Sunday, December 31, 2006

Vienna Philharmonic and Women

An extensive article about Vienna Philharmonic's policy of hiring and firing women. It is long but very interesting.

Israel Philharmonic

An Article about Israel Philharmonic's audience.
"The orchestra's resilience is matched by that of its audience. When the Philharmonic performed in Jerusalem during the first Gulf war, the audience wore gas masks. And earlier this year, at the time of the conflict in Lebanon, the orchestra was in mid-performance in Haifa when the first missiles hit the city. Nobody left the hall."

Bernard Haitink named musician of the year

Bernard Haitink is named musician of the year.
I will get a chance to be in a masterclass in Lucerne this year.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Tour photographers

Christine Marschilok(flute/piccolo) and Laura Whitehurst(violin) will be our official tour photographers.

Getting familiar with Berlin

As we prepare for our tour to Berlin I will start posting links to everything about Berlin so we can be informed travelers when we visit the home of the Berlin Philharmoniker on our first international tour from January 9-16, 2007.

Here is the Metro or subway system in Berlin of which we will make extensive use.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Our venue in Berlin

This is the website link to our performance venue in Berlin.

Scrooge visits community music works

Today, I conducted a concert with the Firebird Ensemble at Community Music Works in Providence, RI for about 200 young musicians. There is some fantastic work being done at Community Music works. Check out their website.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

internship with JFK center for the performing arts

Position: Fellowship; Internship
Institution: John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
Location: D.C.
Date posted: 12/11/2006

Fellowships: Kennedy Center Fellowships. The Kennedy Center Fellowship Program provides 10 highly motivated arts managers a structured blend of independent and collective learning experiences, and the opportunity to work in one of the busiest and most diverse performing arts centers. Fellowships are full-time and last 10 months (September - June). Fellows receive an annual stipend of $20,000. The application period is January 1 to April 1. Kennedy Center Internships. Over 20 college juniors, seniors, graduate students, and recent graduates are selected each semester for full-time placements in advertising, development, education, press, programming, production, technology, and the National Symphony Orchestra. Interns receive a weekly stipend of $225. Application deadlines: Fall, June 15; Winter/Spring, October 25; Summer, March 1.

Phone : 202-416-8844
Fax : 202-416-8853
Ms. Patricia Mogin
Fellowship Program Assistant
John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
PO Box 101510
Arlington, VA 22210

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Mozart's entire musical score now free on Internet

You can look at Mozart's entire works online. Here is the article.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

CK in Boston

I am in Boston to conduct Jon Deak's Passion of Scrooge with the Firebird Ensemble.
Here is the info on the concert.


Saturday December 16, 2007 at 3pm
Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

This vibrant musical work is a suspenseful, dramatic and sometimes amusing journey from past to future, during which the ten instrumentalists of the Firebird ensemble are actors as well as musicians. Soloist, Aaron Engebreth, acclaimed for his "beauty of voice and eloquence" (The Boston Globe), brings his exquisite vocal and acting abilities to multiple roles as he depicts Dickens' characters. The composer, Jon Deak with his exhilarating and animated compositional style, captures the spirit of the season and brilliantly executes the essence of this wonderful literary tale. In addition to The Passion of Scrooge by Jon Deak, the program also includes the hilarious A Not So Traditional Christmas Medley for string quintet by Cameron Wilson, and a selection of Christmas Carols for the audience to participate in, accompanied by the Firebird Ensemble.

In 2005, for the second year running, former Globe critic Richard Dyer named Firebird Ensemble's performance of The Passion of Scrooge a Critic's Pick for the holiday season, and for good reason! "Scrooge" is an exciting, vibrant musical setting of Charles Dicken's A Christmas Carol, which is suitable for all ages and dramatically presented by the Firebird Ensemble and baritone, Aaron Engebreth.

The Boston based Firebird Ensemble has been described as "ambitious and eclectic (New York Times) and "flat out terrific" (New Music Connoisseur).

For tix and concert information call: 617-480-5112 or email:

"In the free-spirited Firebird Ensemble, Boston has its equivalent to such prominent, genre busting new-music ensembles as Eighth Blackbird or Alarm Will Sound."-Boston Globe, December 19th, 2005.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Soloists for the Brahms Double

Here is the bio of our violinist for the Brahms Double concerto.

Stephen Miahky has garnered acclaim for his performances as a recitalist and as a chamber musician. His most recent engagements include performances at New York City's Steinway Hall, Trinity Church, and Mannes College of Music, Atlanta's ProMozart Society, Vancouver's Sonic Boom Festival, Albany's Young Musician's Forum, Detroit's Institute of Art, the Southwest Virginia Festival of the Arts, NPR's Performance Today and for the Dalai Lama's most recent trip to the United States. He has performed with such distinguished artists as Martin Katz, Nicholas Eanet, Martin Beaver, Steven Doane, Norman Fischer, and Anthony Elliott, as well as members of the Tokyo, Blair, Concord, and Arianna String Quartets. Miahky is a member and frequent concertmaster of the IRIS Chamber Orchestra based in Memphis, Tennessee, under the direction of Michael Stern. A founding member of Trio 56 and the Bryant Park Quartet, he is also a member of Brave New Works, a contemporary music ensemble dedicated to education and enrichment through new music. He is featured on an upcoming Naxos release of the chamber music of Jonathan Leshnoff, as well as an upcoming Brave New Works release featuring quintets by William Bolcom and William Albright. Miahky received his B.M. and M.M. degrees from the University of Michigan and received additional training at the Meadowmount School, the Blossom Festival, Canada's National Arts Centre and the Aspen Music Festival, where he was a fellowship student and member of the contemporary ensemble. He is currently a doctoral candidate at Rutgers University and serves on the faculties of the Point Counterpoint Chamber Music Camp and Cornell University. His major teachers are Arnold Steinhardt, Paul Kantor, Stephen Shipps, and Alan Bodman.

Soloists for the Brahms Double

Here is the bio of our cello soloist for the Brahms Double concerto.

John Haines-Eitzen has performed in most of the world’s major concert halls. He was a member of the Philadelphia Orchestra from 1995 until 2005 and has also performed with the New York Philharmonic, the Columbus Symphony, and the North Carolina Symphony. His solo and chamber music appearances have taken him to cities in Japan, Brazil, and Italy, as well as the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico, the Sarasota Music Festival in Florida, and numerous concert series throughout the United States and abroad. Highlights of recent seasons include a performance of the Brahms Piano Quintet with pianist Yefim Bronfman at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and a recital at Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall with The Vandermark Ensemble, of which he is Artistic Director. Mr. Haines-Eitzen is a frequent guest of the Lenape Chamber Ensemble and the Philadelphia Orchestra Chamber Music Series. As a chamber musician, he has collaborated with distinguished pianists Wolfgang Sawallisch and Jean-Yves Thibaudet, mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade, and many of the principal musicians of the Philadelphia Orchestra. His chamber music performances have been featured on National Public Radio stations throughout the United States. Mr. Haines-Eitzen was a finalist or prizewinner in numerous solo competitions including the D’Angelo International String Competition, the National Federation of Music Clubs Competition, and the Kathryn P. MacPhail Competition. He is a graduate of Indiana University where he was a student of Janos Starker. In reviews, his playing has been described as “romantically yearning” (Columbus Dispatch), “forceful and emotional” (Greensboro News and Record), and “with technical mastery and perceptive maturity” (Trent, Italy, Bluarte Review). Mr. Haines-Eitzen is a Senior Lecturer and Artist in Residence at Cornell University.

poster for December 3rd concert

Here is a poster to our concert this coming Sunday.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Shostakovich festival

After an exciting concert by the Moscow Symphony last night, we will have two more days to experience his music. Miri Yampolsky and Xak Bjerken are putting together a chamber music festival over the next two days exploring Shostakovich's music.

Note two orchestra members are featured in the concerts.
Jian Liu of CSO and Abe Katzen of CCO.
Also our two Brahms Double soloists; John Haines-Eitzen and Stephen Miahky are featured soloists.

Here is the press release info.

Shostakovich Festival
Miri Yampolsky, director
Friday and Saturday, November 17-18, 8:00 PM
Barnes Hall

On the heels of the Moscow State Symphony Orchestra's all-Russian program on November 15 (with the Cornell Concert Series), the Department of Music presents a Shostakovich Festival organized by faculty pianist Miri Yampolsky. Funded, in part, by a grant from the Cornell Council for the Arts, the festival features two evening concerts (8:00 PM) in Barnes Hall on Friday and Saturday, November 17 and 18, with faculty and selected student musicians, as well as a number of guest artists--all in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975).

