Peabody Magazine Spring 2016 Peabody Magazine Vol. 10, No. 2

Page 1



Spring 2016 Vol. 10 No. 2

4 Pillars, 8


and the

Future of Peabody


An Action-Packed Autumn and

Fertile Ground

Not many 12-year-olds create piano scholarships.

Truitt Sunderland has started something. When the young Blue Jays fan learned of the death of freshman lacrosse player Jeremy Huber, he asked his friends to donate to Hopkins in Huber’s name. And since Jeremy loved to play the piano as well as lacrosse, the funds were used to start a piano scholarship to help students attend the Peabody Institute. Inspired by this generosity, Hopkins donors are adding their own funds, aiming to raise $100,000. Gifts of every amount are needed to reach this goal — and to create new scholarships at Peabody and across the university. Being 12 is not a requirement for giving.

Are you ready to help our students? Be inspired by Truitt Sunderland.


4 Pillars, 8 Caryatids, and the Future of Peabody by Sarah Hoover Drawing upon our forwardthinking founding as we vault into the 21st century.


An Action-Packed Autumn



Springwell’s Resident Musician Dean’s Incentive Grants Make Debut Promoting Peace Headliners Peabody Welcomes New Senior Associate Dean Task Forces are at Work on Peabody’s Future At the Forefront of Music and Medicine A Partnership Takes Shape in El Paso In Memoriam: Raymond E. Robinson Music’s Healing Bond Peabody Today Launched on WBJC Maestro Murai’s Lasting Legacy Faculty Retirements





Starobin Shines as Performer, Producer, and Educator


Fertile Ground by Samantha Buker New classical ensembles are taking root across Baltimore.

Cover illustration by Richard Mia ABOUT THE PEABODY INSTITUTE OF THE JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY Located in the heart of Baltimore’s Mount Vernon Cultural District, the Peabody Institute was founded in 1857 as America’s first academy of music by philanthropist George Peabody. Today, Peabody boasts a preeminent faculty, a nurturing, collaborative learning environment, and the academic resources of one of the nation’s leading universities, Johns Hopkins. Through its degreegranting Conservatory and its community-based Preparatory music and dance school, Peabody trains musicians and dancers of every age and at every level, from small children to seasoned professionals, from dedicated amateurs to winners of international competitions. Each year, Peabody stages nearly 100 major concerts and performances, ranging from classical to contemporary to jazz, many of them free—a testament to the vision of George Peabody.



Class Notes Melding Music, Culture, and History At Home in Geneva



Grateful for Scholarship Support Unrestricted Annual Fund Donors: Unsung Heroes Friedberg Hall Set to Undergo Extensive Renovations Showing Their Loyalty Paris Leaves Restructured PNAC Positioned for Growth

FROM THE DEAN have matriculated to Peabody and other college-level programs — some through our Baltimore Scholars Program, which provides full scholarships to qualified city residents. We are also exploring a series of ideas to attract and nurture more diversity in our Conservatory student population. Along with the other divisions of Johns Hopkins University, Peabody has begun work on a three-year faculty diversity plan. Unconscious bias training has been provided for all members of search committees for faculty and administrative positions. A diversity advocate will be appointed to each search committee as well. It is important to note that as we continue to increase our engagement in the Baltimore community, we will build and strengthen genuine connections between Peabody and different local communities. This is critical because diversity is not an issue separate from the notion of developing new audiences for classical music. In order to expand audiences to be more diverse, we need more diversity in our performers. And to see more diversity on our stages, the talent has to be found early and nurtured in places like Peabody. This is a lengthy and difficult process, but one which we are committed to pursuing. Peabody has recently established the Diversity Pathway Task Force comprising faculty, staff, students, and alumni. Their charge is to examine Peabody’s current state of diversity with a focus on

underrepresented communities and to establish a long-term plan that addresses the diversity pipeline for students, faculty, and staff, and, in doing so, to foster an ongoing conversation about diversity at Peabody and in the world of classical music. In establishing the Diversity Pathway Task Force at this time, there is an opportunity to intersect with the other task forces that have been recently charged with reimagining curriculum, ensembles, and faculty governance at Peabody (see p. 8 for more). Last spring, in the wake of the unrest in Baltimore, a number of community conversations at Peabody addressed issues of race. While sometimes painful, the conversations were honest and necessary. We intend to continue those conversations as we move forward with other initiatives. Given Peabody’s long and, at times, uneven history when it comes to providing an open and welcoming environment, I believe we have an extra obligation to be both serious and unwavering in our commitment to do all we can in the short term to broaden our diversity and to commit ourselves in the long term to being part of the solution for the larger classical music world. I welcome all members of the Peabody community to this important conversation.

Editorial Staff


Peabody National Advisory Council 2015–16

Margaret Bell, Communications Specialist

Leap Day Media Kristen Cooper, Owner 410-458-9291

Liza Bailey Rheda Becker Paula Boggs Barbara Bozzuto Laifun Chung Richard Davison Larry Droppa Leon Fleisher Sandra Levi Gerstung Nancy Grasmick Taylor A. Hanex Sandra Hittman Allan D. Jensen Christopher Kovalchick Abbe Levin Jill E. McGovern Mark J. Paris, chair

Dean Fred Bronstein

Peabody Friends, With recent developments around issues of diversity and inclusion at college campuses across the country, I wanted to take this opportunity to discuss Peabody’s approach in this area. In light of the historic lack of diversity in our industry, it is clear that we must create a continuum of finding and nurturing young artists of color. We have started to do this in programs like the Preparatory’s Tuned-In, which provides training to Baltimore City schoolchildren, and from which students



Lauren Crewell, Digitial Communications Specialist Sue DePasquale, Consulting Editor Ben Johnson, Design and Publications Specialist Debbie Kennison, Director of Constituent Engagement, Alumni Section Editor Will Kirk, Contributing Photographer Tiffany Lundquist, Director of Marketing and Communications Carin Morrell, Preparatory Communications Coordinator



Peabody Magazine is published twice during the academic year. Send us your questions and comments: Peabody Magazine Communications Office 1 East Mount Vernon Place Baltimore, MD 21202 410-234-4525

Christine Rutt Schmitz Solomon H. Snyder David Tan Shirley S.L. Yang

Emeritus Members Pilar Bradshaw Tony Deering Hilda Perl Goodwin Benjamin H. Griswold IV Turner B. Smith

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Julien Xuereb plays for fellow residents of Springwell Senior Living.

Springwell’s Resident Musician In the lobby of Springwell Senior Living, nestled among groups of chairs and tables and gracious windows overlooking the woods, sits a young guy practicing scales on the guitar. Julien Xuereb (MM ’15, Guitar/ Pedagogy) lives just upstairs in the Mount Washington retirement community. As Springwell’s inaugural artist-in-residence, Mr. Xuereb performs during dinners and happy hours, gives concerts, plays for residents in their rooms, and holds his lobby practice sessions in exchange for a two-room apartment, rent-free. Meanwhile, he is earning his GPD under Guitar Department Chair Julian Gray. “I have one foot in school and another foot in a professional environment. It’s what school should be,” Mr. Xuereb says. “I’m not just learning music; I’m learning how to be a musician.” The arrangement started last June, after Springwell administrators became interested in hosting a 4


young person who would contribute to its music-loving community of residents. They wanted someone with talent, of course, but also someone who would fit in, who had a “good heart for the elderly,” and who would become part of the community, says Phil Golden, Springwell’s director. “Julien has gone above and beyond,” Mr. Golden says. Mr. Xuereb, who has been awarded a Dean’s Incentive Grant to replicate this model of community connectivity, says he gets more from the experience than he bargained for too. Performing on stage used to feel intimidating, but living at Springwell — where he performs, one way or another, every day — has melted his nerves away. “Now performing is just part of who I am. It’s made the extraordinary ordinary,” he says. It also gives him time and inspiration to work on new music and bring out his composer side. “It’s quiet here; time stops,” he notes. And it’s expanded his repertoire — while he

leans toward classical originals and music he’s never heard, many residents prefer the familiar and popular. So he’s obliged their taste by learning some Gershwin and playing Christmas carols around the holidays — and meanwhile discovered that at least one initially disinterested resident now listens at his door while he practices classical works. Mr. Xuereb is so happy with the experience that he hopes to renew the agreement for another year. “It gives a lot of meaning to my practice because I get to try it out on stage right away,” he says. “It’s not like practicing for a recital or exam; it has a different purpose, and it makes more sense. You know why you wake up and play scales. I know that my music impacts people’s lives.” —— Rachel Wallach Watch WBAL’s coverage of Mr. Xuereb and Springwell:

Dean’s Incentive Grants Make Debut What do virtual reality, hip-hop music, and research on Parkinson’s disease have in common? All three are the subjects of proposals selected for funding under the new Dean’s Incentive Grants, announced in January. Created to foster innovation, interdisciplinary initiatives, and community connectivity — three of the four pillars of the Dean’s Breakthrough Plan — the grants offer up to $15,000 for faculty-led initiatives and up to $5,000 for student-led initiatives. Faculty trumpeter Joe Burgstaller’s proposal, titled “Virtual Reality at Peabody,” aims to give prospective students, parents, and others the on-stage and in-studio Peabody experience using immersive, interactive virtual reality technology. “Using this technology, a student considering Peabody could sit between teacher and student during a private lesson, join their section in a large ensemble or chamber music rehearsal, or observe a master class as if they were a participant, even if they are unable to make the trip to campus,” says

Mr. Burgstaller. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to explore the potential VR technology might have for Peabody and feel it speaks volumes as to the forward-thinking nature of our industry-leading institution.” Research into the impact of music lessons on the well-being of patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease forms the interdisciplinary core of a project by Zane Forshee (MM ’01, GDP ’03, DMA ’11, Guitar). Dr. Forshee, chair of the Preparatory’s Guitar Department, and co-investigators, including multi-degree students Shane Coughlin and Jonathan Mo, will test the hypothesis that Parkinson’s patients participating in a guitar-strumming class twice a week for six weeks will demonstrate significant improvement in quality of life and functional movement. A new two-credit course studying the music, the masters, and the culture of hip-hop will also receive funding. To be offered beginning in the fall 2016 semester, Hip-Hop Music Production History and Practice will be taught by Kevin Gift,

a classically trained pianist with a Master of Music from Northwestern, who also performs and produces hiphop under the name Wendel Patrick. Louna Dekker-Vargas, a double-degree undergraduate flutist, and faculty member David Smooke proposed the project as a way to expand the Peabody curriculum and build bridges between communities. A total of seven grants were awarded during this cycle, including a research project analyzing creativity by comparing the differences between on-the-spot and prepared improvisation, development of an interactive orchestral education concert that teaches young audiences listening strategies based on cognitive science, the creation of a pilot program placing Peabody students in residential senior/retirement communities (expanding on Julien Xuereb’s work at Springwell, see p. 4), and development of a student string ensemble whose performances will take place exclusively in community venues. —— Tiffany Lundquist

Promoting Peace Ninety student musicians sat on the stage patiently waiting to begin. It wasn’t Peabody Youth Orchestra Music Director Harlan Parker wielding the baton, however, and they weren’t in Peabody’s Friedberg Hall. On October 24, 2015, the Peabody Youth Orchestra performed at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts’ Verizon Hall in Philadelphia, with internationally renowned composer/conductor Johan de Meij leading the ensemble. The performance was a part of a 70th anniversary celebration of the United Nations presented by Harmony for Peace Foundation. The foundation, launched in 2009 to promote world peace through music, often welcomes renowned performers and peace advocates as

well as children’s performing groups and choirs, according to Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter. The Preparatory’s Peabody Youth Orchestra was invited to perform two of Mr. de Meij’s works, which he conducted himself. Among the works were “Gandalf,” the first movement from Symphony No. 1, “The Lord of the Rings,” arguably Mr. de Meij’s most famous work. Dr. Parker did step on stage to lead the ensemble in “Jupiter: the Bringer of Jollity” from The Planets by Gustav Holst. The Peabody Youth Orchestra was also joined on stage by the Harmony for Peace musicians. “We were so honored Johan de Meij invited us to perform at the UN70 Peace Concert,” says Dr. Parker. “For our young musicians to perform at

Johan de Meij and Harlan Parker

the Kimmel Center — on a stage where so many great musicians have performed — and to do it under the baton of Johan de Meij, that’s such a wonderful opportunity.” Also performing during the concert were Chester County Youth Choir and Chorale, ChildrenSong of New Jersey, violinist Yeou-Cheng Ma, and pianist Gohei Nishikawa. —— Carin Morrell PEABODY SPRING 2016




Amit Peled, performing his Homage to Pablo Casals at Peabody on Founder’s Day, February 12, 2015

Jazz faculty artist



(PC ’89, Clarinet) was the recipient of the first Ann McDonald Baker Art Ventures Award. Created for the Community Foundation’s 25th anniversary, the $10,000 award celebrates “an extraordinary local artist whose work brings distinction to Northeast Florida.” Mr. Patterson is the founder and artistic director of the Ritz Chamber Players, a chamber orchestra composed of AfricanAmerican musicians that performs in Jacksonville and Atlanta in addition to educational outreach.


Faculty artist MARINA PICCININI, flute, appeared with worldrenowned conductor Leonard Slatkin and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra to give the world premiere of Pulitzer Prize–winner Aaron Jay Kernis’s Flute Concerto. An approximately 25-minute, fourmovement piece, the Flute Concerto is the latest work written specifically for the internationally acclaimed artist. The world premiere was held January 21. She also gave the New York state premiere of the piece with the Rochester Philharmonic in February.



bass, released The Distance, his third CD with ECM Records, in February. The CD features Mr. Formanek’s Ensemble Kolossus performing his original compositions. The ensemble performed in January in New York at the 2016 Winter Jazzfest at The New School. In November, Mr. Formanek toured Europe — with performances in Poland, Austria, and Italy — with the Decay ensemble, which includes Mr. Formanek; Tim Berne, alto saxophone; Ryan Ferreira, guitar; and Ches Smith, drums and percussion.

