Sewanee Summer Music Festival Annual Report 2020
Message from theÂ Director On behalf of the faculty, staff, and students of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, I am pleased to share our first Annual Report. The arrival of a new University Vice-Chancellor, coupled with the COVID-19 crisis and related 2020 cancelation, has allowed us to pause and reflect on the unique work we do at the festival, and how that work impacts our community at a local, national, and international level. Each summer for over 60 years, young musicians have traveled to Sewanee seeking inspiration, musical growth and personal development. At the festival, they study with gifted artist-faculty who readily share knowledge and wisdom gained from a lifetime of work as orchestral, solo and chamber musicians. They perform under the baton of acclaimed guest conductors who unlock the mystery behind masterpieces from the symphonic canon. They have the chance to delve into the remarkable world of chamber music, often for the first time. With their young colleagues, they discover the creative power of artistic collaboration.
After just four short weeks, with the sounds of their final performances resonating across the domain, they leave collectively transformed by the experience and ready to share their newly acquired knowledge with family, friends, and mentors back home. The impact of Sewanee reverberates in concert halls, conservatories, universities, and teaching studios across the United States and around the world.
Along with our students and faculty, I am inspired by the energy and enthusiasm of our community, which comes together to enthusiastically support the Festival. We are incredibly grateful for their dedication, partnership, and investment in the journey of our next generation of musicians. Our community has created lifelong bonds with members of our faculty, building deep and meaningful friendships over many years. The Sewanee Summer Music Festival is part of the fabric of the Sewanee community, and while we will not be together this summer, we look forward to a bright and engaging future together.
John Kilkenny Executive and Artistic Director
Mission The Sewanee Summer Music Festival is a launching pad for the next generation of enlightened artist-citizens. The “Sewanee Experience” includes a sense of cooperation, shared commitment to artistic excellence, mentorship with acclaimed artistic faculty, and inspired chamber and orchestral performances.
Core Principles Sewanee is: An artistic incubator where talented young musicians work closely with renowned artist-faculty in an intensive yet supportive environment.
An inclusive and diverse community designed to offer students the chance to learn and grow together with wonderful colleagues from across the world.
An international festival, we welcome students from at least forty states and nine foriegn countries to the Domain each summer In residence on the campus of the University of the South, one of the nation’s most prestigious liberal arts colleges. Over 13,000 acres of hiking, biking, and breathtaking mountain views inspire the artist in everyone.
Our Legacy The precursor to the current Summer Music
featuring a young violinist and future music
New York Philharmonic, Lorin Maazel. In 1957, Vice-Chancellor Edward McCrady re-establish a summer music program, under the leadership of Julius Hegyi,
believed deeply in the idea of a summer music program on the mountain, and made the rebuilding of a summer music school a first level priority of his tenure.
In fact, according to his son, Sewanee resident Waring McCrady, he (Edward) considered the summer music program one of his three major accomplishments as Vice-Chancellor, the others include the building of All Saints Chapel and significant increases in the University’s endowment. In 1963, Martha McCrory, who had since 1957 served on the festival faculty, was asked by McCrady to lead his beloved summer music school. Miss McCrory, as she became known to generations of young musicians, established the Sewanee Summer Music Center as an international destination for summer study. Under her unprecedented 42-year directorship, the current model of the summer music program was established, with two orchestras and a robust student and faculty chamber music program, with a unique focus on student development. Since McCrory’s retirement in 1998, the festival has been led by Stephen Shrader, Mark Savage, Katherine Lehman, and Evelyn Loehrlein. Each Director made meaningful impacts on the festival, navigated the program through challenging economic times, and contributed to the extraordinary legacy of the institution.
Orchestral Studies The Sewanee Summer Music Festival offers two distinct, high-level, serious orchestral experiences: The Cumberland Orchestra and The Sewanee Symphony. The festival Artistic Director, along with guest conductors and the artistic leadership team, selects a range of musically and technically demanding literature for each orchestra to study and perform. Each ensemble is held to the highest artistic and musical standards possible, rehearsing six times per week. The orchestras are composed of both pre-college and college festival participants. Mock auditions, orchestral repertoire classes, and literature classes complete the orchestral experience.