"Celebrating the life and music of any composer is a good 'excuse' for a festival," says Miri Yampolsky, "but I could think of no twentieth-century composer other than Dmitri Shostakovich for whom it would be a special privilege to put together the best of his chamber music works--in the form of chamber music concerts here at Cornell--to celebrate the 100th year of his birth. Being of Russian heritage myself adds a special personal feeling. All of my life as a musician I have felt an incredible bond with the music of this genius whom I (and many others) consider perhaps the 'grand' genius of the twentieth century. His Jewish elements add a special personal link to me. Every piece of music featured on this festival carries an 'emotional weight' of the most intimate kind; his music is moving beyond belief--at times almost too 'strong' to bear. Sharing the stage with the most wonderful musicians and friends and amazing students could not be more perfect for this occasion. I hope that my colleagues, my students, and the public will experience a similar connection to this music during the course of the two concerts."

On the Friday night concert, November 17, concert-goers will hear Satires, a song cycle for soprano and piano (Judith Kellock, Miri Yampolsky) and the Viola Sonata, op. 147 (guest Michael Zaretsky, with Xak Bjerken). Following intermission, three students perform the Piano Trio No. 2 in E Minor, op. 67 (Cris Valenzuela, piano; Jian Liu, violin; Abe Katzen, cello).

The Saturday night, November 18, concert opens with Seven Romances on verses by Alexander Blok, op. 127, for soprano and piano trio (Judith Kellock with Ariadne Daskalakis, violin; Elizabeth Simkin, cello; Xak Bjerken, piano), followed by the Cello Sonata, op. 40 (John Haines-Eitzen, with Xak Bjerken). The program--and festival--ends with Shostakovich's Piano Quintet in G Minor, op. 57, featuring Ariadne Daskalakis (violin) and Michael Zaretsky (viola), along with music faculty Stephen Miahky (violin), John Haines-Eitzen (cello), and Miri Yampolsky (piano).
[Note that Alla Yampolsky will not be playing on this concert as originally advertised.]

Satires, op. 109
with Judith Kellock, soprano, and Miri Yampolsky, piano

Viola Sonata, op. 147
with guest Michael Zaretsky, viola, and Xak Bjerken, piano


Piano Trio No. 2 in E Minor, op. 67
with chamber music students Cris Valenzuela, piano; Jian Liu, violin; Abe Katzen, cello

Seven romances on verses by Alexander Blok, op. 127
with Judith Kellock, soprano; Xak Bjerken, piano; and
guests Ariadne Daskalakis, violin; Elizabeth Simkin, cello
Cello Sonata, op. 40
with John Haines-Eitzen, cello; Xak Bjerken, piano

Piano Quintet in G Minor, op. 57
with Miri Yampolsky, piano; guest Ariadne Daskalakis and
Stephen Miahky, violins; guest Michael Zaretsky, viola; John Haines-Eitzen, cello

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Concerto competition info

Here is the concerto competition guide lines.
You can also download the form as a pdf from the link.

Important dates;
deadline for application December 4, 2006
Date of the competition January 27, 2007
Date of performance of the winner March 4, 2007

Cornell Concerto Competition Guide lines

The winner will perform with Cornell Symphony Orchestra on March 4, 2007.
Eligibility: All currently enrolled undergraduates and graduate students from any Cornell college and in any major. Must be studying privately with a Cornell music faculty member or faculty-sponsored outside instructor.

Instrument: The competition is open to all orchestral instruments, also guitar, saxophones, piano, and voice.

It is important that the private teacher and the student know ahead of time what the goal or goals of the student’s audition will be. The competition itself can serve either or both of two functions:

1) The first is as a great opportunity to audition for a distinguished panel of professional musicians from the Ithaca area. To fulfill this purpose, the student and teacher are free to select whichever piece is best for the student’s education in the long run, provided the piece adheres to the rules of the competition.

2) The second function is as an opportunity to play a solo with an orchestra or Wind Ensemble. If a student truly desires to win the competition, he or she—in consultation with the private teacher—must take into account the following considerations.
The orchestra part must be playable by the Cornell Symphony Orchestra. No matter how good the performance or the piece is, if it is not playable by CSO, it will not be possible for CSO to award a prize to that student.
The piece should be as highly polished as possible. The judges will not take into account the student’s ability or potential to play well, nor will they take into account the difficulty of the piece, only the quality of the performance at that moment.
It is absolutely critical that each student have plenty of rehearsal with his or her accompanist. Since the winners will have to perform with an orchestra after very limited rehearsal time, they will need to be very familiar with the accompaniment. The judges will be looking for indications of the student’s level of comfort in this area.
Since it will be impossible to reconvene all of the judges, there will be no effective make-up date or appeals process; the decision of the judges on the day of the audition will be final.

CSO strongly encourages students to rely on their private teachers’ experience and judgment when choosing a piece to play for the competition. Teachers who have questions are encouraged to contact CSO directly.

Repertoire: A selection not to exceed 15 minutes of a major work for soloist and orchestra, ONLY single movement or single movement of a larger work is acceptable. Memorization is mandatory. You must provide your own accompanist. Musicians who are unable to provide an accompanist for the live audition should contact Xak Bjerken, no later than December 1. 2006 [ ]

Please complete the enclosed application form. Note: It is mandatory that the applicant's current private teacher signs the application in the appropriate space. No application will be accepted without the approval of the student's private teacher.

Date: Saturday, January 27, 2007
Location: Barnes Hall
The panel of judges will consist of Chris Younghoon Kim, director of orchestras at Cornell, as well as at least two other musicians of professional stature.

The deadline for receiving applications is Monday, DECEMBER 4, 2004. Please mail your completed application to:

Chris Younghoon Kim
Director of Orchestras at Cornell University
Music Department
101 Lincoln Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853
Questions? Contact Chris Kim at cyk8(at) or call 5-8614.

new members

We would like to welcome new members to the Symphony.
Zach Fletcher will be joining us in the horn section. And Michael Halper will be joining us in the bass section.

We will have auditions for seats in the orchestra for members who will not be joining CSO or CCO for the Spring semester. Usually we have members who either go abroad like Sean in the cello section, or class or work conflict that can not be resolved or even someone who is training for a triathlon.

Auditions for Spring semester will take place on Monday December 4th.
So far we will have a few openings in the viola, bass, horn, oboe and a few violin spots.

Bailey Hall plaza design update

Here is a link to the page on the provost's website. There is a beautiful rendering of what Bailey Hall plaza will look like. It would have been more realisic to have a rendering of it in colder weather, but it looks great.

Moscow State Symphony in Bailey Hall tonight

Tonight's rehearsal for the Cornell Symphony will be cancelled so that all members can attend the Cornell Concert Series presentation of Moscow State Symphony's performance in Bailey Hall at 8 pm.

The program will be
Tchaikovsky Marche Slave
Tchaikovsky Rococco Variations with Alissa Weilerstein, cello
Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony (much to the delight of our trombonist Chris Mayes)

Tickets are $35/ students $20

See you in the balconey.

CCO at Smith College

Sunday was supposed to be our day when we got to perform with Malcolm Bilson at Smith College. At 8 Am members of CCO loaded the bus to make our six hour journey to Smith College. Except, due to a broken hose our bus was stranded on New York Thruway about 60 miles west of Albany. In fact we were stranded on the highway for about 4 hours. After spending many hungry hours on the bus, we finally got off of the highway after the bus was repaired, and had a long wait at the McDonalds before a replacement bus finally came to return us to Ithaca. We missed our performance at Smith College completely. Malcolm Bilson played a solo recital in our place.

Poster from our November 11th concert

Here is the poster from our November 11th concert by the Chamber Orchestra featuring two concertos in our Semester long Mozart concerto project with Malcolm Bilson.

Our soloists were fanatastic. They were Stefania Neonato on K. 456, concerto No. 18 in Bb Major. and Tatiana Vassilieva on K. 271, concerto No. 9 in Eb Major.

Here are their bios;

Tatiana Vassilieva, a native of St. Petersburg, Russia, is a dual Master’s degree candidate at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY, studying piano performance with Nelita True and collaborative piano with Jean Barr. She has recently completed her Bachelor’s degree in piano performance at Eastman with Nelita True and Fernando Laires. As a soloist, Ms. Vassilieva has appeared with the Rochester Philharmonic, Eastern Festival, and the Greece Symphony orchestras. Other performance highlights include a “Rising Stars Recital” at the Eastman Young Artist International Piano Competition and the Eastern Music Festival concert at the Kennedy Center. In addition to being an active solo pianist, Ms. Vassilieva is also a skilled accompanist and collaborates frequently with numerous instrumentalists and vocalists at Eastman. In the summer of 2006, Ms. Vassilieva attended the Collaborative Piano Program at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, CA, where she studied with Anne Epperson and Jonathan Feldman.