Faculty artist AMIT PELED, cello, was named one of 30 Professionals of the Year in Musical America’s December 2015 Special Report. Musical America asked its readers to nominate “key influencers” who made a difference through virtue of position, creativity, and dedication. The magazine focused on Mr. Peled’s Homage to Pablo Casals tour, which he began at Peabody when he recreated Mr. Casals’ concert from 100 years ago while playing the same 1733 Goffriller cello. Mr. Peled released his first recording on the recently restored Casals cello, performing the Schumann Cello Concerto with the Washington Chamber Orchestra.



(GPD ’11, MM ’14, Piano) received third prize in the International Telekom Beethoven Competition Bonn, an international competition held every other year in Bonn, Germany. Mr. Winkelmann studied under Leon Fleisher and is a founding member of the Sheridan Piano Trio, which was formed at the Ravinia Festival’s renowned Steans Music Institute. In April, the trio will appear with the New York Classical Players in the Martinu Triple Concerto.


When visiting the Peabody Institute for the first time last fall, Abra K. Bush says she was immediately taken with the physical splendor of the facility and its surrounding neighborhood. “It was quite striking to me,” she says. “Mount Vernon reminds me of parts of Boston, with its early American charm. I’m looking forward to being at Peabody for a long time.” Effective March 1, Dr. Bush will serve as senior associate dean of institute studies at Peabody. She most recently served as director of the music division at the Boston Conservatory. Prior to coming to Boston in 2013, Dr. Bush — a Columbus, Ohio, native and operatic soprano who holds a DMA from the Ohio State University School of Music — served as assistant dean of academic affairs and director of assessment at the Eastman School of Music. “I’ve watched Peabody since my undergraduate days at Oberlin,” she says. “It has always been on my radar. It’s one of the finest conservatories in America, and I’m excited to be part of the team moving it into the 21st century.” Dr. Bush will be in charge of bringing together the academic and applied areas of the institute, as well overseeing faculty and curriculum. In addition, she will lead the ongoing development and implementation of a reinvigorated model to make Peabody financially sustainable. She will also be charged with strengthening the relationship between the Conservatory and Preparatory. “Abra comes to Peabody with a keen understanding of the landscape facing conservatories today and the knowledge and skills to help shape and implement a vision for Peabody’s future,” says Dean Fred Bronstein. Dr. Bush says that Dean Bronstein’s vision for Peabody attracted her to the position. “The mission is to be


Peabody Welcomes New Senior Associate Dean

Abra K. Bush

the right hand of the dean in setting the vision of Peabody,” she says. “I’ll be manning the ship on a day-to-day basis and will drive that initiative.” Dr. Bush says that her objective is to help Peabody produce graduates who are not only versatile and high-caliber musicians but also professionals who can compete in today’s marketplace. “When they leave the Conservatory, we want to make sure that graduates have what’s required to be successful,” she says. “There’s more recognition today that your career will likely not be a full-time job but a collection of things you do.” Being adaptable to contemporary musical tastes is crucial, she says. “You have to innovate, but with integrity,” Dr. Bush says. “What we’re trying to do now is take responsibility for the students after they graduate and give them permission to explore what makes them unique as artists. That will help them define how their careers unfold.” —— Alan H. Feiler


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Task Forces are at Work on Peabody’s Future What specific skills in communication, audience development, programming, and community connectivity do Peabody students need to have mastered as they train to be citizen-artists of the future? And how can the learning of these skills be integrated into the work of every Peabody student? These questions are at the core of the work of the Peabody Curriculum for the Future Task Force, which began meeting in the fall and is expected to deliver its recommendations later in 2016. Similarly, the Reimagining Ensembles at Peabody Task Force is working through questions around the number, size, and composition of Peabody student ensembles, and how the ensemble program can be

Columbia Pro Cantare Frances Dawson, Director

Durufle: Requiem Sunday, March 13, 2016, 3 pm Donald Fries, organ Howard County Concert Orchestra Debussy: En Bateau Jacqueline Pollauf, harp Debussy: Beau Soir Laura Whittenberger, soprano Charles V. Stanford: Beati Quo Via; The Lord Is My Shepherd William Walton: Set Me as a Seal upon Thine Heart CPC Chamber Singers First Evangelical Lutheran Church 3604 Chatham Road Ellicott City, MD 21042 CPC joins the Columbia Orchestra, Jason Love, conductor, in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 (”Resurrection”) May 21, 2016 at 7:30 pm Jim Rouse Theatre, Columbia, MD Tickets must be ordered through The Columbia Orchestra Tickets & Information:



configured to give students the most relevant and meaningful performance opportunities in their time here, best preparing them for the wide variety of experiences they’ll likely encounter in professional life. The work of these task forces provides just two examples of Peabody’s continued strategic focus on excellence, innovation, interdisciplinary experiences, and community connectivity, the four pillars of Dean Fred Bronstein’s future-focused Breakthrough Plan. “The task forces now underway are central to the discussion around Peabody’s expanding vision for the future of professional music training,” notes Dean Bronstein. “This is an enormously exciting process and an opportunity for Peabody to engage in a deep conversation about where music as an art and profession is going, and how Peabody can lead in this conversation. At its core, this is about training musicians who will have the flexibility to be successful in a constantly changing environment.” It’s also about embracing the notion that conservatories today must see themselves as being in the audience development business. Dean Bronstein continues: “Growing and expanding audiences for the future requires a different kind of performer. In order to ensure the needed evolution of artists inhabiting our future performing organizations, whether they are in orchestras, opera companies, or in less conventional settings, the training that prepares them for these positions must also evolve. That’s where this discussion and Peabody’s leadership is so critical.” The work of reinvigorating Peabody and marrying its long history to a future vision that is holistic, innovative, inclusive, connected, and relevant — as outlined in the Breakthrough Plan — continues to

make progress on all fronts. Among its initiatives are several profiled throughout the pages of this magazine, including the awarding of Peabody’s first-ever Dean’s Incentive Grants designed to foster innovation in the work of our faculty and students (p. 5); the creation, working with Johns Hopkins Medicine, of a full-time faculty research position (p. 9); the launch of the Young Artist Development Series (p. 10); the launch of a new partnership with WBJC 91.5 FM (p. 13); and our collaboration with Yellow Barn Music Haul (p. 25). Considering the many developments now unfolding under the auspices of the Breakthrough Plan, Dean Bronstein concludes: “It is exciting to see the number of future-oriented initiatives that are now happening here, and the potential impact and implicit importance of these new directions. I am especially pleased that these task forces are engaging an unprecedented number of Peabody faculty — more than 50 — along with administration, students, alumni, and members of the Peabody National Advisory Council. The organic and inclusive nature of this work promises an excellent result for Peabody.” —— Tiffany Lundquist

Read more about the Dean’s Breakthrough Plan:

At the Forefront of Music and Medicine Peabody Institute faculty members have long been involved in teaching, research, and conference activities focused on the intersection between music and medicine. But the creation last fall of a one-year, full-time research faculty position to support health and wellness research marks the beginning of a new, sustained, and strategic approach to music and medicine at Peabody. Serap Bastepe-Gray (BM ’96, MM ’99, Guitar), a member of the Conservatory guitar faculty who also holds a Doctor of Medicine, has been appointed as the Institute’s first research faculty member in musician health and wellness. With the appointment, Dr. Bastepe-Gray will hold a secondary appointment in the Department of Neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Her research is focused on developing instrumentation and protocols for accurate upper extremity biomechanical assessments. The goals: to screen for occupational

Serap Bastepe-Gray

injuries in musicians and to facilitate development of evidence-based, return-to-play work-conditioning programs in musicians with playingrelated musculoskeletal and neurological disorders. “This is such a unique and tremendously exciting opportunity, both for me personally and for Peabody as an institution,” says Dr. Bastepe-Gray. “Through this partnership, we will have the capacity to field much-needed research and begin to develop truly evidence-based wellness education for performing artists.” With connections to both Peabody and the School of Medicine, the faculty research position is the first tangible outcome of an overarching Music and Medicine strategic planning process being led by Sarah Hoover, special assistant to the dean for innovation, interdisciplinary partnerships, and community initiatives. Other recent activities have included the convening of Peabody and Medicine faculty members engaged in interdisciplinary music/medicine research projects to facilitate greater collaboration and communication about current and future projects; plans to co-host MedChi’s annual Performing Arts Medicine forum on April 2, including presentations by Peabody and Medicine faculty; and exploratory conversations around several budding partnerships, including a proposed Center for Music and Medicine jointly overseen by Peabody and the Department of Neurology. “There is so much exciting potential for Peabody in this arena,” says Dr. Hoover. “With the creation of this research position and other efforts underway to strengthen our relationship with Johns Hopkins Medicine, Peabody is poised to be at the forefront of the field of performing arts medicine.” —— Tiffany Lundquist




A Partnership Takes Shape in El Paso Distinguished alumnus Zuill Bailey (MM ’94, Cello) has found a new way to give back to his alma mater. In gratitude, he says, for all that he learned from his teachers and mentors at Peabody, “in addition to subsequently living in environments filled with culture and the arts,” Mr. Bailey reached out to Dean Fred Bronstein last spring with an idea: to mentor Peabody Conservatory students through the Young Artist Development Series residency with his chamber music festival, El Paso Pro-Musica. A “beta test” for a violin and piano duo began taking shape over the summer, auditions took place in October, and master’s student Nikita Borisevich (GPD ’13, Violin; GPD ’15, Chamber Music) and doctoral student

Margarita Loukachkina (BM ’10, MM ’12, Piano), an established duo — who were wedded right after auditioning — were the unanimous choice. The two were in El Paso from November 12 to 18 to give multiple public school concerts, master classes, and performances at the University of Texas at El Paso; perform in programs at the El Paso Museum of Art and at two donor cultivation events; and make frequent media appearances. Throughout the week, they were coached by Mr. Bailey and Felipa Solis, El Paso Pro-Musica’s executive director. Unlike other young artist training programs, there was no critique of technique or musicianship but instead a focus on communication skills, audience engagement, and programming experimentation.

Ms. Loukachkina and Mr. Borisevich described the residency experience as “inspiring,” “thrilling,” and “perfect!” Mr. Bailey reported that they “transformed over the week. Ninety percent of performers try to be someone they’re not rather than sharing who they really are.” The duo say that they learned from watching Mr. Bailey on stage that sharing oneself is a powerful way to further artistic development and connect with audiences. “We learned how important it is to be the kind of people audiences want to see perform,” says Ms. Loukachkina. “Our teachers at Peabody do a fantastic job helping us learn to play our music at a high level. But in El Paso, we had the chance to learn how to be performers.” Next year’s partnership program will expand to include more Peabody students. Auditions will take place in late spring for a November residency. Says Mr. Bailey, “I hope to provide inspiration and support to a new generation of performers and show them how a life in music can serve and enrich lives, as well as engage communities to make music accessible to all.” —— Sarah Hoover Watch Mr. Borisevich and Ms. Loukachkina perform:



LEFT  Nikita Borisevich and Margarita Loukachkina are the first recipients of the Young Artist Development Series internship.


ABOVE  Ms. Loukachkina and Mr. Borisevich participated in musical outreach performances in schools and venues throughout the El Paso region. PEABODY SPRING 2016

In Memoriam:

Raymond E. Robinson (1932–2015) Former Peabody administrator Raymond E. Robinson died in October. He was 82 years old. From 1963 to 1969, he served as dean of the Conservatory, associate director, twice as acting director, director of summer sessions, acting head of the Music Education Department, and even took a stint being in charge of the Choral Department. His accomplishments included tripling the size of the Summer Sessions, expanding course offerings at the graduate level, and overseeing the construction of the dormitory complex. While in Baltimore, he also wrote his doctoral dissertation on the early history of Peabody, was the music critic for the Baltimore Evening Sun, and served on the board of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Dr. Robinson received a bachelor’s degree in music from San Jose State University and then earned a master’s degree in viola and a doctoral degree in music education at Indiana


Raymond E. Robinson

University. In 1969, he was elected president of Westminster Choir College in Princeton, N.J., where he served for 18 years. He joined the faculty of Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, Fla., in 1989, and served as music director and general manager of the Palm Beach Symphony. Dr. Robinson was an authority on Felix Mendelssohn, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Heinrich Schutz, and the author of 10 books.  Extensive Collection of Fine and Rare Violins, Violas, Cellos, Basses and Bows including great examples by Guadagnini, Storioni, Tononi, Gagliano, Vuillaume, Stainer, Testore, Postiglione, Oddone, Ornati, Bisiach, Antoniazzi, Sartory, Ouchard, Fetique, Morizot, Hill and more…

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Music’s Healing Bond FREE TO ALL SUNDAYS @3:30PM MAR 06, 2016

Vega Quartet

APR 24, 2016

Wonderlic Recital MAY 22, 2016

Alexandre Moutouzkine, piano


MAR 20, 2016


Featuring members of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra

The day after 10-year-old Madison Strempek found out her father was in jail, she showed up at the Peabody Preparatory, instrument in hand, for her violin lesson with Louise HildrethGrasso. It is these violin lessons that helped to pull Madison through her most difficult days, she writes in her new book, Everyone Makes Mistakes: Living with My Daddy in Jail. “Violin has helped me get through Daddy being in jail,” Madison writes. “Sometimes when Daddy calls from the jail, I’ll play the songs I’m working on for him. He loves it because he usually never hears me practice, so it makes him happy.” Playing the violin on the phone solidifies a unique bond between Madison and her father, who is a classical trumpet player. “You can send him letters, you can talk to him and try to make it easier for him to be in there, but the cool thing about music is she can play it through the phone, and he can hear a live performance,” says Robin Strempek, Madison’s mom. “He gives her advice about it. It’s like another language, another way to connect.”


