JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
Spring 2018 Vol. 12 No. 2
Ripple Effect Also: The Legendary Leon Fleisher and
Planting seeds of excellence in Baltimore's schools â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and beyond.
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The Ripple Effect By Richard Byrne Meet five alumni leaders who are planting seeds of musical excellence — and building new audiences — right here in Baltimore and throughout the region.
Teacher Sublime By Bret McCabe Admired the world over for his prowess as a pianist, Leon Fleisher’s legacy at Peabody is no less exceptional. Since 1959, he has launched countless influential careers with insight that transcends the act of music-making.
Trumpeter Sean Jones Appointed Chair Of Jazz Studies Peabody Draws on Its Baltimore Roots for New Jazz Hires A String Quartet for Younger Players Peabody Renaissance Ensemble Celebrates 30 Years ‘Playing Well’ Marks Premiere of Online Offerings
Letter from Alumni President
The latest news and accomplishments involving students, faculty, and alumni from the Preparatory and the Conservatory.
38 Fanfare Keeping a Legacy Alive Peabody Opera Dinner Brian Hays Makes Gift to Music and Medicine
Tyrone Page Jr.
By Christen Brownlee Peabody leaders are taking important steps to attract a more diverse array of students and faculty because it’s the right thing to do — and because the future of classical music depends on it.
ABOUT THE PEABODY INSTITUTE OF THE JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
Cover photo by Chris Hartlove
Located in the heart of Baltimore’s Mount Vernon Cultural District, the Peabody Institute was founded in 1857 as the first major intellectual and arts center in an American city by philanthropist George Peabody. Now a division of Johns Hopkins University, the Peabody Institute trains musicians and dancers of every age, stages nearly 1,000 concerts and events each year, and extends music and musical training throughout the community. Building on its rich history of professional music training at the highest level and focused on the five pillars of excellence, interdisciplinary experiences, innovation, community connectivity, and diversity. Peabody is introducing the Breakthrough Curriculum in Music Leadership to prepare artists for a world that is constantly changing yet still deeply in need of what music brings to the human experience.
Mellasenah Edwards conducts the student orchestra at the Baltimore School for the Arts.
FR OM TH E DE A N is no longer enough to be an outstanding musician and performer — in today’s world one must be a good communicator, effective programmer, and true citizen artist.
Dean Fred Bronstein
Peabody Friends, It is impossible to look around at the world today and not come to the conclusion that we are in a time of unprecedented change. This is true of many fields, music included, as well as many aspects of our culture. I believe the arts have a special obligation to not just navigate but set the pace and lead transformational change. This, after all, has been the hallmark of the arts: to challenge, question, and find new ways of seeing the world. As the oldest conservatory in the United States, and as a division of one of the world’s great universities, the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University has an important role to play in leading change in the field of music, especially classical music. That’s why, this fall, Peabody launched a unique and comprehensive approach to training 21st century musicians. The Breakthrough Curriculum puts a stake in the ground in defining a Conservatory education by saying that it
It is for this same reason that Peabody has also chosen to put a stake in the ground around diversity and inclusion. It is no secret that classical music has been largely devoid of diversity — just look at symphony orchestras. Sadly, they’re no more diverse today than they were 25 years ago, when orchestras began to talk about this challenge. Because the discipline of the arts, and especially music, requires early access to training, moving the needle here mandates a commitment by institutions like Peabody to make diversity a core value. We at Peabody have done so, adding Diversity as a fifth pillar to our strategic vision as articulated in our Breakthrough Plan, to bring more attention to the work we have begun in this area. There are four fundamental reasons for this commitment. First, it’s the right thing to do, and doing the right thing will always be in the interest of the institution. Second, as we have seen in business and other enterprises, diversity begets excellence. And excellence is at our core. Third, musical barriers are breaking down. Different genres of music are influencing today’s composers, and vice versa – classical music is influencing other voices. In order to foster this rich landscape, we benefit from different creative voices in that conversation. Which leads to the fourth and equally important point. If we want to grow new audiences
for the future, we must attract a more diverse audience. This will be even more essential as demographics shift in the coming decades. We need to understand and leverage that shift. And ultimately, we can only truly diversify our audiences if we diversify performers on our stages. That’s why the focus on diversity and inclusion is not only right, it’s also smart and vital for the future of classical music and in the interest of all genres of music. There is an evolution going on here at Peabody, as we seek to change the future of our art, our industry, and our world. Our work both to implement the Breakthrough Curriculum and advance our diversity efforts comes with many challenges. But we are fully committed to both and encouraged by signs of success. As always, we find inspiration in the stories of excellence and impact that have long been a hallmark of a Peabody education, which you can see throughout this issue of Peabody Magazine. As alumni, donors, supporters, and friends of Peabody, your feedback is very welcome; please send your thoughts on these important issues to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. As always, I thank you for your continued interest and support. Sincerely,
PEABODY MAGAZINE Editorial Staff
Peabody Institute Advisory Board
Margaret Bell, Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications
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Liza Bailey Rheda Becker Paula Boggs Barbara Bozzuto, vice chair Laifun Chung Richard Davison Larry Droppa Leon Fleisher Nancy Grasmick Taylor A. Hanex, chair Allan D. Jensen, vice chair Christopher Kovalchick Abbe Levin Jill E. McGovern Christine Rutt Schmitz Solomon H. Snyder
Lauren Crewell, Digitial Communications Specialist Sue De Pasquale, Consulting Editor Ben Johnson, Senior Graphic Designer Debbie Kennison, Director of Constituent Engagement Will Kirk, Contributing Photographer Justin Kovalsky, Copy Editor Tiffany Lundquist, Director of Marketing and Communications Leslie Procter, Assistant Director of Constituent Engagement, Fanfare Section Editor Amelia Stinette, Communications Coordinator
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David Tan Shirley S. L. Yang
Emeritus Members Pilar Bradshaw Tony Deering Benjamin H. Griswold IV Turner B. Smith
H E A DLI N ERS
Marin Alsop was appointed chief conductor of the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Junior JUNHONG KUANG, who studies with Manuel Barrueco (BM ’75, Guitar), tied for the highest prize awarded for guitar in the 66th ARD International Music Competition in Munich. The jury did not award a first prize; Kuang tied for second and won the Audience Prize. He performed with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra on September 15, and the concert was broadcast live online and on BRKLASSIK radio, the public-service radio broadcaster in Munich.
Watch the final concert of the ARD Competition: bit.ly/2J5g1AA
A memoir written by soprano
(’68, Voice) sang his 1,000th performance at the Metropolitan Opera on October 17. He performed Timur in Puccini’s Turandot. He made his house debut in 1971 as the King in Aida. Morris went on to perform other roles, most notably Wotan in the Ring Cycle. He was also honored at the Martina Arroyo Foundation’s 13th annual gala on November 13, along with Ailyn Pérez, Chita Rivera, and Tommy Tune.
CHARITY SUNSHINE TILLEMANN-DICK
(’06, Voice) titled The Encore was published on October 3. The book recounts her experience learning to sing again following a double-lung transplant. TillemannDick appeared on NPR Weekend Edition with Scott Simon on September 30 and on the new Megyn Kelly TODAY show on the morning of October 3. Tillemann-Dick signed books at the Barnes & Noble at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.
DMA student XIAOHUI YANG, piano, tied for first in the Naumburg International Piano Competition on November 10 in New York City. Winners of the competition, open to pianists between 17 and 32 years old, received $15,000, two fully subsidized concerts, and a commissioned work. She was also featured in Maryland Public Television’s Artworks program on February 2.
COLBERT ARTISTS MANAGEMENT
Peabody’s Director of Graduate Conducting MARIN ALSOP was appointed the chief conductor of the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, starting in September 2019. She succeeds Cornelius Meister, who has led the orchestra since 2010. In her new role, she will conduct concerts, opera productions, tours, broadcasts, and recordings. Alsop will be the orchestra’s first female conductor. She was awarded the 2017 Ditson Conductor’s Award honoring conductors who have a distinguished record of performing and championing contemporary American music. In January, she also won the Association of British Orchestras Award.
Listen to the NPR Weekend Edition interview: n.pr/2uzuHEF
Trumpeter Sean Jones Appointed Chair of Jazz Studies JIMMY KATZ
In January, the Peabody Conservatory announced that the acclaimed trumpeter, bandleader, composer, and educator Sean Jones has been appointed Richard and Elizabeth Case Chair in Jazz Studies. Jones brings extensive credentials to the role, including his work as artistic director of both the Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra and Carnegie Hall’s nyo Jazz, as a member of the sfjazz Collective, and as a member of the board of directors for the Jazz Education Network. He also holds two degrees in classical trumpet. “With the new Breakthrough Curriculum, Peabody is looking to develop synergies across the program and throughout the Conservatory,” notes Jones. “I feel like I am uniquely equipped to help with that, with my background in both classical and jazz performance. Everything I have done has led me to this opportunity.” Jones comes to Peabody from the Berklee College of Music, where he has served as chair of the Brass
Department since 2014. He will officially assume his duties at Peabody with the beginning of the 2018–19 academic year and is making several introductory visits to Baltimore during the spring 2018 semester to hear auditions, conduct master classes, work with student jazz ensembles, and expand his network in the city. “Baltimore is an amazing city, and its jazz scene has an earthiness to it that I’ve always been drawn to,” he adds, noting that he works regularly with Baltimore-based jazz musicians,
including Peabody Preparatory alumnus Warren Wolf, bassist Kris Funn, and saxophonist Tim Green. It follows, then, that one of Jones’ priorities for the jazz program is to strengthen the connections between Peabody students and the larger jazz community in Baltimore. “I want to get students out into the community for jam sessions, performances, going into the schools,” he says. “I’m very community-minded, and you will definitely see that in my syllabus.” Noting that community connectivity and interdisciplinary experiences are two of the driving forces behind the creation of the Breakthrough Curriculum, Peabody Dean Fred Bronstein says of Jones: “Sean is the perfect choice to lead this effort for our jazz students and all our Conservatory musicians, as well as in the broader community. Peabody’s strong commitment to jazz and its critical points of intersection with many different aspects of musical creation and performance, along
Peabody Draws on Its Baltimore Roots for New Jazz Hires Several additional faculty have been appointed to the Jazz Studies Department since Sean Jones was named Richard and Elizabeth Case Chair in Jazz Studies, as the Conservatory solidifies its commitment to providing a first-class education in jazz — one that reflects both the profound history of jazz in Baltimore and Peabody’s reputation as a premier conservatory. “We could not have a more stellar group of artists for this new era for jazz at Peabody,” notes Dean Bronstein. Baltimore native and jazz bassist Kristopher Funn is an honors graduate of Howard University and recently released his debut album, Cornerstore. He continues to perform professionally in the Baltimore/ Washington D.C. metropolitan area when not touring internationally. Internationally acclaimed saxophonist, educator, composer, and arranger Tim 4
Green, a graduate of the Baltimore School for the Arts, received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music and his master’s degree in jazz studies from the University of Southern California’s Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. Quincy Phillips is a drummer, pianist, and organist at his home church, East Baltimore Deliverance, who holds his BA in music from Howard University and is a member of the Grammyaward-winning Christian McBride Big Band. He is currently touring with Roy Hargrove and Christian McBride. A graduate of Berklee College of Music, Toronto native and guitarist Matthew Stevens has been an essential contributor to new work by artists including Esperanza Spalding, for whom he played key roles on both the Emily’s D+Evolution and Exposure projects. Downbeat magazine named Stevens
among their 25 For the Future in 2016. First Runner-Up in the 2010 Thelonious Monk International Vocal Competition, Charenée Wade is a singer, composer, arranger, and educator who received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in jazz performance from the Manhattan School of Music. Her debut CD, Love Walked In, was released in July 2010. An alumnus of the Peabody Preparatory and the Baltimore School for the Arts, vibraphone specialist Warren Wolf studied at the Berklee College of Music. He is leader of the group Warren Wolf & WOLFPACK, and has recorded seven records as a leader. Coming to Peabody as a Visiting Artist in Jazz Studies for 2018–19, Grammy-nominated pianist and composer Alex Brown has been a member of Paquito D’Rivera’s ensemble since 2007. He earned his
A String Quartet for Younger Players with our focus on citizen artistry, make this an ideal time and place to mark a new chapter for jazz at Peabody and in Baltimore. We are thrilled to welcome Sean to Peabody and eagerly anticipate his leadership.” For Jones, the biggest thing is what lies ahead. “There’s a certain energy on the campus that’s happening right now. People are poised to try new things — staying true to the Conservatory model but expanding on that, getting into more technology, breaking down the walls between genres. There’s a certain excitement that’s really intriguing.” “Peabody is at a crucial time in its history,” he concludes, “and I want to be on the front lines to help make that change possible.” —— Tiffany Lundquist
Learn more about Sean Jones at: sean-jones.com
Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory. Along with these new faculty artists, drummer and composer Nasar Abadey, who has taught at Peabody since 2006, will remain on the faculty. Additional master classes and residencies featuring still more top-notch jazz musicians will introduce a wealth of experiences and approaches. “We are very excited about the direction this program is heading,” concludes Senior Associate Dean for Institute Studies Abra Bush. “The breadth and depth of the faculty and guest artist roster, and the energy these amazing musicians bring to their teaching, will make studying jazz at Peabody a singular experience.”
Students in the Preparatory’s Performance Academy for Strings premiere Butterfly Highway by Molly Wilkens-Reed (right).
