[ in the press ]

52 from Yale feel the beat — and heat — in Ghana trip

IMG_4803New Haven Register
By Joe Amarante

Yale Director of Bands Thomas Duffy returned from a momentous 12-day trip to Ghana with 51 students and Yale band and School of Music staffers on June 1, threw out all his clothes from the trip and left a day later for a week in China.

We should explain.

Duffy led 41 student members of the Yale Concert Band, six Yale Percussion Group grad students, three documentarians and a staff member on 12 days of cultural exchange, musical research and community service in the African country of Ghana.

The delegation studied, performed and recorded traditional drumming and dance pieces with Ghanaian master drummers, the first time that some of the pieces have been performed in decades. MORE

Published June 18, 2014
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[ in the press ]

SoundAdvice Composer Spotlight: Robert Honstein

honsteinSoundAdvice sits down with Robert Honstein, one of the composers selected to participate in ACO’s 23rd Annual Underwood New Music Readings on June 6 and 7, part of this year’s inaugural NY PHIL BIENNIAL celebration. His piece, Rise, is intended to inspire the audience to create their own art.

American Composers Orchestra: What was the inspiration for your piece that will be read by ACO at the Underwood New Music Readings?  How has that been incorporated into the work?

Robert Honstein: I was thinking about the idea of the pastoral, particularly the symphonic tradition of representing nature. It’s a pretty old tradition that had a real flowering (pardon the pun) in the 19th century. You’ve got Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Berlioz, for example, writing orchestra music that expressed a distinctly romantic idea of nature. I love that music but feel like this way of representing nature isn’t quite suited for the 21st century. We’re still moved by the outdoors, of course, but it’s complicated these days. What does it mean to romanticize nature in the post-industrial, climate-changing 21st century? Perhaps this explains the somewhat haunting mood of my piece, Rise. There is a celebration of the natural world, but also an unsettled feeling that never resolves. MORE

Published June 18, 2014
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[ alumni ]

Alumnus Ravi Rajan named to TONY Awards Nominating Committee

Rajan_RaviRavi Rajan ’00 MM was recently named to the Nominating Committee of the TONY Awards. Along with 49 other theatre professionals that comprise the committee, Rajan will serve a three-year term. The committee for the 2014–2015 Broadway season was announced June 11.

The members of the Nominating Committee attend all productions during the Broadway season. The Nominating Committee then meets to determine, by vote, the Tony Award nominees for that season. Last season there were about 50 productions. “While being on the committee is a major commitment of one’s time and energy, the effort is worth it, as the TONY awards bring great public value to the theatre by the broad attention the awards attract,” he said.

Published June 18, 2014
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