Free Post-Concert Reception

MAY 01, 2016 JUN 12, 2016

For more information call 443.759.3309 All concerts take place at the Second Presbyterian Church, 4200 St. Paul St., Baltimore, MD Madison Strempek



Madison has now been taking lessons for six years with Ms. HildrethGrasso, who Madison says is “the most hilarious person on the planet.” She also attends Young People’s String Program group classes with Lenelle Morse and Lauren Rausch. An enthusiastic student and performer, Madison says she most looks forward to performing in recitals and getting to pick her own music. Ms. Strempek says the routine and structure of coming to violin lessons and practicing at home has helped Madison. “Never give up or stop what you’re doing, because then you go into your turtle shell and get depressed,” says Ms. Strempek. “There’s a lot of healing through being around people and doing the things you love, even in sad times.” Madison says she decided to write the book after her dad was imprisoned and she couldn’t find a book written on the topic by kids, for kids. Now available on Amazon, Everyone Makes Mistakes is a Top 100 book on Amazon. —— Carin Morrell


Peabody Today Launched on WBJC Maryland’s classical music station, WBJC 91.5 FM, has joined forces with the Peabody Conservatory to create a new broadcast series of faculty and student performances recorded live during the 2015–16 concert season. Peabody Today launched on November 28 with a live recording of the Peabody Singers under the direction of Edward Polochick performing works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Zoltán Kodaly. A second broadcast in early January featured the Peabody Renaissance Ensemble and Baltimore Baroque Band’s “In the Moon of Wintertime” program. “WBJC is such an important voice in this community, and it provides the perfect platform to showcase the performances of our world-class faculty artists and gifted student musicians,” notes Peabody Dean

Fred Bronstein. “We are proud to partner with WBJC in order to bring these exciting live recordings to a wider audience across the region.” “As a Peabody alum, it is extremely gratifying to begin this new and exciting level of collaboration,” notes

WBJC Program Director Jonathan Palevsky (MM ’86, Guitar). “I look forward to this year’s concerts and more in the years to come.” Upcoming broadcasts, which air at 6:00 pm on Saturdays on Mr. Palevsky’s Music in Maryland program, include faculty artists featured on this year’s Sylvia Adalman Chamber Series, slated to air in late April, and the Peabody Symphony Orchestra, slated to air in late May. Founded in 1951, WBJC is a public, noncommercial radio station that broadcasts a 24-hour-a-day schedule of classical music and arts information programming. Its 50,000-watt signal reaches more than 200,000 listeners weekly across Maryland, the District of Columbia, and portions of the surrounding states. —— Tiffany Lundquist




Maestro Murai’s Lasting Legacy




When Hajime Teri Murai, the Ruth Blaustein Rosenberg Director of Orchestral Activities, retires from active teaching at the end of the 2015–16 season, his legacy will include a generation of students who have reaped the rewards of his devotion to education, his insistence on quality and professionalism, and his passion for 20th-century symphonies. During more than 25 years at Peabody, the music director of the Peabody Symphony and Concert Orchestras earned nine awards from ASCAP for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. Linda Goodwin, executive director of ensemble operations, says Maestro Murai elevated the entire ensemble program during his time at Peabody. “He has a great way of getting students excited and engaged about a program because he’s so enthusiastic about it,” Ms. Goodwin says. Dariusz Skoraczewski (BM ’94, GPD ’96, Cello) remembers when Maestro Murai first arrived at Peabody. Immediately impressed by the new conductor’s focus on his students, Mr. Skoraczewski, now principal cellist for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, places Maestro Murai on the same level as many of the dozens of guest conductors he’s known over the years. “It was great exposure to a high-level, well-crafted conductor who will actually teach you how to play in an orchestra at the same time,” he says. It’s impossible to talk about Maestro Murai without mentioning Gustav Mahler. Works by Mahler introduce students to playing with more flexibility, to the give and take of tempo and dynamics, and Maestro Murai did not shy away from these complexities. When Marcia Kämper (BM ’98, GPD ’00, Flute) joined the Omaha Symphony, she realized how much

The 2015–16 academic year is seeing the retirement of several longtime faculty members at Peabody.

Hajime Teri Murai

she had gleaned from Maestro Murai’s interpretations — especially Mahler. “Playing for him was really eye-opening, because these pieces can go anywhere,” says Ms. Kämper, now second flute in the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. “Watching the conductor and being able to interpret what they want; that training helps tremendously.” From making himself available to students before and after rehearsals, to leaving candy on everyone’s music stand at Halloween, to bowing in greeting, Maestro Murai, in his understated way, shows enormous respect to his students, says master’s student Jeongmin Lee (BM ’14, Violin), the PSO's current concertmaster. “Teri Murai has dedicated most of his career to the training of young musicians — with great dedication, commitment, and integrity,” notes Peabody Dean Fred Bronstein. “We are most grateful to Maestro Murai for everything that he has done during his long career at Peabody.” Maestro Murai plans to spend the 2016–17 academic year on a leave of absence and will subsequently hold the honorary title of music director laureate. —— Rachel Wallach

With a combined 183 years of service — longer than the Peabody Institute has been in existence — these faculty artists leave an indelible impact on their peers, the institution, and most of all, their students.


An internationally renowned artist and pedagogue, VICTOR DANCHENKO graduated from the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied with David Oistrakh. His numerous awards include the gold medal in the Soviet National Competition and the Ysaye Gold Medal. He has been on the violin faculty since 1992. “Studying with Victor Danchenko was transformative to my approach of the bow. I learned to be artistic with my bow and not revert to comfortable patterns,” says Andréa Picard Boecker (MM ’08, Violin), Preparatory violin faculty artist and Young People’s String Program director. “This definitely translated into my teaching, as I am sure my students would testify that one of the things they hear most about from the very start is bow distribution. Mr. Danchenko contributed in many ways to my transition from being a student to becoming an independent-thinking and confident professional.”

At Peabody since 1997, GUSTAV MEIER has stepped down as director of the graduate conducting program, succeeded by one of his students — Marin Alsop, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. “It is an incredible honor to accept this baton from my colleague and friend, master teacher Gustav Meier,” Maestra Alsop says. “His commitment to shaping the talents of young musicians has been an inspiration to me.” Ken Lam (MM ’07, Conducting), music director of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, says: “I learned so much from him over the years, and I really owe everything that I do today to this incredible teacher and wonderful man.” Maestro Meier has also led orchestras around the world, and served as music director of the Greater Bridgeport Symphony in Connecticut and director of the Conductors Seminar at Tanglewood Music Center.

Reflecting upon his retirement, DONALD SUTHERLAND says: “For me, Peabody has always been about the students. Some of them might say that I gave a lot to them, but I would say that it was nothing compared to what they have given me.” He has been on the organ faculty for 40 years, where he served as coordinator of the program. In 1997, he was given the Excellence in Teaching Award by the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association. Mr. Sutherland was an active member of the American Guild of Organists and served three terms as national secretary. He is the music director emeritus at Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church in Bethesda, Maryland, where he served in the music ministry for 25 years.

SEBASTIAN VOGT taught German in the Humanities Department at Peabody for two decades. Chair of the Humanities Department Hollis Robbins says: “His profound understanding of the breadth and depth of German poetry is staggering.” Mr. Vogt says: “My 20 years at Peabody have been professionally the happiest years of my life; I have met many wonderful students and faculty from all over the world, and quite a few have become good friends. It has been a pleasure and a privilege to have been a part of this unique institution for so many years, and I will cherish the memory as long as I live.”


RAY CHESTER (BM ’73, Guitar), who studied at Peabody with Aaron Shearer, went on to serve on the guitar faculty for 40 years. He has published numerous transcriptions and articles on guitar and guitar ensemble techniques, and he commissioned numerous works for solo guitar and guitar ensemble. Junior Marcus Kramer, who studies with Mr. Chester, says: “Ray Chester is a man who should never be underestimated; his love and knowledge of the guitar is incomparable. During my lessons with Ray, he knew exactly how to allow me to learn with his guidance. His teachings have stuck with me and vastly improved my abilities as a guitarist and overall musician. Ray truly is a pedagogical master.”

MARIANNA BUSCHING has been a member of the voice faculty since 1991. A native of Minnesota, the mezzo-soprano has performed with virtually every major music organization in Washington, D.C., including the National Symphony and the Folger Consort. A former student, Jessica Abel (MM ’08, Voice/Pedagogy), says: “I always admired and appreciated Marianna’s unwavering confidence in the talents and potential of each one of her students. With warmth and nurturing, she gave us the tools and guidance to be our very best musical and personal selves. I grew immensely as a musician and singer thanks to her teaching, and I cherish many fond memories of my time in the studio with her.”

—— Margaret Bell PEABODY SPRING 2016


APPLAUSE FACULT Y Jazz percussion faculty artist Nasar Abadey was named Artist of the Year, Best Drummer, and Best Small Ensemble for Supernova in Washington City Paper’s “The Jazzies: D.C.’s Best Jazz in 2015.” Mr. Abadey was also featured in an article in CapitalBop, “Nasar Abadey: Supernova Spirit,” in December.


Faculty member Judah Adashi (MM ’02, DMA ’11, Composition) has been awarded an Exploration of Practical Ethics grant by the Johns Hopkins University Office of the Provost to compose a new work concerned with the unseen violence of solitary confinement in America. Dr. Adashi’s Sestina premiered at Carnegie Hall as part of the American Composers Orchestra’s SONiC Festival and was chosen by audience vote for broadcast on Q2 Music. Other composers included Viet Cuong (BM ’11, MM ’12, Composition).

Tonar Music announces the release of its fourth music publication in the Manuel Barrueco Collection, Bach’s Sonata No. 7 in G Major, BWV 1019, originally for violin and harpsichord, transcribed for three guitars by guitar faculty artist Manuel Barrueco (BM ’75, Guitar). The artist’s fingerings are included in this publication, which includes the score and three guitar parts. Peabody musicology faculty members Susan Weiss and Joshua Walden and alumnus Devon Borowski (MM ’15, Early Music Voice, Musicology) participated in the American Musicological Society conference in Louisville, Ky., in November. Drs. Weiss and Walden spoke on the panel “‘I Concentrate on You’: Contemplating the Music and Lyrics of Cole Porter.”




Musicology faculty member Douglas Buchanan (MM ’08, Composition, Music Theory Pedagogy; DMA ’13, Composition) conducted his first concert as artistic director of the Maryland Choral Society on December 13. He also presented a suite from his organ cycle Welkinharmonie as the featured organist in the National Cathedral’s organ recital series in Washington, D.C., in October. Faculty artist Joe Burgstaller performed as host and lead trumpet for the Malaysian Philharmonic’s Principal Brass Quintet. Mr. Burgstaller performed several solo concerts in China with the Qingdao Symphony Orchestra for its New Year’s Series. In September, Canadian figure skating champion Elladj Baldé won the gold medal at the Nebelhorn Trophy in Germany skating to the accompaniment of Mr. Burgstaller’s trumpet on Echoes of Harlem from his 2009 solo release, Mozart’s Blue Dreams. Author Lesléa Newman’s newest book, Ketzel, the Cat Who Composed, is based on the cat of former Composition Department Chair Morris Moshe Cotel (’62, Composition). In 1997, Mr. Cotel heard his cat, Ketzel, make her way down the keyboard of his piano. He wrote down what he heard — all 21 seconds of it! — and sent it in to a piano solo competition, where the work received an honorable mention. The book was published in October and has been named one of the 10 best Jewish children’s books of the year by Jewish Journal and Tablet magazine. In December, faculty member Thomas Dolby was featured in an article in The Baltimore Sun for his various ongoing projects in Baltimore, including a new music production workshop for Margaret Brent Elementary and Middle School students co-taught with producer Loren Hill. Students work toward finished compositions, some of which involve vocals recorded by themselves or their peers, with the goal of producing music videos at Station North’s new JHU/MICA Film Center. On October 17, faculty artist Julia Sheriff (BM ’12, Piano), piano and bicycle, and master’s student Robby Neubauer (BM ’15, Computer Music), electronics, performed Cycle Loops by

Ruby Fulton (DMA ’09, Composition) at SONiC Festival in the Machine Music: Acoustic & Robotic Instruments division at ShapeShifter Lab in Brooklyn, N.Y. Voice faculty artist Denyce Graves, mezzo-soprano, performed on September 23 in a concert honoring Pope Francis featuring the National Symphony Orchestra. She sang the role of Madeline Mitchell in composer Jake Heggie’s opera Three Decembers in Louisville, Ky., in November. Ms. Graves was also interviewed in Master Singers: Advice from the Stage, a book by Donald George. Master Singers provides vocalists making the transition from student to professional with indispensable singing advice. On the Threshold of Winter by Composition Department Chair Michael Hersch (BM ’95, MM ’97, Composition) was performed on October 30 at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music in Nashville, Tenn. A film of the 2015 production at the Peabody Conservatory, directed by James Matthew Daniel, is scheduled for release in spring/summer 2016. Mr. Hersch’s Carrion-Miles to Purgatory was premiered by Annette von Hehn, violin, and Stefan Heinemeyer, cello, on October 16 at the Library of Congress.

Peabody faculty member Lura Johnson (’01, Piano) and cellist Ilya Finkelshteyn, performing as Duo Baltinati, won second prize in chamber music in the 22nd International Johannes Brahms Competition in Pörtschach, Austria. The duo was selected out of 32 ensembles and 77 artists. On December 10, the American Studio Orchestra — with faculty artists Tim Murphy (BM ’79, MM ’85, Organ), piano and keyboards; Gary Thomas, saxophone and

flute; Alex Norris (PC ’90, Trumpet; BM ’90, Music Education), trumpet; and Blake Meister (BM ’08, Jazz Double Bass) — presented Pearls on a String, a multimedia piece in three parts, mirroring an exhibition at The Walters Art Museum.

