Eastman News Highlights December 15, 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.)

Renee Flemings next audience? William and Kate.
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/09/2014)

Opera superstar/former Monroe County resident Renée Fleming next audience will be British royal couple William and Kate. The soprano is scheduled to perform Tuesday night at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art at a formal, high-priced scholarship fundraiser for the University of St. Andrews, the Scottish higher education institution where Kate Middleton “now the Duchess of Cambridge” and Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge” met.

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. (Also reported by WXXI)

Eastman School of Music celebrates ‘Violin Day’

(WROC-TV-8 12/13/2014)

The Eastman School of Music celebrated all things violin Saturday. Budding musicians were able to try, play and listen during the school’s “Violin Day celebration.” Instructors from the Eastman Community School were on hand to teach kids the basics of the instrument.

Chie Xu has been playing the violin for ten years. “I just love how versatile it is, how sweet sounding it is, and you can fully express yourself on the violin with its broad range!” Xu exclaimed.

Eastman also celebrated the cello, the viola, and the bass.

Jazz Trio to reunited at Sinai Forum

(Michigan City News-Dispatch 12/09/2014)

College jazz trio Dr. Peter Bankoff, Jeff Hamilton and John Clayton will reunite to play multiple music numbers for the first time in nearly 40 years at the Sinai Forum’s “Jazz Masters 101 Reunion” on Sunday at 4 p.m..

The Sinai Forum event will also be the first occasion in which Hamilton and Clayton will play together since the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra was nominated this month for a 2015 Grammy in the category of Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.

Bankoff, son of the forum’s founders, Milton and Sylvia Bankoff, studied jazz at Indiana University School of Music in 1970-1974. There he met Clayton, who transferred there in 1972, and Hamilton, who came from the Eastman School of Music that same year.

Haven String Quartet + Sawada + more in Hamden Concert Saturday

(New Haven Register 12/09/2014)

One of the reasons we spotlight the classical Haven String Quartet is the level of expertise, not to mention the company it keeps; on Saturday night that includes Miki Sawada on piano (who played during the past week at Carnegie Hall as part of the Yale in New York series), Kemp Jernigan on oboe and Tina Lee Hadari on viola.

Sawada, a native of Japan and a recent graduate of Yale School of Music, also holds degrees from Eastman School of Music and Northwestern University, and is currently on staff at Yale School of Music as staff accompanist for strings. She started Music Haven’s piano program last year.

Take two: Second Wind Band celebrates 20 years with annual holiday concert
(Charlottesville Weekly © 12/05/2014)

As 60-, 70-, 80- and even 90-some-year-old musicians cleaned and put away their clarinets, trumpets, trombones, flutes and saxophones, Liz Allan, a clarinetist who’s been with the Second Wind Band almost since its inception, explained that some of the folks in the room also play in a smaller swing band called The Flashbacks. And for those interested in learning an instrument or returning to one they played many years ago there’s the First Wind Band. All three bands will perform at Sunday’s 3pm concert at the Senior Center.

“The band experience here is a very special one,” said Allan. “It has allowed the members to share their love of music and to participate in the fun of performing together.” The group is one of only two Virginia-based bands that are part of New Horizons Music, a project developed by the Eastman School of Music’s Dr. Roy Ernst to promote lifelong learning through music.

Longwood SO revives Hanson

(The Bonston Musical Intelligencer 12/08/2013)

The post-intermission half was given to a work once heard frequently but now a rarity, by a composer about whom the same may be said: the Symphony No. 2 in D-flat Major, Op. 30 by Howard Hanson. It was written in 1930 on commission from the BSO for its 50th anniversaryin company with such classics as Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms, Hindemith’s Konzertmusik and Prokofiev’s Fourth Symphony. Hanson, for 40 years the Director of the Eastman School of Music, was one of the standard-bearers for the American Romantic School, featuring solidly tonal harmony (with decorative and punctuational dissonances), broad melodies and spacious chord changes evoking our continents vast plains. Comparable figures include Roy Harris, Douglas Moore, and Hanson’s student Robert Ward

Holiday concerts fill area’s churches with music now through December
(Willoughby News Herald © 12/05/2014)

St. Vitus Catholic Church in Cleveland’s East 65th and St. Clair Street neighborhood draws many Lake and Geauga county folks who came here from that Slovenian neighborhood and remain part of the congregation. It’s known for its exquisite 1932 Votteler-Holtkamp-Sparling pipe organ which was restored to the tune of $330,000 in 2009. The key and stop actions on this organ are electro-pneumatic with 62 manuals and 32 pedals.