Born in Trento, Italy, Stefania Neonato graduated at her home town Conservatory and earned a Master in Fortepiano Performance Practice at the International Piano Academy (Imola, Bologna). After a BA degree in Foreign Languages and Literatures at the University of Trento, she’s currently a doctoral candidate at Cornell University in the Historical Performance Practice program under Malcolm Bilson. Winner of many National Piano Competitions, she collected gratifying awards at International Contests; she played in the most important Italian cities (Milan, Rome, Florence, Bologna, Brescia, Venice, Padua, Bolzano, Cremona) and in several foreign centres (Paris, Salzburg, Miami, Miskolc, Dortmund), both as a soloist and with orchestras. She attended many master-classes around the world (among them at the Mozarteum in Salzburg) and was recipient of scholarships from the Interlochen Arts Camp (Michigan) and from the School of Music of Miami University. She studied with Riccardo Zadra, Leonid Margarius and Aldo Ciccolini but her interest in historical instruments has been arisen by the meeting with the pianist Alexander Lonquich whom she followed in many seminars on the collections of the Accademia Bartolomeo Cristofori in Florence, Fondazione Giulini in Briosco-Milan, Accademia in Imola-Bologna). In 2004 she was invited to give a seminar on historical performance practice at Trento Conservatory and in 2005 her first recording was released: it features Mozart, Beethoven and Dussek on a 1780 Viennese fortepiano.

panoramic photo

Thanks to Maria Aridgides(mother of Daniel Aridgides, our former horn player who graduated) for this beautiful photo. Photo was taken during the performance of Mahler's First Symphony last season at Ford Hall.
She writes, "In particular I have a very unique photo of the whole orchestra playing that encompasses everybody from left to right. The photo was photostiched from five or six shots. It is approx. 9" high by 48"wide but could be increased or decreased."

The link is to her website.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Malcolm Bilson receives honors

We are indeed quite lucky to be able to work so closely with Malcolm Bilson this semester on the Mozart Piano concerto project. November 11th concert will feature two more of his doctoral students. Stefania Neonato and Tatiana Vessilieva.

Orchestra fund raiser

Sorry for the long time since the last post. A lot of events. Just a short run down of events;

October 19 Midday Music with Guest artist Andrew Eng
October 21 First Family Weekend concert
October 26 Inauguration of Bailey Hall concert
November 4 Berlin tour fund raiser Lunch at Lincoln
November 11 Cornell Chamber Orchestra concert

Also we are in the middle of a violin professor search.
We had our first finalist Joseph Lin audition. He played a recital and gave a lecture and taught three sessions.(two violinists and a piano trio).

Here is the poster for the fundraiser.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Guest soloist Andrew Eng

Andrew Eng will be joining members of CSO in a performance of Astor Piazzolla's Winter and Spring from Seasons on the October 19th Midday concert. Here is his biography.

Andrew Eng, violinist and violist has gained a versatile reputation
playing such diverse genres as Baroque, Classical, Tango, Jazz and
Contemporary music. Eng’s playing has been noted as “intense and
powerfully emotional”(Classical New Jersey) and by The New Jersey Star
Ledger, as having an “instinct for the emotional pulse of the line”.

A founding member of the Kalistos Chamber Orchestra of Boston, and the
Symphony in the Barn of Ontario, Mr. Eng also plays as the principal
violinist for MASS Tango, the Chagall-Boston String Quartet and as a
member of the Found Objects Jazz String Trio of Boston. He is a frequent
Guest Artist on the Lyrica Boston Chamber Music Series since its’
inception in 2003.

Festival appearances include Spoleto, Orford, Domaine Forget,
LyricaFest, Killington and the Quartet Program at Bucknell University.
Eng recently collaborated as a soloist with Elmar Oliveira and the
Lyrica Chamber Orchestra, in chamber music with Eugene Drucker, Terry
King, Victor Rosenbaum, Joseph Robinson and jazz improvisation with
George Garzone, Diane Monroe, and Peter Cassino.

Presently he is a featured soloist in the newly released Lyrica Live cd in
performances of Bach’s A minor Concerto and short pieces of Bloch with
the Lyrica Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Eng has been heard on New Hampshire,
Vermont and Canadian Public radio.

This season, as Guest Concertmaster of the Indian Hill Orchestra, Eng
performed Rimsky- Korsakow’s Capriccio Espanole and was subsequently
invited to serve as a soloist for the New Bedford Symphony.
This summer, Eng joins the faculty of LyricaFest, a summer music
festival in New Jersey, which represents students from virtually every
major music school in The United States.

In 1998, Andrew received his A.R.C.T. Performer’s Certificate from the
Royal Conservatory in Toronto, Canada, and then in 2003 and 2005
respectively received his Undergraduate Diploma and Master of Music at
the Longy School of Music as a student of Laura Bossert and Peter
Cassino. Eng was honored with the Patricia Sherman Award, the highest
honor given to a member of the graduating class.

Pictures from the October 1st concert

Here are some pictures thanks to Stephanie Chu.
If you have pictures of the concert send them on to our webmaster Thomas Weber (tfw4)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

poster for October 19 is ready

The poster for the October 19th midday concert is ready.
The program will feature;

Astor Piazzolla Winter and Spring from the Seasons
with guest violinist Andrew Eng
Jean Sibelius Swan of Tuonela
with Anna Herforth, English Horn
W.A. Mozart Piano concerto No. 12 in A Major, K. 414
with Sezi Seskir (student of Malcolm Bilson)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Article on Shostakovich

Here is an article on Shostakovich. As we start our rehearsal process on Shostakovich's first symphony if you have an article you would like the orchestra to read, please email me. We are alos looking for guest bloggers.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Article in the Ithaca Journal's ticket

Thank you for our long time supporter Daphne Chu for alerting me about the Ithaca Journal article.
It is great to have local press support for this concert. We should also thank Loralyn Light, our concert manager for getting all the press releases out. Also Thanks to Robert Barker for the photograph.

Notes on Divertimento

Here are notes on the Bernstein Divertimento by Symphony Pianist and co president Daniel Jones.
Also a picture of a guy in a turkey suit trotting.

Leonard Bernstein has long been closely associated with the city of New York, New York, where he made his celebrated debut with the New York Philharmonic, and later went on to serve as music director of that orchestra for twelve years. His music, too, reflects that association: the 1944 musical “On The Town” recounts the adventures of three sailors on shore leave in New York, and the city also provides the backdrop for his most famous musical, “West Side Story.” Sometimes overlooked, however, is Bernstein’s equally meaningful association with New York’s sometime rival to the north, the city of Boston. Bernstein was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, outside of Boston, and grew up in the Boston area. As a child, his father took him to concerts of the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Symphony Hall, planting the seeds of a long relationship with that orchestra. This relationship deepened in 1940, when Bernstein spent the summer at Tanglewood, the BSO’s summer home in Lenox, MA. There, BSO music director Serge Koussevitzky served as mentor and teacher to the young Bernstein, and later in his life Bernstein followed Koussevitzky’s example by returning as head of the orchestra and conducting programs at Tanglewood. Indeed, Bernstein’s final public performance was a concert in which he led the BSO at Tanglewood in August 1990.
Given his deeply rooted connection with the BSO and the city of Boston, it is no surprise that the BSO commissioned Bernstein to write a piece for the orchestra’s centennial in 1980. The result was the Divertimento for Orchestra, premiered under Seiji Ozawa on September 15, 1980. As its title suggest, the Divertimento is a light-hearted, high-spirited, witty piece, full of musical allusions and in-jokes with orchestra members. The first movement, Sonnets and Tuckets, is a boisterous exploration of the possibilities of the work’s underlying motive, an alternation between the notes B and C. The “B,” of course, stands for “Boston,” while the “C” stands for “Centennial.” Along the way, he throws in references to Strauss’s Till Eulenspiegel, and at one point gives the clarinets the famous trumpet lick from Stravinsky’s Petrouchka. The movement comes to an emphatic (albeit dissonant) close with the full orchestra blaring simultaneous B’s and C’s. Waltz, the second movement, is of an entirely different character: restrained, lilting, and poignant, it keeps the string players happy with some lovely writing. Of course, the Divertimento being what it is, Bernstein casts it in the offbeat meter of 7/8, instead of the usual 3/4.
While the Waltz was written primarily with strings in mind, the Mazurka provides the winds and particularly double reeds with their moment in the sun. Devotees of 19th century piano repertoire will recognize the three note descending motive lifted from Chopin, in another of the many allusions found throughout the work. It is worth noting that Bernstein’s highlighting of the various sections of the orchestra was very much intentional, and in many cases based on Bernstein’s personal relationship with the BSO players. When he wrote in a solo for a particular instrument, it wasn’t (for instance) for some anonymous oboe or horn player, but for a musician whom Bernstein knew personally, and whose personal traits he often had in mind when writing.
The Samba is a lively dance movement, reminiscent of some of the music from West Side Story, and the Turkey Trot is another dance movement, recalling a style popular in the early 1900s. The conductor Leonard Slatkin claims that “Turkey Trot” is the name of a street in Lenox, MA, the town in which Tanglewood is located. If so, the title is yet another of the many allusions and in-jokes sprinkled throughout the piece. However, independent research failed to confirm the existence of this road, so Slatkin’s claim may have to be regarded as apocryphal for now. Sphinxes is a satirical foray into the world of twelve-tone music, of which Bernstein was no enthusiast. The movement contains two twelve-tone rows before a perversely tonal cadence on A-flat major, with Bernstein getting the last laugh on the serialists. The Blues serves to highlight the brass section, and provides the principals with some nice opportunities to display their solo chops. Transferring the blues idiom to symphony orchestra always risks becoming a dull and inauthentic-sounding exercise, but here, Bernstein skillfully captures the color and spirit of the blues.
The final movement, In Memoriam and March: The BSO Forever, begins with a solemn introduction for flutes in memory of BSO members and conductors past. The boisterous music of the first movement soon returns, however, before the orchestra erupts into a full-blown, Sousa-esque march, amply seasoned (of course) with references to Sousa. The final chord brings the work full circle, with a resounding declaration of “B” and “C” simultaneously. – Notes by Daniel Jones