The latest CD release by jazz trumpet faculty artist Alex Norris (PC ’90, Trumpet; BM ’90, Music Education), Extension Deadline, received 4.5 out of five stars in a review in DownBeat magazine. The album features Mr. Norris on trumpet with drummer Rudy Royston, saxophonist and Director of Jazz Studies Gary Thomas, and pianist-organist George Colligan. Humanities Department Chair Hollis Robbins published “African American Literature of the Gold Rush,” co-authored with Janet Neary, in a new volume, Mapping Region in Early American Writing. She also wrote an article, “The Literature of Lynching,” which ran in The Chronicle of Higher Education’s August issue of The Chronicle Review. Dr. Robbins presented a paper entitled “Lily Bart Goes to Alaska: Edith Wharton’s The House of Mirth in Financial Context” at the 2015 Society for the Study of American Women Writers conference in Philadelphia in November. Humanities faculty member Jelena Runić co-authored a journal article with Marija Runić titled “Strategies for Reducing L2 English Grammar Errors with L1 Chinese Writers,” which appeared in the Journal of Teaching English for Specific and Academic Purposes. Dr. Runić also gave a talk titled “Strong Pronouns in Slavic and Japanese” at the 11th European Conference on Formal Description of Slavic Languages at the University of Potsdam in Germany in December.

Peabody musicology faculty member Andrew Talle and Erik Helzer, assistant professor of management at Carey Business School, are among the first funding recipients in the JHU Exploration of Practical Ethics program with the project “Understanding the Ethics and Value of Higher Education: When Is Specialized Training ‘Worth It?’” Faculty member Dan Trahey (BM ’00, Tuba, Music Education) has been chosen by the Los Angeles Philharmonic to help develop three youth orchestras and teach low brass while continuing his existing roles at Peabody and OrchKids. The National Take a Stand orchestras — sponsored by the Longy School of Music, Bard College, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic — will work with students from underserved communities and will take place at Bard College, the Aspen Music Festival, and Walt Disney Concert Hall. Musicology faculty member Joshua Walden’s new book, The Cambridge Companion to Jewish Music, was published by Cambridge University Press. His book Sounding Authentic: The Rural Miniature and Musical Modernism won the Association for Recorded Sound Collections Award for Excellence in Historical Research in Classical Music: Discography. Dr. Walden also received a 2015 ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Award for his 2014 article “The ‘Yidishe Paganini’: Sholem Aleichem’s Stempenyu, the Music of Yiddish Theatre, and the Character of the Shtetl Fiddler,” published in the Journal of the Royal Musical Association.

STUDENTS Peabody computer music students, faculty, and alumni were featured at the 2015 International Computer Music Conference at the University of North Texas this fall. Among the performed pieces were works by Joshua Armenta (MM ’14, Composition; MM ’15, Computer Music), master’s student Yi-an Hwang, and Ivan Voinov (’15, Computer Music; Recording Arts and Sciences) and Wuan-Chin Li (MM ’99, Computer Music). Members of the department presented a paper entitled

“Peabody Computer Music: 48 Years of Looking to the Future” written by Director of Computer Music Geoffrey Wright (MM ’81, DMA ’92, Composition), faculty members Greg Boyle and Joshua Armenta, master’s student Ryan Woodward, and alumna Sunhuimei Xia (MM ’14, Computer Music). GPD student Zoe Band (BM ’12, MM ’14, Voice) placed second in the 2015 Wonderlic Voice Competition and performed alongside Dawn Upshaw at Tanglewood Music Center. Ms. Band currently studies under William Sharp. GPD violin student Alan Choo (MM ’14, Early Music, Violin) and master’s piano student Hengyue Lin worked with five Peabody composition students and alumni on SG Inspirations, a new music initiative to celebrate Singapore’s 50th anniversary. The composers were alumni Zhangyi Chen (MM ’11, DMA ’15, Composition; MM ’15, Music Theory Pedagogy) and Wynne Fung (MM ’15, Composition) and students Jun An Chew, Kok Jun Phang, and Yuting Tan.

John Thomas Dodson (MM ’83, Conducting) and Executive and Education Director Yolanda Borrás (BM ’85, Piano). DMA candidates Yonatan Grinberg, violin, and Sarah Lowenstein (BM ’08, MM ’10, Viola), along with Andrea Grinberg, cello, have created the Chamber Encounters Concert Series at the Peggy and Yale Gordon Center for Performing Arts.

Edwin Huet (BM ’15, Computer Music), a recording arts and computer music master’s student studying with Geoffrey Wright, won the third award in the Luigi Russolo International Sound Art Competition in Barcelona for his work Meridian. As part of the prize, the piece will appear on a compilation CD from the competition. Senior percussionist Ji Su Jung, a student of Robert van Sice, won second prize in the PercussiveLinz International Marimba Competition at the Bruckner Conservatory in Austria.

The Vice City Brass, a quintet featuring master’s trumpet student David Deshler, released its first CD, I’m Dreaming of a Vice Christmas, featuring classical and crossover versions of holiday favorites. The quintet is the ensemble-in-residence at the Fredericksburg Brass Institute, a summer festival Mr. Deshler co-founded with Austin Boyer (BM ’14, Trumpet, Music Education). The Peabody Renaissance Ensemble was invited to the Conciertos de la Villa de Santo Domingo Festival in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic in February. The festival is founded and directed by Artistic and Music Director

Junhong Kuang, a 16-year-old guitar student of Manuel Barrueco, performed in recital with the Baltimore Classical Guitar Society on December 5. He also performed a recital at Symphony Space in New York on December 11. L’abri Trio — cellist Young Eun Lee (MM ’10, DMA ’15, Cello), GPD saxophone student Kenny Baik, and GPD vocal accompanying student Ju Young Lee (MM ’14, Vocal Accompanying) — performed at the Embassy of the Republic of Korea’s Korean Cultural Center in Washington, D.C., on December 10. Master’s cello student JacquesPierre Malan (GPD ’12, Cello; GPD ’13, Chamber Music), a student of Amit Peled, won second

prize in the inaugural Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival International Study Bursary Competition. Mr. Malan was also a finalist in the Getting to Carnegie Competition, which was started by Peabody alumnus Julian Gargiulo (MM ’97, Piano). The finalists competed on January 17 at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall in New York. In September, Symphony Number One, founded by DMA conducting student Jordan Randall Smith and junior Nicholas Bentz, opened its inaugural season with the world premiere of a saxophone concerto — by Andrew Boss (MM ’13, Composition), featuring senior Sean Meyers — commissioned by the group. Symphony Number One also released its debut album worldwide in November. The album features recordings from the chamber orchestra’s debut concert in May 2015. Symphony Number One will perform as part of Light City Baltimore, the first largescale, international light festival in the United States. Tenor John Chong Yoon Noh, a senior voice student of Stanley Cornett, recently won an Encouragement Award in the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Auditions in Washington, D.C. Jiaoyang Xu (BM ’15, Cello), a master’s student of Amit Peled, has been invited to attend the 2016 Piatigorsky International Cello Festival as a fellow. In addition to participating in master classes and workshops with festival artists, Ms. Xu will be part of the mass cello ensemble — consisting of over 100 cellists — performing at Walt Disney Concert Hall on May 17.

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Starobin Shines as Performer, Producer, and Educator Described as “arguably the most influential American classical guitarist of the 20th century” by Soundboard magazine in 1997, Grammy award–winning performer David Starobin (BM ’73, Guitar) continues to earn international esteem for the breadth and quality of his body of work — as a performer, producer, and educator. During the course of Mr. Starobin’s performing career, many leading composers — including Elliott Carter, George Crumb, Milton Babbitt, Poul Ruders, Gunther Schuller, Paul Lansky, and Lukas Foss — have written more than 300 works for him. Mr. Starobin is the only guitarist to have been awarded Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Career Grant (1988) and was the youngest guitarist inducted into the Guitar Foundation of America’s Hall of Fame (2011). He is founder with wife, Becky (BM ’73, Violin), of Bridge Records Inc., which has released more than 400 CDs and DVDs since the company started in 1981, and he has served as a member of the guitar faculty of Manhattan School of Music since 1993. In addition, in 2010, along with Jason Vieaux, he started the guitar program at the Curtis Institute of Music, where he was appointed Fondation Charidu Chair in Guitar Studies. Over the years, Mr. Starobin has performed at festivals, including Marlboro, Aspen, Santa Fe Chamber, Banff, and Tanglewood, and with orchestras and ensembles, including the New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, and the Emerson and Guarneri String Quartets, as well as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Mr. Starobin was guitarist and conductor with the ensemble Speculum Musicae, and he recorded and toured from 1969 to 2013 with baritone Patrick Mason (BM ’72, Voice). 18


David Starobin (right) works with Leon Fleisher (left) to produce the Grammy-nominated CD All the Things You Are.

He balances his active performance and teaching schedule with his role as director of artists and repertoire at Bridge Records. Bridge’s recordings have earned more than 30 Grammy and Latin Grammy nominations, three Grammy awards, three MIDEM Awards, and five ASCAP Deems Taylor Awards. Mr. Starobin himself was nominated for two Grammy awards as performer and was nominated as Producer of the Year (Classical) in 2015. Mr. Starobin started playing guitar at the age of 7 and went on to study with Manuel Gayol, Albert Valdes Blaine, and Aaron Shearer. At Peabody, he was coached by legendary pianist Leon Fleisher, also performing with him in the chamber ensemble that would become the Kennedy Center Chamber Players. Currently a member of Peabody’s Distinguished Artist Council, Mr. Starobin says that without Peabody, his life would have been very different. Peabody is where he met Becky, where he developed lifelong friendships with musical colleagues, and where mentors exposed him to the music, composers, and ideas that shaped his own musicianship. “The school provided the atmosphere for learning, and there were a whole bunch of people around who were fascinating and knew more than I did, and I loved those years because of that,” says Mr. Starobin, who received Peabody Conservatory’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 1999. “It transformed my life in the most thorough way.” —— Rachel Wallach

Distinguished Artist Council Leon Fleisher, chair While celebrating the remarkable history of the Peabody Institute, members of the Distinguished Artist Council support the outstanding musical training provided at Peabody and are invaluable resources in guiding Peabody through today's ever-evolving musical environment. Members • Yefim Bronfman, Piano • Richard Goode, Piano • Hilary Hahn, Violin (Preparatory Alumna) • Theodora Hanslowe (AD ’94, Voice) • Kim Kashkashian (BM ’73, Viola) • Angel Lam (MM ’03, Composition; MM ’05, Music Theory, DMA ’11, Composition) • Jaime Laredo, Violin • Peter Lee (BM ’06, MM ’08, Voice; MM ’08, Early Music) • Yo-Yo Ma, Cello • Lawrence Manchester (BM ’94, Percussion; BM ’95, Recording Arts & Sciences) • Itzhak Perlman, Violin • Sharon Robinson (BM ’72, Cello) • Murry Sidlin (BM ’62, Music Education; MM ’68, Conducting) • David Starobin (BM ’73, Guitar) • Svetoslav Stoyanov (BM ’03, GPD ’05, Percussion) • André Watts (AD ’72, Piano) • Dontae Winslow (BM ’97, MM ’99, Trumpet) • Hugh Wolff (MM ’77, Piano; MM ’78, Conducting) • Qian Zhou (PC ’90, AD ’92, Violin)

Mr. George Peabody believed in the power of the arts to open minds and enrich lives. His vision inspired Mr. Johns Hopkins to establish the Johns Hopkins University, and in 1977 the Peabody Institute became part of the University. What Will Your Legacy Be? As George Peabody and Johns Hopkins did more than a century ago when they founded world-renowned institutions, you can help future generations of aspiring musicians by making a gift to support Peabody’s future. Consider these opportunities to leave a meaningful legacy while taking into account your personal goals.

From Your Will or TrusT Gifts that cost nothing in your lifetime. reTiremenT Plan DesignaTion Avoid the double taxation incurred if designated to heirs. liFe income giFT Receive annual income and an immediate tax deduction with a charitable gift annuity or charitable remainder trust. To learn more about these and other creative ways to support the Peabody Institute, contact:

Office of Gift Planning 800-548-1268 Seek advice from a tax professional before entering into a gift annuity agreement. Johns Hopkins gift annuities are not available in all states. Photo: Michael Dersin PEABODY SPRING 2016 19





4 Pillars, 8 Caryatids, and the Future of Peabody Drawing upon our forward-thinking founding as we vault into the 21st century By Sarah A. Hoover

Photography from the Peabody Archives


a young pianist growing up in Washington, D.C., I made my first trips to Peabody’s Friedberg Hall as a participant in yearly piano competitions. I was frequently overwhelmed by the whole experience: the anxiety of waiting my turn to play, the fear of stumbling over a tough spot once I began, the discomfort of being judged as a musician. I remember feeling rather small in that grand hall, dwarfed by the eight elegant statues above me on the walls. I later learned that these stone female figures were called caryatids, a Greek form of columnar support carved in the shape of the human body. Now back at Peabody in a new capacity, I have found myself looking at those caryatids, who seem to carry the weight of the ceiling upon their heads. I am reminded of another image, rendered in stained glass in the south rose window of Chartres Cathedral: Each evangelist sits upon the massive figure of an Old Testament prophet, an image recalled by Isaac Newton in a letter: “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of a giant.” At Peabody, too, we stand on the shoulders of giants. The caryatids of our 19th-century origins support us as we vault into the 21st century. Our future is grounded in our rich past. Dean Fred Bronstein has delineated a clear path forward for Peabody, organized around the concepts of excellence, interdisciplinary experiences, innovation, and community connectivity. He has called these concepts “pillars,” and we are now at work as a community to give these pillars character and shape with new programming, curriculum, and partnerships. As we move ahead, we are fortunate in having a history to draw upon to help us remember that the Peabody Institute was in fact founded as a forward-thinking organization, a pioneer in arts education in a city of entrepreneurs and industry leaders, and a model for the development of a uniquely American tradition of classical music training and performance. Our subsequent legacy has been one of innovation in the development of new educational

programs and concert life, and of periodic recalibration in response to changing times and changing audiences. This serves to remind us that what we are up to right now in 2016 is, in fact, not very new at all.

Born in poverty in New England, George Peabody was a self-made man who grew up without access to opportunities for education in the liberal and fine arts. According to the first provost, Nathaniel Morison, Peabody’s pioneering vision of a single multidisciplinary campus containing a library, lecture series, art gallery, music school, and concert series was intended for a similar sort of motivated “young man of genius without means.” For him “this institute is especially designed. It affords him, in its library and lectures, means of improvement which he could not possibly obtain without its aid.” Peabody knew from his extensive travels and residence overseas that America did not yet possess a high-quality training program equal to those in Europe. While creating access to opportunity for American musicians, the overarching ambition of the founders was clear: “It is aimed at the highest and the best.”