At 11:30 a.m. on Dec. 7, or just after the 10 a.m. Mass, Professor Nathan Laube will sit down at this organ and give his only Northeast Ohio concert. The 26-year-old virtuoso, a professor of organ at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. is of Slovenian ancestry. He received his master’s degree in organ performance from the Musikhochschule in Stuttgart, Germany, and is a past recipient of a Fulbright grant. He has performed three times in the Republic of Slovenia and most recently last March in its capital city of Ljubljana. Laube was the artist-in-residence at the American Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in Paris, France, from 2011 to 2013.

He’s also appeared at Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Washington National Cathedral, The Mother Church (Boston), Verizon Hall in Philadelphia, First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, Stiftskirche in Stuttgart, Germany, Notre-Dame-du-Taur in Toulouse, France, and Cathédrale Saint-Alain in Lavaur, France.

Helenbrook does ‘Mostly’ Mozart in Christmas concert

(Batavia Daily News 12/10/2014)

Emily Helenbrook, the celebrated soprano from Alexander now studying at the Eastman School of Music, will be featured in the “Mostly Mozarts Christmas” concert with the Camerata di Sant’ Antonio Chamber Orchestra on Saturday at Central Park United Methodist Church, 216 Beard Ave. (Also reported by Artvoice)

‘O Come All Ye Faithful . . .’

(Bureau County Republican 12/10/2014)

To add to the incredible sound of an entire church collectively singing Christmas carols, Larry B. Peterson will again be accompanying the crowd on the organ for the event. Peterson is the director of music for Augustana College Campus Ministries and instructor of organ for the Augustana Department of Music in Rock Island. He holds a master’s degree in music from the Eastman School of Music.

Grammy nominees include 2 from Eastman
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle © 12/07/2014)

An Eastman School of Music professor and a graduate have received Grammy nominations. Paul O’Dette of Brighton received one nomination and Robert “Bob” Ludwig got four. Both have won Grammys previously.

O’Dette, professor of lute, was nominated in the Best Opera Recording category for Charpentier: La Descente d’Orphee aux enfers by the Boston Early Music Festival, of which he is co-director. He was one of the conductors on the album, which also features Christel Thielman, Eastman assistant professor of conducting, and alumni Avi Stein and Zachary Wilder, according to Eastman.

Former Child Prodigy Does Christmas
(MidWeek.com © 12/10/2014)

That short conversation began nearly four decades of acquaintance with Craig Young, who was once a child piano prodigy in Hawaii. Our paths crossed again in the late 70s at our old alma mater, where he was a music teacher, and I taught history and coached basketball.

I’m sure the thought crossed his mother’s mind at the time that Craig could well be the next Beethoven or Liberace of our time. The boy wonder widened his professional repertoire with a different instrument when he was 15 years old. He won another solo spot accompanied by the symphony this time as a violinist playing Lalo Eduards Symphonie Espagnole, Op. 21. While other 16-year-olds were building transistor radios and jet-propelled gas planes with ready-made kits, this musical sensation was building an audience as he was brought back to perform a standard classical repertoire, Grieg Piano Concerto, written by one of the leading Romantic-era composers, the late Edvard Hagerup Grieg of Norway.

He received his masters in piano performance at University of Colorado and earned his undergraduate degree in music at Eastman School of Music, Rochester University in New York, where he studied under internationally renowned violinist, the late Zvi Zeitlin.

Calvin Oratorio Society will present ‘Messiah’

(Holland Sentinel 12/03/2014)

The Calvin Oratorio Society will be presenting Handel’s “Messiah” at the Calvin College Covenant Fine Arts Center at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5, and Saturday, Dec.6. These will be the first performances with the society’s new conductor, Sean Ivory. Also joining the performance will be guest soloists: Lisa Walhout, soprano; Sarah Ponder, mezzo-soprano; Zachary Wilder, tenor; and Paul Max Tipton, bass.

A performer in opera, early, and modern music, tenor Zachary Wilder came to love Baroque music while an undergraduate at Eastman School of Music. He received his Master’s from the University of Houston and was a Tanglewood Music Festival Fellow (2008), and Lorraine Hunt-Lieberson Fellow at Emmanuel Music.