Magic flute notes

Here is program notes by Chamber Orchestra violist Dorian Bandy and a great picture of the set for Magic Flute by Karl Friedrich Schinkle which is in the Staatliche Museen, Berlin

Despite his poverty and diminishing health, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) remained prolific even during the last year of his life. Indeed, in the months immediately preceding his death he composed a piano concerto, a clarinet concerto, thirty-nine orchestral and chamber works, a Requiem mass, three cantatas and motets, and two operas. One of these, Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute), was completed on September 28 and premiered on September 30, 1791. Although the opera was a hit success, and played in Vienna for the next few years, its warm reception mattered little to Mozart, who died ten weeks after the initial performance.
Mozart’s long-time colleague, Emanuel Schikaneder (1741-1812), famed actor, poet, and singer, provided the story and text for Die Zauberflöte: The evil and tyrannical Queen of the Night employs Tamino, a prince, and Papageno, a bird catcher, to rescue her daughter Pamina from the evil sorcerer Sarastro. Upon entering Sarastro’s “Temple of Wisdom,” they discover the sorcerer’s benevolence, and agree to undergo extensive initiation rites (based on real Masonic rituals) so that they may join the Temple. Tamino succeeds and weds Pamina (much to the Queen’s chagrin); Papageno fails the initiation but still finds happiness with Papagena, his female counterpart. Annoyed at this collective rapture, the Queen tries to destroy Sarastro’s Temple, but to no avail: Sarastro vanquishes the Queen’s forces, and the four lovers continue to lead long and happy lives. (The magic flute itself plays an ironically small part in the opera—it appears in only two scenes and has little or no effect on the plot.)
The overture to Die Zauberflöte reflects many of the themes that Mozart and Schikaneder explore during the opera itself. The music begins slowly, with three majestic chords, reminiscent of those which herald Tamino’s entry into Sarastro’s Temple. The next section, a jovial fugato Allegro, introduces a melody in the second violins, which all of the strings successively imitate. (Here, the presence of a fugue, one of the most complex forms of composition, represents the wisdom Tamino hopes to attain in Sarastro’s Temple; the playful character of this fugue in particular resembles the lighthearted irreverence with which Papageno ignores the Temple’s initiation rites.) The strings continue to play fragments of the original melody while the winds carry a slightly more lyrical theme, possibly indicative of Papageno and Papagena’s innocent love affair. The music builds to a faux-finale, which is interrupted by a restatement of the same three chords that opened the overture. The Allegro theme then resumes, though this time with a much darker mood, a reminder of the Queen of the Night’s many attempts to prevent her daughter’s and Tamino’s happiness. As in the opera, however, the clouds soon lift, and give way to a triumphant and joyous climax. – Notes by Dorian Bandy

Program notes on Mozart by our soloist

Pianist Frédéric Lacroix has performed in the United States, Canada and Taiwan. He has most recently appeared with the Albany Symphony Orchestra, Cornell Chamber Orchestra, Ottawa Symphony Orchestra and Ensembre Fusions. He has also performed in programs of CBC Radio and NPR. While he also the privileged to premiere a number of works by American and Canadian composers, he devotes some time to his own compositions. Lacroix holds degrees from the University of Montreal and the University of Ottawa, where he studied with Marc Durand and Cynthia Floyd. He is currently a doctoral student at Cornell University, where he is studying performance practice with Malcolm Bilson.

Following his departure from Salzburg in 1781, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart settled in Vienna and embarked on a series of successful business and artistic ventures, becoming a thriving freelance musician in an era dominated by a system of patronage. The early Vienna years were marked by the prodigious composition of keyboard concertos (there were six completed in 1784, the year of the composition of the keyboard concerto K.453), most of them destined for his own performance at subscription concerts and ‘academies’; the latter being well-attended ‘epic’ concerts which Mozart would organize to showcase himself as performer and composer. The Concerto in G major K.453 was composed for an ‘academie’ given by Mozart’s pupil, Barbara Ployer, on June 10, 1784. While most concertos up to 1784 were composed somewhat pragmatically in a ‘galant’ chamber music style and with allowances for a reduced orchestra in which the wind parts would be optional, Mozart shifted his ideals early that year to create concertos ‘which would be bound to make the performer sweat’. These concertos, starting with the keyboard concerto K.450 are increasingly symphonic in nature and contain significant wind parts, creating a true battle between soloist and orchestra.

Typical of Mozart’s G major, the concerto opens with music that expresses a somewhat naive happiness or contentment. This naiveté soon dissipates as the composer turns the wheel of his kaleidoscope and reveals within this happiness hues of comedy, tenderness, passion and uncertainty. The slow movement is remarkable for its departure from the home key of C major. At first, Mozart seemingly evokes an innocent tenderness, but his use of chromaticism and his far-reaching modulations generate some of his most passionate music. The last movement is composed in variation form, a genre popular with the audiences of the time, and ends with an extensive finale section. The dramatic rhetoric of this movement recalls the operatic discourse; in particular, either by its key or by some of its volubility, it anticipates The Magic Flute. The cadenzas used in today’s performance were composed by Mozart. – Notes by Frédéric Lacroix

Iraqi National Orchestra

Here is a moving report on the Iraqi national symphony.
A few excerpt from the article;
"The musicians are running out of things like reeds and strings, and few music stores remain open in Iraq, partly because militant Islamists have bombed several. Players must worry about offending fundamentalist militiamen and Islamist neighbors."


"This orchestra represents the real map of Iraq,” Mr. Nasser, 48, said as Mr. Baban lighted a cigarette. “This man is Kurdish, there’s another man there who’s Christian. This is a real national symphony. The ties among us are unbreakable.”


“My wife says: ‘Please don’t go. Life is very bad in Baghdad. There’s a lot of death in Baghdad,’ ” he said. “She tries to prevent me from coming, but I have to come. We can’t survive without music. It’s like oxygen.”

Not being able to rehearse in Bailey Hall during concert week is an inconvenience, but it is always good to remember what others who are less fortunate must go through to play music.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Poster for the October 1st concert

Here is the poster to our first concert of the year.
The concert will feature both the Chamber Orchestra and the Symphony Orchestra.
Program will include;
W.A. Mozart Piano Concerto no. 17 in G Major, K. 453
with Frederic Lacroix(Student of Malcolm Bilson), fortepiano
W.A. Mozart Magic Flute Overture
Leonard Bernstein Divertimento for Orchestra
and a surprise by both orchestras to close the concert.

classical music quiz

How well do you know classical music?
Follow the link for the quiz.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Gabriela Lena Frank with Silk Road Ensemble

One of our former guest composer, Gabriela Lena Frank is featured with the Silk Road Ensemble. We hope to include more living composers on our programs.

Richard Dyer retires

Here is a link to an article by the now retired Boston Globe writer Richard Dyer.
I am especially inspired by the following statistic;

"Richard Dyer retired this month as classical music critic for The Boston Globe. Over 33 years, he wrote more than 12,000 articles about the arts for the Globe."

That is simply one person's contributions to arts in our society.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Free Beehoven Fifth download

Philadelphia Orchestra has launched a music store. They are offering a free download of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony conducted Christoph Eschenbach.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

New Architecture building

This afternoon the Architecture department will announce a new design by Rem Koolhaas.
I have included the picture here. Construction is to start 2007 for about two years.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Orchestral news from around the globe

Here are some headlines concerning music around the world.
If you find an interesting article email it to me and I will post it.

