ROCHESTER, NY — March 20th becomes “Music for All Day” again this year when more than 40 student chamber music ensembles from the Eastman School of Music perform in city, private, and suburban schools around the greater Rochester area.
This is the second year in a row that a specific day has been set aside for the classroom performances, and 46 Eastman chamber ensembles — including instrumental trios, string quartets, woodwind quintets, and brass quintets — are scheduled to play and talk to elementary and middle school children throughout the day. The performances, each of which features a different program, will take place in Rochester City Schools, as well as in the Penfield, Pittsford, and West Irondequoit School Districts.
” ‘Music For All’ prepares students to create and perform programs that will actively engage any type of audience,” says program coordinator David Beauchesne, who works closely with the acclaimed Ying Quartet, Eastman’s quartet-in-residence, to make the day happen. “A performance is truly effective when the musicians are able to communicate both musically and verbally with their audience.”
Created in 1995 as part of the Eastman Initiatives, the “Music For All” program is designed to teach students the skills necessary to bring music to people in the community. Each of the School’s chamber music students are required to participate in the program and to present several performances each year in the Rochester community.
“Musicians today must be willing to adapt their methods of delivering music to the audience’s changing needs and lifestyles,” said Timothy Ying, co-chair of Eastman’s chamber music department. “They need to be prepared for a wide range of performing situations — both in and out of the concert hall. Our goal is to help Eastman students develop the flexibility and skills needed to create their own performing opportunities, while bringing live music to the community. It’s a win-win situation.”
In addition to performing in schools, student ensembles also play in area hospitals, senior citizen residences, and for civic organizations. After “Music for All Day,” each of the 46 groups will present a program in a different community setting between late March and early April.