Omer Quartet is named YSM’s new fellowship quartet-in-residence

Omer Quartet

Omer Quartet

The Omer Quartet has been named the new fellowship quartet-in-residence at the Yale School of Music. During its two-year appointment, which begins in the fall, the quartet will be mentored by the School’s ensemble-in-residence, the Brentano String Quartet, and will coach undergraduate chamber music ensembles at Yale College’s Department of Music. The Omer Quartet, which succeeds the Rolston String Quartet as YSM’s fellowship quartet, includes violinists Mason Yu and Erica Tursi, violist Jinsung Hong, and cellist Alex Cox.

The quartet won the Grand Prize and the Gold Medal at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition in 2013 and was a first-prize winner at the 2017 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, among other distinctions. The quartet was formed at the Cleveland Institute of Music and later served a graduate residency at the New England Conservatory. The group has collaborated with such respected artists as Sérgio and Odair Assad, Eugene Drucker, Clive Greensmith, Kim Kashkashian, Cho-Liang Lin, Ricardo Morales, and the Borromeo String Quartet, and has collaborated with composers Perry Goldstein and Sean Shepherd.

The Omer Quartet comes to Yale having served as chamber-ensemble-in-residence at the Bravo! Vail Music Festival and as the doctoral fellowship quartet-in-residence at the University of Maryland. While at Yale, the quartet will be introduced to audiences in New Haven and beyond. In October, the group will perform concerts in Sudler Hall and at Carnegie Hall as part of YSM’s Yale in New York Series. In December, the quartet will perform a recital program in Morse Recital Hall.

Committed to community engagement, the quartet inaugurated a Music for Food concert series in the Washington D.C. area with the mission to support local hunger relief with a Tarisio Trust Young Artists Grant. The concerts involved local and out of town guest musicians and raised almost $5,000, creating over 10,000 meals to date.

Learn more about the ensemble at omerquartet.com.

Published July 25, 2019
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Drs. Bowring and Monahan appointed to YSM’s academic faculty

Drs. Lynette Bowring and Seth Monahan have been appointed Assistant Professor Adjunct of Music History and Visiting Associate Professor Adjunct of Music Analysis and Musicianship, respectively, at the Yale School of Music. Both will begin teaching at YSM in the fall.

Bowring, who will teach survey courses and electives in music history at YSM, has been serving as an adjunct faculty member at The Juilliard School, teaching courses in Renaissance and Baroque music history. She has also taught at Westminster Choir College and in the Music Department at Rutgers University. Bowring specializes in the instrumental repertoire of the Italian Baroque, with secondary interests that include 20th-century music. She has contributed to a number of scholarly journals and has recently written an article on the implications of musical literacy for 17th-century instrumentalists for a forthcoming issue of Early Music. She has also co-edited an essay collection titled Music and Jewish Culture in Early Modern Italy. Bowring earned a Ph.D. in musicology from Rutgers University, a master of music degree in musicology from the University of Manchester (UK), and a bachelor of music degree from the Royal Northern College of Music (UK), where she studied violin. She continues to perform as a Baroque violinist.

Monahan will teach core courses and electives in musicianship and analysis at YSM. He previously served as Associate Professor of Music Theory and Chair of the Music Theory Department at the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music. Monahan has earned widespread acclaim for his publications, lectures, and conference presentations. His research focuses on the relationships among form, narrative meaning, and interpretation, particularly in the symphonies of Gustav Mahler, the late compositional style of Richard Wagner, and other Romantic and Classical instrumental works. Monahan’s Mahler’s Symphonic Sonatas, published in 2015 by Oxford University Press, won the Society of Music Theory’s Emerging Scholar Award. He earned a bachelor of music degree in composition from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where he also studied guitar, a master of music degree in music theory from Temple University, and a Ph.D. from Yale University.

Published July 24, 2019
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Yale composers win New Music USA grants

 

More than two dozen student, alumni, and faculty composers from the Yale School of Music have received grants from New Music USA for a variety of commissions, projects, and performances. This year, New Music USA has helped fund 114 projects with grants totaling more than $500,000. Please join us in congratulating the following members of our composition community.

Students

Gabrielle Herbst ’20MM is a part of a project titled “The Female Gaze” through which works featuring the female voice are commissioned and performed. A twist on the trope of the “male gaze,” the project’s composers, performers, and intended audience members are all women. Herbst’s First Lady of the Air was inspired by the life of Amelia Earhart.

Joel Thompson ’20MMA received a commission from the Grant Park Music Festival’s FestivalNext initiative, part of Chicago’s Night Out in the Parks program, which brings classical performances into Chicago neighborhoods. Thompson’s string quartet will be performed by fellows from the festival’s Project Inclusionprofessional development program, which serves young musicians of historically underrepresented identities.

Liliya Ugay ’16MM ’22DMA was a Fellow at the CULTIVATE 2018 Emerging Composers’ Institute, which was created by the Music from Copland House ensemble. The program commissioned Ugay and other fellows to write pieces that were later workshopped, performed, and recorded.