The string quartet is an important component of the young string player’s development, helping students develop ensemble and listening skills in addition to technical playing skills. But few, if any, of the quartets in the standard repertoire are pedagogically appropriate for intermediate players, who may still be developing the level of maturity, bow skills, and finesse required to play these pieces. In addition, the standard quartets often feature and challenge the first violinist, while leaving the other three players with fewer melodic lines and less interesting parts. After struggling with choosing appropriate and engaging music for her intermediate level students, master’s student Molly Wilkens-Reed, a violist studying string pedagogy and an apprentice faculty member at the Preparatory, saw an opportunity to fill some of the gap in the repertoire for intermediate level string players. At the same time, she noted a dearth of intermediate string quartets written in the 21st century. With funding from a Dean’s Incentive Grant, Wilkens-Reed addressed both problems by commissioning fellow Peabody student Ledah Finck, a master’s candidate in both violin and composition, to compose a new string quartet written specifically for intermediate level string players. The Butterfly Highway for String Quartet received its world premiere at the December 2 Chamber
Music Recital of the Preparatory’s Performance Academy for Strings. Violinists Jing Fan and Joseph Tao, violist Rebecca Marr, and cellist Joseph Mostwin were featured individually within the piece, with each of the four movements offering a different player the opportunity to shine. The students also gained from working with the composer to both shape and learn the quartet — an uncommon experience, especially for young students. Their enthusiasm for the work shone through in post-concert observations such as, “The music felt personalized, which is something I have never experienced.” “Students at this level should be playing Beethoven, Haydn, and Mozart, of course, but it’s important for them to play new music as well,” says Wilkens-Reed. “I’m so proud of the way our students performed this wonderful new piece, and I am already looking for opportunities to program more performances.” As a coda to the work, WilkensReed plans to submit an article outlining her successes and the lessons learned in completing this project to American String Teacher magazine. “This project can really have its widest impact,” she says, “if it works to create greater awareness about the need for more music of this kind and inspires others to create new works which deepen students’ learning and help bridge to the great works of the canon.” —— Tiffany Lundquist PEABODY
Peabody Renaissance Ensemble Celebrates 30 Years Long known for attracting sell-out audiences, the Peabody Renaissance Ensemble celebrates its 30th anniversary this season, featuring concerts that commemorate that milestone with special guest and alumni performers. Mark Cudek (MM ’82, Lute), who directs the ensemble, founded the group in 1988 while directing the Early Music Ensemble at Towson University. He was an alumni guest in Peabody’s Consort of Viols directed by Mary Anne Ballard and invited that small group to perform with his Towson ensemble, which had vocal as well instrumental components. Ballard encouraged Cudek to create such an experience for Peabody students — and he did. The Renaissance Ensemble draws its members from students in many departments at Peabody, including the Historical Performance Department, which Cudek chairs (and which this year boasts 13 graduate students, the most in its history, and 11 Ensemble participants). The group
also includes players from the larger Johns Hopkins University community and guests from the BaltimoreWashington early music community. In its 30th year, the ensemble isn’t just selling out concerts at Peabody. The group performed this season at the Church of the Redeemer in Baltimore and at the Church of the Epiphany in Washington, D.C. Lutenist and theorbo player William Simms (MM ’91, Guitar) was a guest artist performing in the fall, while Alan Choo (MM ’14, Violin, Early Music; GPD ’16, Violin) performed in the spring. Cudek credits the group’s initial following with the success of the Baltimore Consort, which ran a subscription series in Baltimore for 20 years. Now a professional touring group, its audience members migrated to the Peabody Renaissance Ensemble. One group of eight devoted audience members call themselves the “Griswold Groupies.” Jeanne Sears, a member of this group, says they love supporting the
program and getting to know the faculty artists and students and can count on a high-energy, high-level performance at every concert. Sarah Lynn (BM ’17, Baroque Flute) had her first experiences with Renaissance instruments in the Peabody ensemble and has since earned professional gigs playing this earlier music. Lynn, a GPD Baroque flute student who also sings in the Renaissance Ensemble, says, “The students joke that the Renaissance Ensemble is Mark Cudek’s baby, but it really is. His level of dedication for the ensemble is staggering. It really gives students an insight into how wellorganized professional ensembles operate from start until concert day.” The group’s repertoire includes works from the 13th to the 17th centuries, such as madrigals and chansons, motets and anthems, lute and consort songs, and various instrumental consorts. “What makes the ensemble special is that musicians can play and sing the ‘classical’ music of the age — the courtly and sacred music — but also the pop and folk music of the period,” Cudek says. Over the years, the ensemble has also collaborated with dancers and actors to deepen the experience for students and audiences, says Cudek, who credits the group’s longevity “to the constant influx of new creative energy.” In 1996, Cudek founded the Peabody Consort to feature the Renaissance Ensemble’s most advanced students and recent alumni. This subset has performed in Rome, Taiwan, Japan, and the Dominican Republic as well as at the Boston, Hawaii, and Indianapolis Early Music Festivals. Peabody Renaissance Ensemble alumni play, or have played, in numerous American ensembles, including Apollos’s Fire (Cleveland Baroque Orchestra), Baltimore Consort, Folger Consort, Hesperus, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Tempesta di Mare (Philadelphia Baroque Orchestra), and the Waverly Consort. —— Margaret Bell
‘Playing Well’ Marks Premiere of Online Offerings Across academia, enrollment in online or distance-learning courses has grown consistently over the past decade, even where traditional enrollments have decreased. Conservatories have been slow to enter this market, but with one in four college students now taking at least one online course, many academic leaders see online learning as a critical part of the future of higher education. For Peabody, establishing a presence in the world of online learning was a natural next step under the tenets of the Breakthrough Plan. “We saw an opportunity to distinguish ourselves in terms of being innovative and future-focused among leading schools of music by building an online program that complements our traditional on-campus curriculum,” notes Associate Dean Sarah Hoover (DMA '08, Voice). “We also saw an opportunity to leverage our affiliation with Johns Hopkins University in creating a course and a certificate program which we believe are truly unique — and important — offerings for musicians.” After many months of market research, expert consultations, and course development, the first course offered to the public through the new Peabody Online program was launched in January. Playing Well — Anatomy and Movement is a 14-week, two-credit, graduate-level course for musicians, offered completely online. It is the first of four courses in the projected Playing Well certificate series, which introduces a range of occupational health issues specific to the needs of musicians. “Research suggests that as many as four of every five instrumentalists will experience some kind of playing-related muscle, tendon, or nerve disorder,” notes Serap Bastepe-Gray (BM '96, MM '99, Guitar), a member of both the Peabody Conservatory guitar faculty and the Johns Hopkins University Department of Neurology faculty, and one of the teachers of the Playing Well course. “There is an undeniable athletic component
to playing an instrument. However, unlike athletes, musicians are not typically trained in anatomy and movement, common playing-related injuries and their treatments, injury prevention strategies, and mental fitness techniques. Recent review of literature suggests that adopting the positive aspects of sports training and culture may reduce risks and provide better support for musicians experiencing playing-related disorders.” That capacity to expand the breadth of courses Peabody is able to offer is one of the benefits of taking teaching online, says Hoover. Another is the flexibility online learning offers for students in terms of both when and where they complete the coursework, freeing them to take advantage of courses that might not otherwise fit in their schedules. For many of Peabody’s international students, this means they can complete an English
language prerequisite before they arrive in Baltimore. For alumni and others, it means they will not have to return to campus to take advantage of some of the components of Peabody’s exciting new Breakthrough Curriculum in Music Leadership. Courses in community engagement skills for artists and in career skills like marketing, self-promotion, grant-writing, and programming are currently under development for Peabody Online. “These are the skills we are teaching current undergraduates to equip them for success as 21st-century citizen artists,” notes Hoover. “What could be more fitting than to offer this expertise on a 21st-century learning platform?” —— Tiffany Lundquist
Watch the introduction video for Playing Well: bit.ly/2GXvhia PEABODY
Ripple Effect By Richard Byrne
Peabody alumni are planting seeds of excellence and building new audiences for classical music. Meet five who are leading the way right here in Maryland.
Mellasenah Edwards conducts the student orchestra at the Baltimore School for the Arts. Photograph by Chris Hartlove PEABODY
ON a chilly December afternoon
at the Baltimore School for the Arts (BSA), Mellasenah Edwards (DMA ’99, Violin) works with the school’s string orchestra in a rehearsal room. Edwards’ job as head of the BSA’s music department involves significant administrative responsibilities, but she says that “the most important time for me is my face-to-face time with students.” Today, Edwards uses her experience as an accomplished violinist to help students navigate tricky passages in Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings in C major. “I see too many eyeballs glued to the music,” quips Edwards. “That’s not going to work.” As the young musicians grapple with the conclusion of the piece’s famous “Waltz” movement, Edwards pushes them further to sharpen their technique. “That last note should be the softest note ever,” says Edwards. “It can be just a touch.” The conservatory education offered at Peabody emphasizes the individualized study that creates top-notch soloists, ensemble players, composers, and studio teachers. But for alumni such as Edwards and many others, it has also become a foundation for influential careers as educators and advocates for classical music in Maryland and beyond. “Educators are, typically, performers,” says Terry Eberhardt (BM ’99, Voice; BM ’99, Music Education), the music coordinator in the Howard County Public School System. “You’re performing in the classroom all the time. Being taught how to perform really helped me get a jump start.” Peabody alumni who have chosen this path are planting seeds of future excellence in the students who pursue music in classrooms, choruses, and
ensembles for young people. They are also creating wider ripples in Baltimore and the region, building new audiences for the arts and, specifically, for the classical repertoire. “As an educator, you’re sharing your knowledge with others,” observes Eric Conway (BM ’85, MM ’87, DMA ’95, Piano; JHU Bus MA ’93, Management), who leads the renowned Morgan State University Choir. “One way to really make a difference in this world is through contact with students in the next generation.”
MI N I N G t h e TAL E N TS As the music coordinator for Howard County public schools, Terry Eberhardt is a rising national star in music education. Howard County tapped Eberhardt to lead music instruction across its 76 schools in 2014 — including 19 gifted-and-talented and honors ensembles at elementary, middle, and high school levels. The vibrancy of Howard County’s music programs demonstrates the power of music education to touch the lives of all 57,000 students in the district. “My role is to provide a place for every student to experience music in a positive way,” says Eberhardt. Eberhardt’s pathway to his music education leadership role began at Marriotts Ridge High School, where he was tapped to create a choir at the newly opened school in 2005. “There’s nothing like being in a place where you can dream anything up and actually achieve it,” he recalls. “It’s what I refer to as utopia. I came in very young, and I was part time, and I had a principal who said: ‘Build what you want it to be.’” Left: Performers from Maryland Sings, directed by Bill Myers Right: Terry Eberhardt instructs a music class in Howard County.
Watch an overview of Maryland Sings: youtu.be/r18jHXqbjGQc
Watch an interview with Terry Eberhardt on edCircuit: bit.ly/2J6kYc8
Eberhardt nurtured the new ensemble into a powerhouse, which went on to perform at venues including the White House and the Kennedy Center. His success at Marriotts Ridge also made Eberhardt one of the hottest young music educators in the region and the nation. He was named Howard County Teacher of the Year in 2008 and made it to the semifinals of the prestigious nationwide Grammy Music Educator of the Year Award in 2015. “I knew we could always work to improve,” recalls Eberhardt. “And that was a mentality I instilled in my kids. We were never perfect. We were always working to get better. And people recognized that I was challenging [my students] and demanding a high level of excellence.” Bill Myers (BM ’62, MM ’68, Music Education) is another Peabody alumnus who has created pathways for young music students in the region — and helped build audiences along the way. Myers played and arranged music as a service member in the U.S. Army in postwar Europe before attending Peabody. And though he has used his gifts to forge a career spanning six decades as a teacher and performer traveling the globe, Myers was determined to make his biggest mark in his hometown. “I’ve climbed the ladder of success without leaving Baltimore,” says Myers. “I needed to be here on home ground to watch over the young folk, and teach them, and stimulate them.”’
Myers’ enduring achievement in the region is Maryland Sings — a nonprofit organization he founded in 1990 to provide young singers with a structured learning experience from childhood through adolescence. Maryland Sings is based at the Reisterstown United Methodist Church, where Myers is also director of musical ministries. It comprises four ensembles that progress from “Maryland Singers” (starting at 9 years old) to the “Escape” ensemble of high-school level performers. The group accepts 20 members each year. The Maryland Sings ensembles perform American standards and Broadway show tunes at an annual concert held each year, but the group also maintains a steady stream of public appearances in venues including Maryland Public Television, Fort McHenry, the Baltimore National Aquarium, and even the White House. The group was also a favorite of late Maryland Governor William Donald Schaefer. “I raise the goal [for Maryland Sings] each year,” says Myers. “It gets higher and higher. And they go to that level. I just have them remember: Love each other and enjoy each other’s gifts, as you are trying very hard to make your gifts become a reality.” PEABODY
S H AP I N G t h e G I FT Below: Eric Conway leads the Morgan State University Choir. Right: Eric Conway with Morgan State University Choir, First Lady Michelle Obama, and President Barack Obama in 2015 for the "In Performance at the White House" series.
Watch the Morgan State University Choir perform on WJZ: youtu.be/Zd31oWBjtxc
As musical talents are identified and begin to develop, specialized training can help push young people even further. At Baltimore School for the Arts, for instance, 400 students drawn from all over the city pursue a curriculum focused on shaping their talents. The BSA also identifies and nurtures young artists who may not have had opportunities for the organized instruction or personal lessons that many others find to be a path to conservatories or music schools. Mellasenah Edwards was a student in the BSA’s first four-year class, graduating in 1985. She pursued studies in violin at the Eastman School of Music and at Yale University, but developed a passion for teaching along the way. “When I was at Yale, I had the opportunity to start a string program — an afternoon program in a church,” Edwards recalls. “I absolutely enjoyed that. I think the little kiddies did it for me. I started making up songs and my own curriculum. That was me doing my own thing, and that was fun.” Edwards taught in upstate New York before earning her doctorate at Peabody, and then worked as an educator at Converse College and the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities before returning to her high school alma mater in 2009. Two years later, she became the BSA’s Music Department head. “One of the most important things I can give is high expectations for every student,” says Edwards. “Some of these students are coming from places where no one has had any expectations for them at all. And the other important thing is a love for what we do.” Edwards says that she and other BSA graduates who teach at their high school alma mater are JAY BAKER
3.625 x 9.875 with 1/8 bleed
committed to helping Baltimore produce the next new generation of talented musicians. “There are quite a few alumni in the building,” she observes, “and I think we all want to keep the specialness of this school.” Many of those students will find paths to musical excellence in higher education at places including the Eastman School of Music, the Juilliard School, Berklee College of Music, Yale University, and Oberlin College and Conservatory. As they do, many of them will be shaped by teachers such as Eric Conway. Conway’s extensive training at Peabody was the foundation for a superlative career as a concert pianist, distinguished accompanist, and chorus master. But today, as leader of Morgan State University’s world-acclaimed choir, and chair of its Department of Fine and Performing Arts, Conway has found equal renown in his role as a music educator. Morgan State’s choir is made up entirely of current university students, including music majors and those Conway calls “enthusiasts.” His initial involvement with Morgan State’s 140-voice choir came as an accompanist during the tenure of its legendary director and Peabody alumnus, the late Nathan M. Carter (DMA ’84, Choral Conducting). “It was a great ride for me,” Conway says. “We traveled all over the world together. In many ways, I am trying to carry on what he started at Morgan.” Conway became the choir’s director in 2004 and has extended its tradition of excellence into the new century. In 2017 alone, Morgan State’s choir sang at the inauguration of Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh, the funeral of Civil Rights activist Dick Gregory, and at a performance of Duke Ellington’s Sacred Concerts with the Smithsonian Jazz Orchestra at the Museum of Natural History. Over the years, the choir has also traveled to perform at destinations in Europe, South America, Asia, Australia, and Africa. “We’ve hit every continent but Antarctica,” says Conway.
TO BERNSTEIN WITH LOVE
FRI, MAY 4 | 8 PM • SUN, MAY 6 | 3 PM MARIN ALSOP, Music Director NICOLA BENEDETTI, violin
JOHN WILLIAMS, LUCIANO BERIO AND JOHN CORIGLIANO // Birthday Bouquet BERNSTEIN // Serenade BERNSTEIN // Symphonic Dances from West Side Story BERNSTEIN // Three Dance Episodes from On The Town
The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra celebrates Bernstein’s centennial with Nicola Benedetti, one of the most sought-after violinists of her generation. This performance features Bernstein favorites from West Side Story and On The Town, as well as works by modern composers written in homage to his genius.
