The Eastman School of Music will present two concerts to celebrate longtime conducting and composition faculty member and Eastman alumnus Sydney Hodkinson’s 80th birthday. The concerts will consist of an array of works by Hodkinson and repertoire that complements his compositions, performed by the Eastman Wind Ensemble and Musica Nova.
The first concert, at 8 p.m. Monday, Nov. 3, in Kodak Hall, will feature both ensembles. Musica Nova will perform Hodkinson’s Some Assembly Required and Chamber Concerto by Gyorgy Ligeti, a composer who was one of Hodkinson’s biggest inspirations, according to Musica Nova conductor Brad Lubman. This concert will also feature Hodkinson’s Symphony No. 10 played by the Eastman Wind Ensemble under the direction of Mark Davis Scatterday. “Professor Hodkinson was a very intense teacher, and had a lot of positive influence on my career as a conductor,” said Scatterday.
On Wednesday, Nov. 5, at 8 p.m. the Eastman Wind Ensemble returns to Kodak Hall to perform Hodkinson’s Symphony No. 10 . The program also includes Dahl’s Concerto for Saxophone and Meyerowitz’s Three Comments on War and will also be conducted by Scatterday.
Both concerts are free and open to the public. Hodkinson will be visiting Eastman during the celebration, attending rehearsals and the Monday evening concert and presenting a composition symposium.
Hodkinson has written over 250 works covering a vast range of genres: educational pieces; a variety of chamber music, including six string quartets; a prolific output of choral, operatic and vocal music; and large orchestral canvases, with concerti for English Horn, voice, violin, and clarinet.
His work Monumentum Pro Umbri , for winds, was awarded the 2004 Audience Prize and second place in from the International Harmonie Composition Contest of Harelbeke, Belgium. He has received awards from the National Institute of Arts and Letters, Guggenheim Foundation, the Canada Council, The National Endowment for the Arts, International Congress of Jeunesses Musicales, Danforth Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1934, Hodkinson receive his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at the Eastman School of Music. He continued his composition studies at the Princeton Seminars with Elliott Carter, Roger Session, and Milton Babbitt. He received his Doctoral of Musical Arts Degree from the University of Michigan in 1968. He joined the faculty of the Conducting and Ensembles Department of the Eastman School of Music in 1973, assuming directorship of the Eastman Musica Nova Ensemble and later the Kilbourn Orchestra. In addition to serving as chair of the conducting and ensembles department, Hodkinson became a professor of composition in 1995. Upon his retirement from Eastman in January 1999, he was named Professor Emeritus of conducting and ensembles.
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