We’re Going to Brag (But Just a Little)

So—most of you reading this know that Polyphonic.org is an initiative of the Institute for Music Leadership at the Eastman School of Music, and some of you also know that our site is funded by Paul R. Judy, a philanthropist and former CEO of A. G. Becker, an investment banking firm. But, only a small number of you are familiar with the Paul R. Judy Center for Applied Research. If you follow the link you will see that the Center’s research and programming emphasizes the 21st century evolution of the innovative ensemble i.e., ensembles influenced by both the symphony orchestra and the chamber music traditions, with a focus on creative, artist-centered groups that reflect new models of artistic innovation, organizational relationships and operational sustainability.

This year our energy has been focused on two central initiatives, and we have some news to share.

1. The Paul R. Judy Center is very pleased to be collaborating with Chamber Music America to present a pre-conference workshop at the CMA National Conference in January 2015 in New York City.  The pre-conference day, scheduled for Thursday, January 15, 2015 at the Westin Hotel will include presentations and discussion focused on the theme of  “How to Succeed in a Changing Musical World.” Topics will include technology, marketing, branding, collaborative projects, and more, offering attendees insights and ideas that they can take back home and apply to their careers. To view the full schedule, click here.

In addition, after a full day of stimulating sessions, participants are invited to join us for a reception at Etcetera, Etcetera, 352 W. 44th Street, from 5:30pm-7:30pm.  $10 per person – limited to pre-conference day participants.  Register for all Chamber Music America National Conference events here.

2. The Center’s first grant cycle has come to a close. We received a very impressive group of 64 proposals from ensembles and individuals.  A total of nearly $20,000 was given to ten projects, which were evaluated on the following criteria:

  • how well the project related to “innovative ensembles;”
  • the project quality and creativity;
  • the feasibility of the project;
  • the type of items requested for funding; and
  • how well the proposal followed the guidelines.

The projects that were awarded grants represent an extraordinary amount of diversity; well established innovative ensembles are included alongside relative newcomers, musical styles range from contemporary music to baroque music to gamelan, several projects focus on new works including works by women composers, and projects are spread across new initiatives, research projects, and events.

Below is the list of ten projects that were awarded funds through the Paul R. Judy Center Grant Program:

New Initiative Category

  • Alarm Will Sound  Alarm System, a new initiative comprised of workshops and performances featuring collaborations with composers outside of conventional classical music networks
  • International Contemporary Ensemble  OpenICE, a new international initiative offering free programming in three major areas: Live Concerts, Online Innovation, and Education

Research Category

  • Gamelan Dharma Swara A new research project studying the current operational, programming, and funding models of gamelan groups and similar ensembles
  • Daniel S. Isbell  A new research project – Musical Code-Switching: Musical Interactions in Alternative Music Ensembles
  • John Pippen  A new research project studying artistic innovation, organizational structure, and operational sustainability in three new music ensembles

Event Support Category

  • Hotel Elefant speakOUT spring 2015 concert featuring works written by female composers
  • New Vintage Baroque  A trio of concerts in the 2014-15 season exploring the theme of “Vice”
  • Third Coast Percussion March, 2015 performance at Constellation in Chicago, featuring the premiere of three new percussion quartets

Proposals for the second year of the grant cycle will be due September 1, 2015. Guidelines will be posted soon at www.esm.rochester.edu/iml/prjc/poly/prjcenter.

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Ramon Ricker

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