GERSHWIN'S PIANO CONCERTO FRI, JUN 1 | 8 PM • SAT, JUN 2 | 8 PM MARIN ALSOP, Music Director KIRILL GERSTEIN, piano
STRAVINSKY // Suite from The Firebird (1919) GERSHWIN // Concerto in F SCHUMANN // Symphony No. 2 in C Major
Music Director Marin Alsop leads the BSO in Stravinsky’s dazzling Firebird and Gershwin’s Concerto in F, a blend of classical forms and the freedom of American jazz. This program concludes with Schumann’s incredibly personal Second Symphony, expressing the composer's triumph over darkness.
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Conway observes that the pursuit of excellence as a performer also has helped him achieve a high standard as an educator. “I tell my students all the time: You want to be the best musician you can, so you can then share that musicianship with others,” he says. “If the level of musicianship is not very high, then what you will be able to impart will not be as significant.”
E N L ARG I N G t h e CI RCL E Music education stretches beyond nurturing students. It is work that also creates more knowledgeable communities to appreciate the music future performers will make. Since 1990, Jonathan Palevsky (MM ’86, Guitar) has been the program director of WBJC-FM, the classical station affiliated with Baltimore City Community College. He hosts a number of the station’s most prominent programs, including Music in Maryland, Face the Music, and the WBJC Opera Preview. But WBJC is also a springboard for Palevsky’s numerous efforts to promote classical music in Baltimore — a city he has called home since he arrived
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at Peabody from Canada in 1982. He also makes numerous appearances introducing concerts and teaching adult courses at Johns Hopkins University and Towson University. Palevsky says that as powerful as radio can be, the medium has its limitations as an educational tool. “Radio is like a hop on, hop off bus,” he observes. “How people use the radio is up to them.” His lectures and classes in the community attract “a focused audience that really wants to tune in.” WBJC has successfully navigated the immense technological revolutions of the past three decades — from vinyl albums to streaming audio. These days, anyone in the world can listen at any hour of the day. “Radio’s challenges are substantial,” says Palevsky. “There are huge changes in the classical music world right now. You can feel it.” Preparing today’s students for sweeping changes in audience is a key element of music pedagogy at any level. Yet, say these Peabody alumni, building character in young people is as important as developing musicianship. Myers says his time working with conductor Robert Shaw and his famous chorale taught him the importance of “how you carry yourself” as a musician. Maryland Sings emphasizes not only vocal performance, but an attention to presentation and detail that transforms its participants into “young professional warriors” ready to perform at nontraditional venues, including television studios, government buildings, and outdoor stages. “We are all here for a reason,” says Myers. “And think beyond the poverty, or whatever else is bothering you, or preventing you from growing. Teachers must get kids beyond all that, and to know they can grow to become someone else or something else.” Conway says extending the legacy of excellence that he inherited from Nathan Carter requires identifying Morgan State students who possess character as well as vocal chops.
“One thing I resolve is that no matter how great your talent may be, you must also be a good citizen,” says Conway. “You must be a person with integrity. Singing is a key to the soul, and one of the hallmarks of my groups over the years has been a genuine sincerity of sound. A purpose when we sing, so that you can’t help but listen.” The ripples created by these Peabody alumni who have chosen careers as educators reverberate throughout the region, the nation, and even the world. “Music education — and music — can change your life,” says Eberhardt. “There are moments in life that transcend the rest of your life. Music has given those moments to me. That’s what I want to do for kids. I want them to have amazing experiences as well.” Edwards recalls that she didn’t foresee a career in education as she studied to become a performer. Now, however, her work at Baltimore School for the Arts is an essential element in her professional life. “I opened up that door,” says Edwards, “and found another way to love music.”
Left: Jonathan Palevsky Right: Bill Myers
Hear more from Jonathan Pelevsky on his blog at WBJC: bit.ly/2J7Bucf PEABODY
DURING NEARLY SIX DECADES AT PEABODY, PIANIST LEON FLEISHER HAS LAUNCHED COUNTLESS INFLUENTIAL CAREERS — OFFERING UNPARALLELED WISDOM AND INSIGHT THAT TRANSCENDS THE ACT OF MUSIC-MAKING. by BRET MCCABE illustration by PETER STRAIN
the Peabody Institute Andrew W. Mellon Chair of Piano, is one of the most esteemed pianists and conductors of his time. His storied career began with a meteoric rise to classical music renown in the 1950s, a switch to conducting and playing a left-hand repertoire when a neurological condition robbed him of the use of his right hand in 1965, and a celebrated return to two-handed repertoire following surgery in 1981. As an artist, he occupies a rarefied air. “He has an uncanny, absolutely eerie kind of way of basing a piece of music in a way that is new,” says vocalist Phyllis Bryn-Julson, a recently retired Peabody faculty member who has collaborated with Fleisher in the Theater Chamber Players ensemble he cofounded in Washington, D.C., in 1968, and during her tenure at the conservatory. “It’s something that he’s devised over his years of experience, and it’s not describable. He comes with a different kind of a depth and knowledge, and it’s based on fact, but it’s also based on just a really unbelievable ear for the way things can happen.” As Fleisher approaches his 90th birthday in July, he’s also quietly inching toward a six-decade career mark as an even more rare and generous talent: as a teacher. He’s taught at Peabody since 1959, and multiple generations of his students report that the education he provided them continues to inform not only their playing, but their relationship to the world — a constant reminder that they need to be observers and
participants in the world so that they can relate to the music and convey its emotions, stories, and experiences to others. “I loved studying with him, and I hope I was appreciative at the time because he gave me hundreds and hundreds of hours out of his private life,” says André Watts (AD ’72, Piano), who studied with Fleisher in the 1960s. “But it was only after I left from studying with Leon, when I started to teach, that I realized to what degree he gave thought and care to teaching me.” Watts brings up the conflicting impulses that can besiege a young concert pianist who still feels like a student. “One night I would go in front of a couple thousand people and have to have the attitude, ‘You should listen to what I have to say because it’s meaningful,’ and the next day go in to him and say, ‘Help me because I don’t know anything,’” Watts says. “That feeling he understood, I think, better than I did. I don’t think I could have articulated at that time what was difficult, but he understood that very well, and he worked accordingly. That kind of interest, that kind of willingness to add effort is very, very loving.” “He takes you beyond piano and beyond music, and applies everyday life into the playing,” says Jenny Lin (KSAS BA ’94, German; AD ’98, Piano), who studied with Fleisher in the 1990s at Peabody and at the International Piano Academy Lake Como. “He always spoke about [how] every performer is different, that there shouldn’t be one way of playing. He talks about
UPI ROTO SERVICE
Fleisher and daughter Paula Beth, December 1964
breathing, and he talks about the cosmos. To Mr. Fleisher, the piano is a microcosm of the world and the universal force that we all share, and on which art depends to communicate. He talks about music in such a way that one can use it 10 years later, 20 years later, because one remembers that one thing he said.” Michael Sheppard (BM ’98, MM ’00, GPD ’03, Piano) echoes that sentiment. Though he finished his GPD with Fleisher in 2003, he continues to experience
moments when he feels like he newly understands something Fleisher said to him. “Sometimes you don’t get everything he says in the moment,” Sheppard says. “I think he knows that at some level, and he’s constantly guiding you through lessons, and years later it’s amazing how an insight can just pop up and suddenly your playing is at a whole different level.” Precisely identifying exactly what this insight is can be difficult to put into words, as what the musicians are talking about is an elusive place where their minds and bodies interact with a physical sound-making object, as instructed by notes written down on a musical staff, perhaps by somebody who died hundreds of years ago. The notes don’t change, the sound-making object, when properly cared for, doesn’t change. The performer is the variable, and yet making music isn’t as mechanical as hitting the designated right notes at the designated right time. There’s this whole, complex humanity animating the music that supplies its profound emotive power. “It’s a difficult thing, playing the piano or any instrument, just because there is a physical manifestation of whatever you’re trying to do, and that’s your technique,” says Sahun “Sam” Hong (GPD ’15, MM ’17, Piano), one of Fleisher’s current students. “Improving your technique is important, but doing that definitely seems to distract you from the primary goal, which is making music in the first place. It’s always so difficult, because we’re not sitting here trying to improve our technique to prove something. We’re trying to
Born July 23, San Francisco, California
Auditions for Artur Schnabel thanks to San Francisco Symphony conductor Alfred Hertz, begins first lessons with Schnabel at Lake Como that summer, and continues to study with Schnabel for the next 10 years
Debuts with the New York Philharmonic under conductor Pierre Monteux at 16
Becomes the first American to win the Concours Musical International Reine Elisabeth de Belgique competition
Begins recording career with Epic Records
Starts teaching at the Peabody Conservatory
His recording Beethoven: Emperor Concerto receives Grammy nomination for Best Classical Performance – Instrumental Soloist (With Orchestra)
UPI ROTO SERVICE
Fleisher and Artur Schnabel, c. 1940
improve our technique so that we can express the music more freely. Yet it still hinders the making of the music. It’s a very delicate balance.” All musicians have to find their own ways to navigate that balance, and Fleisher sees his role as encouraging students to consider many possible ways to find their own path. “What one gleans from a piece of music as a performer who is going to perform it, we relate it to our own experience,” Fleisher says. “It is always filtered through each person’s own DNA. I think what a lot of performers are worried about is their own individuality. How can they do something that is unique to them? I think that’s a concern that really shouldn’t bother them. One of the things that Fleisher and André Watts, February 1990
one tries to communicate is an increased awareness or an openness to life, what life has to offer us, which will help color what it is that we do.” Watts recalls the lasting benefit of this open-ended advice. “I remember he said once, ‘My job is not to make little Fleishers,’” Watts says, and adds that he would play for Fleisher, and based on what he played, Fleisher would have an understanding of how Watts approached a piece. “And he would say, ‘From my experience, maybe I can present other possibilities to you. You’re free to accept or reject any of those possibilities. Ideally, my presenting more possibilities to you will make you come up with more possibilities of your own.’ “You might think, ‘Well, yeah, doesn’t everybody do that?’” Watts continues. “No, actually. And that’s a very high level of teaching.”
ALIX B. WILLIAMSON
“It was only after I left from studying with Leon, when I started to teach, that I realized to what degree he gave thought and care to teaching me. He gave me hundreds and hundreds of hours out of his private life.” —André Watts
Loses the use of two fingers on his right hand due to focal dystonia; stops playing two-handed piano repertoire
Co-founds the Theater Chamber Players of Washington with pianist Dina Koston and begins his conducting career. In 1973, it becomes the Smithsonian Institution’s first chamber-ensemblein-residence. In 1979, it becomes the Kennedy Center’s first resident ensemble
Makes debut in New York as conductor, at the Mostly Mozart Festival
Appointed as inaugural Andrew W. Mellon Chair in Piano at the Peabody Institute
Named associate conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, a position he held until 1978
Undergoes surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston to relieve pain and numbness in his right hand. The surgery is performed by Robert Leffert, to the accompaniment of Mahler’s First Symphony
“He talks about breathing, and he talks about the cosmos. To Mr. Fleisher, the piano is a microcosm of the world and the universal force that we all share, and on which art depends to communicate.” —Jenny Lin
Fleisher and conductor David Zinman, 1990s CRAIG S. SMITH
It’s an approach that reminds students to focus on why they’re working so hard. “Every time I go in the studio after having worried for the whole week about my problems, thinking I feel like I can’t do this, he tells me, ‘Oh, it doesn’t matter whatever you feel like you can’t do because the audience doesn’t care,’” Hong says with a laugh. “That’s how he gets me every time. He’s reminding me I’ve forgotten to pursue higher goals in music, and always nudges me back to the primary goal.” “He is undoubtedly one of the great musicians of our time,” says former Peabody faculty artist Rheda Becker, who has known Fleisher since 1958 and was a colleague of his during her 42 years as musical narrator at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, where he was the associate conductor from 1973 to 1978. In 2012 and 2014, Becker, who is also a member of the Peabody Institute Advisory Board, and her partner Robert Meyerhoff created the Leon Fleisher Scholars and the Leon Fleisher Studio Scholarship funds to support the undergraduate and graduate students studying with him. “He is also someone with a great deal of social awareness and conscience, a citizen of the world, which makes him the very treasure that he is. He looks at his legacy of teaching as an important aspect of his career.” Fleisher learned to teach in the same room where he honed his own talents: at the Hotel Peter Stuyvesant at Central Park West and 86th Street in New York, apartment 9C. In a piano room overlooking the park, students played a Steinway, the teacher a smaller upright. The teacher only taught a handful of students, and
Appears on the front page of The New York Times for playing with both hands for the first time since 1965, beginning a slow comeback to playing the twohanded repertoire
Named artistic director of the Tanglewood Music Center, a position he held until 1997
His recording Ravel: Piano Concerto For Left Hand/ Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 4 For Left Hand/Britten: Piano Diversions (Left Hand) receives Grammy nomination for Best Classical PerformanceInstrumental Soloist(s) (With Orchestra)
Plays first series of two-handed concerts since 1965
Performs his first-two handed repertoire concert at Carnegie Hall since 1947
Records Two Hands, his first two-handed album since the 1960s
“Sometimes you don’t get everything he says in the moment … and years later it’s amazing how an insight can just pop up and suddenly your playing is at a whole different level.” —Michael Sheppard Fleisher conducts the Peabody Symphony Orchestra, c. 1990
they all sat in the piano room as the teacher worked with an individual student. The teacher was Artur Schnabel, the Austrian emigré who was one of the most revered pianists and music educators of the 20th century. Though German was Schnabel’s native tongue, Fleisher remembers his English being impeccable. “I can only describe it as he sounded like Richard Burton with a German accent,” Fleisher recalls. Schnabel was “part of several generations of a civilization that took language very seriously,” Fleisher says, understating a singular artistic lineage. Schnabel studied under Polish great Theodor Leschetizky, who studied with Austrian composer/pianist Carl Czerny, who, at the age of 10, became the pupil of a German composer named Beethoven. Schnabel also took teaching very seriously, and loved it. “I think he passed that on to all his students,” Fleisher says. “That’s a challenge, because when one had been
subject to greatness, you had something to live up to.” Today, Schnabel’s voice remains lodged in Fleisher’s memory, just as Fleisher’s voice lives on in his own students’ minds, because during Schnabel’s classes all the students overheard the ideas he had to impart about a composition a student was playing, how the student was playing, and how the interaction of score and musician creates art. “I found his method of teaching most effective and productive,” Fleisher says of this one-on-one in a group format. “You learn not just to try to elucidate the music but you begin to tune in to what the characteristics of the student are, where their proclivities rest, and how to approach that specific student. This combination is always challenging, and we have such incredible luck to be devoting our lives to such an extraordinary field of human endeavor. It’s just a joy every time to walk into the studio.”