Comparing New Opera Houses In Oslo And Toronto "Where Toronto opted to build an opera house that serves its purpose and nothing beyond, Norwegians understood that such a project must address more than the narrow spectrum of opera lovers. Oslo is also in the process of burying its elevated waterfront highway and its railway tracks. The objective is to reintegrate the old harbourlands back into the city, and transform it into a mixed-use neighbourhood where people live and work. What better way to launch the regeneration than by building an opera house?" Toronto Star 09/17/06

The Met In Times Square Metropolitan Opera "General Manager Peter Gelb said on Friday the September 25 opening night performance of Puccini's 'Madama Butterfly,' directed by filmmaker Anthony Minghella, would be beamed live to Times Square on a giant screen." Yahoo! (Reuters) 09/15/06

What If Mozart Had Lived? "Mozart’s death in 1791 was probably caused by streptococcal infection, renal failure, terminal bronchial pneumonia and a matrix of other illnesses, some dating from his childhood, when the Mozart family spent years touring Europe to show off the boy genius and, to a lesser extent, his sister. Imagine how different music history would have been had Mozart lived..." The New York Times 09/17/06

Indianapolis Symphony Gets A New Contract The Indianapolis Symphony has a new contract with its musicians. It provides for wage increases in each of its three years, a contast to the previous contract, which got significant compensation concessions from the players. Indianapolis Star 09/17/06

Classical Music, The Alt Intro New To classical music and looking for a good introduction? Sure there are the classics, the greats to recommend. But Andrew Adler has an alternative list to try to tempt you. Louisville Courier-Journal 09/17/06

Runnicles Out At SF Opera David Runnicles will leave his post as music director of San Francisco Opera after 14 years. "We came to the conclusion that it was in mutual best interest of Donald and the company to maintain our relationship, but to give each party the freedom to pursue other options." San Francisco Chronicle 09/16/06

From The Top To TV From the Top has become one of NPR’s more popular programs, and is "distributed to some 250 NPR outlets and boasts some 750,000 listeners." Now it will be on TV too, in a new series broadcast from Carnegie Hall. Musical America 09/15/06

Paris Finally Gets A Home Back For Classical Music "Paris had become one of the last major western capitals without a world-class space devoted exclusively to symphony concerts and a permanent home for its orchestras. But the French government yesterday set out to reclaim the city's classical music heritage, unveiling a €30m refurbishment of the Art Deco Salle Pleyel in Paris." The Guardian (UK) 09/14/06

Robertson Gets Extension In St. Louis The St. Louis Symphony has extended the contract of popular music director David Robertson through 2010. The orchestra has enjoyed a resurgence since Robertson took over in 2005, and the new contract continues the trend of American orchestras locking up their maestros long-term, once it becomes clear that the fit is a good one. St. Louis Post-Dispatch 09/14/06

UK To Allow Instruments Back On Board In response to public outcry (and what it says is a diminished threat level,) the UK's Department of Transport says it expects to relax restrictions on airline carry-on bags by next week. "The changes are likely to mean bulky items, including musical instruments, will be allowed as carry-on baggage." Some restrictions, including bans on liquids and gels, are likely to remain in place for the time being. The Guardian (UK) 09/14/06

Conducting Comp Has Its First Female Winner The Sir Georg Solti International Conductors' Competition is only four years old, but it has already become one of the top conducting awards in the world. This year, it's also making a bit of history, handing out its top prize to a woman for the first time: 31-year-old Shi-Yeon Sung of South Korea "receives a €15,000 prize and a concert date with the Frankfurt Museum Orchestra and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony." PlaybillArts 09/14/06

Lebrecht: Why Shouldn't Musicians Have To Fly Like The Rest Of Us? Norman Lebrecht is unconvinced by British musicians' protests over new airline carry-on restrictions. "If an exception were made for concert soloists, executives would demand to carry their laptops, nursing mothers their baby kits and would-be jihadis their special-mix drinks. It is not even in the musicians’ own interest to set them apart as a special case for that would separate them from the rest of the human race at a time when their greatest need, in classics and jazz, is to be seen as integral and essential to the emotions and rhythms of the modern world." La Scena Musicale 09/13/06

Indianapolis International Violin Competition Finalists Finalists include musicians from South Korea, Italy, Bulgaria, the Netherlands, the US and Germany. would be the "survivors." They're competing for $250,000 in prizes. Indianapolis Star 09/13/06

Chicago Concertmaster To Retire After 48 years, the Chicago Symphony's long-time concertmaster is going to retire. "Samuel Magad made his debut with the CSO at 11 as the winner of the CSO youth auditions. He joined the first violin section in 1958 under music director Fritz Reiner and was named assistant concertmaster in 1966. Georg Solti appointed him concertmaster in 1972." Chicago Tribune 09/13/06

Birmingham Orchestra Launches Podcast The City of Birmingham Orchestra is launching a monthly podcast. "Members of the public will be invited to review recent concerts, and each recording will aim to explain how the musicians work together. Each free podcast can be downloaded through the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra's website." BBC 09/12/06

iTunes' Classical Top Ten Classical music sells on iTunes in greater numbers than in CD stores. But what are the most popular downloads? The list is revealing, writes Marc Geelhoed. Slate 09/12/06

Baltimore Symphony Contract Talks Going Well? "Both sides negotiating a new contract for Baltimore Symphony Orchestra musicians have maintained a media blackout, but, with the current contract set to expire Saturday night after the annual BSO gala, there are a few favorable signs - and also potential concerns. ... As the orchestra's management aims to balance a budget after a string of annual deficits, negotiating points may include the orchestra's size and the length of its season - factors that can affect the BSO's reputation and ability to attract and retain talent." Baltimore Sun 09/12/06

Paris' Salle Pleyel Reopening After four years of renovation, Paris' Salle Pleyel reopens this week. The theatre is the Carnegie Hall of Paris. "The acoustics used to be a weakness of the Salle Pleyel. To improve them, architect Francois Ceria and Artec Consultants Inc., the acclaimed New York sound gurus, have encircled the platform with a wooden wall and added four narrow side balconies and a number of rows behind the orchestra, replacing the old Cavaille-Coll organ with a human reflector." 09/11/06

Claim: New UK Airline Carry-on Restrictions Killing Musical Life "Restrictions on hand luggage, intended to reduce the volume of baggage going through cabin security checks, have had a devastating impact on performers. Musicians who were used to stowing their Stradivarius in the cabin fear that irreplaceable instruments will be smashed by a careless baggage handler or wrecked by freezing temperatures in the hold. Instead, they are cancelling concerts or enduring exhausting train journeys." The Guardian (UK) 09/11/06

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Ocean Symphony with Jack Black

Hilarious video.
I especially like Henry Wrinkler's expression as the cymbal is hit behind him.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Classical music news roundup

Here are some interesting news from around the world.

Compleat Mozart For Pennies On The Disk A new set of 170 CDs contains the complete music of Mozart. It costs about 70 cents per disk. "The complete recorded works of composers are nothing new, but this issue is rare for its low cost and popularity, at least in Europe. And there is something compelling about its compactness: your fingers can walk through Mozart�s entire output in a few minutes." The New York Times 09/04/06

The UK's Top 10 Orchestras - A List Richard Morrison makes a list, ranking Britain's major orchestras. At the top? Halle... The Times (UK) 08/31/06

Two Bach Manuscripts Discovered The earliest-known manuscripts to be written by JS Bach have been discovered in a fire-damaged library. "The two manuscripts date from around 1700 and contain copies Bach made of organ music composed by Dietrich Buxtehude and Johann Adam Reinken. Researchers found the documents in the archives of the Duchess Anna Amalia library in Weimar, where a previously unknown aria by Bach was discovered last year." Yahoo! (AP) 08/31/06

Can The World Get Excited About A Haydn Birthday? The world has been awash in Mozart this year. Three years from now it's a major Haydn birthday. "While just about everyone alive has been exposed to Mozart if only on a ring-tone or a lonely bus station, you could play Haydn seek all day long on Oxford Street without finding a single shopper who can name one of his works or whistle a theme. In the Classic FM Hall of Fame, that rough guide to middlebrow taste, Haydn does not rank at all in the top 100 and even at the BBC Proms he gets just three nods in eight long weeks. How, demand the marketing men, do we sell something so resolutely obscure?" La Scena Musicale 08/30/06

Why Seattle's Musicians Are Leaving "Over the past couple of years, significant members of Seattle's music community have been drifting south, drawn by Portland's inexpensive cost of living and vibrant creative community. Scott McCaughey, Michael Maker, Chris Walla, Tucker Martine, and Laura Veirs are my neighbors. That you might not have noticed can be partially attributed to our somewhat nomadic lifestyles, but it also speaks volumes about how disconnected the once-cohesive Seattle music scene has felt lately. In a lot of respects, Portland has become Seattle's hot new neighborhood." The Stranger 08/31/06

Early Music Heaven The Utrecht Early Music Festival offers 100 concerts in a week. "About 55,000 people will attend. More than half of the concerts are free; most of the rest have ticket prices around 15 euros, or a little under $20. About 25 concerts are broadcast live. Seen from the United States, where classical radio is courting extinction, you wonder whether this is utopia." Philadelphia Inquirer 08/31/06

Orchestra On The Move (Literally) How do you move a large symphony orchestra around Europe? It's a ballet of trunks and containers. "The payload has its own itinerary, flying from Toronto to Rome to Athens to begin the tour, while the musicians flew through Frankfurt. The cargo has its own seating arrangement, with each case holding multiple instruments stacked like a Tetris game on pallets loaded into the plane. It also has its own strict program -- an important customs document called the carnet that is as strictly adhered to as any concert personnel chart." Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 08/30/06

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Orchestra audition results are now online

Hi everyone,
After a grueling week of auditions (August 21 to August 26), we have now the results online and also on the Orchestra Board in Lincoln Hall.
For the Chamber Orchestra membership point your browsers to;
For Symphony Orchestra membership go to;

Rehearsals begin this week.
Monday 630 -815 pm in Bailey Hall
Tuesday 445-615 pm in Barnes Hall

See you at rehearsal.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Auditions start today with Violas and woodwinds.
Tomorrow is for Brass and percussion. Wednesday is for cello and bass. Thursday and Friday will be for violins.