33 faculty & 7 guest conductors led
880 private lessons
The Festival also offers robust programs that include: Solo and collaborative pianoÂ Composition Conducting Career development seminars Faculty artist chamber music series
Chamber Music Chamber music performance develops leadership skills, fosters collaboration, improves intonation, blend, and balance, and promotes high-level musical thinking. Oftentimes, studentsâ€™ busy in-school programs are unable to devote the time necessary for a truly in-depth study of chamber music. We have decided that the serious study of chamber music is vital to the education of every musician, and rests at the core of what we do at Sewanee. It is in the intense laboratory of the chamber ensemble that students become mature musicians, integrating their individual part and their own musical personality into a unified whole. From duos to string ensembles, wind quintets, string quartets, brass ensembles, and percussion groups, the unique skills developed through chamber music carry through to every other aspect of a studentâ€™s performance. Participants rehearse daily in a chamber music group, and receive regular coaching from faculty mentors. They perform in our weekly student chamber concerts, as well as in outreach and community engagement performances across the region.
Community Engagement SSMF is committed to bringing our students to the community and engaging audiences where they live. The festival is pleased to partner with a number of regional venues to broaden our outreach into the community.
Our students learn from their first day in Sewanee the value and meaning behind community engagement, and experience first hand the communicative power of
Performances and Opportunities
classical music performance to build community.
Cowan Center for the Arts Educational outreach with Mountain T.O.P. enrichment program Monteagle Sunday School Assembly Sewanee Child Care Free Family Concert at SAS Free tickets for University students and discounted Employee tickets July 4th Patriotic Celebration
Sewanee Academy The Sewanee Academy is a dynamic, new residential program for middle and high school musicians that runs
instrument group classes focus on technique, musicality, audition preparation, chamber music, and effective practice habits.Â Sewanee
Academy participants will also have access to the full resources of the Festival,
masterclasses, and access to all festival performances. During the Summer 2020 season, Sewanee planned to offer Academy programs in flute, clarinet, and strings. Future potential Academy programs include brass and percussion which will be determined after the 2020 season.
251 Students 40 States 9 Countries Nearly 500 applications
Internationally, we draw students from Â China, Costa Rica, Columbia, Guatemala, Peru, Australia, Ireland and the S.A.R. of Hong Kong
Sewanee is a special place where, not only do you get to play fantastic literature with some of the best people in your field, but you also get to do that with people you will remember and continue to cherish for the rest of your life ... Itâ€™s hard to explain why, but I would encourage any young or experienced musician to try Sewanee...It just has to be experienced."
John, 2016-2017 Festival Participant
Educational Partnerships The Sewanee Summer Music Festival is pleased to partner with leading educational organizations throughout the United States whose mission it is to create opportunities for young musicians of color. The festival matches scholarships offered by these programs so that their students may attend the festival. We are proud to work with the Nashville Symphony Accelerando Initiative, Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative, The Atlanta Symphony Talent Development Program, P.M.A.Y (Philadelphia Musicians Alliance for Youth), Sound Impact, and Austin Soundwaves, among others. Each year since 2017 at least $40,000 of overall scholarship funding is distributed to students from these and other Diversity, Equity and Inclusion programs. During the same period of time additional $100,000+ goes to fund all students based on a combination of financial need and performance merit.
"I learned so much in 2019 and was sad when we couldn't be together in person. But I wouldn't miss my Sewanee Experience for anything and I'm so happy I was able to work with Mr. Person this summer! Treasure, 2019, 2020 Festival Participant
"I had a FANTASTIC experience â€“ I gained so many life-long friends and worked with amazing musicians!â€? Gabrielle 2019 Festival Participant
"I came to New York and Juilliard because of summer Sewanee teachers: it was a beautiful place remembered by all of us!"
Kathy 1963, 1964 Festival Participant
Jessica Dan Fan Violin, Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra "Sewanee to me feels like home, having attended both as a student and now as part of the faculty. I remember being mesmerized by the musical world that unfolded in front of my eyes as a student, and fast forward 29 years, how rewarding it has been to teach and perform as faculty there! The experience from both sides has been nothing short of magical, and returning to Sewanee has become the highlight of each summer!”
John Armstrong Trumpet, United Stated Navy
Paul Bryan Dean, Curtis Institute of Music "Sewanee was life changing for me - the breadth of the experience I had was significant, from orchestral to chamber music--I was able to do it all. The day I left Sewanee was the first day I wanted to come back!"
