[ faculty ]

Wei-Yi Yang and Sarita Kwok release a new duo album on Genuin

interchangePiano faculty member Wei-Yi Yang ’95 MM, ’96 AD, ’99 MMA, ’04 DMA and violinist Sarita Kwok ’05 MMA, ’06 AD, ’09 DMA have released their first album together on the German record label Genuin.

The recording, titled Interchange: Violin and Piano Duos of the 20th Century, features works by Janacek, Prokofiev, Ravel, and Stravinsky. The album was released on Jan. 29, 2016, and is described as:

“a balancing act that both young musicians pull off splendidly, connecting long musical lines and palpably enjoying relentless rhythmic repetitions. They provide for moments of stillness as well as veritable fireworks. So it comes as no surprise that both musicians have drawn international acclaim – competition juries and the press have not stopped singing their praises! We experience first-hand the moment the lights go out and the musicians intone the first notes of Ravel’s seductive blues…”

ALBUM WEBSITE

Published February 29, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Yale Opera students and alumni perform in Warsaw in March 2016

Evanna Chiew

Evanna Chiew

Students and alumni of the Yale Opera program will perform in Warsaw, Poland on March 18 and 25, 2016 as part of the twentieth annual Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival. Each concert will offer different repertoire, with a program on March 18 program featuring one-act operas by Vaughan Williams and Holst, and the second program on March 25 featuring Krzysztof Penderecki conducting his own St. Luke Passion.

The Yale Opera singers involved in the performances are current students Evanna Chiew ’16 AD and Kathleen Reveille ’16 MM, and alumni Nicole Percifield ’15 AD, Eric Barry ’10 MM, ’11 AD, and David Pershall ’10 MM, ’11 AD. Krzysztof Penderecki is a former member of the Yale School of Music faculty.

For the Friday, March 18 concert, Evanna Chiew, Nicole Percifield, and Kathleen Reveille will each sing in a concert performance of Ralph Vaughan Williams’s one-act opera, Riders to the Sea. The performance will feature additional cast members Gary Griffiths and Anna Fijałkowska, along with the Warsaw Philharmonic Women’s Chamber Choir and the Warsaw Chamber Opera Sinfonietta conducted by Łukasz Borowicz. MORE

Published February 29, 2016
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[ concerts ]

Robert Blocker presents five new works by YSM faculty and alumni

This recital is a rescheduled event from Wednesday, March 9.

blocker2The Horowitz Piano Series at the Yale School of Music presents a recital by Robert Blocker on Wednesday, May 11 at 7:30 pm. Blocker, the dean of the School of Music, has played with such orchestras as the Beijing and Shanghai Symphonies, the Houston Symphony, and the Prague and Moscow Chamber Orchestras.

Blocker will open his program with works from the classical canon. Mozart‘s Sonata No. 8 in A minor, K. 310, written soon after the death of Mozart’s mother, will be followed by Ravel‘s Valses Nobles et Sentimentales (Noble and Sentimental Waltzes).

The second half of the program will open with a set of character pieces, all written by Yale faculty and alumni composers. David Lang‘s ’83 MMA, ’89 DMA Winter Piano will be followed by Hannah Lash‘s ’12 AD Prelude. Next are Illusory Rail by a recent YSM alumna Fay Wang ’10 MM, ’12 AD, and Three Novelettes by Warren Lee. Closing the set will be Christopher Theofanidis‘s ’97 DMA Wake Up, Called the Voice. MORE

Published February 29, 2016
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[ faculty ]

In memoriam: Otto-Werner Mueller, conductor

Otto-Werner Mueller conducts the Yale Philharmonia in Woolsey Hall

Otto-Werner Mueller conducts the Yale Philharmonia in Woolsey Hall

Otto-Werner Mueller, Professor of Conducting at the Yale School of Music and music director of the Yale Philharmonia from 1973 to 1987, passed away at his home in Charlotte, North Carolina on February 25. He was 89.

In a statement to the Yale School of Music community, Dean Robert Blocker said, “Under Otto-Werner Mueller’s artistic direction in the 1970s and 80s, the Yale Philharmonia emerged as one of the nation’s leading University orchestras. His accomplishments with his orchestras and his talent for nurturing young conductors have influenced the careers and lives of his students at Yale, Juilliard, and Curtis – and indeed our musical landscape.”