Be sure to fill out the audition form.
If you'd like an audition time email me.
Here is the info on our website;

Student tickets at Carnegie Hall

Here is a link to student subscriptions at Carnegie Hall. The Promo code is MSSU
Here is the info. They also have $10 rush tickets for many events.
There are some great concerts.

NEW! Student Subscription Series

New in the 2006-2007 season! Get an affordable Student Subscription and plan ahead at just $15 a seat.

International Festival of Orchestras I
5 Concerts for $75
October 23, 2006 • NHK Symphony Orchestra
November 4, 2006 • Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
November 27, 2006 • London Philharmonic Orchestra
March 2, 2007 • Vienna Philharmonic
March 27, 2007 • NDR Symphony Orchestra

International Festival of Orchestras III
4 Concerts for $60
November 3, 2006 • Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
December 7, 2006 • Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra
March 3, 2007 • Vienna Philharmonic
March 26, 2007 • NDR Symphony Orchestra

Great American Orchestras II
4 Concerts for $60
October 5, 2006 • The Cleveland Orchestra
December 8, 2006 • Chicago Symphony Orchestra
February 14, 2007 • Minnesota Orchestra
May 18, 2007 • San Francisco Symphony

Carnegie Hall Classics
3 Concerts for $45
December 5, 2006 • Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
January 13, 2007 • Carnegie Hall Festival Chorus
March 6, 2007 • Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra

Violin Virtuosos
4 Concerts for $60
October 14, 2006 • Maxim Vengerov / Alisa Weilerstein / Lilya Zilberstein
November 1, 2006 • Gidon Kremer / Krystian Zimerman
November 15, 2006 • Anne-Sophie Mutter / Lambert Orkis
April 10, 2007 • Sarah Chang / Ashley Wass

Saturday, August 19, 2006

T shirt candidate

Here is another design for the CSO t shirt design.
If you'd like to submit a T shirt design please send them to me.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Tighter Security Is Jeopardizing Orchestra Tours

Here is a NYtimes article Daniel found which may concern us.
Hopefully it will get better by January.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

CSO and CCO's first concert

The first concert of the fall semester for both orchestras is a joint concert on October 1.
It is much earlier than usual. Usually the first concert of the semester is the second week of October. But this fall we will have the first concert on October 1.
Program will be;
Mozart Magic Flute Overture [CSO]
Mozart Piano concerto K. 453 with Frederic LaCroix [CCO]
Bernstein Divertimento for Orchestra [CSO]

Past concerts on CD and not Cassette

You can create your own picture of a cassette from the above site.
CCO's performance of Nicholas Walkers pop bass concerto is available on CD with a $10 donation to the orchestra.

Monday, August 14, 2006

audition info update

Hi everyone,
Here are the updated audition info for the orchestra auditions next week.

Audition info for 2006-2007 Season

University Symphony Orchestra, University Chamber Orchestra,
Audition Dates: Monday, August 21 - Sunday, August 27, 2006
Audition Location: Lincoln Hall Room 332

Monday, August 21, 2006
- Rm 332 viola only 1-5 PM [with Andrew Justice]
- Rm 332 winds only 7-10 PM[with Chris Gendall]
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
- Rm 332 brass only 1-5 PM [with Ryan Zawel]
- Rm 332 percussion only 7-9 PM [with Jim Armstrong]
Wednesday, August 23 2006
- Rm 332 cello only 1-5 PM [with John Haines Eitzen]
- Rm 332 bass only 7-10 PM [with Nicholas Walker]
Thursday, August 24, 2006
- Rm 332 violin only 1-5 PM [with Steve Miahky]
- Rm 332 violin only 7-9 PM [with Steve Miahky]
Friday, August 25, 2006
- Rm 332 violin only 1-5 PM [with Steve Miahky]
- Rm 332 violin only 7-10 PM [with Steve Miahky]
Saturday, August 26, 2006
-Rm 332 by appointment only
Sunday, August 27, 2006
- Rm 332 by appointment only

All new and current members of both Chamber Orchestra and Symphony must reaudition each fall.

Auditions will last 10 minutes each.

Prepare 6 to 7 minutes of music to play at the audition. Contrasting excerpts from the solo or orchestral literature are best: something fast and flashy, something slow and lyrical. Select repertoire that demonstrates your technical ability and musical skill; do not choose music that is too difficult for you, or that you have not thoroughly prepared.

You will also be asked to sightread several passages from the standard orchestral repertoire, to demonstrate facility with transposition skills (if relevant), and possibly to play a specified major.

Please complete the Audition Form and bring it to your audition.
Download Audition Form []

Sign-up: Request an audition time starting August 1, 2006, via email by contacting Professor Chris Younghoon Kim; cyk8(at)

Audition Tips:

Be on time for the appointment. If you are late, you risk having a shortened audition.

Warm up thoroughly before the audition. Practice rooms on the basement floor of Lincoln Hall will be available for this purpose during the entire audition period.

Indicate a preference for an ensemble at the time of your audition, although you will be placed in a particular group according to the directors' evaluations of the audition.

Acceptance and placement lists:

Lists will be posted on the Orchestra Board in Lincoln Hall.

All musicians accepted for membership are expected to attend the organization's first rehearsal, as announced on the posted lists. Be sure to check ALL of the acceptance lists carefully, as you may not be placed in your first-choice ensemble.

All orchestra members must be available for all rehearsals and concerts. Please check the schedule of rehearsals and concert dates posted online.

Contact Prof. Chris Younghoon Kim at 255-8614 or cyk8(at) for additional information about upcoming auditions.

Call for guest bloggers

For all current and past members of the Cornell Orchestra I would like to ask if there is interest to serve as guest bloggers.
If you are interested in please contact me.

Another article about ban on musical instruments on planes

Here is another report on traveling with instruments.
Here are two excerpts from the comment section;

Like Ms Morneweg, I am a cellist. I am travelling to Germany tomorrow to rehearse for a premiere of a new cello concerto, written for me, at the Salzburg Festival on Tuesday. I cannot cancel, because no-one else has learnt this concerto; I cannot put my priceless 18-century Italian cello in the hold - it would not be insured in there (as far as I know) and besides, to risk the desecration of such an irreplaceable work of art would be irresponsible and wrong. So I am taking the train tomorrow - a 10-hour ride, as opposed to the one-hour flight.
Steven Isserlis CBE, London, UK


I am now a second year cellist at a conservatory. Due to financial limits, I cannot afford to buy a seperate seat for my cello when I travel between school and home, and often pay the consequences: on one trip, a new, $1000 cello case I had recently purchased appears to have had someone in security try to pry the two halves apart, mangling the alignment of the case. This likely continued until someone realized that the case might more easily be opened by unhooking the snaps, which I left unlocked in case the case was searched. It would seem that there has been too little policy issued or consideration taken for what to do with instruments and instrument cases. Hopefully, incidents of such blatant abuse are rare. However, with increased security searches, it appears that musicians will continue to suffer a higher incidence of instrument mistreatment.
Edward Vigneau, Huntington, USA

Flight curbs hit festival concert

Here is a link to an article about the recent terror plot's effect on orchestra of St Lukes ability to travel to the Edinburg festival.
Hopefully this will not be a factor when we go on tour in January of 2007 to Berlin.
It is getting more and more difficult to travel as musicians.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Simon Rattle quote

In the above article Simon Rattle talks about why music is to him. I look forward to making music with all of you this coming year. Please remember to email me for an audition time.