Peabody Orchestra with Asger Hamerik (ca. 1890)



Peabody’s motivations were perhaps as entrepreneurial as philanthropic. He wished to drive “the enlargement and diffusion of a taste for the fine arts” in an enterprising city that, in the mid-1850s, was a leader in industrial activity but lagged behind in the development of academic and cultural institutions. He speculated that gathering together cultural activities in one institution could create a compelling intellectual energy in the city and help broadly educate its citizens, both music-makers and music lovers, for a rapidly evolving future. He understood that the proposed institute would need to create its own audiences and demonstrate its own relevance and value to the Creating a culture of community. In his vision, reflected in the second musical excellence in turn annual report, “all parts of the system are bound fostered a lively practice of together into a consistent community performances, whole. The training in the school is to culminate providing students with in the concerts; and the invaluable professional concerts are to be standing exhibitions of the opportunities. culture of the school, and are to spread that culture among the people.” Therefore, when musical instruction began at Peabody in 1868, professional concert activity also commenced. Regular series provided both students and residents access to Baltimore’s only professional orchestra (discontinued in 1895 to create a student ensemble); under director Asger Hamerik, Peabody presented ambitious concerts of all-American music

Faculty member Franz Bornschein conducting a Preparatory ensemble



in 1874 and 1877, as well as the first American Beethoven Memorial Festival and programs devoted to symphonic music from France, Germany, and Scandinavia. The Friday Afternoon Recitals, founded in 1874 by pianist Nanette Falk-Auerbach, presented 20 yearly concerts featuring faculty and international artists. Visiting artists included Fritz Kreisler, Ferruccio Busoni, Gertrude Stein, Pablo Casals, Georges Enesco, Arthur Schnabel, Wanda Landowska, Myra Hess, Vladimir Horowitz, Rudolf Serkin, Arthur Rubinstein, Andres Segovia, Helen Traubel, and Zinka Milanov. The series lasted until 1952, when Director Reginald Stewart replaced it with a six-concert series on Tuesday evenings called Candlelight Concerts, featuring a professional chamber orchestra and guest soloists in an intimate, candlelit setting. Director Otto Ortmann wrote in 1941 that “these recitals, apart from furnishing concert opportunities for the public, also form an essential part of the education of the music students.” Creating a culture of musical excellence in turn fostered a lively practice of community performances, providing students with invaluable professional opportunities. A brief-lived Concert Bureau took Peabody faculty and students as far away as Chicago, Cincinnati, St. Louis, and New York, as well as in the city of Baltimore to concert halls, universities, clubs, churches, and hospitals to perform concerts — up to 108 in the peak year of 1913–14. While the Friday Recitals had “for many years been one of the most important educational factors in the art life of Baltimore,” the Peabody Bulletin reported in 1910, “it is desired to extend still further their usefulness by instituting a series of recitals outside of Baltimore, thus giving the people of Maryland and the neighboring states the opportunity of benefiting by this important phase of the Conservatory’s work.” Commitment to community engagement through musical performance expanded in the 1930s when the Carnegie Corporation awarded Peabody a series of three grants totaling $129,000 to bring musicians into public schools in Baltimore: “In cooperation with the public schools system, 13 Peabody teachers [applied music majors and ‘school music’ students] are giving training in instrumental music to more than 2,000 pupils in 34 grade schools and 13 junior and senior high schools.” In 1939, the Bulletin posed hard questions about how to select students for intensive study based on “ability and interest,” how to provide instruments for practice at home to economically disadvantaged children, and how to pay for “talented students in the public schools to study at the Conservatory.” The Carnegie grants allowed Peabody during the Depression era to commit to “the finding of talent that might otherwise be lost for lack of care,” supporting a large-scale institutional

Peabody Little Orchestra with Director Reginald Stewart (1955)

commitment to instrumental instruction for schoolchildren in the Baltimore community. Experiments with education took place within the walls of Peabody as well. Over the years, its leaders and faculty began with a European blueprint for professional musical training; studio teaching was for the first 30 years conducted in frequent weekly small group lessons, with an astounding total of 72 per year. While it was recognized that “in the majority of cases, the most satisfactory results can be obtained in class lessons, since a careful and attentive student profits hardly less by the instruction given to his classmates than by that to himself,” by 1898, instruction expanded to include the option of private lessons under the leadership of Harold Randolph, under whose guidance the Conservatory distinguished itself for its “insistence on the ‘hand-made article,’” a combination of private training and group education tailored for the unique needs and characteristics of each student. By 1912, 60 minutes of private instruction, either in one hourlong or two half-hour lessons per week, was standard practice, a model continued today.

By 1914, the Yearbook reported that it was “the object of the Conservatory to turn out well-rounded musicians”; the Conservatory expanded its programs to include a “school music” curriculum (1911); an affiliation with Johns Hopkins to allow for cross-divisional registration (1916); expanded coursework in music history, form and analysis, ear training, acoustics, and eurhythmics (1927); the development of a Bachelor of Music (1926) and, in 1934, Master of Music and Bachelor of Science, a degree offered jointly with Johns Hopkins; and the nation’s first doctor of musical arts in 1963. Over time, Peabody developed curriculum that balanced 19th-century European professional training with a broader university-based educaPeabody developed tion, adapting to changing curriculum that balanced models of American education and evolving needs 19th-century European in career preparation for professional training with high-level performers. A pioneering program in a broader universityperformance training took based education. place in a laboratory on the fourth floor of Leakin Hall; in 1915, Mr. Ortmann began research on musical aptitude at the Preparatory, later publishing studies on the psychology of music and acoustics, and utilized new recording technology as a teaching tool. His work was found to be “of practical value because the department has been active as an integral element of the Conservatory’s work, in no way replacing its artistic function but merely serving to help in the solution of musical and educational problems.” Mr. Ortmann was perhaps best known for his groundbreaking book The Physical Basis of Piano Touch and Tone (1925), reviewed by Arnold Schultz as “by far the most important and

Ortmann Tone Study lab apparatus (1950s)



effective book in the field of piano-playing — a work which bears the distinction of being the first genuinely scientific investigation of the technical problem.” Mr. Schultz urged music schools to “inaugurate courses in physiological mechanics.” The research program was disbanded in 1942 at the time of Mr. Ortmann’s resignation, in part to pay the $5,300 salary of French composer/conductor Nadia Boulanger.

Given our predecessors’ commitment to building a civic and national culture of musical excellence, serving the community through musical outreach, and seeking innovation in teaching, performance, and interdisciplinary research, it is not surprising that we return to these principles now in a new chapter at Peabody. Exactly what form they may take is part of institution-wide conversations convened this year under Dean Fred Bronstein’s leadership and beginning to take shape under the initiatives of his Breakthrough Plan. Rooted in experiments and successes of the past, what might we build “on the shoulders of giants”?

• A 21st-century “concert bureau,” affording all of our students the opportunity to bring their talents outside of Peabody and, as in the early years, instilling the imperative that musicians need to cultivate their own audiences and create a need for their art within a community. • Continued experimentation with instructional models in studio and classroom teaching to discover new ways and technologies to deliver the “hand-made article” of performance training as well as potential new programs. • A new “research department” that brings a scientific perspective, like Mr. Ortmann’s, to musical performance to “help in the solution of musical and educational problems,” leading the field in scientific inquiry into the nature of music’s effects on the brain and research into scientifically supported curricular advances in performance and occupational health (see related story, p. 9). • A renewed commitment to the schools of Baltimore by building viable pathways to musical careers through school programs, the Preparatory, and the Conservatory, making sure to find those talented young musicians who might be “otherwise lost for lack of care.” In 1919, in response to Peabody’s first public fundraising campaign, The Baltimore Sun wrote that “the Peabody holds a peculiar place in the life of the city. It is the heart of Baltimore’s organized musical and art culture. For over half a century it has been a center which has enriched the taste, raised the standards and opened wide the door of opportunity to higher things for many thousands of Baltimoreans. In its field it has contributed more to the making of a really greater Baltimore — greater in the greatest sense — than almost any other community agency.” Rooted in the past and supported by the four pillars of a new era of leadership, Peabody will once again join in “the making of a really greater Baltimore.”

Sarah Hoover (DMA ’08, Voice) is special assistant to the dean for innovation, interdisciplinary partnerships, and community initiatives. Dr. Hoover wishes to thank Ben Johnson, Jennifer Ottervik and staff, Elizabeth Schaaf, and Caitlin Wieners for their assistance in researching this story. Peabody Preparatory Senior Choir rehearsal (1950)






Yellow Barn’s Music Haul traveling stage held three concerts in Baltimore, featuring percussionist and Peabody alumnus Ian Rosenbaum (BM '08, Percussion), as well as other Peabody performers.





Voice faculty artist Ah Young Hong performed the Baltimore premiere of composition faculty member Michael Hersch’s debut opera, On The Threshold of Winter.

Author and journalist Norman Lebrecht visited Peabody for a dialogue with Dean Bronstein about the issues and trends in classical music, the first of this year’s Dean’s Symposiums.

Internationally renowned conductor Marin Alsop joined Peabody as the director of the graduate conducting program.




New classical ensembles are taking root across Baltimore, enriching the lives of Peabody’s performers and local audiences alike.

By Samantha Buker It’s a Wednesday night in Baltimore,  and the LUNAR Ensemble’s musicians are tuning up to play works by composer Jason Eckardt in an unconventional setting intended to break down barriers between musicians and their audience. No stage gets in the way. A semicircle of tables, spread with white paper and studded with crayons, surrounds the seating. This inspires free sketching, conversation, and Instagramming during breaks. You can grab a free beer on your way to your seat. “The sort of stuffy rules of being an audience member are subdued,” says concertgoer Jason Farrell. “It’s nice to experience artists going out on a limb to create something offbeat, unique,” he says of the new music collective, which has premiered 40 works since 2011 (see sidebar). Based around the pierrot-plus instrumentation — flutes, clarinets, violin/viola, cello, piano, percussion, two sopranos, and conductor — the LUNAR Ensemble is offering a happy hour concert this evening, hosted by the Baltimore War Memorial Arts Initiative. Mr. Farrell enjoyed his first trip to hear the LUNAR Ensemble so much that he returned for a second pour of beer and music, this time at An die Musik in Mount Vernon. “If I were to box the experience into a sentence, it would be, ‘avant garde classical you can bring your kids to,’” says Mr. Farrell, an aficionado of video game music and Led Zeppelin. In fact, during that performance, a 5-year-old boy cried out, “I like this!” during each work, while bouncing in his seat. He high-fived with the composer and met the soloists at intermission. North of Peabody, another group stakes out new turf for classical music, drawing a new audience. The Occasional Symphony’s concert in December traces the history of the waltz from Strauss to Schoenberg. The venue is Church & Company, a performance 26


space in Baltimore’s Hampden neighborhood that was formerly a Presbyterian church. The occasion: a masquerade ball. As we walk up the staircase, the sound of strings floats down to greet us. We choose a mask from the pile on the table. Candles surround us. A giant chandelier strung out with Christmas lights sets the tone. How on earth did they manage to fit a 21-piece orchestra, complete with concert harp, into the room? If my dance partner is not careful, I might get clipped on the hip by the cellist’s bow or fall into a violinist. We take our place in the line of dancers, and the lesson begins. There are giggles, a few grand tumbles. Everyone is in character and radiant in the context. Midwaltz, an attendee, Matthew, proposes to Monica, his date and now fiancée. And the whirling continues, faster. The exercise prepares us all for Schoenberg’s String Quartet No. 2. The second half of the concert starts with a show-and-tell on the development of the waltz. The orchestra strikes up a galliard, a minuet. Then, in groups of four couples, we make new friends by putting hands across to each other in a contra dance. Part ringmaster, part dancing master, the Occasional Symphony’s executive director, James Young (DMA ’14, Composition), drinks it all in. “More than I expected, I feel I am at a ball. Back then. In Vienna.” He’s grinning as he talks to the assembled group. “This is our mission!” Learn, laugh, listen. It’s a concert none of us will ever forget. These new ensembles and others like them are firing the local scene with a new vigor, making classical music an enduring partner in Baltimore’s burgeoning arts scene. With students and alumni leading the charge, Peabody has become a driving force in this proliferation of new music endeavors.


Baltimore musicians, including Peabody alumni and students, come together for the LUNAR Ensemble’s Pitcher Perfect Happy Hour. (Left to right, top to bottom) Nicholas Cohen, Joshua Bornfield (DMA ’13, Composition; MM ’14, Music Theory Pedagogy), Rafaela Dreisin (MM '10, Trumpet), Ruby Fulton (DMA '09, Composition), Thomas Fortner; Julia Sheriff (BM '12, Piano), Stephanie Ray (MM '12, Flute), Lisa Perry (MM '11, Voice), James Young (DMA '14, Composition), Amy Beth Kirsten (DMA '10, Composition); Peter Kibbe (BM '12, Cello), Stephen Edwards (MM '15, Composition) PEABODY SPRING 2016


While Peabody musicians have long relied on nearby An die Musik as a popular performance space, today’s new student and alumni ensembles are striking out to unconventional venues across the city. Student performers have taken over spaces from the pizza joint Joe Squared on North Avenue to residencies at the Baltimore Theatre Project, a stone’s throw away from Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. They are mounting operas — rock and otherwise — at 2640 Space in Charles Village and screening films with live orchestra. They are “art bombing” Johns Hopkins Hospital and the War Memorial across from City Hall. The secret recipe for all these ensembles can be found in this list of C’s: curation and concept, in context, in a continuum, with consistency — in short, a collaboration that is as consumable as possible. “Putting on a good show means having your fingerprint on every part, not only musicianship: conceiving the show, building the audience, and presenting it in a personal way as no one else can,” says Peabody composer and faculty member Judah Adashi (MM ’02, DMA ’11, Composition). Dr. Adashi should know, since his Evolution Contemporary Music Series, launched in 2005, could be considered the forerunner to many of today’s new music endeavors in Baltimore. The series aims to produce singular events for everyone — composer,

musicians, and audience — that make Baltimore a destination for new music. Over the past decade, the series — which regularly includes pre-concert talks with performers, composers, critics, and scholars — has presented or premiered works by more than 75 composers. Among Evolution’s brightest interpreters, you’ll find Peabody musicians who have their own ensembles. For instance, Lauren Rausch (DMA ’14, Violin) regularly appears as a soloist for the series and is managing director of the new music ensemble SONAR. Back in 2009, SONAR took over the George Peabody Library with a guerrilla concert to debut the piece “iPod Shuffle” to much laughter and applause. More recently, SONAR has been in residence at the Baltimore Theatre Project. Taking full advantage of lighting, projection, and actors from a local theater company, SONAR offers musical levity to the local arts scene. “SONAR has, from its beginning, been about exploration,” says founder Colin Sorgi (BM ’09, GPD ’13, Violin). “At first, we were exploring entirely new rep that usual conservatory students don’t play. Now, here we are eight years later exploring ways to make a more interesting concert experience.” Mr. Sorgi, a deft violinist and comedian, is as apt to revive a John Cage piece as he is to commission something spanking new. “For me, every piece of


Soprano Young Eun Lee (MM ’15, Voice), a GPD student, and violinists Joshua Hong (MM ’15, Conducting) and junior Andrew Kwon performing at Occasional Symphony’s Masquerade at Church and Company in Hampden.