Receives the honor of Commander in the Order of Arts and Letters by the Minister of Culture of the French government
Two Hands: The Leon Fleisher Story, the 20-minute film directed by Nathaniel Kahn, is nominated for a Best Documentary Short by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Named a Kennedy Center Honoree
My Nine Lives: A Musical Memoir, his biography co-written with Anne Midgette, is published
Sony Classical releases 23-CD box set of his entire recorded works
His recording All the Things You Are receives Grammy nomination for Best Classical Instrumental Solo
Embracing Diversity By Christen Brownlee Illustration by Erin Robinson
How Peabody is leading the way to attract a more varied array of students and faculty — and why such efforts are crucial to the future of classical music.
day when Jonathan Rush was in the eighth grade, his band teacher was leading the class in playing a march. At one point, she asked if any of the students wanted to try conducting. When no one else volunteered, Rush raised his hand. His teacher gave him a quick tutorial in conducting technique, then left the rest up to him. “I felt this sense of unity in front of the ensemble, and it was incredible,” he remembers. “I wanted to do this more, to feel this more.” Rush immediately started trying to learn more about conducting. He watched videos of maestros in action and practiced different conducting patterns. He talked to anyone who would listen about his newfound interest, including a family friend who taught piano and went to his church. “She told me, ‘I don’t know if you really want to go this path,’” he says. “She said that the music world doesn’t accept black conductors as they do white conductors. She didn’t know if I’d succeed because you don’t see many people like us doing that.” Driven by his passion, Rush is now a first-year master’s student in the Orchestral Conducting Program at the Peabody Conservatory under the guidance of Marin Alsop, who directs the program and is also music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the Sao Paulo State Symphony. Alsop herself is one of few female conductors in this heavily maledominated field. Both Rush and Alsop are part of the changing face of conservatory education, where growing numbers of underrepresented minorities and women are making their place at schools across the U.S. that have traditionally been overwhelmingly white and male. As the oldest conservatory in the country, the Peabody Institute is leading the way, making changes that are
gradually increasing the diversity of faculty and students alike — transformation that Conservatory leaders hope will permanently alter the makeup of performers and audiences across the musical spectrum.
A BULLY PULPIT Why increase diversity in the first place? “The easy answer is that it’s the right thing to do,” says Fred Bronstein, dean of the Peabody Institute. “But it goes far beyond that.” Bronstein explains that many of the broader efforts he’s been leading since he began his tenure at Peabody nearly four years ago have been aimed at keeping music education — and by association, music in general — relevant for performers and audiences far into the future. This sentiment is at the root of the Institute’s new mandatory Breakthrough Curriculum, which introduces concepts of community, citizen-artistry, and entrepreneurialism over four-year undergraduate programs. These concepts haven’t typically been part of conservatory training, but they’re quickly becoming key to having a successful music career and keeping audiences engaged. Diversity is part of this same picture, Bronstein says. Numerous studies have shown that a diversity of workers — including different races and ethnicities, sexes, and sexual orientations — lends itself to excellence in a variety of fields, such as business and medicine. In these fields and others there have been proven benefits of grouping together people of different backgrounds to offer multiple points of view, including more creative problem solving, expanding the mentor pool to better serve junior employees, and achieving familiarity and understanding to more effectively serve people from varied backgrounds.
Music is no exception. Bronstein points to the populations at Peabody and other conservatories typincreasing breakdown of barriers between musical ically remained stagnant, with few underrepresented genres as one critical area where increased diversity minorities and women in many fields and hardly any has driven positive change. For example, contempo- in leadership positions. rary classical composers are currently incorporating As the overwhelmingly white and male student body elements of pop and jazz into their work. Performers graduated from music schools, they helped maintain whose primary role has been in popular music are the status quo in the music industry — particularly for increasingly collaborating with those in the classical classical music, the mainstay of many conservatories. realm and vice versa. Musicians from diverse backWhen Bronstein took the helm, he says, one of his grounds, he explains, will be necessary to keep this main goals was to break that cycle. His first move cross-pollination going and add creative new ideas. toward increasing diversity was to establish the A diversity of faces and voices will also be necessary Peabody Diversity Pathway Task Force, which joined to build audiences over time, Bronstein says. As the three other task forces intended to promote major demographic makeup of our country changes, per- changes at the conservatory in the curriculum, the formers need to change to reflect that shift, he says, ensembles program, and faculty governance. otherwise audiences will gradually disappear. After the diversity task force’s inaugural meeting “I always tell people that those of us who go into — attended by members of the faculty, the student music are all in the audience development busi- body, alumni including those in Peabody’s Society of ness,” he says. “To keep audiences strong, you have Black Alumni, and the advisory board — the group to have performers who look like the audiences you decided to focus on three areas: student recruitment, want to attract.” curriculum and programming, and climate and culConservatories — especially Peabody, with its long tural competency. Subgroups for each of these tophistory — have a special charge to make that happen, ics, each co-chaired by a member of the staff, facsays Afa Dworkin, president and artistic director of ulty, and student body, meet regularly to examine Sphinx, a Detroit-based national organization dedi- Peabody’s current state of diversity and develop cated to increasing diversity in the arts. ideas for change. “Music education institutions have a bully pulpit In a recent meeting on curriculum and programand a special role,” she says. “By changing things at ming, the group discussed whether Peabody should the preparatory level, you’re providing tools at the offer courses in the traditionally black genre of gospel. base to stop the gap for underrepresented minorities While the discussion was heated, says Denyce Graves, and make performers more reflective of the commu- a faculty member in Peabody’s Voice Department, the nities they’re serving.” meeting’s atmosphere was open and honest, allowing everyone to freely voice their opinions. “People spoke what was on their hearts and what SPEAKING THEIR TRUTH they felt. Everyone spoke their truth,” she says. Historically, Bronstein explains, people of color Another outgrowth of the task force’s work is the new and women weren’t welcome at conservatories — Blue Ribbon Scholarship program, in which Peabody even if there weren’t any explicit policies against is working with partner high schools to identify strong them attending. Even as broader changes in society underrepresented minority students who, if admitted, opened up increasing opportunities for these groups, will receive scholarships to attend Peabody. 24
“IT TAKES INTENTIONALITY” Other institution-wide efforts have made great strides in increasing faculty diversity. Bronstein and his colleagues developed a faculty search protocol that emphasizes identifying not just a pool of highly qualified candidates for a particular position, but also a diverse pool. If a list of finalists sent to the dean’s office for review isn’t diverse enough, Bronstein sends it back for reconsideration. “We have to work harder to find these candidates, and there’s more competition for them,” he says. “It takes intentionality that we haven’t had in the past.” These efforts are slowly affecting the faculty makeup. Five years ago, under-represented minorities made up just 3 percent of the faculty. Of the 28 new faculty hired for the 2017–18 academic year, 18% were under-represented minorities, bringing the total percentage to 7, a small but significant change. The Conservatory’s Dean’s Incentive Grants, which Bronstein started soon after he arrived, have also helped on the diversity front. One example is the new hip-hop class launched last fall, which came about after students requested it. Hip-hop, a conventionally black genre, is a huge departure from the traditional classical offerings of most other conservatories, says the class instructor Wendel Patrick, a hip-hop artist who is also a classically trained pianist. But for Peabody to offer such a class, he adds, speaks to the school’s genuine drive to help students achieve wellrounded musical training. Philanthropy supports the grant that funds the hiphop class. Other recent gifts have been earmarked specifically for boosting diversity. For example, a $500,000 gift in 2016 by Rheda Becker and Robert Meyerhoff helped establish the Peabody Institute
Diversity Fund, supporting a variety of initiatives, including recruitment of Peabody faculty of color and providing full scholarships to attend the Peabody Preparatory to students in OrchKids, a music program for youth in Baltimore City. With a requirement to match this gift, other donors have given specifically toward increasing diversity as well, including a new donation from Dick and Rosalee Davison that funds a scholarship for underrepresented minority students. “It’s a minor fix for this situation,” says Rosalee. “But it may encourage other people to give too, which will have an even greater impact.” Looking broadly at diversity-building initiatives that have begun to unfold across Peabody, Dean Bronstein says, “We recognize that we have only just begun to address these issues at Peabody, and we are committed to staying on this path.” Considering stories such as that of conducting master’s student Rush, it would seem that all of these efforts are already making a difference — for him and future generations of musicians. “Maybe in the future I’ll be able to conduct in inner cities or inspire people who have my skin color,” he says. “They’ll go to concerts and say maybe I can do this because that person looks like me.”
Get involved and learn more about the Society of Black Alumni at Peabody! Call Debbie Kennison at 667-208-6558 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Left: Jonathan Rush conducting the Buckeye Philharmonic Orchestra, a studentrun ensemble at The Ohio State University, where he served as music director from 2015 to 2017. Right: Wendel Patrick and students in his home studio
A LUM N I Letter from the Alumni President Dear Alumni and Friends of the Peabody Institute: I am very excited — and I hope you are, too — about the new curriculum and the expanded professional skills that Peabody has dedicated to teaching current students. Please take the time to read this issue’s cover article, which shows Peabody alums’ successful track record of building on both talent and education. What’s amazing is that the alumni highlighted in this article are successful even without the tools being offered to today’s students — tools that help jumpstart careers (a departure from expecting new grads to “learn on the job” and rely on their own creativity, as most of us had to do).
What thrills me more is that Peabody’s administration is committed to bettering what is already changing. To that end, we would love to hear from alumni about what you wish you had learned and what advice you would give current students. Please send your thoughts to PeabodyAlumni@jhu.edu Some of you may have also received information about the new online programs being offered at Peabody. These programs leverage the Peabody/ Johns Hopkins connection, creating unique and high-quality courses. I hope you will take a peek for your own professional development and also pass along the information to those you think might be interested.
Lastly, one of Peabody’s strongest assets is its people — alumni, parents, students, donors, and community members. I encourage our alumni, in particular, to stay in touch with the Alumni Office. It is also helpful for all members of our community to help us seek out and reconnect with our “lost alumni,” available online. I wish you all the best and look forward to hearing from you! Fondly, Elizabeth Kent Berman
(BM ’05, Oboe; KSAS BA ’05, Romance Languages) President, Society of Peabody Alumni
Left: Meng Su (PC ’09, MM ’16, Guitar; GPD ’15, Chamber Ensemble) presented a cultural exchange concert at the Beijing American Center of the U.S. Embassy in Beijing where she was awarded the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association Outstanding Recent Graduate Award in January. Below: Hopkins Beijing Club President John Ji (BS ’08, Neurosciences), Peabody Distinguished Artist Council member Wen Chih Lee (BM ’06, MM ’08, Voice), Meng Su, Dean Fred Bronstein, and Associate Dean for External Relations Jessica Lunken gathered with other Hopkins alumni at Su’s award presentation in Beijing, which was co-sponsored by the Society of Peabody Alumni and the Johns Hopkins University Alumni Association Beijing Chapter.
Above: Dean Fred Bronstein, Society of Peabody Alumni First Vice President Braphus Kaalund (BM ’02, Trumpet), Johns Hopkins Alumni Association President David Yaffe (KSAS BA ’74, Social and Behavioral Sciences), Mark Markham (BM ’84, MM ’86, DMA ’91, Piano) at the presentation of the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award to Markham on October 7. Right: Mark Markham presented a solo recital in Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall, at which he was presented the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award.
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS Peabody student, faculty, and alumni news all in one place, sorted by department to make it easier for you to find your colleagues and classmates. BR A S S Kate Amrine (MM ’17, Trumpet)
released As I Am, an album featuring new music for trumpet by women composers. The Peabody honors ensemble Aeris Brass was featured on WBAL’s holiday special, Season to Celebrate, which aired throughout December.
Sam Bessen (MM ’17, Horn) played natural horn with live electronics at Baltimore’s Cork Factory.
The Melodica Men — Joe Buono (BM ’13, MM ’15, Bass Trombone) and Tristan Lane Clarke (’12, Trumpet) — were interviewed by Limelight, Australia’s classical music and arts magazine, and were featured soloists with the Jacksonville and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras.
Gregory Campbell (BM ’05,
Trombone) joined Minnesota Opera as patron services director, and has recently played with the Kansas City Symphony, Symphony Orchestra of Northwest Arkansas, Fountain City Brass Band, and the Spire Chamber Ensemble.
David “Buddy” Deshler (MM ’17,
Trumpet) won a position in Dallas Brass. See Paul Hopkins in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE See Justin Nurin in VOCAL STUDIES
Theo Pappas (BM ’97, Trumpet), Brian Stone (MM ’95, DMA ’03, Conducting), and James Sherry (DMA ’02, Trumpet) played in the orchestra pit of The Nutcracker with the Westside Ballet of Santa Monica, Calif.
Ricson Poonin (MM ’16, GPD ’17,
Trombone) was a featured soloist on Ferdinand David’s Trombone Concertino in E-flat with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra in the Cultural Center of the Philippines. See Dan Trahey in PREPARATORY Faculty artist Denise Tryon, horn, was featured on The Brass Junkies Podcast. She released a duo horn album, A Pair of Aces, with Karl Pituch, Detroit Symphony’s principal horn. Michael Sheppard
(BM ’98, MM ’00, GPD ’03, Piano) joined the duo for a recording of Richard Bissill’s Time & Space.
Robert Stan Wilkerson (MM
’98, Trombone) released a new single, Unstoppable, to generate funds for the Community Cupboard, a food pantry in Florida. See Larry Williams in STRINGS
Dontae Winslow (BM ’97, MM ’99,
Trumpet) composed the music for HBO’s documentary Baltimore Rising. For the Super Bowl halftime show, he arranged “Suit and Tie” for the University of Minnesota Marching Band and performed with Justin Timberlake.
C O MP O S ITIO N Rise Bmore, an annual event founded and directed by faculty artist Judah Adashi (MM ’02, DMA ’11, Composition) won Best Concert in Baltimore Magazine’s 2017 Best of Baltimore issue. His composition, my heart comes undone, appears on a CD by Giacomo Fiore. This piece and fellow composition faculty artist Du Yun’s Angel’s Bone were featured in The New Yorker’s list of notable performances and recordings in 2017. See more Judah Adashi in GUITAR Master’s student Camila Agosto had a work performed at Columbia University’s Maison Française. She was also commissioned for a piece by Miller Theatre at Columbia University for its pop-up concerts.