"The humour fits with the lack of grandiloquence Rattle displays when explaining what music ultimately is to him. "I always had the feeling," he says softly, pausing frequently, "that beyond the sheer pleasure principle, the job of music was to express to people that they were not alone; that someone else had felt this, or was searching for an explanation to this. I still feel that, of all the arts, it is the most visceral, has the most direct access to the emotional bloodstream."
-Simon Rattle

Saturday, August 05, 2006

haus der musik

Today I explored an intriguing museum/exhibit/space in Vienna. It is called Haus der Musik. It has over five floors of various sound installations and exhibits ranging from a floor dedicated to the Wiener Philharmoniker, a floor dedicated to composers connected with Vienna; Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Mahler, Schoenberg, Webern and so forth. Tod Machover of MIT also has a section dedicated to his Brain Opera. But by far the best part for me, since I am a conductor, was a virtual conducting program which is interactive. Der Virtuelle Dirigient, allows anyone to hold a sensor equipped baton and conduct the Vienna Philharmonic. You have a choice of four compositions to conduct from; Mozart's Little Night Music, Strauss' Blue danube Waltz, Die Fledermaus overture, and a Strauss March. They have filmed the actual Vienna Philharmonic playing these four pieces from an aerial view (quasi viewpoint of the conductor). There are some hilarious reactions if the conductor is not able to keep a steady beat. Once someone fails to keep a reasonably constant beat, someone from the orchestra stands up and protests quite vehemently. The entire orchestra than berates the conductor. If you conduct to the end of a piece without someone complaining about your unsteady tempo, than a invisible audience applaudes wildly. The program allows for quite a bit of flexibility in tempo. The program even allows for dynamic contrast. If you conduct large beats the orchestra will play loudly and if you conduct smaller beats they will play softly. Very well designed. Although I must say it is far more amusing for people watching if someone fails and a violist or a horn player in the orchestra starts to complain vigorously. There are several variations. It is not always the violist who complains.

Friday, August 04, 2006


This week I had a chance to visit the Musikverein in Vienna. This hall is of course most famous for their annual New Year's concert with the Vienna Philharmoniker. I was told there are actually three performances of the New Year's concert that happens each year. Only one on New Year's Day is televised across the world. There is a lottery system to get a ticket. So each year right after the concert you can request a ticket either in person or on their website. Last year they had over 60,000 requests for the tickets. Not all 1400 or so seats are available for the lottery ticket system. Some are reserved for sponsors and higher ups. The Musikverein is actually a private entity. Most of their funding comes from their actual ticket sales. 96 percent of the concerts are sold out. There are two halls, the main hall and also the Brahms Hall which present chamber music concerts and seats about 600 people. A Statue of Brahms, who was the music director of the Music society for three years overlooks the small hall. On the landing of the stair way to the two halls, there is a statue of Clara Schumann who played the very first concert of the music society. The Music society also holds a very large collection of manuscripts by Brahms and Schubert. One of the most fascinating aspect of the hall for me was the fact that the great acoustics is achieved by both design and accident. Below where the audience sits, is a very large and tall room. It was initially built to store the chairs of the hall during the Viennese ball which occur each year. However they discovered when the storage room is empty the hall sounds much better since the floor acts as a giant sounding board. In fact, all four walls, the stage floor, and the ceiling are free floating and thus act as vibrating surfaces, or sounding boards. Even the gold sculptures surrounding the hall is hallow inside to accommodate acoustics. The ceiling is hanging from the rafters so that it too can vibrate.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Alex Ross' Article on Mozart

Hi everyone,
Greetings from Vienna. To celebrate the 250th year of Mozart's birth we have a number events planned throughout the upcoming season. The chamber orchestra will devote the fall concerts to presenting four Mozart concerti (K. 453, K. 414, K. 271 and K. 456) with four students of Malcolm Bilson. And K. 271 will be played again with Malcolm Bilson at Smith College. We will finish the fall semester with a concert in Rochester, NY with all four concerti. Symphony will open the fall semester with Mozart's Magic Flute overture. CCO will finish the year with guest artists Roberto Diaz (of the Philadelphia orchestra and now the dean of the Curtis school of music) and Gabriela Diaz(his younger sister, and also a fantastic free lance violinist in Boston) in a performance of Sinfonia Concertante. (a side note- I first met Gabriela when I heard her heart pounding performance of the Ligeti's violin concerto).

Here is an essay by one of my favorite writers on new music about an experience of taking three months to listen to Mozart's entire output on his ipod.

In my favorite passage from his essay, Mr. Ross contemplates what critics might say if Mozart had lived on to old age;
"Mozart was still a young man, discovering what he could do. In the unimaginable alternate universe in which he lived to the age of seventy, an anniversary-year essay might have contained a sentence such as this: “Opera houses focus on the great works of Mozart’s maturity—‘The Tempest,’ ‘Hamlet,’ the two-part ‘Faust’—but it would be a good thing if we occasionally heard that flawed yet lively work of his youth, ‘Don Giovanni.’ ”

And about K. 271 which the CCO will play;
"...most strikingly, the Piano Concerto No. 9, which is a three-act instrumental opera of energetic play, melancholy withdrawal, and happy return."

p.s. picture is the quite touristy statue in the Volksgarten in Vienna I took a few days ago.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

T shirt design for the fall

hi everyone,
greetings from Vienna.
i will be returning to the states in about a week and I will start to schedule auditions.
Please go to the audition website for the info until then.
Also I have two designs for the orchestra T shirts. One is for CSO and one is for CCO. These are not the final designs. I just came up with a few mock ups.
It would be wonderful if someone wants to design something for the orchestra.
So the deadline for the T shirt design for either orchestra would be August 9.
All design must include similar info as these two mock ups.

Let the design begin.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Deutsche Kammerakademie Neuss am Rhein's website

Here is a link to the Deutsche Kammerakademie Neuss am Rhein, which I will be conducting tonight at 730 pm at the Orchester Hause in Salzburg, Austria.

Greetings from Salzburg

Sorry for the long time since the last entry. I have been in Salzburg for the last week as part of the conducting class at the Mozarteum. I have been lucky enough to be one of the seven conductors working with Peter Gulke and the wonderful Kammerakademie Neuss am Rhine, a professional orchestra from Neuss. Tonight is the final concert of the intense week. We have had usually three, three hour sessions per day. The concert tonight will feature all seven conductors. The program is Haydn Symphony No. 80 and Mozart violin concerto no. 5 KV.219 and Bartok's Divertimento for Strings. I will be finishing up the concert with the finale of the Bartok.

In case you are in Salzburg here are the directions;

Orchesterhaus Nonntal
Mit Buslimic 3 bis Jutitgebaude, Umsfeigen!
im Buslimie 5 bis Enz abt-Klotz Strasse (2 stationnen)
20 meters die Strasse Zuruck belimdet sich das Orchester haus auf der linden seite,
hinter dan Schauspielhaus.

Concert starts at 730 pm.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

AMAZING Mozart 3 - 3rd movement Cadenza

It is nice to see the spirit of improvisation coming back to Mozart.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Learn Bartok String quartets with an interactive web feature

This summer I discovered a wonderful interactive website produced by Carnegie Hall.
It offers all kinds of advice for performing Bartok String quartets.
Since Chamber Orchestra will be taking on Bartok's Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta in the spring, it would be a great way to brush up your string techniques by visiting this site.

The Emerson String Quartet: The Bartók Quartets
A Guide for Performers & Music Lovers

Explore the six string quartets of Bela Bartók through the vision of the Emerson String Quartet in this amalgamation of video footage, written commentary, and animated score. Much of the video was taken during a workshop given by the Emerson members in 2003 and has been supplemented with additional video of Emerson members and others speaking about the quartets.
This site is intended for performers who are preparing these pieces as well as listeners and concertgoers who wish to learn more about the Bartók quartets and about the many musical decisions that must be made in order to perform these demanding works.

design a poster for Carnegie hall

If anyone is artistically inclined, check out the following call;

Carnegie Hall Seeks Original Art for its Playbill Covers!

THEME “Music as a fundamental expression of the human spirit” —using Carnegie Hall’s 2006–2007 season as inspiration
Please click here for complete season details.

ELIGIBILITY Open to all enrolled students (valid identification required)

STYLE AND MEDIUM Any style and any medium, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, and computer-generated art

SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS JPEG, TIFF, or PDF digital format only; file size not to exceed 2 MB; e-mail to

PRIZES Each of 10 selected entrants will receive $500 and 2 tickets to a performance at Carnegie Hall.

Deadline: July 17, 2006

Monday, July 10, 2006

Audition information for Cornell Orchestras 2006-2007

Hi everyone,
The audition info is up on the web for the 2006-2007 orchestra auditions.

The same info applies for both Chamber Orchestra and Symphony.
Thomas our webmaster is going through CSO site and updating pages.
If you suggestions please get in touch with him.

The repertoire for the orchestras are in the process of being set.
The chamber orchestra is very close to being finalized.
The symphony repertoire will also be set very soon.