Band "I really miss Sewanee and my time there, some of my best childhood memories were made on the mountain. I wouldn't trade my time there for the world”
Finance and Advancement
Since 2010, using a combination of endowed funds, annual giving, tuition, ticket sales and grant support, the Sewanee Summer Music Festival has been operatingÂ without a deficit, and contributes nearly $400,000 annually to the University of the South through a combination of conference service fees, lodging, dining hall, faculty support, and space use fees. The festival also provides a significant economic boost to local and regional businesses and has recently sponsored the Monteagle/Sewanee Rotary club annual chili cookoff.
Highlighting Our Supporters McCrory Family Endowment Longtime Festival Director Martha McCrory passed away in 2019. To honor her extraordinary legacy in Sewanee, McCrory’s nieces, Cheri, Mary, and Martha, established the Martha McCrory Scholarship and Directors fund for the Sewanee Summer Music Festival. The largest endowment gift for the festival in over a decade, it will support scholarship funding for festival participants and allow for enhanced creative activities during the summer season. The principal cello chairs of both orchestras and the final concert of each season will be named in honor of McCrory.
John G. Bratton The current administration of SSMF is arguably the most successful in recent memory. The last session of SSMF brought exceptionally talented faculty, conductors and students to perform. The Cumberland Orchestra performances are nearly equal to that of the Sewanee Symphony and at a level beyond that of either orchestra of some years ago. John Kilkenny and his team have done an extraordinary job of communicating the Sewanee community. There may be advancements in the future, but for now, who could want for anything more!
John Bratton’s roots in Sewanee range far and wide, from reading, writing and arithmetic at the Bairnwick School, to the Sewanee Military Academy (class of 1947), to economics major at the University (class of 1952), to alumni director for seven years, to the oldest surviving charter member of the MonteagleSewanee Rotary Club, to the proud distinction of having never missed a concert of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival since it began more than 60 years ago. He is a regular contributor to the festival, and now sponsors two faculty chairs, one in clarinet and one in harp.
Highlighting Our Supporters Greg and Pam Maloof The reasons the SSMF is so special to us is because it nurtures the young artist and gives them early on a love of music. The education they receive during the summer and the care and commitment by the faculty and staff is unmatched. The community looks forward to the festival because every year it seems to get better and better. John Kilkenny’s leadership and dedication has continued the legacy and vision of Dr. Martha McCrory, whom we all deeply admired.
Pam and Greg Maloof are longtime residents of the Monteagle Sunday School Assembly. For many years, Pam volunteered in the festival office, working closely with festival director Martha McCrory. Pam and her husband, Greg have sponsored post concert receptions, family concerts and most recently, the festival’s annual July 4th celebration.
Stephen Burnett (Mountain Messenger, 2018) As the SSMF approaches it's final weekend of spectacular music, I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the exceptional work that Director John Kilkenny and Hilary Dow Ward brought to the festival for 2018. Many of the Mountain Messenger readers know that there was unplanned turnover at the top of the SSMF organization last fall which makes John and Hilary's contributions (recruiting, programming etc.) for this year all the more notable. The Festival was able to recruit and audition top notch students from the States and beyond, who were then mentored by high level faculty in a number of orchestral disciplines and then musically melded together by a series of talented conductors. The result was a number of well received musical presentations including last Sunday's offerings by both the Cumberland Orchestra and Sewanee Symphony. Particularly notable were the selections of Gershwin, Ravel, Marquez and Dvorak. The entire Sewanee Community thanks the University (notably Dean Papillon), organizers, staff and musicians of the SSMF and will look forward to the 2019 edition, with great anticipation.
Stephen and Nancy Burnett are community leaders in Sewanee. They are deeply involved in many causes, including serving on the board of SAS and leading the Friends of the Music Festival group. They have hosted post concert receptions and sponsored scholarships for students to attend the festival.
Supporters of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival July 1st, 2018 - June 1st, 2020 Director's Circle Gregory and Pam Maloof John G. Bratton John Kilkenny* Dr. Mircea Basaraba Stephanie Smith The Martha McCrory Foundation Patron of the Festival Bonita G. & John M. McCardell, Jr. David Culbreth Clough, Jr. Ernest J. Moench James M. Pierce Joseph N. Pierce Margaret & Robert A. Ayres Knowles and William Harper Sally & Walter A. Sedelow, Jr. Benefactor Anne & William B. Davis Anne F. Griffin Christin & Thomas M. Carlson Edwina & John R. Furman Elise A. Kikis & Stephen R. Miller James Woodard
Friend *Amy & Chad E. Burrow
*Anna Elizabeth Burklin
James E. Patching III
Annabelle & Paul Broward Salter, Jr.