Josh Armenta (MM ’14 Composition;
MM ’15 Computer Music) gave a lecture, “Activating a Physical Space through Sound,” in October at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture in Karachi, Pakistan. Armenta and MICA alumnus Omer Wasim, a sculptor based in Karachi, went to Pakistan to conduct field research for an interdisciplinary work for Peabody Computer Music’s upcoming 50th anniversary. Symphony Number One released its fourth album, Approaching, centered on Approaching Eternity by Nicholas Bentz (BM ’17, Composition, Violin). The
album also features music by master’s student Hangrui Zhang. Thompson Street Opera Company in Chicago presented Uncle Alex by Joshua Bornfield (DMA ’13 Composition; MM ’14, Music Theory Pedagogy) with libretto by Caitlin Vincent (MM ’09, Voice) as part of a multidisciplinary event called Faulty Systems. Voices Rise: A Baltimore Choir of Hope, directed by Benjamin Buchanan (MM ’14, Composition; MM ’15, Music Theory Pedagogy) and faculty artist Douglas Buchanan (MM ’08, Composition, Music Theory Pedagogy; DMA ’13, Composition), was featured in The Baltimore Sun and appeared on a live broadcast on WYPR’s Midday with Tom Hall. Faculty artist Douglas Buchanan (MM ’08, Composition, Music Theory Pedagogy; DMA ’13, Composition) began an 18-month residency, “The Sounds Between,” at the Dallas Chamber Symphony (DCS). Three newly commissioned works were performed including a work titled Crossroads for Dallas Street Choir and DCS, directed by Richard McKay (DMA ’11, Conducting). Buchanan and librettist Caitlin Vincent (MM ’09, Voice) won the $25,000 Sackler Prize for Music Composition from the University of Connecticut. See Viet Cuong in PERCUSSION and WOODWINDS DMA student Zach Gulaboff Davis was named a national semifinalist for the American Prize in Composition, student division, for his work Sonata for Two Pianos. Faculty artist Du Yun and Charity
(’06, Voice) were featured in The Washington Post’s article about the top 10 noteworthy moments in classical music this year. Du Yun was also interviewed by Stay Thirsty Magazine. Marie Begins, an interactive opera by Ellen Fishman-Johnson (DMA ’95, Composition) and Julia Curcio, was premiered by Tri-Cities Opera in a workshop performance at Opera America’s New Works Forum in New York. PEABODY
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS by Hsiao-Ying Lin (MM ’08, GPD ’10, DMA ’16, Piano), Matt Sullivan (BM ’13, Early Music), Ta-Wei Tsai (BM ’11, MM ’13, Piano), and Molly Young (MM ’13, Voice, Early Music).
Composition department chair Michael Hersch (BM ’95, MM ’97, Composition) gave the European premiere of his The Vanishing Pavilions, Book 1 at Festival Dag in de Branding at The Hague, Netherlands. He was the subject of American Visionary, a Utah festival that celebrated his artistry with presentations of three evening-length works — The Vanishing Pavilions, Last Autumn, and On the Threshold of Winter. On the Threshold of Winter also received its Chicago premiere with Ensemble Dal Niente and Ah Young Hong (BM ’98, MM ’01, Voice). Ensemble Klang has released their album Black Untitled featuring Hersch’s works and a performance by Hong.
The Dallas Symphony Chorus performed Proud Music of the Storm, by Jake Runestad (MM ’11, Composition; MM ’12, Music Theory Pedagogy), which was commissioned to celebrate the chorus’ 40th anniversary. His Into the Light was performed in Germany at the Thomaskirche in Leipzig and the Schlosskirche in Wittenberg.
created an electric theorbo and premiered his piece for it, Strange Seasons, highlighting the instrument and Seattle’s weather patterns.
See more Michael Hersch in VOCAL STUDIES See Josef Kardell in VOCAL STUDIES
Scott Lee (MM ’ 13, Composition) was
a recipient of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers Foundation’s 2017 Morton Gould Young Composer Award. Senior TJ Martin composed the music for Squirrely Roo Rabbit, a game created by MICA students. Associate Dean Paul Mathews (DMA ’98, Composition) gave the presentation, “On Being Middle Management During Major Transformation,” at the National Association of Schools of Music annual meeting. Faculty artist Wendel Patrick was featured in Baltimore Magazine’s “Baltimore Visionaries” story. Ryan Dorsey (BM ’07, Composition) was also featured for his role as Baltimore City Councilman. Faculty artist Kevin Puts and librettist Mark Campbell reunited at the Chicago Opera Theater for the opening of their new opera Elizabeth Cree. Puts and Peabody Dean Fred Bronstein were featured in Stay Thirsty Magazine.
Michael Rickelton (MM ’10,
DMA ’17, Composition), an adjunct faculty member in the Music Theory Department, released a CD on Albany Records, Time and Memory, featuring his works for solo voice and piano, performed
Paolo Bortolameolli (GPD ’15,
Conducting) was appointed assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for the 2017–18 season. See Ronald Gretz in VOCAL ACCOMPANYING Doctoral student Nell Flanders has been appointed conductor of The Chelsea Symphony. WASIN PRASERTLAP
Aaron Grad (MM ’08, Composition)
Daniel Sabzghabaei (MM ’17,
Composition) was commissioned to write two pieces for the Minneapolis choral ensemble VocalEssence. In addition, his piece At the Door was premiered as a part of the New York Festival of Song. Master’s student Misael Tambuwun was a first-prize winner in the Great Composers Competition: The Art of Piano in the VII age group. He performed his piece Pes Barbos Samogo with the Amarillo Symphony led by Jacomo Bairos (GPD ’11, Conducting) as winner of their Young Composer Initiative Orchestral Competition. See Jamie Leidwinger in DANCE See James Young in CONDUCTING
C OMP UT ER M USIC
The Occasional Symphony, with musical director Joshua Hong (MM ’15, Conducting), presented Halloween concerts featuring new works by local composers, including James Young (DMA ’14, Composition).
Steven Jarvi (MM ’03, Conducting) has
See Josh Armenta in Composition
been appointed interim artistic director for Charlottesville Opera.
Bijan Olia (BM ’11, MM ’12, Computer
See Ken Lam in VOCAL STUDIES
Music) was a fellow for the Sundance Institute Music and Sound Design Lab at the Skywalker Ranch.
See Jason Love in VOCAL STUDIES
See Sam Torres in DANCE
Stephen Mulligan (MM ’13,
Alex (Tuo) Wang (MM ’17, Computer
Music) released his debut EP Black Dragon under the Beijing record label Dohits.
C O ND UC TIN G
See Richard McKay in COMPOSITION Conducting) has been appointed conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra.
Glenn Quader (MM ’03, Conducting) led the Frederick Symphony Orchestra (Md.) in March and May.
music director for the Amarillo Symphony and co-founder and artistic director for Nu Deco Ensemble — a 21st-century, genre-bending chamber orchestra based in Miami.
DMA student Michael Repper made his conducting debut at Carnegie Hall and was appointed music director of the New York Youth Symphony Orchestra. He also led the New York premiere of composition faculty artist Kevin Puts’ Flute Concerto and the world premiere of go and by Thomas Kotcheff (BM ’10, Piano), the First Music commission winner.
See more Jacomo Bairos in COMPOSITION
See Murry Sidlin in MUSIC EDUCATION
See Marin Alsop in HEADLINERS and GUITAR
Jacomo Bairos (GPD ’11, Conducting) is
Symphony Number One performed at TEDxMidAtlantic 2017 in October, and Music Director Jordan Randall Smith (’14, Conducting) gave a TED talk. See Brian Stone in BRASS See Joseph Young in VOCAL STUDIES
DA N C E danah bella, chair of the Conservatory dance program, danced to improvised music by master’s students Ledah Finck (BM ’16, Violin) and Sam Torres at Baltimore’s Blank Space. Master’s composition student Jamie Leidwinger and Finck also performed new music at the concert.
G U I TAR Faculty artist Manuel Barrueco (BM ’75, Guitar) helped mark the 30th anniversary of the Baltimore Classical Guitar Society with a performance at Towson University in October. The concert was part of his 2017 tour, which spanned the U.S and Europe. A study by faculty artist Serap BastepeGray (BM ’96, MM ’99, Guitar) regarding musician brain volumetric MRI and diffusion was accepted for publication in the Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy. Freshman Katie Cho was featured on NPR’s From the Top. DMA student and Young Artist Development Series Fellow Nathan Cornelius collaborated with El Paso Pro-Musica, and was in residence in El Paso and Las Cruces participating in educational outreach and community engagement under Zuill Bailey (BM ’94, Cello). The Atlantic Guitar Quartet — Mark Edwards (MM ’09, GPD ’11, Guitar), Kevin Shannon (MM ’06, GPD ’08, Guitar), Zoe Johnstone Stewart (MM ’05, Guitar), and Jonathan Zwi (MM ’10, Guitar) — performed in October at Carroll Community College (Md.), and were interviewed by The Baltimore Sun. In September, faculty artist Zane Forshee (MM ’01, GPD ’03, DMA ’11, Guitar) performed my heart comes undone by fellow faculty artist Judah Adashi (MM ’02, DMA ’11, Composition) on the Sofar Sounds Concert Series on the roof of the Newseum in Washington, D.C.
John Johns (BM ’70, Guitar) retired
from Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music. Johns took part in the development of the school and was appointed chair of the guitar department in 1986.
Łukasz Kuropaczewski (GPD ’05,
Guitar) made his debut with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, led by faculty artist Marin Alsop. He was also featured in Classical Guitar Magazine and performed for the John E. Marlow Guitar Series in Bethesda, Md.
CUPFUL, CUPFUL, we adore thee!
Jose Lezcano (BM ’81, Guitar) per-
formed the world premiere of his Mojito, Guitar & String Quartet with members of the Portland Chamber Music Festival at the Maine Academy of Modern Music. He also performed in concerts for Rebecca Harkta’s release of Colors — featuring the world premiere recording of his Cello & Guitar Sonata — and had pieces published by Cayambis Press. The Sacramento Guitar Society presented Yuri Liberzon (BM ’04, GPD ’05, Guitar). Baltimore School of Music Director James Lowe (MM ’09, GPD ’12, Guitar) was among the 59 business owners who graduated from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program in Baltimore.
Finbarr Malafronte (BM ’08,
MM ’09, Guitar) performed on the Queen Mary 2 and was reviewed by Rick Perdian in MusicWeb International’s live review section.
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See Ronn McFarlane in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Piotr Pakhomkin (BM ’08, MM ’10,
Guitar) made his debut at Carnegie Hall with the Chamber Orchestra of New York and has been signed to McDaniel Artist Management.
Berta Rojas (MM ’98, GPD ’00, Guitar)
was appointed associate professor of guitar at Berklee College of Music. The CD, Meng, by artist diploma student Meng Su (PC ’09, GPD ’11, MM ’16, Guitar; GPD ’15, Chamber Ensemble) was hailed as “this year’s finest debut by far” by Classical Guitar Magazine.
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Julien Xuereb (MM ’15, GPD ’17,
Guitar/Pedagogy) performed his composition, Through the Telescope, at the TEDxMidAtlantic Conference. PEABODY
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS H A RP Anastasia Pike (MM ’07, Harp) per-
formed with some of her students for Governor Larry Hogan in Annapolis. In November, she also conducted her students at the Camac Harp Festival in the world premiere of Evan Meier’s Variations on an Antique Theme, which she commissioned for the event.
Jacqueline Pollauf’s (BM ’06, Harp;
MM ’07, Harp Pedagogy) arrangement of five songs by Gabriel Fauré has been published through Vanderbilt Music. She was also appointed the harp department coordinator at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Twin Lake, Mich.
Jordan Thomas (BM ’13, MM ’15, Harp) was named the League of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association’s 2017– 18 Civic Scholar. He is principal harpist for the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.
H I STO RICA L PERF O RM A N C E Peabody’s B’More Bach Ensemble — graduate students Katelyn Aungst, soprano; Matthew Gabriel (MM ’17, Cello), Baroque cello; Sarah Lynn (BM ’17, Baroque Flute); William Marshall, baritone; Paula Maust (MM ’16, Harpsichord); JT Mitchell, Baroque flute; and Stephanie Zimmerman, Baroque violin — were chosen to participate in Early Music America’s 8th annual Young Performers Festival. The Baltimore Consort — featuring alumni and current and former faculty members Mary Anne Ballard, Mark Cudek (MM ’82, Lute), Ronn McFarlane (’79, Guitar), and Mindy Rosenfeld (BM ’80, Flute) — gave concerts at the Met Cloisters in December. In the same series of concerts, Elaine Lachica (BM ’97, Voice) was featured in the Waverly Consort’s presentation of The Christmas Story. Mountainside Baroque presented “Totally Telemann” featuring Julie Bosworth (MM ’14, Early Music Voice), Janna Critz (MM ’13, Early Music, Voice/Pedagogy; GPD ’14, Voice), Sarah Lynn (BM ’17, Baroque Flute), and Corbin Phillips (MM ’15, Voice) in Cumberland, Md.
Wade Davis (MM ’11, GPD ’13, Baroque
Violoncello) headlined the Chamber Music Series at the Colour of Music Festival in Charleston, S.C., with a concert of Bach
cello suites, and was the principal cello for the festival orchestra. Mezzo-soprano Kristen DubenionSmith (MM ’05, Voice) was featured in a concert presented by Eya Ensemble for Medieval Music. Graduate students Matthew Gabriel (MM ’17, Cello), Baroque cello, and Stephanie Zimmerman, Baroque violin; Preparatory faculty artist Judson Deitrich, violin; Marc Bellassai (’83, Harpsichord); and Michael De Sapio (’08, Baroque Violin) were featured in concert with Charm City Baroque titled “A Musical Banquet.” The Handel Choir of Baltimore, Handel Period Instrument Orchestra, and vocal soloists including soprano Kerry Holahan (MM ’14, Early Music, Voice) presented The Messiah in Baltimore. See more Kerry Holahan in VOCAL STUDIES In October, “Fire & Invention: Telemann’s Orchestral Music for the Dresden Virtuosi” was presented by Tempesta di Mare, the Philadelphia Baroque Orchestra, and the Folger Concert with Paul Hopkins (GPD ’97, French Horn), Eve Miller (BM ’93, Cello), Christof Richter (BM ’85, MM ’86, Violin), and faculty artists Adam Pearl (BM ’99, Piano; MM ’01, DMA ’09, Harpsichord), Gwyn Roberts, and Richard Stone.
Ronn McFarlane (’79, Guitar) pre-
sented a solo recital “Celtic and Modern Folk Music for the Lute” in Takoma Park, Md. See Paula Maust in VOCAL STUDIES
See Matt Sullivan in COMPOSITION See Molly Young in COMPOSITION and VOCAL STUDIES The Peabody Consort performed three concerts in Hawaii in November. The group was also invited to perform its “Music of Three Faiths” program at the JHU Islamic Studies program’s biennial symposia. The Peabody Renaissance Ensemble performed music in conjunction with the Camerata Coloniel. This was a part of a festival, Conciertos de la Villa de Santo Domingo, and was broadcast on WXXI in the Dominican Republic.
MUS I C EDUCATIO N
O RG A N
Kevin Clark (BM ’12, GPD ’14, Jazz
Linda Apple Monson (BM ’79, Music
Michael Britt (BM ’84, Organ) per-
Guitar) was interviewed on the Forbes podcast The Limit Does Not Exist.
