Eastman News Highlights December 21, 2015

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.)

Meet the new Metropolitan Opera Radio host

(Wisconsin Public Radio 12/16/2015)

Mary Jo Heath, who has worked as a producer and guest host for the “Metropolitan Opera” over the past nine seasons, recently became the fourth full-time radio host in the company’s history. Her responsibilities as the “voice of the Met” include hosting the Saturday matinee broadcasts — the longest-running classical music series in U.S. broadcast history.

She is also familiar to Met audiences from the behind-the-scenes interviews with Met staff and artists she has conducted for both radio broadcasts and “Live in HD” transmissions to movie theaters. She has worked for more than 25 years in various facets of the music industry, from radio stations to record companies to researching and writing. She earned a Ph.D. in music theory from the Eastman School of Music and both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music from the University of Oklahoma in her hometown of Norman, Oklahoma.

BMI Celebrates Jeff and Joan Beal’s Launch of Beal Institute at Eastman School of Music

(BMI.com 12/16/2015)

Fifteen-time nominated and four-time Emmy winner, most recently for his score of the immensely popular Netflix series House of Cards, composer Jeff Beal and his wife, esteemed vocalist Joan Beal, have generously committed to financing the Beal Institute for Film Music and Contemporary Media at the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music, the couple’s alma mater. The new institute will provide students with instruction and experiences that prepare them for the increasing and evolving opportunities to write, produce, and perform music for film and contemporary media.

Supporting this hugely momentous endeavor, BMI’s Director of Film/TV Relations, Anne Cecere, attended the private reception for the launching of the institute that included a conversation with Eastman Dean Jamal Rossi, Jeff and Joan Beal and other noted alumni. Jeff Beal, who studied composition and trumpet at Eastman, received his Bachelor of Music degree with High Distinction in 1985. One of the most prolific and respected composers for film, media, and the concert hall, for which his commissioned works have been performed by many leading ensembles, Beal will serve as artistic director of the institute and continue to be actively involved with the school, its students, and administration.

Compline concerts are attracting all types, ages

(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle 12/17/2015)

“It’s incredible to hear 300 people being completely silent. It’s amazing how quiet people can be,” said Stephen Kennedy, music director of Christ Church on East Avenue.

“Compline is usually all sung — that’s the tradition,” said Kennedy, who also is an instructor of sacred music at Eastman School of Music.

The choir came to be known as the Schola Cantorum (roughly translated from Latin as “school of the singers”). And the quality grew over the years, enough for the choir to serve as an Eastman School of Music course, at the request of the Eastman Early Music Committee.

The Schola Cantorum mostly consists of Eastman students, as well as some local area singers and experts of early music. Kennedy, the instructor of the course, views the choir as a lab to explore practice and performance techniques of early music and musicians. They often sing the Gregorian chant in English and Latin. Recently, they’ve been accompanied by instruments — Christ Church’s Consort, a collection of Eastman students and professionals who specialize in playing Baroque and Renaissance instruments.

Eastman Schools O’Dette, Schneider Grammy nominees
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/07/2015)

Two previous Grammy Awards winners with Eastman School of Music ties, Maria Schneider and Paul O’Dette, are back for more, along with a handful of other musicians with Eastman connections on the list of Grammy nominees announced Monday. (Also reported by Rochester Business Journal, WXXI)

Eastman School of Music students experience rare instrument
(Fairport-East Rochester Post © 12/11/2015)

The “most famous double bass in the world” is temporarily in residence at the Eastman School of Music, giving students the chance for firsthand experience on an instrument of extraordinary history. Professor James VanDemark and his students have been enjoying exclusive use of the 200-year-old Karr-Koussevitzky Bass thanks to the International Society of Bassists.

Lawrence University Faculty Jazz Quartet and Local Alumni at the Dakota, December 7

(Jazz Police 12/05/2015)

The Lawrence University Faculty Jazz Quartet — artistically adventurous, instrumentally virtuosic, harmonically sophisticated, not to mention a ton of fun — performs at the Dakota on Monday, December 7.

Saxophonist José Encarnación is the Director of Jazz Studies at Lawrence, coming to Appleton from the Eastman School of Music. He has performed with many of the Latin jazz world’s finest musicians, including Gilberto Santa Rosa, Roberto Rohena and Luis Enrique, as well as Chicago musicians Tito Carrillo, Chip McNeill and Scott Burns. In 2013, Encarnación played with the Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra at the Elmhurst (IL) Jazz Festival.

W.Va. Symphony Orchestra presents Home for the Holidays concert in Morgantown

(The Exponent Telegram 12/03/2015)

As a soloist who has performed with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, baritone Steven Stull has had an opportunity to show off his range, appearing in the operas “Carmen” and “La Boheme” as well as a children’s show. At 7:30 p.m. Friday, he will add to his resume with the Charleston-based orchestra as a soloist for the Home for the Holidays concert that will take place at the West Virginia University Creative Arts Center.

A native of Amherst, New York, Stull started out playing the French horn and also grew to love singing, taking voice lessons and appearing in high school musicals. He majored in music at Oberlin College’s Conservatory of Music in Ohio and received his master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York.

CLASSICAL | Winterfest
(Rochester City Newspaper © 12/16/2015)

Just in time for the holidays, the Eastman Community Music School (ECMS) presents Winterfest, an all-day extravaganza packed with performances by ECMS students. Winterfest starts Saturday, December 19, at 9:20 a.m. and runs all day at Eastman School of Music, 26 Gibbs Street, and its various venues. Free and open to the public.

United Church of Canandaigua to present ‘An Evening of Festive Organ Music and Carols’

(Daily Messenger 12/08/2015)

The United Church of Canandaigua, 11 E. Gibson St., will present “An Evening of Festive Organ Music and Carols” at 7 p.m. Dec. 18. The free program will feature “Joy to the World,” “Prelude in G Major” by Johann Sebastian Bach, “O, Holy Night,” “Go Tell It on the Mountain” and “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” performed by Eastman School of Music students Marko Pranic and Ivan Bosnar.

Holiday concerts around the area
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/13/2015)

Brass Chamber Music: 2 p.m. Dec. 13. Hatch Recital Hall, East Wing, Eastman School of Music, 433 E. Main St. Free. (585) 274-1100 or www.esm.rochester.edu/calendar. Eastman New Jazz Ensemble: Dave Rivello, director. 8 p.m. Dec. 14. Kilbourn Hall, Eastman School of Music, 26 Gibbs St. Free. (585) 274-1100 or www.esm.rochester.edu/calendar. Eastman Community Music School Winterfest: A day of performances by youth and adult choirs, orchestras and ensembles. The groups will perform classical and jazz works. Performances will take place in Lowry Hall, Hatch Recital Hall, Kilbourn Hall, Messinger Hall and Howard Hanson Hall. 9:20 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 19. Eastman School of Music, 26 Gibbs St. (585) 274-1400.

Barnstable High School to host Percussion Day

(The Barnstable Patriot 12/04/2015)

From taking part in a drum circle to learning about making cymbals, Cape Codders will have a chance to experience the world of percussion during the 7th annual Day of Percussion Dec. 13 at Barnstable High School. The unique daylong event features a wide variety of hands-on clinics and mini-performances conducted by world class clinicians from the Eastman School of Music of Rochester, New York, Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps of Allentown, Pennsylvania, Drum Corps Hall of Fame, the Zildjian Company of Norwell and more.

During the event Aaron Jackson of the Zildjian Company presents a talk about cymbal making and using cymbals as part of a drum kit and how that changes the sound of the music. Michael Burritt of the