John D. Canale III
Anne Elizabeth Giles
Joy & Thomas S. Rue
Carmelita S. Gandy
Karen S. Keele
Christiana & John R. Popper
Kathleen & Don L. Huneycutt
Elizabeth A. Camp
Kaye Leonard Lane M. Price MD & Julian Price, Jr. Latham & Mary Davis Lessley O. & Robert G. Hynson Liesl A. Allingham & Terry L. Papillon *Lin He
Marilyn & Thomas F. Phelps
**Laura Brooks Rice
Mary Ellen Nolletti
Mary & William M. Priestley
Laurie Anne Ramsey
Melanie K. Briggs
Leslie B. & Thomas J. DiNella
Michael D. Harold
Linda C. Akenhead
Katherine & David Copeland Johnson
Nancy J. Weaver & James H. Cheek III
Laura & Edward J. Crawford III
Patricia & Tommy Sipes
Leslie S. & William J. Pretsch
Phoebe S. Bates
Maria B. Campbell
The Sewanee Rotary Trudy & Joel L. Cunningham
Janet G. & Joe Conover
Kathryn & Albert M. Austin
^Marian & Frank W. Shaffer
Ms. Judy MagaveroNancy & Stephen W. Burnett
Judith A. Kilkenny
Margaret Elaine Bonds
Phebe C. Hethcock
The Rev. Dr. Julia M. Gatta & Dr. John J.
*Hillary Anne Herndon
Jill & David H. Morgan
Joyce & Daniel Rabinowitz
Susan L. D. Peek
H. Louise Irwin, Hildegard & Allan E. Cox
*Jason L. Allison
Lyn & James A. Bradford
Mr. & Mrs. Robert W. Cotter
Sarah & Donald Bryan Zimmerman
*Hilary R. Dow Ward & Geoffrey H. Ward
Michael Strasinger Patricia & Thomas M. Keithly Patsy A. Ashabranner *Peter C. Bond Sandra L. Carr Sherrie Taylor
Sarah G. Little
Susan M. & Rodger D. Keene
Sarah McCrady Hubbard
Sophia & E. Dudley Burwell
The Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Elenor L. Anderson III
Susan & Jack W. Steinmeyer
The Rev. Dr. Larry E. Carden & Barbara
Sylviane & George W. Poe
The Rev. David A. Kearley
The Rev. Dr. & Mrs. H. Hunter Huckabay, Jr.
Al String, Andrea W. and Andrew Dixon
The Rev. & Mrs. Timus G. Taylor, Jr.
Dr. Amy Evans
The Sewanee Women’s Club , V.
Ann & J. Douglas Seiters
Eugene G. Ham
Betsy Grant, Betty & James Blythe, Jr.
Virginia & James L. Uden
Brice L. Holland
Virginia R. Tobias
Callie E. Compton
Carol & W. Harold Bigham
The Rev. Ricardo Wayne Sheppard Timothy Lee Kidder Virginia & L. Gene Densmore
Charles Blake Jessee *Donna Shin Elizabeth & Louis E. Koella Gene H. Moon*
*current SSMF faculty/staff
** national advisory board member
^Former SSMF faculty/staff
The festival has recently launched a
series of livestream broadcasts titled
"Sewanee Summer Music Festival’s New
performances, interviews and
Opportunities for Students of Color"
seminars with faculty and guests. To
Nashville Scene "McCrory Scholarship for the Sewanee Summer
date, the program has generated:
Music Festival Established" Sewanee Mountain Messager
"SSMF Celebrates 63rd Season"
Sewanee Mountain Messager "Sewanee Summer Music Festival 2019" WLRH 89.3 FM/HD Huntsville
"Sewanee Summer Music Festival 2020"
WLRH 89.3 FM/HD Huntsville
"The atmosphere at the music festival is a remarkable blend of intense work (strangely free of stress), learning, sharing, humor, and
mutual respect. The student performances are always gratifying, and invariably greater than the sum of their parts…I am not an academic, but my perception is that the University and the SSMF complement one another. Each July I leave regretfully...tired, yet energized and fulfilled.”