Devin Gray (BM ’06, Jazz Percussion)
released an album CloudSounds with his jazz trio and they played at James Carney’s Great Konceptions Music Series at Korzo in Brooklyn. Gray also travelled to Europe with his RelativE ResonancE quartet and trio for a tour. See Kayin Scanterbury in PREPARATORY
Education; MM ’81, DMA ’86, Piano) is director of the School of Music at George Mason University and the National Association of Schools of Music Commission. Sidney O. Dewberry committed $1 million to create a scholarship in her name, and the Grand Tier III of the Center for Performing Arts was renamed in her honor. See Karen Seward in PREPARATORY
Murry Sidlin (BM ’62, Music Education;
MM ’68, Conducting) and faculty artist Herbert Greenberg, violin, participated in a concert, “Hours of Freedom: The Story of the Terezín Composer,” as part of the 19th Washington Jewish Music Festival. See Dan Trahey in PREPARATORY
MUS I C TH EO RY See Benjamin Buchanan in COMPOSITION See Douglas Buchanan in COMPOSITION
Mark G. Meadows (BM ’11, GPD ’13,
Jazz Piano; KSAS BA ’11, Psychology) and The Movement performed at Baltimore’s An Die Musik and performed concerts in Washington, D.C.; New York; and Durham, N.C.
LIBE R AL ARTS Faculty member Hollis Robbins (KSAS BA ’83, Writing Seminars) released The Portable Nineteenth-Century African American Women Writers. The book was ranked number one on Amazon under New Releases in Classic American Literature and was featured in NPR’s list of 2017’s Great Reads. She also published “The Marrow of Allusion: Charles W. Chesnutt’s House Behind the Cedars and Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe” in a new MLA Books volume: Approaches to Teaching the Works of Charles W. Chesnutt. Faculty member Jelena Runić gave a poster presentation titled “PCC Effects in Slavic: A Morphological Account” at the 12th European Conference on Formal Description of Slavic Languages, University of Nova Gorica, Slovenia.
Quartet for String Trio and Harpsichord by faculty member Mark Janello — commissioned for the Mallarmé Chamber Players — received its world premiere at Duke University. Faculty member Ildar Khannanov presented a paper at the Third Congress of the Russian Society for Music Theory, in Moscow. See Cody Raum in VOCAL STUDIES See Michael Rickelton in COMPOSITION See Jake Runestad in COMPOSITION
MUS I C O LO GY Faculty member David Hildebrand and former archivist Elizabeth Schaaf (’77, Voice) launched their book Musical Maryland at an event in the George Peabody Library. Hildebrand and Ginger Hildebrand (MM ’88, Guitar) also presented a concert at the First Unitarian Church of Baltimore. Faculty member Susan Forscher Weiss and her co-authors were awarded a Certificate of Merit for Best Research in Recorded Popular Music for their book A Cole Porter Companion (University of Illinois Press).
formed in a Brass and Organ Concert at the Brown Memorial Presbyterian Church in Baltimore.
Roderick Demmings Jr. (BM ’16, Organ) played for Abyssinia Baptist Church in Harlem, New York.
James R. Houston (BM ’71, Organ)
was honored for his 50 years of service as organist and music director of the First Unitarian Church of Baltimore with a gala concert that included performances by Michael Britt (BM ’84, Organ) and Marijim Thoene (BM ’70, Church Music). Organist and composer Trent Johnson (BM ’89, GPD ’91, Organ) was commissioned by Trilogy: An Opera Company to write the opera Kenyatta. The premiere took place at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. Faculty artist John C. Walker was involved in the First Shanghai Conservatory of Music’s (SCHM) International Organ Festival, and First SHCM International Organ Competition.
PERC US SIO N Sandbox Percussion — Victor Caccese (BM ’11, Percussion), Terry Sweeney (BM ’13, Percussion), Ian Rosenbaum (BM ’08, Percussion) — conducted its second annual NYU Sandbox Percussion Seminar and toured the West Coast performing concerts featuring pieces by Thomas Kotcheff (BM ’10, Piano), Viet Cuong (BM ’11, MM ’12, Composition), and Caccese.
Eric Cha-Beach (BM ’04, GPD ’05,
Percussion) and Sō Percussion were presented by the Candlelight Concert Society in Columbia, Md.
Adam Rosenblatt (BM ’10, Percussion;
KSAS BS ’10, Molecular/Cellular Biology) performed his one-man multimedia show “Godly Chaos” as a part of the Charm City Fringe Festival. See Karen Seward in PREPARATORY
PIA N O Matthew Bengtson (MM ’97,
DMA ’01, Piano) co-authored The Alexander Scriabin Companion, published by Rowman and Littlefield Press. He released a three-CD recording of violin/ PEABODY
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS piano duo and solo piano music of Karol Szymanowski on the Musica Omnia label, and another recording project, the complete cello/piano music of Roberto Sierra, on Albany Records.
Sahun (Sam) Hong (GPD ’15, MM ’17,
Jennifer Nicole Campbell (BM ’14,
Daniel Horn (’76, Piano), Ann Palen (MM ’89, Violin), and Jeannie Yu
MM ’15, Piano) was featured in Main Line Today about her collaboration with the Academy of International Ballet. She was also interviewed by West Chester Radio’s Art Watch. See Ya-Ting Chang in STRINGS See Hui-Chuan Chen in VOCAL STUDIES See Clara Christian in STRINGS
Andrew Cooperstock (DMA ’88,
Piano) released Leonard Bernstein: Complete Solo Works for Piano on Bridge Records.
Inna Faliks (BM ’99, MM ’01, GPD ’03, Piano) performed Mahler 6 with Daniel Schlosberg (BM ’00, MM ’01, Piano;
Piano) won the 2017 Vendome Prize at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland. Sejoon Park (BM ’12, AD ’17, Piano) was also a finalist in the competition.
(DMA ’05, Piano) participated in the 27th annual Midsummer’s Music Festival in Door County, Wis.
Danny Kelley (MM ’71, DMA ’85, Piano) Kimberly Kong (BM ’09, Piano) was
See more Adam Pearl in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
See Katherine Jacobson in STRINGS was featured in the Houston Chronicle.
featured in the fall 2017 Johns Hopkins Magazine.
See Thomas Kotcheff in CONDUCTING and PERCUSSION See Hsiao-Ying Lin in COMPOSITION
Faculty artist Brian Ganz (AD ’93, Piano) performed works by Chopin in February at The Music Center at Strathmore.
Washington Garcia (MM ’98,
DMA ’03, Piano) was awarded the medal for Outstanding Cultural Achievement by the Ecuadorian National Assembly. Garcia also had his debut with the Omaha Symphony.
Faculty artist Boris Slutsky performed Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 with the Reading Symphony Orchestra in celebration of Mozart’s 262nd birthday. See Aaron Thacker in VOCAL STUDIES See Ta-Wei Tsai in COMPOSITION
Jenny Lin (KSAS BA ’94, German; AD ’98, Piano) released a new recording of Philip Glass’ (Preparatory Alumnus) Complete
Etudes for Solo Piano on the Steinway and Sons Label. She made her debut in Lincoln Center’s Great Performers Series and White Light Festival, and she joined Glass for three concerts in Brazil. See Linda Apple Monson in MUSIC EDUCATION
Christine Niehaus (BM ’72, MM ’73,
played the premiere of his Violin and Piano Sonata No. 2 in Carnegie Hall as part of “Getting to Carnegie.”
Piano) performed the original score of the silent film Wings by John Stepan Zamecnik, sponsored by The American Film Institute in Silver Spring, Md.
See Adam Golka in WOODWINDS
Matthew Odell (MM ’03, GPD ’05,
CD, Macbeth, features music by ScottishCzech composer Geraldine Mucha.
Piano) organized a Hurricane benefit concert for Puerto Rico. RoseAnn Markow Lester (BM ’75, MM ’82, Violin), José Miguel Cueto (BM ’78, MM ’81, Violin), faculty artist Edward Polochick (MM ’78, Piano, Choral Conducting) and Jennifer Rende (BM ’83, Viola) were featured.
See Alexander Shtarkman in VOCAL STUDIES
Julian Gargiulo (MM ’97, Piano)
Patricia Goodson’s (MM ’80, Piano)
Nancy Roldán (MM ’76, DMA ’89,
See Michael Sheppard in BRASS
Joel Fan (MM ’94, Piano) is the artistic
See Leon Fleisher in STRINGS
Faculty artist Benjamin Pasternack was featured on PostClassical Ensemble’s concert “Secret Music Skirmishes of the Cold War: The Shostakovich Case” at Washington National Cathedral. Historical performance faculty artist Adam Pearl (BM ’99, Piano; MM ’01, DMA ’09, Harpsichord) played in Pro Musica Rara’s season opener, “A Baroque Halloween: A Tribute to the Diabolical Side of Music.”
KSAS BA ’00, History) at the National Gallery; performed and gave master classes in China’s top conservatories; presented master classes and recitals at Mondo Musica, Cremona, Italy; and served on the International Symposium on Conservatory and University Music Education. She also released a recording on the Delos label, titled PolonaiseFantasie, the Story of a Pianist.
director of Open Source Music Festival in New York City.
Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona and the Universitat de Barcelona in Spain.
Piano) presented a solo recital at St. Martin in-the-Fields in London, a performance at the University of Sheffield, and gave lectures and master classes at the Universitat
Rosemary Tuck (MM ’86, Piano)
released a recording of Czerny’s first concerto in D minor with the English Chamber Orchestra.
Sorab Wadia (BM ’93, MM ’95, Piano)
played Shylock in The Merchant of Venice at Peak Performances at Montclair State University in New Jersey.
André Watts (AD ’72, Piano) opened the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra’s 2017–18 season with a concert titled “From Piano to Pen” at Carnegie Hall. He performed this program in four other cities, and performed Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 conducted by Robert Spano with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
John Wilson (BM ’10, MM ’12, GPD
’14, Piano) tied for second place in The American Prize in Piano, 2017–18, in the college/university solo division.
Einav Yarden (GPD ’03, MM ’05, Piano) presented a recital as a benefit for the Gesher Music Festival at The Ethical Society of St. Louis, Mo.
GPD student Susan Zhang co-directed Concert Truck, a mobile performance stage in a 16-foot box truck, which performed in Baltimore.
P R E PA R ATORY Alumna Soh-Hyun Park Altino and her husband Leo Altino performed the Brahms Double Concerto in A minor with the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra. Dance alumna and former teacher Helene Breazeale was presented with the Living Legacy Award by the Maryland Dance Education Association. She founded the Towson University dance program and established the Dance Company in 1972. She became associate dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication and then the executive director of the World Music Congresses, producing the World Cello Congress II in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1997; the 2000 World Cello Congress III at TU and the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall; and the first World Guitar Congress in 2004. Preparatory cellist Henry Bushnell won the Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestra’s concerto competition in the Concert Orchestra division. Preparatory student Connor Chaikowsky, violin, participated in the 2017 New York String Orchestra Seminar, conducted by Jaime Laredo at Carnegie Hall. Voice student Katelynn Cherry participated in the Honors Performance Series mixed chorus, at Carnegie Hall. She also performed in Walt Disney World with the All-National Honors Ensemble. Two students from the Preparatory flute studio of JeeYoung Rachel Choe (MM ’02, GPD ’03, DMA ’09, Flute) placed at the 2018 Flute Society of Washington Competition. Hyungjoo Han won second place at the junior division at the student honors competition. Angela Park won third place at the senior division. Preparatory percussionist Nate Delivuk and Preparatory Wind Band Conductor Karen Seward (BM ’01, Music Education; PC ’01, Percussion) spent three weeks in Europe on the American Music Abroad Gold Tour 2017.
See Judson Deitrich in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE See Philip Glass in PIANO See Irina Kaplan Lande in WOODWINDS Preparatory student Richard Kim, cello, won first place in the Maryland Division of the MTNA Senior Strings Competition. Kim also won first place in the Senior Division of the Asian American Music Society Competition and performed in a winner’s concert at the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center. Two Preparatory cellists — Sean Kim and Luka Stefanovic — were winners in the Londontowne Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Competition and were featured at the LSO’s Rising Stars concert. Kim also won first place in the Howard County’s Gifted and Talented Orchestra Concerto Competition and performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in a Side-by-Side concert. Columbia Orchestra’s 2018 Young Artist Competition winners were: Preparatory violinists Megan Rabe, Senior Division, and Joseph Tao, Junior Division. They were featured soloists with the Orchestra. Two others were awarded Honorable Mention: Sean Kim, cello, and Jing Fan, violin.
FREE TO ALL Welcome to our 31st season of Music for All! Please join fellow music lovers from the Baltimore area for 16 FREE CONCERTS in the beautiful sanctuary of Second Presbyterian Church 4200 St. Paul Street Baltimore, MD 21218
CHAMBER MUSIC BY CANDLELIGHT
Featuring members of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
MAR 11, 2018 APR 15, 2018 MAY 6, 2018 JUN 3, 2018
Preparatory student Nina Shih, violin, was invited to perform with violinist Elizabeth Pitcairn for a fundraising event in Philadelphia for the Luzerne Music Center.
Preparatory student Alisha Stafford, violin, won the York River Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Concerto Competition. Stafford also received an honorable mention at the Williamsburg Youth Orchestra Concerto Competition.
Preparatory student Laura Stanell was the voice finalist representative from the Pennsylvania Music Teachers National Association for the senior division. See Ivan Stefanovic in STRINGS Preparatory student Kevin Su was a finalist in the full orchestra division of the 2017 YCC National Young Composers Challenge and in the 2017 ASCAP Young Composers Awards; won the orchestra category of the 2016–17 Azusa Pacific University/J.W. Pepper High School Composition Contest; won the Music Teachers National Association Composition Competition for Maryland in the senior
MAR 18, 2018 Irina Muresanu
APR 22, 2018
MAY 20, 2018
Todd Marcus Jazz Quartet
For more information call 443.759.3309 or visit CommunityConcertsAtSecond.org
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS division; and was named an Emerging Composer in the Tribeca New Music Young Composer Competition Division 2.
Graduate student in acoustics Kate Wagner writes the viral architecture blog McMansion Hell, and was interviewed by James Bennett II for his WQXR Blog, “Where’s the Best Seat in the Concert Hall?”
ST RI NG S Peabody’s Trio Jinx performed at the Mesa Arts Center in Mesa, Ariz., in November, as part of the Young Artist Development Series. They were joined by Zuill Bailey (BM ’94, Cello), music director of the Mesa Arts Center’s classical series. See more Zuill Bailey in GUITAR
R E C OR DING ARTS Faculty artist Thomas Dolby accepted the Roland Lifetime Achievement Award.
See José Miguel Cueto in PIANO See Judson Deitrich in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE See Netanel Draiblate in VOCAL STUDIES See Ledah Finck in DANCE See Matthew Gabriel in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE See Herbert Greenberg in MUSIC EDUCATION
Christopher Hamlen (BM ’04,
GPD ’06, Double Bass) has joined the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
Andréa Picard Boecker (MM ’08, Violin) and Clara Christian
Alec Hiller (BM ’12, Double Bass)
(MM ’08, Piano) performed in a concert called “Music for Violin & Piano from Northern Europe” at College of the Ozarks in Missouri.