I will be in Austria from July 14 to August 6. I will try to have some entries from Austria.
I will not be scheduling specific audition times until I get back from Austria.
But the general times for auditions for different instruments are as follows;

University Symphony Orchestra, University Chamber Orchestra,
Audition Dates: Monday, August 21 - Sunday, August 27, 2006
Audition Location: Lincoln Hall Room Room TBA

Monday, August 21, 2006
- Rm 332 viola only 1-5 PM
- Rm 332 winds only 7-10 PM
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
- Rm 332 brass only 1-5 PM
- Rm 332 percussion only 7-10 PM
Wednesday, August 23 2006 with John Haines Eitzen
- Rm 332 cello only 1-5 PM
- Rm 332 bass only 7-10 PM
Thursday, August 24, 2006 with Steve Miahky
- Rm 332 violin only 10-12 PM [only if necessary]
- Rm 332 violin only 1-5 PM
- Rm 332 violin only 7-9 PM
Friday, August 25, 2006 with Steve Miahky
- Rm 332 violin only 10-12 PM [only if necessary]
- Rm 332 violin only 1-5 PM
- Rm 332 violin only 7-10 PM
Saturday, August 26, 2006 [only if necessary]
-Rm 332 by appointment only
Sunday, August 27, 2006 [only if necessary]
- Rm 332 by appointment only

Auditions will last 10 minutes each.

more info is on the website link above.

Have a great summer everyone.

Monday, May 15, 2006

In Boston

I am spending a week in Boston rehearsing with the Kalistos Chamber Orchestra. I will be conducting Schoenberg's Verklarte Nacht on Sunday May 21.
It has been raning for the last 10 days, so many streets are flooded.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Berlin Philharmonic Forges New Links to the Young

Educational efforts by the Berlin Philharmoniker.
It is my hope that on our tour to Berlin, we can learn from this amazing orchestra.
Photo by Dietmar Gust for The New York Times
article by Daniel J. Wakin

Oliver Knussen Wins $100,000 Composition Prize

One of my favorites is honored for his work.

Chamber Orchestra will expand its renown by making radio archive available online

This is a very interesting trend.
Perhaps we should make our archive of live concert recordings available on out website.

Orchestra picks one of its own as principal violist

The former principal Roberto Diaz is now at the head of Curtis instiute.
He also happens to be our guest artist for the Chamber Orchestra concert on April 2007.
He and his sister Gabriela Diaz will be performing Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante.
This article talks about the viola principal post in the Phildelphia orchestra.

Violists, start working on your masterclass material.

The best chamber orchestra in the world

opinions of course.

Phila. names first female lead hornist

Orchestra has been a male dominated entity, but that is fast changing. Even the Veinna Philharmonic has new members who are not male. The brass section which had been dominated by men are also changing. A good musician is a good musician.

CSO taps 2 conductors to fill in for Barenboim

Another article on the Chicago conductor post

Chicago Symphony Names Haitink And Boulez to Conducting Posts

Here is this week's orchestra news from around the world.

Friday, May 12, 2006

more concerts this weekend in Ithaca

Finals are continuing and spring rain has arrived in Ithaca.
Here are more concerts this weekend.

Friday 12 8:00 pm Sage Chapel D.M.A. recital: Fang Man, composer. "7 Flowers and 5 Colors" features University organist Annette Richards and players of the OSSIA ensemble from the Eastman School of Music.

Saturday 13 3:00 pm Barnes Hall Senior recital: Katherine Skovira, soprano, and Graeme Bailey, piano, with soprano Jacqueline Conti and tenor James Patrick Miller.

Saturday 13 8:00 pm Barnes Hall Heather Miller Lardin and guest Brent Wissick, viols; guest Deborah Fox, theorbo; and Shane Levesque, harpsichord and organ. Sponsored by the Cornell Collegium and funded by GPSAFC and the Bar Dee Stirland Fund for Early Music.

Sunday 14 3:00 pm Barnes Hall Student recital: Alexander Tsiatas, flute, with Graeme Bailey, piano. Features works by Bach, Bloch, Griffes, Karg-Elert, and Karel Husa.

Sunday 14 8:00 pm Barnes Hall Emily Green, piano. Features works by Bach, Mozart, and Conlon Nancarrow.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Cornell enters final exam period

Cornell has entered final exam period for Spring semester. There is a blanket of tension across the campus with muted streets and hallways.
There is one last student recital on Sunday May 14. Our own orchestra Librarian and flutist Alex Tsiatas will give a recital on Sunday afternoon in Barnes. Here is the info.

I am having a flute recital this Sunday, May 14th, at 3:00pm in Barnes
Hall. I'll be playing works by Bach, Bloch, Griffes, Karg-Elert, and
Karel Husa, and I'll be accompanied by Graeme Bailey on piano. The
concert is free, and I would love for all of you to come see me perform.
Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Chamber Music concert

The last orchestra concert is done, but there are more performances this week.
Tonight in Barnes Hall at 8 pm is the last Student chamber music concert of the semester.
Support your fellow orchestra members;

1.Haydn- String quartet in B Flat Major Op.76 No.4 ("sunrise")
-Allegro con spirito
Homan Lee- violin, Yin Tong.-violin, Stephen Liu- viola, Alexandra

2.Brahms- Zwei Gesänge Op. 91
1) Gestillte Sehnsucht
2) Geistliches Wiegenlied
Dara Taylor, mezzo-sooprano, Tanya Lee- piano, Joel Ong- viola

3. Barber- "Despite and Still" op.41
A last song
My lizzard
In the Wilderness
Solitary Hotel
Despite and Still

Samantha Landau- soprano, Bernie Hsu- piano
4.Schumann- Piano quartet in E Flat Major, Op.47
-Sostenuto assai- Allegro ma non troppo
-Scherzo- molto vivace
-Andante cantabile
-Finale: Vivace
Benjamin Dorfan- piano, Brightin Schlumpf- violin, Kimberly Wong- viola,
Stephen Palmer- cello

5.Beethoven- Piano trio op.97 in B Flat Major ("Archduke")
-Allegro moderato
Stefania Neonato- piano, Esther Kim- violin, Sarah Rice- cello

6. Rebecca Clark- Sonata for viola and piano
-Impetuosso- ma non troppo Allegro
Kathryn Kimble- viola, Blaise Bryski- piano

7. Brahms- Sonata for cello and piano op.99 in F Major
-Allegro vivace
-Adagio affettuoso
Theresa Tan- cello, Tanya Lee- piano

8.Beethoven- Piano trio Op.1 No.1 in E Flat Major
-Adagio cantabile
-Scherzo: Allegro assai- Trio
Stefania Neonato- piano, Esther Kim- violin, Sarah Rice- cello

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Our own Sean Shepherd's tales in Minnesota

Our very own former Orchestra TA and Grad student/bassonist is featured in the American Music center to blog his experience with the Minnesota Orchestra reading.
Check it out.

Monday, May 08, 2006

2006-2007 season plan

Here is a tentative schedule for the 06-07 season.
The rehearsal times for the orchestras are as follows;
Cornell Symphony Orchestra
Monday 630-815 pm in Bailey Hall
Wednesday 700-900 pm in B20 of Lincoln Hall

Cornell Chamber Orchestra
Tuesday 445-615 pm in Barnes Hall
Thursday 445-645 pm in Barnes Hall

The concert dates for 2006-2007 season are
Cornell Symphony Orchestra
Sunday 3 pm, October 1, 2006 in Bailey Hall [joint concert with CCO]
Saturday 8 pm, October 21, 2006 First Family Weekend concert in Bailey Hall
Thursday 8 pm, October 26, 2006 Inauguration concert for Bailey Hall
Sunday 3 pm, December 3, 2006 in Bailey Hall
January 9-16, 2007 Tour to Berlin Germany
Sunday 3 pm, March 4, 2007 in Bailey Hall, with Cornell Concerto Winner
Sunday 3 pm, April 29, 2007 in Bailey Hall

Cornell Chamber Orchestra
Sunday 3 pm, October 1, 2006 in Bailey Hall [joint concert with CSO]
Thursday 1230 pm, October 19, 2006 Midday concert in B20
Saturday 8 pm, November 11, 2006 in Barnes Hall
Sunday 3 pm, November 12, 2006 concert at Smith College with Malcolm Bilson
Friday 8 pm, December 1, 2006 concert in Rochester, NY
Sunday 3 pm, February 25, 2007 in Barnes Hall, with Annette Richards and David Yearsley and Richard Faria
Monday 8 pm, March 12, 2007 in Barnes Hall, Music of Gideon Klein with Brave New Works and guests
Sunday 3 pm, April 22, 2007 in Barnes Hall, with Gabriela and Roberto Diaz

Dates and venues are subject to change. For the latest info please visit our websites;
Orchestra Blog