Performance Primer: Baltimore


Keeping up with all the developments in Baltimore’s burgeoning contemporary classical music scene can be tricky. Here’s a primer on some popular performing groups and spaces with rich Peabody connections:

DMA conducting student Jordan Randall Smith leads Symphony No. 1 in a performance at the Baltimore War Memorial Building.

music has a story to tell. Our aim with SONAR is to bring these stories to life by tying in other art forms as well. Amazing music is being written every day, all around the globe, and it’s our job to make sure these composers get a chance to be heard.”

Peabody’s Newest Ensemble Breaks Out In November, Peabody’s newest ensemble, Now Hear This, made its debut to a jampacked Griswold Hall, which buzzed with energy. When master’s student Christopher Salvito, also of Occasional Symphony, took a wordless sprint up the aisle and began the explosive percussion work Paddy, by composer Donnacha Dennehy, you knew this was not your typical Peabody recital. Voice faculty member Ah Young Hong (BM ’98, MM ’01, Voice) exclaimed it was “the most exciting concert of the year.” Now Hear This, a contemporary chamber music ensemble, is something Peabody was missing. Envisioned as a flexibly configured group, it will provide a seamless link between student players and working composers. Students will develop intimate professional relationships with living contemporary composers. And the ambition won’t live just inside Peabody’s walls. Faculty advisor David Smooke (MM ’95, Composition) and artistic director Courtney Orlando have plans to take Now Hear This out: first stop, The Windup Space on North Avenue in Baltimore. Second stop, Millennium Stage in Washington, D.C. Then, perhaps, New York City. With Now Hear This, Peabody now has an incubator that models the professional artistic process and high-caliber performance with side-by-side stage time. Opportunities like these draw students to Peabody and keep them here once their formal studies are complete. Part of why they stay? Reaching audiences who may have felt shut out of the old conservatory environment. As Dr. Smooke puts it, “Courtney Orlando conceives Now Hear This concerts as curated theatrical experiences based around killer performances

Baltimore War Memorial Arts Initiative

Promotes civic engagement through year-round concert performances. Joshua Bornfield (DMA ’13, Composition; MM ’14, Music Theory Pedagogy), coordinator 101 N. Gay St.

Classical Music Revolution (Baltimore)

Collective of classical musicians making “chamber music for the people.” Rafaela Dreisin (MM ’10, Trumpet) and Stephanie Ray (MM ’12, Flute), founders

Evolution Contemporary Music Series

Baltimore-based concert series dedicated to the music of living composers. Judah Adashi (MM ’02, DMA ’11, Composition), founder An die Musik, 409 N. Charles St.

LUNAR Ensemble

Baltimore-based new music collective that redefines today’s concert experience. Gemma New (MM ’11, Conducting), conductor Stephanie Ray (MM ’12, Flute), chamber music director

Now Hear This

Peabody student ensemble featuring curated theatrical experiences based around killer music performances. Faculty artist Courtney Orlando, artistic director Faculty artist David Smooke (MM ’95, Composition), faculty advisor

Occasional Symphony

Innovative concert celebrations to engage the Baltimore community and illuminate the unparalleled experience of hearing live music. Joshua Hong (MM ’15, Conducting), music director James Young (DMA ’14, Composition), executive director GPD conducting student Joon Choi, associate conductor Preparatory student Elizabet Pujadas, president

SONAR Ensemble

City Paper’s choice for 2014 Best Classical Group Colin Sorgi (BM ’09, GPD ’13, Violin) and Preparatory faculty artist Jaclyn Dorr (BM ’09, MM ’12, Viola), founders In residence at Baltimore Theater Project, 45 W. Preston St.

Symphony No. 1

The East Coast’s newest chamber orchestra, dedicated to performing and promoting works by emerging composers. DMA conducting student Jordan Randall Smith, music director





LEFT  Audience members attending Occasional Symphony’s Masquerade sit in a circle to take in the confession scene from Act 3 of Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow.  RIGHT  The SONAR Ensemble strives to add multimedia interest to the concert experience.

of energetic music — the sort of exciting events that might appeal to people more at home in Baltimore’s clubs and DIY scene than at a classical concert hall.” Baltimore is where it’s at, says today’s young talent, including Occasional Symphony’s James Young and Joshua Hong (MM ’15, Conducting). “I don’t want to leave,” says Mr. Hong. As a student, Mr. Young experienced mezzo-soprano Megan Ihnen’s (MM ’09, Voice) Federal Hill Parlor Series, which took over homes and art galleries throughout the neighborhood south of the harbor. And that, he says, “is what I wanted to do all the time.” Perhaps most striking about today’s new music scene in Baltimore is how deeply interwoven the Peabody connections have become, and how they continue to grow. LUNAR Ensemble, for example, formed inside Peabody but reached outside it to celebrate the centenary of Arnold Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire. Back in 1912 Berlin, Mr. Schoenberg’s vocal work incited hissing, hysteria, and laughter. When LUNAR played the work in Johns Hopkins’ Shriver Hall, Baltimore was eager for it. As part of the centenary project, eight young composers affiliated with Peabody were invited to set to music the remaining Pierrot Lunaire poems by Albert Giraud — a continuum of Sprechstimme. Their eight original compositions were performed at Shriver Hall alongside Mr. Schoenberg’s melodrama. One of the participating composers was Joshua Bornfield (DMA ’13, Composition; MM ’14, Music Theory Pedagogy), who today still reaps the fruits of that early collaboration, as he has engaged LUNAR as the current ensemble-in-residence for his War Memorial Arts Initiative. With WMAI, Dr. Bornfield seeks to activate the space of a forgotten yet remarkable Baltimore landmark — an imposing neoclassical building with an expansive auditorium across from City Hall. His main means? New music. So far, Dr. Bornfield’s WMAI has featured 55 composers, 40 of whom are living and several from the 16th century and before.




When LUNAR’s flutist and Chamber Music Director Stephanie Ray (MM ’12, Flute) experienced her first War Memorial show, she approached Dr. Bornfield with one question: “How can we be a part of this?” Together, they planned LUNAR’s residency at WMAI, drawing inspiration from Rafaela Dreisin (MM ’10, Trumpet), with whom Ms. Ray co-founded the local chapter of Classical Music Revolution, a loose collection of improv ensembles that performs at bars, bun shops, and pizza joints. Ms. Ray, a self-described “activist for new music,” sees Baltimore as a place of infinite possibility. Her ultimate dream is to start her own hub of art that channels the energy of all she loves about Baltimore, with music-making that impacts society. She’s eager to draft her cohorts, like Occasional Symphony, for the cause. Though started by Peabody students and alumni, today’s new ensembles now offer a life — and living — beyond Peabody’s concert halls. Their strength consists in being artist-driven, creative families. Gemma New (MM ’11, Conducting), LUNAR’s conductor, stresses that all her players have a say in the group’s artistic direction. They all want to be performing the most influential music out there right now. They aim to be the next Kronos Quartet, ICE, or Alarm Will Sound. Peabody’s students are in luck, with Alarm Will Sound and Ensemble Signal founder Courtney Orlando marching alongside them. “As someone who dedicates my life to the creation and performance of contemporary music, I am beyond thrilled about the direction in which Peabody and its alums are moving,” she says. “I am very grateful to count myself among the leaders of this movement and look forward to watching it grow. I can only imagine the excitement will be infectious and will build new audiences inside and outside our walls.” She adds, “I would be lying if I said I don’t have a few things up my own sleeve to try out on some unsuspecting concertgoers.”




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Dean Fred Bronstein (left), JHU Alumni Council President Jay Lenrow (center right), and Marin Alsop (right) present Ken Lam (center left) the Johns Hopkins University Alumni Association’s Global Achievement Award.



Y. J H



Watch the award presentation:

Dear Alumni and Friends of Peabody: This year we are excited about the launch of our online map showing where Peabody alumni work around the globe. If you haven’t already visited, please take a few minutes to: • Find out who’s working near where you live. • See what your first roommate is up to. • Learn what other alumni in your instrument/major went on to do. • Make sure you are included on the map! The map is password protected so only those in the Johns Hopkins community can access it. Your alumni credentials for JHConnect will get you in. If you don't have them (or have forgotten what they are) visit At the moment we have more than 1,600 flags on the map; however, we want more participation. Please send additions, corrections, or deletions to It is more useful, and more fun, the more flags there are! A career in music is often represented by multiple flags on the map. A great example of this is Ken Lam (MM ’07, Conducting). We were honored to present the Johns Hopkins University Alumni Association’s Global Achievement Award to Mr. Lam in October. He is currently working in South Carolina as music director of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra; in Baltimore, as associate conductor for education of the Baltimore Symphony

Orchestra and artistic director of the Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestras; in New Jersey, as associate professor and director of orchestral studies at Montclair State University; in Hong Kong as artistic director of Hong Kong Voices; and in North Carolina as resident conductor of the Brevard Music Center. The map is also a great tool for current students to find out all the varied directions our alumni take in their careers. We also try to do this at least once a year in person, and I want to thank Ken Lam, Glenn Plaskin (’78, Piano), Lewis Patzner (BM ’07, Cello), Nicholas Dogas (MM ’13, Voice), and Qing Li (PC ’91, BM ’92, Violin) for participating on this year’s alumni panel during Family Weekend. All generously shared their “paths from Peabody” with current students and parents. We’d love to hear your feedback about the map, as well as your stories and career paths. Please gather your thoughts and share them with the Alumni Office by sending them to or calling 410-234-4673. We look forward to hearing from you! Sincerely,

Matthew Rupcich

(BM ’90, Music Education) President, Society of Peabody Alumni PEABODY SPRING 2016


CL A SS N OTES 1950 Har Sinai Congregation recently presented a program featuring Dark Waters of the Chesapeake and “Go Green!” from Earth Day Suite by

Vivian Adelberg Rudow

(TC ’57, BM ’60, Piano; MM ’79, Composition), performed by the Howard County Concert Orchestra.

1 9 70 Rebecca Anstine Smith

(MM ’79, Harp) recently performed Fantaisie by Peter Matthews. The piece was commissioned by the Lafayette Square Duo to honor former faculty member Jeanne Chalifoux.

1980 Paul Avgerinos (BM ’81,

Double Bass) won the Grammy for Best New Age Album. The album, Grace, was released on Round Sky Music in August.

Daniel Kazez (MM ’82, Cello)

produced an iPhone app called InTune to test and train intonation.

Robyn Stevens-Woodle (MM ’88, Voice) joined the voice faculty at Peabody Preparatory.

The Riko Method School of Piano, founded in 2003 by Riko Weimer (BM ’88, Piano), held its grand opening in the school’s Scarlatti Concert Hall in Los Angeles.



199 0 Bass-baritone Robert Cantrell (MM ’90, GPD ’92, Voice) appeared as a soloist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in The Polar Express in December and Peter and the Wolf in March. High Velocity, by Mark Weiser (BM ’91, Piano; MM ’93, Composition), won the 2015 Ithaca College International Heckscher Composition Prize and first prize at The Ear concert competition in New York. His opera, Where Angels Fear to Tread, made the top of the San Francisco Chronicle’s Top 10 in Opera 2015 list.

Leela Breithaupt (BM ’93,

MM ’96, Flute) taught her Go Baroque! Historically Informed Performance for Modern Flutists workshop for the MasterclassesNYC series this September and performed in concert with Barthold Kuijken at Flutistry Boston in October.

Chia-Chi Hsu (BM ’93,

MM ’95, Piano) has been elected the new president of the Taiwan Chapter of the Society of Peabody Alumni. WenChih “Peter” Lee (BM ’06, MM ’08, Voice; MM ’08 Early Music: Voice), the immediate past president, is continuing his very active performing career and is delighted to leave the chapter’s leadership in such capable hands. In August, Joel Fan (MM ’94, Piano; JHU MS ’94, Computer Science) performed a solo recital as part of the Ravinia Festival’s Classics series. His program included music from China, featuring rarely heard works of Penxun Chen and Wang Jianzhong.

Lawrence Manchester

(BM ’94, Percussion; BM ’95, Recording Arts and Sciences) and Josiah Gluck (JHU BA ’81, Humanistic Studies), who studied recording arts at Peabody, were featured at the 139th International Audio Engineering Society Conference in October. Mr. Manchester also recently launched Audiosmith Digital Solutions LLC, New York City’s new premier venue for largescale orchestral recordings. The 2015 Peabody Taiwan Friends Concert Series, coordinated by Joanna Hsin-Ju Ting (BM ’94, MM ’96, DMA ’02, Piano), included performances by nearly 50 Peabody alumni at eight universities throughout Taiwan in the fall. Featured alumni included Chien-An Chen (’83, Cello), conductor for the National Central University Symphony Orchestra; Kuang-Ching Sung (BM ’94, Trombone), principal trombone for the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra; Ray-Chou Chang (BM ’96, Recording Arts and Sciences; BM ’96, MM ’99, Violin), concertmaster for the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra; Wei-lung Li (MM ’94, Piano), associate professor at Tainan National University of the Arts; and Yung-Ying Chris Gan (MM ’00, Oboe), associate professor at Tamkang University.