Nikita Borisevich (GPD ’13, MM
’17, Violin; GPD ’15, Chamber Ensemble) performed at the Sitka Summer Music Festival’s Alaska Airlines Autumn Classics in Anchorage with Martin Sher (BM ’96, Violin) and Zuill Bailey (BM ’94, Cello). Borisevich and Bailey were also guest artists at the Northwest Bach Festival in Spokane, Wa.
won a bass position with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra.
Daniel Jacobs (MM ’15, GPD ’17, Viola) was an ArtistYear Fellow this year, teaching elementary students in Roaring Fork Valley, Colo.
Michelle LaCourse (BM ’82,
MM ’83, AD ’87, Viola) was featured in Boston University Today as a strong mentor and teacher for violist Samuel Kelder. PHIL VAN NOSTRAND
Preparatory alumnus Derrick Wang, who serves as a faculty artist in the Professional Studies Department, premiered There is a Road: Scenes for Concert Band with the Baltimore Symphonic Band at the Community College of Baltimore County.
formed in N.Y., N.J., and S.C.
Cameron Blake (MM ’07, Violin) released a new CD, Fear Not. Ten Tuned-In students attended Interlochen Arts Camp; two attended the Alpine Brass Band Camp in Stams, Austria; Keith Flemming and Lowrider James attended The National Sistema Young Leaders Orchestra in London as Youth Mentors; five students were hired as youth mentors at Living Classrooms summer music program in Baltimore; another 10 attended The Archipelago Project’s summer music camp in Traverse City, Mich., where Preparatory faculty artist Eliza Minster (BM ’13, MM ’14, Trumpet) is on the teaching staff; and several travelled to New York to perform as part of Make Music NYC. In addition, seven Tuned-In members were selected to play in the National Take a Stand Orchestra presented by the LA Philharmonic. Preparatory faculty members Troy Stuart (GPD ’94, Cello), Lauren Rausch (DMA ’14, Violin), and Dan Trahey (BM ’00, Tuba, Music Education), as well as Camille Delaney McNeil (MM ’11, Flute) and Conservatory senior Kayin Scanterbury, jazz percussion, were teachers and presenters at the Symposium.
Mermagen (BM ’84, Cello) she per-
Frances Borowsky (MM ’13, Cello) is a cello teacher at Lebanon Valley College.
Katarzyna Bryla-Weiss (GPD ’05, AD ’11, Violin; GPD ’08, Chamber Ensemble) won a viola position with the New York City Ballet.
Lydia Bunn (MM ’09, Viola) won the co-principal viola position with the Orquesta Sinfónica de la Universidad de Guanajuato in Mexico.
Helen Callus (GPD ’94, Viola) was
named professor of viola at Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music. She has written a book on viola technique, published by Carl Fischer, and numerous articles for the Strad and Strings magazines.
Jeremy Lamb (BM ’03, Cello) won a
Faculty artist Victoria Chiang, viola, was interviewed for Strings magazine and was featured on the Violin Channel’s blog. She was also featured on Prince George’s Philharmonic’s concert. As a member of the Aspen String Trio with Michael
the 2017–18 Rudolph Ganz Fellow at the Newberry Library in Chicago. Her most recent book is The Art Songs of Louise Talma, and her opera libretto Marie Curie Learns to Swim premiered at the Hartford Opera Theater.
cello position in the Charlotte Symphony, where he joined Sarah Markle (BM ’10, Cello).
Kendra Leonard (BM ’95, Cello) is
Jennifer Leshnower (MM ’91, Violin), a member of the Cassatt String Quartet, participated in the Cassatt in the Basin! residency. The group worked with Benjamin Zander, conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, and had the residency with four high schools at the Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center in Midland, Texas.
John “Adidam” Littlejohn
(MM ’02, GPD ’04, Violin) released Caterpillar Chronicles. This hip-hop album was created using only Littlejohn’s vocals and violin. See Jason Love in VOCAL STUDIES
by faculty artists Leon Fleisher and Katherine Jacobson at Virginia Commonwealth University. The Mendelssohn Piano Trio — Peter Sirotin (GDP ’97, Violin; GPD ’99, Chamber Ensemble), Ya-Ting Chang (BM ’96, MM ’98, Piano), and Fiona Thompson — celebrated the 20th anniversary of their meeting at Peabody with a performance premiering a new ballet by the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. They also presented Mendelssohn works at the Smithsonian American Arts Museum and appeared as guest artists with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra.
Jacques-Pierre Malan (GPD ’12,
Cory Palmer (MM ’07, Double Bass)
won a principal bass position with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.
See Jennifer Rende in PIANO See Christof Richter in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Stephen Schmidt (DMA ’00, Viola)
performed the modern-day premiere of Randall Thompson’s The Wind in The Willows string quartet with his colleagues from the Richmond Symphony Orchestra and hosted a concert and master class
Shu-Ting Yao (MM ’06, Violin) was
appointed to the violin faculty at Frostburg State University. She is assistant principal second violin at the National String Symphonia, and she was a featured artist in Frostburg State University’s Summer Music Academy.
Faculty artist Eileen Cornett played for Annapolis Opera’s concert “Arias and Encores,” where Ronald Gretz (BM ’66, Voice; MM ’68, Choral Conducting) is the artistic director and Elisabeth Slaten (MM ’12, Voice/Pedagogy) was a featured artist.
See Ann Palen in PIANO
See Lauren Rausch in PREPARATORY
principal second violin position with Symphony NH in Nashua.
was a faculty vocal coach for the Young Artist’s Program at Boston’s Tanglewood Institute.
See Eve Miller in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
See Cody Raum in VOCAL STUDIES
Ryo Usami (BM ’17, Violin) won the
Mijin Choi (MM ’11, Vocal Accompanying)
See Roseann Markow Lester in PIANO
The Music Academy of the West named Yuan Qi (GPD ’17, Viola) a Zarin Mehta Fellow. As a part of the fellowship, she participated in a training program with the New York Philharmonic.
Bass) was featured in an all-Telemann program, which commemorated the 250th anniversary of Telemann's death, in Arlington and Vienna, Va.
VO CA L AC C O M PA N Y IN G
MM ’16, Cello; GPD ’13, Chamber Ensemble) performed at the Embassy of South Africa, his home country, as part of the Embassy Series in Washington, D.C.
Faculty artist Amit Peled, cello, was included in String Ovation Magazine’s 10 Fall Music Performances Not To Miss. He also released an album, Amit Peled Peabody Cello Gang, featuring his students; is a character in the children’s book A Cello Named Pablo; and was featured on the Grammy-nominated album Mademoiselle – Premiere Audience – Unknown Music of Nadia Boulanger.
Wesley Thompson (BM ’12, Double
Annie Flood (MM ’17, Vocal Katie Smirnova (BM, MM ’11, Violin)
is the co-founder and artistic director of Rushmore Music Festival in Spearfish, S.D. William Kass (’15, Cello), Charlene Kluegel (MM ’11, GPD ’12, Violin), and Ismar Gomes (BM ’09, MM ’11 Cello) have been involved in the festival.
Barbara Schneider (MM ’98, Violin)
organized a benefit concert for the people of Vieques, Puerto Rico. Preparatory faculty Ivan Stefanovic, violin, and Troy Stuart (GPD ’94, Cello); the Lyric Brass Quintet with Larry Williams (BM ’88, GPD ’90, French Horn); and Dariusz Skoraczewski (BM ’94, GPD ’96, Cello), Marcia Kämper (BM ’98, GPD ’00, Flute), and Lukasz Szyrner (GPD ’97, Cello) performed in the concert. Faculty artist Alan Stepansky, cello, participated in a workshop — “How to Audition Like a Boss” — with the New York Youth Symphony. See Troy Stuart in PREPARATORY
Willy Sucre (’75, Viola) returned to perform in Western New Mexico University’s President’s Chamber Music Series.
Accompanying) is a staff pianist for the vocal departments of Gonzaga University and Whitworth University in Wash.
Nadezda (Nadja) Mijatovic-Sekicki (MM ’13, Vocal Accompanying) joined the Morgan State University faculty. She is a vocal coach and teaches an opera workshop class. Mijatovic-Sekicki has also been engaged as pianist for productions of The Magic Flute and Oberon with The In Series: Opera and More.
VO CA L STUDIE S Tariq Al-Sabir (BM ’15, Voice) per-
formed in an original arrangement of Schubert’s Winterreise at Schubertiade Remix hosted by the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) as a part of Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival. Faculty artist Tony Arnold, soprano, gave a rare performance of György Kurtág’s cantata for soprano and piano, The Sayings of Péter Bornemisza in a concert commemorating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in the composer’s native Hungary. She also performed with Third Angle New Music in Portland, Ore. PEABODY
DEPA RTM ENT N EWS Rachel Blaustein (MM ’15, Voice) was named a winner the Wisconsin District Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She is in residence with the Florentine Opera, singing the roles of Sylviane in Merry Widow, Second Woman in Dido & Aeneas, Shepherdess in Venus and Adonis, and Papagena in The Magic Flute.
Vocal studies faculty member and opera stage director Garnett Bruce directed Puccini’s Turandot for the 2017–18 San Francisco Opera season opener. Soprano Toni Marie Palmertree (BM ’06, Voice) made her debut in the role of Liu. When the production returned, Christopher Don Franklin (DMA ’99, Conducting) made his San Francisco Opera conducting debut. Bass-baritone Robert Cantrell (MM ’90, GPD ’92, Voice) sang in the premiere of Mother’s Lament at Morgan State University; Mozart Requiem with Bay Atlantic Symphony; Brahms Requiem at Shriver Hall; and made orchestral debuts with the Atlanta Symphony with Joseph Young (AD ’09, Conducting) and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra with Ken Lam (MM ’07, Conducting). He also appeared in Undine Moore’s Life of a Martyr with the Richmond Symphony and performed Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra with Jason Love (BM ’92, Cello; MM ’94, Conducting) conducting and mezzo-soprano Kyle Engler (BM ’92, MM ’94, Voice).
See Janna Critz in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE Tenor Josh Diaz (MM ’13, Voice; GPD ’15, Opera) sang Samuel Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 with the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra, the nation’s oldest LGBTQA orchestra. Tenor Michael Dodge (MM ’16, Voice) and soprano voice master’s student Arianna Arnold presented a performance and lecture celebrating the life and works of WWI poet and composer Ivor Gurney.
Michael Dodge (MM ’16, Voice), Claire Galloway Weber (MM ’15, Voice), Kerry Holahan (MM ’14, Early Music Voice), Justin Nurin (GPD ’10, Trumpet), Cody Raum (BM ’13, Double
Bass; MM ’14, Music Theory Pedagogy), Stephanie Ray (MM ’12, Flute), Ben Shaver (BM ’12, Voice), Aaron Thacker (’16, Piano), and Peter Tomaszewski (MM ’10, Voice; GPD ’12, Opera) were featured in Baltimorebased Stillpointe Theatre’s production of Leonard Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti. See Kristen Dubenion-Smith in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Maggie Finnegan (MM ’10, Voice) sang
the role of The Water in Rachel Portman’s The Little Prince with San Francisco company Opera Parallele.
Faculty artist Denyce Graves has been elected to OPERA America’s board of directors. Graves gave a master class presented by the Washington Performing Arts Society at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. Two of her Peabody students, Emma Dickinson and Simone Brown (MM ’17, Voice) were featured. See Ronald Gretz in VOCAL ACCOMPANYING See Kerry Holahan in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Mezzo-soprano Diana Cantrelle (MM ’12, Voice/Pedagogy) sang the title role in Carmen—Vive la Liberté, a newly edited version that she created. She also sang the role of the Mother in Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors at the Howard County Center for the Arts.
Faculty artist Ah Young Hong (BM ’98, MM ’01, Voice) presented two concerts and a master class during a residency at the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University. She premiered Susanne un jour and rake forth the embers, which were written by composition department chair Michael Hersch (BM ’95, MM ’97, Composition). See more Ah Young Hong in COMPOSITION
Megan Ihnen (MM ’09, Voice) and
saxophonist Alan Theisen gave multiple concerts as a part of their This World of Yes Tour; and she presented a recital in Glendale, Calif. Faculty artist JoAnn Kulesza presented a master class and private coachings at University of Mississippi and Birmingham–Southern College, where Jacqueline J. Leary-Warsaw (DMA ’00, Voice) heads the music department. She also conducted Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and Copland’s Canticle to Freedom with the Londontowne Symphony Orchestra and conducted Baltimore Concert Opera’s Sweeney Todd. See Elaine Lachica in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Christine Lyons (MM ’16, Voice)
was presented by Vocal Arts DC at the Millennium Stage of the Kennedy Center.
Emily Noël (MM ’06, Voice) and Andrew Arceci (BM ’08, Double Bass,
Viola da Gamba) are members of Floyds Row, which performed at The Four Hour Day Lutherie in Baltimore and at the Gaithersburg Arts Barn. After releasing the album No King this fall, Outcalls — a band with Britt Olsen-Ecker (BM ’09, Voice) and Melissa Wimbish (GPD ’11, Voice; GPD ’14, Chamber Ensemble) — played the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra PULSE Series pre-show concert, opened for San Fermin at the Ottobar, performed at The Lexington Bar Los Angeles, and played multiple shows in Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York. See Corbin Phillips in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE
Frances Pollock (MM ’15, Voice) was
selected to participate in Composers & the Voice.
Alexandra Razskazoff (BM ’14, Voice) tied for first place at the Academy of Vocal Arts 2017 Giargiari Bel Canto Competition in Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center. Peabody students Elizabeth Sarian, mezzo-soprano, and Nathan Cicero, vocal accompanying, performed a concert at University of Maryland, Baltimore County, as part of the Peabody/UMBC collaboration, Interplay. See Elizabeth Schaaf in MUSICOLOGY
Faculty artists William Sharp, baritone, and Alexander Shtarkman, piano, and Netanel Draiblate (MM ’07, GPD ’09, Violin) were featured in PostClassical Ensemble’s concert, Music in Wartime: A Pearl Harbor Day Commemoration at the Washington National Cathedral.
A performance by Fatma Daglar (MM ’95, GPD ’97, Oboe) of Bohuslav Martinu’s Oboe Concerto with the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, was featured on NPR’s Performance Today. Daglar is the oboist of Zéphyros Winds, which recently toured Utah and Northern California.
See Elisabeth Slaten in VOCAL ACCOMPANYING
The Poulenc Trio — Bryan Young (BM ’96, Bassoon); Preparatory faculty artist Irina Kaplan Lande, piano; and Liang Wang, oboe — released Trains of Thought in February. The title work is by Viet Cuong (BM ’11, MM ’12, Composition).
Musica Spira, under the direction of Grace Srinivasan (MM ’16, Voice) and current DMA student Paula Maust (MM ’16, Harpsichord), presented a concert at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church in Annapolis, Md.
Voice) most recent book is Fall from Grace. See Charity Sunshine TillemannDick in HEADLINERS and COMPOSITION See Caitlin Vincent in COMPOSITION In September, Two Cities, a vocal duo with Melissa Wimbish (GPD ’11, Voice; GPD ’14, Chamber Ensemble) and Elspeth Davis (MM ’06, Voice) performed with Hui-Chuan Chen (MM ’06, DMA ’14, Piano), as part of season two of Thrive Music Live.
