university professors and doctorate students from the Eastman School of Music, plus musicians from Ithaca as well as from Mansfield University in northern Pennsylvania, where the group’s founder and director, Dr. Adam Brennan, is director of bands. The symphony even includes a bass clarinetist who commutes from Texas.

Perhaps a bit more uplifting, the ensemble will also perform Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride,” Alfred Reed’s “Russian Christmas Music” and the 1991 piece “Lauds (Praise High Day)” by Ron Lauds, a 1952 grad of the Eastman School of Music.

Carolina Brass to play Waynesville

(Smoky Mountain News 12/17/3014)

Carolina Brass will feature a variety of holiday and classical songs at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 17, at the Waynesville First United Methodist Church.

Trained at some of the country’s most prestigious schools, including the New England Conservatory of Music, Indiana University, and the Eastman School of Music, the members of Carolina Brass are are known internationally for high-caliber musicianship delivered with a sense of fun.

Organ concert features music that ‘Leads to Rome’
(The Daily News © 12/24/2014)

Organist Anne Laver will perform baroque works with a connection to the Eternal City at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 15, as part of the Third Thursday Concert with Eastman’s Italian Baroque Organ series at the Memorial Art Gallery.

Titled “All Roads Lead to Rome” — a reference to the city’s role as the hub of the Roman Empire’s system of roads — the concert will feature music from a time period when Rome had risen once again as Europe’s important cultural center.

Laver is assistant professor of Organ and University Organist at Syracuse University’s Setnor School of Music. She also currently serves as instructor and coordinator of organ outreach programs at the Eastman School of Music. Laver has more than 12 years of experience in church music, leading volunteer and professional choir programs in a variety of parishes in New York, Wisconsin, and The Netherlands.