210+ hours of watchtime
Peter Bond, Artist Faculty, Trumpet
Faculty Winds, Brass
Donna Shin, flute, Associate Professor
Eva Cappelletti Chao, violin
The University of Washington
KCOHO, Baltimore Symphony, Grand Teton Music Festival
Robert Stephenson, oboe, The Utah Symphony
Mari Liis Calloway, violin Gulliver AcademyÂ (chamber music coach)
Chad Burrow, clarinet, Associate Professor The University of Michigan
Assistant Professor, MTSU Sam Suggs, double bass Assistant Professor, James Madison University, Concert Artists Guild
**Jessica Dan Fan, violin Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra
Piano and Harp Amy I-Lin Cheng, piano, Assistant Professor, The
Rebecca Van de Ven, oboe Belmont University
**Tim Pearson, double bass
Lin He, violin,
University of Michigan
Baton Rouge Symphony. Associate Professor Carl Rath, bassoon, Associate Professor
Louisiana State University
Steve Beck, piano, soloist, chamber musician, the New York Philharmonic, BargeMusic
Lawrence Conservatory Gregory Lee, violin Gabriel Bevers, bassoon, AssociateProfessor
Oklahoma Symphony, Associate Professor
The University of Miami
University of Oklahoma
**Paula Bressman, harp, Vanderbilt University pre-college Belmont University
Jason Allison, horn, Burning River Brass The University of Pittsburgh
Brittany MacWilliams, violin Assistant Professor, University of Louisville
Rachel Miller, harp, Kalamazoo Symphony, Columbus Symphony
Peter Bond, trumpet, The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra (ret.)
Jonathan Magness, violin Associate principal second violin,
Composition and Conducting
The Minnesota Orchestra
Jorge Variego, Composition
**Joshua Bynum, trombone Professor, The University of Georgia
Assistant Professor, The University of Tennessee Philippe Chao, viola, Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, George Mason University,
Eric Bubacz, tuba
Catholic University of America
Georgia State University Percussion She e Wu, percussion, Associate Professor,
Associate Professor and Director of Orchestral Studies, California Baptist University
Hillary Herndon, viola Associate Professor, The University of Tennessee Sewanee Academy
Northwestern University. Artist Faculty, Manhattan School of Music
Gene Moon, Conducting
Sheldon Person, viola The Houston Symphony
Dr. Angela Ammerman, String Academy. Music education consultant
Timothy K. Adams, percussion, Associate Professor, The University of Georgia. former timpanist, The Pittsburgh
Natasha Farny, cello Professor, State University of New York, Fredonia
**Kristen Sheridan, Clarinet Academy Studio teacher, WW coordinator Virginia Winds Academy
Symphony Jason Calloway, cello Philip Oâ€™Banion, percussion, Associate Professor and Director of Percussion,
Amernet String Quartet Associate Professor, Florida International University
Dr. Katherine Isbell Emeneth, Flute Academy. Studio teacher, board member National Flute Association
Temple University Meghan Berindean, cello Assistant Professor, Austin Peay State University
Festival Administration **John Kilkenny, Executive and Artistic Director. Associate Professor, George Mason University School of Music Hilary Dow Ward, Managing Director. Managing Director, Project 440 Rhaea Dâ€™Alesio, Office program specialist and special projects coordinator **Bruce Mangan, Production Manager *Ali Verderber, Principal librarian. Former Fellow, New World Symphony. Principal Librarian, Austin Symphony *^Liam Corley, media manager. Media specialist, The Dance Complex *Emily Crane, Sewanee Symphony manager. Graduate candidate, Arts Management, George Mason University. *Josh Ellis, Cumberland Orchestra manager. Graduate candidate, Arts Management, George Mason University *^Anna Burklin, Artist Services/orchestral operations. Graduate candidate, Arts Management, George Mason University *#Sarah Strasinger, front of house intern and patron services assistant *Andrew String, percussion intern *Katie Grischow, Administration Intern *+Andrew Yow, *Natalia Agredo, *^Destiny Sewell - SSMF residence life, 2019-2020 *seasonal staffÂ
^University of the South alumni.
+University of the South current student
"For both faculty and students, the Sewanee Summer Music Festival is truly amazing, inspirational, awesome, and transformative. In four short weeks, young people's lives are changed by an intense study of their instrument, rich orchestral experience, and vigorous chamber music instruction. The positive mentoring environment and richness of the curriculum make Sewanee Summer Music Festival a truly unforgettable transformative experience for all involved." Chad Burrow, Artist Faculty, clarinet
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The first-ever annual report for the Sewanee Summer Music Festival