February 21, 2020

More Information:
For Media Inquiries: Eastman Public Relations and Social Media Coordinator: Katey Padden (585-274-1052,

Empire Film and Media Ensemble posterGather ‘round to hear some tales of magic and explore distant lands of creatures that you’ve never seen before. Come enjoy some plots that only authors can contrive, as we play scores to pictures and deliver a Story Time LIVE. Featuring Empire Film and Media Ensemble (EFaME), Story Time LIVE will take place Sunday, March 1, 2020 at 2 p.m. at the Strong Museum of Play, in the newly renovated Paychex Theatre, here in Rochester.

In EFaME’s newest production, Story Time LIVE, a live orchestra will perform musical settings of three classic children’s novels, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, and The Hobbit. In each work, a live narrator will tell a short story in which our heroes and heroines will traverse obstacles that only the bravest can overcome. Projection, lights, and a full orchestra will immerse you into these tales and give life to these magnificent stories.

Story Time Live features the wonderfully talented soprano, Julia Fedor (BM19) and Professor James VanDemark (Professor of Bass at the Eastman School of Music) as the Narrator, conducted by Grant O’Brien (BM19), with music composed by Eastman Professor Mark Watters, Director of the Beal Institute for Film Music and Contemporary Media.

This performance was made possible by contributions from Eastman’s Beal Institute.

Empire Film and Media Ensemble is an artistic collective that is dedicated to the production and performance of music and live to picture media. The Ensemble has performed as a part of The Little Theater’s One Take Film Festival and partnered with institutions like WXXI Classical 91.5, The Little Cafe, Eastman’s Beal Institute of Film Music and Contemporary Media, and the Strong Museum of Play. Empire is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

This performance is open to the public. Those who do not subscribe as members of the museum must purchase a general admission ticket for entry.

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About Eastman School of Music: 

The Eastman School of Music was founded in 1921 by industrialist and philanthropist George Eastman (1854-1932), founder of Eastman Kodak Company. It was the first professional school of the University of Rochester. Mr. Eastman’s dream was that his school would provide a broad education in the liberal arts as well as superb musical training. The current dean is Jamal Rossi, appointed in 2014.

More than 900 students are enrolled in the Collegiate Division of the Eastman School of Music—about 500 undergraduates and 400 graduate students. They come from almost every state, and approximately 23 percent are from other countries. They are taught by a faculty comprised of more than 130 highly regarded performers, composers, conductors, scholars, and educators. They are Pulitzer Prize winners, Grammy winners, Emmy Winners, Guggenheim Fellows, ASCAP Award recipients, published authors, recording artists, and acclaimed musicians who have performed in the world’s greatest concert halls. Each year, Eastman’s students, faculty members, and guest artists present more than 900 concerts to the Rochester community.