Yael Weiss (BM ’94, Piano)

performed a recital at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., in January. The program featured Auerbach’s Ludwig’s Nightmare and sonatas by Schubert and Beethoven.

Sarah Chan (MM ’96, Piano)

presented solo recitals at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in December and at St. James’s Church Piccadilly in London in January. A recent interview of the artist was conducted by Fueilletonscout, a Berlin-based arts and culture organization.

Matthew Bengtson

(MM ’97, DMA ’01, Piano) has been commemorating the 100th anniversary of the death of Scriabin with the release of a recording of the composer’s complete sonatas and giving numerous all-Scriabin concerts around the United States, as well as being a participant in a unique tribute, “Scriabin in the Himalayas,” in Ladakh, India.

Jenny Lin (AD ’98, Piano; JHU

BA ’94, German) performed with Philip Glass, and others, for a concert of Glass’s piano works at the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City in November. Ms. Lin also appeared on CBS Sunday Morning in a December segment on the legacy of Steinway pianos.

20 0 0 J. Austin Bitner (MM ’00, Voice; GPD ’00, Opera), Jason Buckwalter (MM ’06, GPD ’08, Voice), Kimberly Christie (MM ’12, Voice), and Jessica Satava (MM ’04,

Voice) performed Carousel at Maryland Hall in Annapolis in October, led by conductor J. Ernest Green (MM ’83, Conducting) of the Annapolis Chorale.

Bass David Salsbery Fry (’00, Voice) was the subject of the cover story of the October issue of Classical Singer. The article describes Mr. Fry’s


Robert Martin: Melding Music, Culture, and History It’s been a long and winding path of interwoven musical and cultural influences for Robert Martin (BM ’74, MM ’75, Composition) from his days at Peabody to his current roles as composer and executive director of the Zethus Fund for Contemporary Music. In 1976, he moved to New York to pursue postgraduate studies as the recipient of the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Charles Ives Scholarship for outstanding music composition. He survived by copying music for other composers, but it wasn’t much of a living, and he describes himself as nearly destitute. In 1979, he received a Fulbright Scholarship in music composition to study Alban Berg’s opera Lulu in Vienna; he believes he is the only person to have studied with both George Perle and Friedrich Cerha, the two leading experts on Berg. He also ventured behind the Iron Curtain several times to meet composers he was interested in. “I met a number of great composers who even now are unknown in the West, and I heard firsthand about the government suppression of creative freedom,” he says. In 1980, he returned to New York and took an entrylevel position at a small consulting firm on Wall Street. He worked his way to the level of senior vice president at a leading investment bank and eventually served as financial advisor to the City of New York. Following his retirement, Mr. Martin began traveling in Asia, visiting Korea (home of Pansori epic song), Taiwan, and Hong Kong. As the 1999 recipient of the U.S.-Japan Creative Artists Exchange Fellowship in music composition, he spent six months in Japan, visiting hundreds of temples and gardens, attending dozens of Noh plays, and studying other old music forms and notations. Critics note that his compositions reflect the aesthetics of both Eastern Europe and eastern Asia. When he returned to New York, he established the Zethus Fund, a flexible funding approach for contemporary music.

experiences living and thriving with hemophilia and how it has guided everything from his career path to his approach to opera performance.

Michael Angelucci (BM

Daniel Schlosberg

’11, Composition; MM ’05, Music Theory) was featured in an interview with the New York Foundation for the Arts.

(BM ’00, MM ’01, Piano; JHU BA ’00, History) and Ryan De Ryke (MM ’02, AD ’04, Voice) were featured in Baltimore Lieder Weekend, which Mr. Schlosberg founded and directs.

’03, MM ’06, Piano) won The American Prize in Piano, professional solo division, 2015.

Angel Lam (MM ’03, DMA

Mr. Martin, who has had more than 100 pieces published by Theodore Presser Company, applied to the North/South Consonance’s Call for Scores competition and won for several consecutive years. After he received a Grammy nomination for his chamber orchestra composition titled They Will Take My Island, the North/South Consonance Chamber Orchestra presented a retrospective concert of his music in early 2015. The concert, in recognition of his musical achievements and large body of original work, included music spanning four decades. Meanwhile, Mr. Martin makes it a point to continue exploring the interconnectedness of musical and cultural influences. “Often I am disappointed by how little current musicians know about the history of Western opera,” Martin says. “I continue a lifelong study of this history because it is a driving force into the creative flow of western classical music.” —— Rachel Wallach

Joseph Regan (BM ’03, MM ’06, Voice) and Jeremy Lutty (BM ’13, MM ’15, Guitar) were featured in Bach’s Cantata 19: Es erhub sich ein Streit and the overture from Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major, BWV 1068 for Bach in Baltimore First Sunday Concerts.

James Seay (MM ’04, Voice)

has been named the artistic director for the Montgomery Chorale and will also serve as Montgomery’s First United Methodist Church’s director of music.

Soprano Bonnie McNaughton (GPD ’05, Voice) performed as a soloist in Bach in Baltimore’s first concert of 2016. PEABODY SPRING 2016


CL A SS N OTES Peter Lee (BM ’06, MM ’08,

Kaya Katarzyna Bryla

Emily Noël (MM ’06, Voice) and Andrew Arceci

Ana Vidovic (AD ’07, Guitar)

Voice; MM ’08, Early Music: Voice) was featured as the cover story of Muzik magazine’s November issue.

(BM ’08, Viola Da Gamba, Double Bass) performed as part of Floyds Row, a British-American ensemble, when it toured in February in Baltimore, Boston, Arlington, and Cambridge, Massachusetts.

(left to right) Glenn Plaskin (’78, Piano), Nicholas Dogas (MM ’13, Voice), Ken Lam (MM ’07, Conducting), Qing Li (PC ’91, BM ’92, Violin), and Lewis Patzner (BM ’07, Cello) were participants in the alumni panel during Family Weekend.

Alumni shared their “paths from Peabody” with current students and parents at one of the annual Family Weekend activities, October 23–25.

Soprano Toni Marie Palmertree (BM ’06, Voice) is a recipient of the San Francisco Opera Center’s 2016 Adler Fellowship, a multiyear, performance-oriented residency. Music Director Ken Lam (MM ’07, Conducting) invited Peabody students and alumni — GPD violin student Ki Won Kim, GPD orchestral conducting student Joon Hyuk “Joon-Tang” Choi, HaYoung Kim (BM ’11, GPD ’12, Violin), Chi-Yin Chen (MM ’13, Violin), Ismar Gomes (BM ’09, MM ’11, Cello), and Jeremy Lamb (BM ’03, Cello) — to join the Charleston Symphony Orchestra performances in November.





San Francisco’s Musical Art Quintet with Lewis Patzner (BM ’07, Cello) performed at Johns Hopkins’ Evergreen House in October. Stone Mason Projects hosted its inaugural performance, Fury, featuring world premieres by Pamela Stein (MM ’07, Voice) and Jenny Beck (BM ’08, Composition), as well as performances by Megan Ihnen (MM ’09, Voice), Sara MacKimmie (MM ’11, Voice), and

(GPD ’05, AD ’11, Violin; GPD ’08, Chamber Music) in November at the National Opera Center.

performed with the Apollo Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in January.

Sookkyung Cho (MM ’08, Piano) was appointed assistant professor of piano, artist performer, at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Mich. Katlyn DeGraw (BM ’09,

Cello) won a position in the cello section of the Richmond Symphony. In August, Colin Sorgi (BM ’09, GPD ’13, Violin) was guest concertmaster of the 2015 Lucerne Festival Academy. He gave the European premiere of Tod Machover’s electric violin concerto Forever and Ever and performed Alban Berg’s Lyric Suite. Eun Jin Raoul Cho (BM ’10, MM ’12, Flute) was also a student at the academy this summer. Gaëlle Pierre-Louis, student of Matthew Viator (BM ’09, Composition), won second place in the 2015 Crescendo International Competition and performed Mendelssohn’s Rondo Capriccioso in the winner’s recital at Carnegie Hall in January.

201 0 Matt Bacon (BM ’10, Guitar) was one of the featured artists for the India Guitar Federation’s annual festivals this December.


Elizabeth Hungerford (BM ’10, Voice) and Andrew Arceci (BM ’08, Viola da

Gamba; Double Bass) released the album Love and Lust, featuring early English and Italian works by Caccini, Monteverdi, Hume, Simpson, Campion, and Purcell.

John Wilson (BM ’10, MM

’12, GPD ’14, Piano) was awarded a piano fellowship position with the New World Symphony and was appointed the principal keyboardist of the Reading Symphony. “Floral-dip transformation of Arabidopsis lyrata,” a research project by Hart Linker (MM ’11, Saxophone), received a Fall 2015 Undergraduate Research Grant from the Biology Department at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. The 2015 papal visit to the United States included a mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. The shrine choir included Sara MacKimmie (MM ’11, Voice), Molly Young (MM ’13, Voice; MM ’13, Early Music), Janna Critz (MM ’13, Early Music: Voice/Pedagogy; GPD ’14, Voice), Kate Jackman (MM ’11, Voice), Sonya Knussen (GPD ’12, Voice), Andrew Spady (MM ’12, Voice), Jeffrey Gates (GPD ’13, Voice), Brian Mummert (MM ’15, Voice), and Andrew Sauvageau (MM ’08, GPD ’10, Voice). Soprano Nola Richardson (MM ’11, Early Music: Voice) was featured in The New York Times for her performance of Bach’s Masses in A and G Minor with Juilliard415 and the Yale Schola Cantorum.

Ms. Richardson “was especially impressive in the soprano parts, singing with beautiful tone and a security that belied the fact that she was a late substitute,” wrote music critic James R. Oestreich. Soprano Melissa Wimbish (GPD ’11, Voice; GPD ’14, Chamber Music) performed Ligeti’s Mysteries of the Macabre on the Concert Artists of Baltimore season-opening concert. The concert also featured My Shalom, My Peace by former faculty member

Morris Moshe Cotel (’62, Composition).

Soprano Kimberly Christie (MM ’12, Voice) performed Handel’s Messiah in three sing-alongs, including making her solo debut at the Kennedy Center in December. Soprano Kisma Jordan (GPD ’12, Opera), mezzo-soprano Madelyn Wanner (BM ’09, Voice), and soprano Melissa Wimbish (GPD ’11, Voice; GPD ’14, Chamber Music) performed in Angels and Demons, a program presented by Annapolis Opera in December. In November, soprano Ms. Jordan won first place in the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh Mildred Miller International Vocal Competition. Mezzo-soprano Sonya Knussen (GPD ’12, Voice) performed in Bach in Baltimore’s December 6 concert. On September 13, Frances Borowsky (MM ’13, Cello) performed Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra.

Dion Cunningham

César Orozco (GPD ’14,

Lavena Johanson (MM ’13,

Alexandra Razskazoff

(MM ’13, Piano) won third place in The American Prize in Piano Performance, Solo 2015 Professional Division.

Cello) performed the Elgar Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op. 85, with the Saratoga Orchestra of Whidbey Island in October.

Maki Kubota (BM ’13, Cello) was selected to travel to New York in January to participate in the New York Philharmonic Global Academy Fellowship Program.

Mark Meadows (GPD ’13,

Jazz Piano; JHU BA ’11, Psychology) participated in a five-week residency, performing with Jazz at Lincoln Center Doha in Qatar.

Bethany Pietroniro

(MM ’13, Piano; MM ’13, Vocal Accompanying; GPD ’15, Piano) has been named a collaborative piano fellow at the Bard Conservatory of Music.

Jennifer Nicole Campbell (BM ’14, MM ’15,

Piano) worked with Charles Street Sound, co-founded by Daniel Rorke (MA ’15, Audio Sciences) and recording arts student Arun Ravendhran, to record two works by Mark Maarder, who studied at Peabody Preparatory before serving in the U.S. Army. Ms. Campbell also presented a solo piano concert that included two of her compositions, sponsored by the Newark Symphony Orchestra.

Kerry Holahan (MM ’14,

Early Music: Voice) was the featured soloist at the New Year’s Concert at Lingnan University School of Music in Zhanjiang, China.

Jazz Piano) and his group, Kamarata Jazz, released No Limits For Tumbao, featuring faculty artist Gary Thomas.

(BM ’14, Voice) received a review in The New York Times of her performance of James Primosch’s “From a Book of Hours” with the New Juilliard Ensemble. “Alexandra Razskazoff gave a beautiful performance of this captivating work, which benefited as much from her richly faceted, slinky soprano as from the expressive clarity she brought to the German text,” wrote Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim.

Jarrett Gilgore (BM ’15, Jazz Saxophone), Matt Frazao (BM ’02, Guitar), and Britt Olsen-Ecker (BM ’09, Voice) performed the music of Daft Punk with Interstella Live Live Live on New Year’s Eve at Ottobar. Mr. Gilgore and Mr. Frazao continue to perform extensively with their band Time Toss.

Joshua Glassman (MM ’15, Voice) became director of the University of Pennsylvania Glee Club.

The New Consort, directed by Brian Mummert (MM ’15, Voice), is the 2015 winner of The American Prize in Chamber Music Performance.

Nicholas Pothier (MM ’15, Vocal Accompanying) has been appointed adjunct lecturer, staff pianist, and coach at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire.



CL A SS N OTES Mezzo-soprano Claire Weber (MM ’15, Voice) sang the role of Donna Elvira in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with Bel Cantanti Opera in October and competed in the Concours International de Chant-Piano Nadia et Lili Boulanger competition in Paris in November with pianist John Henderson (MM ’15, Composition). She

was recently appointed to teach Singing in French and French Mélodie for the Peabody Voice Department.