Molly Young (MM ’13, Voice, Early
Music) was featured on Self magazine’s website and the JHU HUB for coping with chemotherapy sessions by creating music videos complete with costumes, makeup, and lip syncing. See more Molly Young in COMPOSITION
WO O DW IN DS Leela Breithaupt (BM ’93, MM ’96,
Flute) was appointed interim executive director of Indy Baroque Music, Inc. She signed the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra with Naxos Records for a series of CDs, and her debut album with her trio, Les Ordinaires, was released on Naxos.
See Mindy Rosenfeld in HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE the Weber Clarinet Concerto No. 2 with the Philadelphia Sinfonia.
co-founded Scapi Magazine, a Chicagobased publication with collaboration from Tyler Lee (BM ’12, Voice), Josef Kardell (BM ’12, Composition), and Molly Young (MM ’13, Voice, Early Music).
Libby Sternberg’s (BM ’75, MM ’78,
See Stephanie Ray in VOCAL STUDIES
John Russo (’63, Clarinet) performed
Maureen Smith (BM ’12, Voice)
Peabody Distinguished Visiting Artist Eric Owens, bass-baritone, and faculty artist William Burden, tenor, performed Mendelssohn’s Elijah with Music of the Baroque in Chicago.
The Woodbridge Flute Choir, featuring Tara Nadel (BM ’04, Flute), gave a concert at the Greenwich Presbyterian Church in Va.
Peabody’s La Obra and Classical Revolution presented Music for Puerto Rico, organized by Louna DekkerVargas (KSAS, BA ’15, Sociology; BM ’17, Flute; KSAS BA ’17, French). Proceeds were sent to UNIDOS, which provides hurricane relief. Faculty artist Alexander Fiterstein, clarinet, joined Adam Golka (’08, Piano) and other artists for the culminating concert of the fifth Sedona Winter Music Festival in Arizona. Fiterstein served as a co-artistic director of the festival. See Marcia Kämper in STRINGS
Melanie Schattschneider Keller (BM ’99, Flute) joined the faculty of the College of Idaho. She has performed with the Boise Philharmonic on both flute and piccolo, and continues to serve as principal flute and personnel manager of both the Vallejo Symphony and Symphony Napa Valley in Calif.
Michelle Kiec (MM ’98, DMA ’04,
Clarinet) was named dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts at Kutztown University in Pa. See Camille Delaney Mcneil in PREPARATORY Junior bassoonist Mateen Milan was the first Summer Diversity Fellow at Ithaca College’s Summer Music Program.
Mary Matthews (MM ’10, Flute)
IN MEMORIAM Jeanne Chalifoux
former harp faculty member
Agnieszka Gawin-Wnek (BM ’93, Voice)
former strings faculty member
(BM ’73, MM ’75, DMA ’84, Piano)
Loren Wayne Kitt
former woodwinds faculty member
(BM ’69, MM ’72, Piano), former Preparatory faculty member
Isabel Martin (BM ’38, Piano)
Shirley A. Mathews former faculty member
John T. Plier
(MM ’98, DMA ’06, Voice)
released her album, Three-Nine Line. PEABODY
FA N FA R E Keeping a Legacy Alive Gift of archival materials, scholarship, and faculty funding honors the memory of Rosa Ponselle.
After a painstaking process of cataloguing and restoration, a treasure trove of more than 1,400 items belonging to Metropolitan Opera star Rosa Ponselle is now available for public viewing — both digitally and in permanent physical displays — at Peabody’s Arthur Friedheim Library. Ponselle began her singing career in 1912, as a teenager, on the vaudeville circuit. The gifted soprano was discovered by Enrico Caruso and debuted at the Metropolitan Opera at age 21, singing the role of Leonora in Verdi’s La forza del destino, opposite Caruso. Thus was launched an illustrious 20-year opera career as a dramatic soprano whom Maria Callas called “the greatest of us all.” When she retired in her mid-30s, Ponselle moved to Maryland with her Baltimore-born husband. In the 1940s, she moved to Villa Pace, an estate she had built in Stevenson, Md., where she lived until her death in 1981. The Rosa Ponselle Collection was donated to Peabody in 2015 by the Lester Dequaine/Frank Chiarenza Foundation. Dequaine, who passed away in 2016, once operated a Rosa Ponselle Museum in Meriden, Conn., and had amassed an extensive 38
collection of the singer’s personal belongings, including two recital gowns, countless photographs and concert programs, and a baby grand piano especially designed for her by the Baldwin Piano Company. After the museum closed in 2007, Dequaine sought a permanent home for the collection, ultimately choosing Peabody because of Ponselle’s extensive ties to the Baltimore music community. (She was an ardent supporter of the Baltimore Civic Opera Company, which today is known as the Lyric Opera Baltimore.) Matthew Testa, archivist at the Friedheim Library, said the first order of business for his team was to digitally scan the entire collection. Then
they set about creating an online exhibit, at musiclibrary.peabody.jhu.edu/ rosaponselle, that provides site visitors a structured presentation of Ponselle’s life and career. “It’s an introduction to who she was,” Testa says. The physical exhibit, which opened in January 2018, includes Ponselle’s Baldwin piano, a silver tea service, ceramic figurines of Ponselle’s operatic roles, and some furniture. Items from the collection are displayed at several sites within the Friedheim Library, as well as Johns Hopkins’ Evergreen Museum and the Milton S. Eisenhower Library at Homewood. Chiarenza, 91, says he is pleased that the collection his friend prized so highly is once again on public display. “I know that Lester spent hundreds of thousands of dollars restoring and maintaining the collection,” Chiarenza says. “Lester was very happy that Peabody was the place to receive and preserve the memorabilia.” Along with the gift of the collection, Dequaine and the foundation provided funds for both an endowed undergraduate voice scholarship and a three-year faculty artist position in Ponselle’s name. The Rosa Ponselle Scholarship in Voice, to be awarded annually to a voice student at the Conservatory, is held this year by mezzo-soprano Tammi Lee, a senior studying in Denyce Graves’ studio. At Peabody, Lee has been featured as a soloist with the Peabody Singers and in the
Peabody Opera Dinner November 18, 2017 Leith Symington Griswold Hall role of Third Lady in Peabody Opera’s outreach production of Papageno! “It is truly an honor to be named a recipient of the Rosa Ponselle Scholarship in Voice. The competition in the field of classical music is so fierce and the standards we work diligently for remain so high that it is always reassuring to receive this kind of support and encouragement for any young artist who is dreaming big,” says Lee. Graves, an international opera superstar and since 2012 a member of the Peabody Voice faculty, has been named The Rosa Ponselle Distinguished Faculty Artist at the Peabody Conservatory. “All of us in this business are standing on the shoulders of those who have come before us,” notes Graves. “Rosa Ponselle was truly a luminary, and this link to her legacy is a great point of pride for me, for my studio, and for Peabody.” —— Christine Stutz
A special opera dinner was held in celebration of the 40th anniversary of Peabody’s affiliation with Johns Hopkins and also to welcome Peabody’s new opera managing director Samuel Mungo. Sponsors of the opera Allan and Claire Jensen served as hosts for the evening, during which more than 75 guests shared dinner with student performers and were treated to a preview of the evening’s performance of L’elisir d’amore. Left: Ponselle items on display. Above: Denyce Graves, the Rosa Ponselle Distinguished Faculty Artist at Peabody.
Clockwise from top-left: Students William Marshall and Jason Berger performing; Allan Jensen, Mary Burke, and Claire Jensen; Madeline Huss, Sister Mimi Bodell, Samuel Mungo, Emma Nicholson, and Jacob Bowman; Students Lauren Vanden Broeck and Lorenzo Zapata performing
Rising to the Challenge Campaign Update for Peabody Goals TOTAL RAISED BY PEABODY THROUGH MARCH 30, 2018: $52.7 MILLION
PROGRAM SUPPORT (38%)
FACULTY SUPPORT (1%)
SCHOLARSHIP SUPPORT (61%)
ALLOCATION OF $52.7 MILLION RAISED TO DATE
Brian Hays Makes Gift to Music and Medicine Professional musicians rely on strong, healthy bodies to practice their art, and when injury strikes, it can threaten livelihoods as well as quality of life. Part of the mission of the new Johns Hopkins Center for Music and Medicine is to improve understanding of, and treatment options for, medical maladies that afflict professional musicians. Classical guitarist Brian Hays knows this issue all too well — so much so that he was an early and strong supporter of the center, which is an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Peabody Institute and Johns Hopkins Medicine and the University. Hays’ professional musical career was cut short in the mid-1980s, when he developed focal dystonia, a neurological movement disorder estimated to afflict about 2 percent of musicians, according to The Dystonia Society, a British advocacy group. Renowned musicians with the condition include pianists Leon Fleisher and Glenn Gould, and rock star Keith Emerson. It can affect anyone from singers to bagpipers to banjo players. “Dystonia is common, but underreported,” says Hays. “Musicians think you can’t tell anyone because you won’t have a job. This is unfortunately sometimes true, but it impedes progress. Luckily, some brave souls and the openness of the internet have helped crack that wall.” Patients with dystonia lose control over certain muscles, causing involuntary spasms of the affected area. In Hays’ hand, the wrong finger would move when plucking a string, making it virtually impossible to play the guitar or even type on a keyboard. His tenure with the San Diego Guitar Quartet was over. Hays, who earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music from the University of California at San Diego, became an avid student of medical research into dystonia and sought treatment from experts in the field. Many were guitarists who had trained themselves to play differently, since
“normal practice” was ineffective. One even reversed his hand positions. Serap Bastepe-Gray (BM ’96, MM ’99, Guitar), a physician who serves on Peabody’s Guitar faculty and is a co-founder of the center, says retraining has been rated as a more effective treatment for musicians’ dystonia than medications and physical therapy. “Much like the training of a musician,” she says, “retraining a musician with dystonia requires an
individualized approach. Most musicians use a ‘cocktail method,’ where they combine various strategies. Unfortunately, little is known about the formal content and effectiveness of various approaches in the management of this condition.” Hays became active in an organization called Musicians with Dystonia that had been formed by Stephen Frucht, a neurologist at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, and Glen Estrin, a noted French horn player who toured extensively with performers such as Frank Sinatra before contracting dystonia of the mouth and facial muscles. Although Hays eventually regained his ability to play the guitar recreationally, he continued to seek additional knowledge about dystonia
causes and treatments. “We’ve known for years that it can be cured,” he says, “it’s just that nobody’s had the prescription so that it can be cured every time, and there’s no quick fix.” When he learned that Peabody and Johns Hopkins were establishing a Center for Music and Medicine, Hays offered $25,000 in seed money to fund a pilot research study to improve understanding and treatment of dystonia for guitarists. The study is being conducted by BastepeGray and Alexander Pantelyat, a neurologist and center co-director. Hays later followed this gift with $50,000 to launch a matching campaign to raise awareness of the Center for Music and Medicine. Most recently, he and his wife, Tammy, have named the Center for Music and Medicine as a beneficiary of their estate plans. Of particular interest to Brian Hays is educating the medical community in proper diagnosis and treatment options, and teaching young musicians how to recognize symptoms and seek help. “The word is finally out so that musicians have awareness of what dystonia is,” says Hays. “Now we need everyone else to be aware that preserving the health of our artists is a needed, valuable endeavor in our community.” Bastepe-Gray says she is very excited for the work ahead and the center’s future. “Today more than ever, the resources of the medical community are being harnessed and directed for the goals of musicians’ health,” she says. “Brian’s interest in the mission of Center for Music and Medicine and his incredibly generous support of our work makes it possible for us to continue our exploration of the underlying causes of focal dystonia and the establishment of effective therapies to return musicians to their musical avocation. “We look forward to our growing partnership with Brian and Tammy Hays in working to achieve this goal.” —— Christine Stutz
STUDENT SPOTLI GHT Tyrone Page Jr. Tyrone Page Jr. (BM ’16, Music Education; BM ’16, Saxophone), a master’s saxophone student, is a homegrown Baltimore saxophonist who is giving back to the community by teaching at his alma mater, the Baltimore School for the Arts, and with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids. The latter is a year-round music program designed to create social change and nurture promising futures for youth in Baltimore City neighborhoods. Page, 23, performs the contemporary saxophone repertoire as a soloist, and chamber and orchestral musician. He has been a finalist in several prestigious concerto competitions. Why did you choose the saxophone? When I joined the school band in sixth grade, I had wanted to play the drums, but the teacher said there were plenty of kids interested in percussion. Another student was playing the sax, and I liked the sound, so that’s what I chose. Why Peabody? One of my friends from the Baltimore School for the Arts was accepted at Peabody Conservatory. She was my mentor, and I very much admired her playing. In my senior year of high school, I took lessons with Peabody faculty member Gary Louie. His approach and his attitude about music as a career made me see that he, and Peabody, would be a good fit for me. What keeps you in the practice room? The influence of my mentors. I’ve had the pleasure of studying with remarkable teachers, Dr. Chris Ford and Tim Green at the Baltimore School for the Arts, and with Gary Louie at Peabody. I’ve also been humbled by working with professionals in this field and colleagues in my studio. All of these experiences are a daily contribution to my motivation to be a better musician. And as with most
artists, I don’t really feel like I deserve time away from my horn unless I’ve recently been successful in competition, recording, or performance, during which time I’ll allow myself a few days off.
What’s next for you after you graduate with your master’s degree? I’m planning to release an album pretty soon, a recording of a single 50-minute piece of music: Truth Fluorescent Skeleton, by composer James Young. I recently won a regional concerto competition, and as a result I will be touring with the Symphony in the Mountains Orchestra, most likely in 2019. In the meantime, I’ll be busy applying for local teaching opportunities and competitions, and preparing for future performances, including a tour of Truth Fluorescent Skeleton.
Who or what inspires you? Not just one thing. My siblings, and of course my mom, LaShanda Woodard, who is a very strong person, independent and successful. Also, my band teacher at Ashburton Elementary Middle School, Richard Kirby, who started me on the saxophone. When I look back on the kind of teacher he was, I always want to be that light for my students. I can’t forget my current teachers, Gary Louie and Dr. Harlan Parker, whose musicianship and care for their students inspired me since I began studying with them. I’m also inspired daily by my students and colleagues.
What was the most important thing you’ve learned at Peabody? The importance of being a good human being and having positive interactions with those I work with; that has to be at the top of my list. For example, I respect the custodians who kept our school and living spaces clean no differently than I respect the school’s administration. —— Interview by Christine Stutz
What do you find most rewarding about teaching? It’s one of the easiest ways for me to give back to my community and feel like I’m doing some good in the world. It brings me joy to watch my students succeed in performance, develop confidence, and discover they are capable of greatness after tremendous hard work.
Watch Tyrone Page perform Fluorescent Skeleton Reassembled: youtu.be/k4sAYrVzmcY
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