Mueller was a commanding presence on and off the podium due to his physical stature—he stood at six feet, seven inches tall – as well as his probing intellect and uncompromising musical standards. In addition to attracting enthusiastic audiences in Woolsey Hall, Mueller and the Yale Philharmonia recorded regularly for NPR’s “Performance Today,” made frequent appearances at Carnegie and Tully halls in New York City, and served as the resident orchestra of the Evian (France) Music Festival for two seasons. MORE

Published February 26, 2016
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[ in the press ]

The New Yorker: Fish Out of Water

Lang-by-David-Serling-webThe New Yorker | By Alex Ross

On the day of the Golden Globe Awards, in January, the composer David Lang, who teaches at the Yale School of Music and won a Pulitzer Prize for his radiant choral work “The Little Match Girl Passion,” found himself in a Chevy Suburban on a side street in Beverly Hills, creeping toward the Beverly Hilton. He had been nominated, in the Best Original Song category, for a piece called “Simple Song #3,” which appears in Paolo Sorrentino’s film “Youth.” His competitors were Sam Smith, Brian Wilson, Wiz Khalifa, and a team led by Max Martin. Lang was at a far remove from the Manhattan new-music world where he has long been a fixture, notably as a co-founder of the Bang on a Can collective.

Lang, who is fifty-nine and has a droll, sanguine manner, was with his wife, the artist Suzanne Bocanegra. “This tux belonged to my dad,” he said. With his shaved head and his round architect-style glasses, he could be mistaken for a studio big shot. “But, more often, people ask me to park their cars,” he said. He grew up in Los Angeles, the son of a doctor and a librarian, but in his youth he had only glancing contact with movie culture. As a teen-ager, in the nineteen-seventies, he worked as an usher at a theatre in Westwood; one of his duties was to attend to patrons who had thrown up during “The Exorcist.”

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Published February 26, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Yale Opera alumni win top prizes in George London Competition

Claudia Rosenthal

Claudia Rosenthal

Claudia Rosenthal ’08 BA, ’14 MM and David Pershall ’10 MM, ’11 AD have each won the top prize in the George London Foundation Awards Competition. The annual event, which is for young American and Canadian opera singers, held its final round of this year’s competition on February 19, 2016 at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York City.

Of the 23 finalists (from an initial field of 85), six were awarded grand prizes of $10,000 each, and nine received “encouragement awards” of $1,000 each. , and the rest received honorary mention and $500 each. Rosenthal and Pershall were among the singers chosen for the $10,000 grand prize.

James R. Oestreich, reviewing the competition’s final round for the New York Times, singled out Rosenthal and Pershall MORE

Published February 25, 2016
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[ concerts ]

New Music New Haven features Theofanidis and Vees March 10

Christopher Theofanidis Photo by Matt Fried

The New Music New Haven concert series at the Yale School of Music presents a concert on Thursday, March 10 at 7:30 pm. The concert will feature the music of Christopher Theofanidis and Jack Vees along with new works by graduate student composers.

The program will include selections from two of Theofanidis’ operas: “Juliet’s Aria” from Heart of a Soldier, written in 2011 for the San Francisco Opera, and “El Salvador” from The Refuge, which Theofanidis wrote for the Houston Grand Opera in 2007. Both arias will be sung by Jazimina MacNeil, mezzo-soprano, with pianist David Fung.

Jack Vees’ Piano Trio (Hulk Smash!), written for three performers on two pianos, will be played by composition alumni Benjamin Wallace, Paul Kerekes, and Fay Wang. Vees’ Ambulant Music, for brass sextet, earned its title “for the simple reason that the performers do walk (on and off) as part of the performance,” says the composer. MORE

Published February 25, 2016
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[ concerts ]

Faculty Artist Series features violinist Kyung Yu Mar 5

Kyung YuThe Faculty Artist Series at the Yale School of Music presents a recital by violinist Kyung Yu on Saturday, March 5 at 7:30 pm. Pianist Melissa Rose will join Yu for the evening to perform music by Mozart, Brahms, and Ravel.

The concert will open with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart‘s Sonata in G major, K. 301/293a, followed by Johannes Brahms‘ Violin Sonata No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108. Written for the famous violinist Joseph Joachim, Brahms’ dramatic sonata is written in four movements, an expansion of the traditional three-movement sonata form.

Closing the program are two works written by Maurice Ravel in the 1920s. The Violin Sonata No. 2 shows Ravel’s love of American jazz and blues; the virtuosic Tzigane, Rhapsodie de concert pour violon et piano has a Gypsy-influenced flair. MORE

Published February 24, 2016
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[ faculty ]

Martin Bresnick to present session at Chamber Music America

Martin Bresnick, composer

Martin Bresnick, composer

YSM composition faculty member Martin Bresnick will offer a free session at Chamber Music America on Tuesday, March 1. The session will focus on the composer-ensemble-commissioner relationship, including how to keep fee negotiations fair and amicable, along with advice on responding to commissioning requests, setting pay scales, negotiating creative control, and getting one’s work performed more often.

The session will be held at 3pm on March 1 at Chamber Music America’s offices, located at 12 W 32nd St. in New York City. It will also be available for viewing via CMA’s live stream.

For more information and to RSVP, click here.

Published February 24, 2016
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