Julien Xuereb (MM ’15,

Guitar/Pedagogy) is part of #popscope, a project selected by the Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures Social Innovation Lab for early incubation and support.

#popscope provides free public astronomy nights for Baltimore’s many neighborhoods to promote communitybuilding through science outreach in public spaces.

In Memoriam Leigh Martinet

(TC ’46, Music Education: French Horn; DMA ’66, Conducting) Ashton Fletcher

(BM ’69, Music Education) Please send us your news Alumni Office 1 East Mount Vernon Place Baltimore, MD 21202

Charles Ellis

(DMA ’91, Conducting) Reynaldo G. Reyes (MM ’60, AD ’60, Piano)

Pia Bose: At Home in Geneva Following a career path that’s had some unexpected forks, Pia Bose (MM ’01, Piano) is now living the life of a musician fully immersed in both her art and a community of artists. Living in Geneva, Switzerland, since 2012, Dr. Bose begins her mornings practicing as half of the Bose-Pastor Duo (four-hand piano). The other half is her husband, Antonio Pastor Otero, whom she met while studying with Dominique Weber during an earlier stint in Geneva just a few years after finishing at Peabody. The duo won the second prize in the 18th International Piano Duo Competition in Tokyo in 2013 and has performed in Switzerland, Spain, France, and the United Kingdom. Dr. Bose then shifts into teaching mode, coaching private piano students at the École Internationale de Genève. Her 25 students, who range in age from 5 to 18, hail from around the globe. “I’m surrounded by wonderful people — colleagues and students — every day, and am constantly reminded of the inspiring and supportive teachers and mentors I had at Peabody and elsewhere,” Dr. Bose says. “Seeing my young students learn, grow, and become more knowledgeable, open-minded, compassionate, and inquisitive — as a result of music education — makes teaching and playing all the more meaningful.” Sandwiched between practicing and teaching, Dr. Bose devotes herself to the nonprofit she co-founded with Mr. Pastor and three other colleagues: the Association Amigos de España. Its main project is Festival Goyescas, a festival of Spanish music, dance, arts, literature, and gastronomy, which “aims to bring warmth to a winter weekend in Geneva.” Envisioned as an annual affair, the inaugural event took place in December, featuring guest artists including pianist Javier Perianes; flamenco dancer Ana la China; Cuarteto Quiroga; Cueva Flamenca; and professors Jenaro



Talens (Université de Genève), Andrés Soria Olmedo (Universidad de Granada), and Diego Martínez Martínez (director of the Festival Internacional de Música y Danza de Granada), under the patronage of eminent conductor Jesús López Cobos and the ambassador of Spain in Bern. When Dr. Bose completed her master’s degree under Marian Hahn, she expected to study with Mr. Weber for a year and then enter a doctoral program. Instead, she worked with Mr. Weber for three years, earning a Diplôme de Soliste, and then taught at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and the University of Texas at El Paso, eventually earning her DMA in 2012 at the University of Colorado Boulder under fellow Peabody alumnus Andrew Cooperstock (DMA ’88, Piano). “After several years of wondering which path to choose, where to live, Geneva is finally home for us. At least for now,” Dr. Bose says happily. —— Rachel Wallach


Unrestricted Annual Fund Donors: Unsung Heroes It’s not flashy or often the focus of attention, but unrestricted donations to the Annual Fund provide things like:


• The black metal stand that holds the cello part on the Friedberg concert hall stage, bathed in warm light, and supporting classical music written centuries ago but alive right now;

Yesse Kim was the recipient of the Ruth J. Brouse Bauer Endowed Scholarship in Piano from 2013–15.

Grateful for Scholarship Support Yesse Kim (BM ’15, Piano), 22, knows how fortunate she is to be able to concentrate on her musical studies while at Peabody and not have to hold down a job. Currently a graduate student, she is a recipient of the Lillian Freundlich Endowed Scholarship. Ms. Kim’s tuition was covered by the Ruth J. Brouse Bauer Endowed Scholarship in Piano as she completed her bachelor’s degree in piano performance. “It has really helped a lot because it has allowed me to focus on my studies,” says Ms. Kim. “It gives me a lot of time to work for myself, instead of having to work at a job to earn money to help pay my tuition. “I was lucky,” she says, referring to her financial aid package. “We’ve got a very amazing dean who has worked hard to make scholarship funds available to students.” The native Korean, who began playing the piano at age 6, says she hopes to combine a career in piano

performance with some aspect of music education. “I love working with kids, and I would love to teach young kids,” says Ms. Kim. She moved to Baltimore from Ann Arbor, Michigan, to do her undergraduate work at Peabody. A fan of Bach and an admirer of Japanese pianist Mitsuko Uchida, Ms. Kim studies with faculty artist and fellow Korean native Yong Hi Moon. “She has taught me so much, and she is such a significant part of my life,” says Ms. Kim. The Bauer scholarship was originally established in 1999 and augmented in 2011 by the Ruth and Ted Bauer Family Foundation. It supports piano students in honor of Mrs. Bauer, who graduated from Peabody in 1968. Her late husband, Ted, who started the foundation, was a World War II veteran and alumnus of Harvard and New York University who chaired the Houston-based AIM Management Group. —— Christine Stutz

• The mirror in the practice room, which reflects hours of scales and the perfection of that one fast run of notes, as well as the form of muscles and posture dictated by the teacher for the best sound; • And the new set of strings on the jazz bass that brighten the instrument’s sound and allow for the harmonically rich overtones that the student has been striving for. Like these unsung items, our unsung heroes are the donors whose gifts make them possible — supporting the foundation on which creativity can flourish. We — the students, faculty, staff, and visiting artists — applaud all of our donors for their generosity. Thank you for helping to create the 2015–16 year at Peabody! ——Debbie Kennison

ou nk gyift to a h T your for

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Friedberg Hall Set to Undergo Extensive Renovations From Mr. Kirkegaard’s perspective, Friedberg Hall has “wonderful bones” and was probably a better performance space before the 1982 remodel, which unfortunately did some harm to the acoustics. Some original windows were removed and replaced with gypsum board panels, he says, and air-conditioning ductwork was installed behind additional gypsum board surfaces. “Unfortunately, these new surfaces were aligned in parallel,” he says, “which causes them to repetitively reflect sound back and forth across the hall. “They simply are not reflecting sound the way they should,” says Mr. Kirkegaard. “Instead, they are emphasizing high-frequency distortion and disproportionately absorbing the low-frequency portion of the scale.” One key upgrade will be an extension of the front of the stage, increasing its useful depth. Upstage, he says, an 8-foot-high increase in acoustic

mass will provide better sound reflection for instruments in close proximity to the wall. In addition, a sheet of canvas will be installed to create a “ceiling” enclosure above the stage, to enhance tone production and improve performers’ ability to hear one another. The bass-absorbing gypsum board panels will be replaced with plastered masonry. Structural piers on the hall’s side walls will receive a thin acoustic coating to diminish harsh, high-frequency sound reflection from these surfaces. The acoustic work has to be done over the summer, says Joe Brant, Peabody’s director of facilities, to minimize the disruption to teaching and performing schedules. Additional improvements planned for Friedberg Hall — at a later stage, as funding becomes available — include stage lifts, updated lighting grids, enhanced HVAC systems, and the installation of new technology to facilitate live streaming. —— Christine Stutz


The stage at Peabody’s venerable Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall, celebrating its sesquicentennial this year, has been graced by countless luminaries, from Pyotr Tchaikovsky and Igor Stravinsky to Hilary Hahn and Philip Glass. Yet this Peabody Institute landmark, the oldest concert venue in Baltimore, is showing its age. The 750-seat hall is in need of renovation to correct acoustical issues that have been in place since a 1982 remodel, say Peabody officials, as well as to update lighting, rigging, and audiovisual systems. A $500,000 grant from the France-Merrick Foundation will allow work to begin this summer, the first phase of a comprehensive $1.6 million initiative to modernize Friedberg Hall’s aging technology and acoustical infrastructure so that it meets current standards. For Peabody Dean Fred Bronstein, it is critical that students performing on the Friedberg stage accurately hear the music that they and their colleagues are playing. “For some, it is hard to hear, and therefore it is hard to learn to listen,” says Dean Bronstein. “We want to improve the learning experience as well as the audience experience, of course. Friedberg is a very historic hall, very important to the history of Baltimore, and we want to make sure we make it the best it can be,” he says. Peabody has retained R. Lawrence Kirkegaard, “one of the top acousticians in the world,” Dean Bronstein says, to oversee the acoustical renovations. In addition to his work in concert halls throughout the nation and across the globe, Mr. Kirkegaard is known locally for improving the acoustics of Baltimore’s Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. He also consulted on the design of the Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda, Maryland. Both venues are homes to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

Miriam A. Friedberg Hall, ca. 1900, with functional windows from the original 1861 building construction.




Showing Their Loyalty Every year, Ruth and Arno Drucker loyally support the school to which they have been so deeply tied throughout their long careers. “All alumni owe an allegiance to their institution,” says Dr. Arno Drucker (DMA ’70, Piano). They continue to strengthen their long-held commitment to Peabody by maintaining membership in the Friedberg Society. The Friedberg Society is named in honor of Sidney and Miriam Friedberg, whose generosity launched a new era of philanthropic leadership at Peabody. Friedberg Society donors sustain and enhance Peabody by giving $1,000 or more over the course of a fiscal year. Peabody celebrates these donors by inviting them to a special performance and lunch in May of each year. In 2000, the Druckers endowed a scholarship to benefit voice and piano students. Approximately $2,000 is awarded to one student per year, Dr. Drucker says. “It’s important that we help students,” he says. “We wish we could help a lot more. We care about the students.” And in order to increase their impact, the Druckers give annually, adding to the scholarship’s endowment. Dr. Drucker was the first of Leon Fleisher’s students to receive the DMA degree, and he taught on the Peabody faculty from 1977 to 1985. His distinguished career includes serving as principal pianist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra for more than 20 years, as well

Arno and Ruth Drucker

as participation in several noted chamber music ensembles. Mrs. Drucker, a Viennese-born soprano, has been an active performer and teacher, serving on the Peabody faculty for 20 years. She continues to give private lessons to Peabody students and alumni. “They called us ‘Peabody North,’” she quips, because so many students have taken lessons in the couple’s Baltimore County music studio. “We still maintain close ties with many

former students who are performing around the world,” she says. The Druckers acknowledge that it takes a great deal of funding to keep an institution like Peabody thriving and competitive. “Money is terribly important,” says Dr. Drucker. “The effort to encourage giving through legacies and wills, it’s the right thing to do.” Through the Druckers’ scholarship endowment and loyal annual giving, they continue to have a persevering impact on the school. —— Christine Stutz

LEFT  Senior flute student Amir Farsi, faculty artist Marina Piccinini, and Edward Mortimore with the three Powell flutes Mr. Mortimore donated to Peabody from the estate of his father, Glenn Mortimore. RIGHT  Jill McGovern and Marin Alsop at the reception following the annual Peabody Symphony Orchestra concert, held in memory of Dr. McGovern’s husband and former Johns Hopkins University president, Dr. Steven Muller.




Paris Leaves Restructured PNAC Positioned for Growth When Mark Paris (BM ’84, Voice) steps down in May from his leadership role with the Peabody National Advisory Council, he will leave behind a stronger, more effective organization, well-positioned for future growth. Mr. Paris, who has been the PNAC chair since 2009, served on the search committee for Dean Fred Bronstein and restructured and diversified the council during his tenure. “The chair’s job is to find ways for people to engage with Peabody’s strategy,” Mr. Paris says. “I wanted to give the board an opportunity to make substantive contributions.” A baritone, Mr. Paris studied opera at Peabody and briefly sang professionally before becoming a Wall Street banker. He is currently a managing director and venture capital fund manager at Citi. His musical training, he says, prepared him for the rigors of Wall Street and gave him the kind of perspective that helped him weather life’s challenges, especially the financial crisis of 2008. Johns Hopkins University Provost Robert Lieberman worked closely with Mr. Paris in the search for the new dean and the leadership transition that followed. “We knew going into the search that we were going to have to look in unconventional places to find the right kind of leader to move Peabody forward,” he says. “Mark was one of the critical voices on the search committee in helping us navigate that challenge.”

Mark Paris

He praised Mr. Paris for his dedication to Peabody and Johns Hopkins, as exemplified by his hard work and his generosity in making a $1 million commitment with his wife, Tammy Bormann, at the launch of Peabody’s 2013 Rising to the Challenge campaign. “Mark put in a lot of time, deep thought, and effort to make Peabody as great as it can possibly be. Through his leadership, his example, and his generosity, he has modeled that commitment for other leaders,” says Provost Lieberman. “Mark restructured the PNAC, put committees together to reflect Peabody’s strategic focus, and put Peabody on a path for further

strength,” says Taylor Hanex (BM ’75, MM ’78, Piano), a Johns Hopkins University trustee, PNAC board member, and campaign co-chair. “He changed the mandate for the PNAC so members could make more meaningful contributions. He also fostered a closeness of members collectively dedicated to the success of Peabody.” Jeffrey Sharkey, professor and principal at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, was director of the Peabody Institute and helped recruit Mr. Paris to PNAC. “Mark elevated the performance of the PNAC, helping make it one of the best councils in the JHU universe in terms of finding matching funds for scholarship and making its work relevant to the overall goals of the university,” he says. “For too long, Peabody was a well-kept secret in the wider community. Mark helped to shake some of the dust off and bring Peabody into the modern era.” Mr. Paris, who is active on several other boards, says he believes new leadership invigorates an organization. “I believe stepping down is about giving other leadership an opportunity. I think five to seven years is what you should be doing, and then you need to get out of the way. “I will truly miss these members. They have become my friends,” Mr. Paris says. But he promises he will always be a passionate ambassador for Peabody. “I really have a heart for the place,” he says. —— Christine Stutz

Rising to the Challenge Campaign Update for Peabody Goals TOTAL RAISED BY PEABODY THROUGH FEBRUARY 29, 2016: $40.2 MILLION





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