Michael is Music Director of the Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra and Sharon Community Chamber Orchestra in Massachusetts. He regularly teaches young students in orchestral settings and conducts Oliver Ames High School orchestras in Easton and Sharon Community Chamber Youth Orchestra. Since moving to the United States Michael performed with the Alabama Symphony, Boston Lyric Opera, and Boston Classical Orchestra. Michael Korn has appeared as a soloist with orchestras throughout the former Soviet Union, in Israel, Europe, Africa, and the US. He also founded the critically-acclaimed Chagall Trio, “String Summit,” the first chamber music festival for youth in Alabama, and now is organizing a new chamber music festival in Easton, Massachusetts.Read More
Bill Cahn was a long-time member of the Rochester Philharmonic, and a founding member of NEXUS, a Toronto-based percussion ensemble. Bill has written for Polyphonic in the past, about the use of improvisation in performances and educational programs, and about the impact of social and economic issues on music and the arts. He is the author of ”Creative Music Making,” and teaches a course of the same name at music schools and conservatories. Bill shares with us some of his insights from his most recent course, particularly around the issue of listening and the lack of any formal training for most music majors on HOW to listen.
Bill proposes three levels of listening, describes each in detail, and suggests that the “ideal scenario” is to have all three listening levels at work during an ensemble’s performance.
On March 1, a group of more than 30 California Lithuanians gathered at the Los Angeles Walt Disney Concert Hall for an evening of Mozart, Stravinsky and Beethoven. They unfurled a Lithuanian flag on the steps in honor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s recently-appointed Assistant Conductor, Lithuanian Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. The 29-year-old conductor has impressed Los Angeles audiences and music critics since her debut concert in August 2014 at the Hollywood Bowl and continues to do so.
Alexandra Kudukis interviewed the new Maestra for Draugas News, an English-language Lithuanian newspaper.
Reprinted by permission of Draugas News.Read More
The Yale School of Music held its fifth Symposium on Music in the Schools on June 5 & 6, 2015 in New Haven to explore the role of music partnerships. Associate Dean Michael Yaffe invited Polyphonic to attend the opening day session on June 6th, to which New Haven public music school teachers were also invited. 39 partnership programs from across the country also participated, 25 (64%) of which involved a partnership with a symphony orchestra or opera company. The charge of the symposium was to consider ” Why” — to ensure that we have a strong case for the value of music education.Read More
(With apologies to Frederick Delius and in the full understanding that his “Paradise Garden” was actually a seedy country pub.)Read More
For the past 14 years, Polly Kahn has served as Vice President for Learning & Leadership Development at the League of American Orchestras, where she oversaw the League’s artistic, learning, and leadership development programs and services, including the Orchestra Leadership Academy, Emerging Leaders Program, National Conference, Getty Education and Community Investment Grants, Music Alive new music program, constituent services, programs for emerging orchestra executives, online learning, and self-assessment tools for orchestras. Prior to her time with the League, Polly was Director of Education at the New York Philharmonic, and worked in education positions at the 92nd Street Y and Lincoln Center.
As Polly prepared to step down from her position at the League, she wrote a wonderful piece for Symphony magazine, which I featured on Polyphonic a few months ago. She described many of the ongoing symphonic community engagement programs around the country, and spoke with such an optimistic voice.
I asked Polly to write something for Polyphonic, reflecting on her many years working in our industry in so many areas. The article she wrote is deeply personal, raises some difficult questions, but beautifully describes the passion that brought us all to our professions.
–Ann Drinan, January 12, 2015Read More
John R. Beck is a percussionist, faculty member at the UNC School of the Arts in Winston-Salem, NC, and President of the Percussive Arts Society (PAS). Earlier this year, John wrote an article that was published in “Rhythm Scene,” the PAS newsletter. In the article, Beck discusses recent experiments that aim to measure sound levels in various musical environments, and provides information on earplug effectiveness and options. Ultimately, he calls for percussionists and all musicians to be proactive about their hearing health, and provides some useful links for additional resources.Read More
Below is a thoughtful and informative article by Eastman School of Music Director of Admissions Matthew Ardizzone (not pictured!) on why college rankings “get his goat.” He also provides advice for prospective students as they think about which college/university/conservatory may be the best fit for them. This article first appeared on the Eastman School of Music Admissions Blog, and is reprinted here with permission.Read More
In the article below, New Bedford Symphony Orchestra Education Director Terry Wolkowicz summarizes the yearlong educational program that was undertaken by the NBSO this year. The orchestra’s innovative education program aimed to go beyond simply presenting children’s concerts of classical music, and to integrate classical music within the academic curriculum – creating synergies and connections for students and teachers. It sounds like it was a great success!Read More
Michael Drapkin’s recent article “The Commoditization of Orchestra Musicians” seems to have struck a nerve and promoted lively debate. We have since found an article which discusses the commoditization issue in the context of orchestra labor disputes. In addition, we learned of some recent scholarly research that seems relevant to this topic. Below we have provided links to all of these articles as well as excerpts from each. What is your reaction to this topic? We want to hear from you – do you think an orchestra musician is a commodity?Read More