Alumni

The Los Angeles-based Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra will commission 20 composers, with commissioned works to be performed in the 2020 season as part of the organization’s 20×2020 series. Of those composers, eight are YSM alumni or faculty: Andy Akiho ’11MM, Krists Auznieks ’16MM ’22DMA, Christopher Cerrone ’09MM ’10MMA ’14DMA, Natalie Dietterich ’16MM ’17MMA, Ted Hearne ’08MM ’09MMA ’14DMA, Hannah Lash ’12AD, Peter Shin ’20MMA, and Sarah Kirkland Snider ’05MM ’06AD.

Works by Reena Esmail ’11MM and Caroline Shaw ’07MM will be performed by the multi-genre string quartet Brooklyn Rider as part of the ensemble’s “Healing Modes” program in April 2020 at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland. “Healing Modes” was inspired by the idea that music is a force for healing.

The composing-performing group Invisible Anatomy, including Ian Gottlieb ’15MM, Paul Kerekes ’12MM ’14MMA ’19DMA, Brendon Randall-Myers ’14MM, Ben Wallace ’14MM ’21DMA, and Fay Wang ’10MM ’12AD, presented Illumination as part of the 2019 Tribeca New Music Festival. The performance combined music and performance art and was based on the role of light in human life.

Molly Joyce ’17MM was one of the composers commissioned in 2016 by Grand Valley State University New Music Ensemble as part of its celebration of the 100th anniversary of the National Parks System. A CD of the commissioned works will be released on Innova Recordings. Joyce also received a grant for her project “Breaking and Entering,” which examines physical immobility in dance and music.

Works by Molly Joyce ’17MM, Loren Loiacono ’10BA ’12MM, and Tanner Porter ’19MM were performed as part of “Sing Out, Justice!” a program presented by the Albany Symphony’s 2019 American Music Festival. The festival commemorated the anniversaries of the passage of the 19th Amendment and the Stonewall riots.

Caroline Mallonee ’00MM will have her String Tunes recorded by the Buffalo Chamber Players, for whom she is the composer-in-residence. String Tunes  consists of 12 solos, two trios, one duo, and one quartet.

Marc Mellits ’91MM will be commissioned to write for the Chicago Opera Theater as part of Ear Taxi 2020, the second Chicago Festival of New Music put on by New Music Chicago. The festival’s mission is to support Chicago-based composers, artists, and performers by connecting them with cultural institutions.

Matthew Welch ’13MMA ’17DMA collaborated with five other composers to create the opera Chunky in Heat, which premiered this summer as part of Experiments in Opera’s 2018-2019 residency at the Flea Theater in New York City. Welch is a co-founder of Experiments in Opera.

Faculty

Faculty composer Martin Bresnick will be commissioned by the PRISM Quartet for its performance and recording project “Mending Wall,” which explores the role of walls in today’s society. Bresnick’s piece is based on the 1914 Robert Frost poem of the same name.

Faculty composer Christopher Theofanidis ’94MMA ’97DMA will write a piece for the Allentown Symphony Orchestra for its celebration of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, in 2020. The work, for strings and harpsichord, will examine themes of conservation and environmentalism.

Published July 11, 2019
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Morse Academy welcomes public-school students to Yale

Morse Summer Music Academy participants perform at the New Haven Free Public Library

Young musicians from the New Haven Public Schools have arrived at the Yale School of Music to participate in the Morse Summer Music Academy. For four weeks, these students will take private lessons and take part in scheduled daily chamber music lessons, large and small ensemble rehearsals, workshops, and master classes. The program also includes field trips to local galleries, museums, and the Yale Summer School of Music/Norfolk Summer Music Festival.

A primary goal of the Morse Academy, in partnership with the Music in Schools Initiative, is to address equity in access to music for the city’s public-school students. Musical equity has been widely discussed at Yale School of Music in recent years, most notably at the 2017 Symposium on Music in Schools, after which the School published its Declaration on Equity in Music for City Students. “Access is one thing, but equity is another. Access means there is a teacher, but equity means everyone has the opportunity to work with that teacher,” YSM Associate Dean Michael Yaffe said.

Morse Academy is free to participating students and is made possible through a generous endowment established by Enid and Lester Morse (Yale College ’51). Students in grades four through 11 who sing and/or play piano, guitar, woodwind, brass, string, and percussion instruments are eligible to apply. Instruction is provided by certified music teachers from the New Haven Public Schools, and graduate-student Teaching Artists, alumni, and faculty from the Yale School of Music.

Clarinetist Richard Adger ’19MM ’20MMA is a returning Teaching Artist who was drawn to the Morse Academy by the opportunity to help nurture young musicians and pass on what he has learned. “As a Teaching Artist, my goal is to always try and unlock a love of music in the students,” Adger said. “Whether the students decide to pursue music as a career or not, I hope to give them something that will last their whole life.”

Morse Academy also allows Teaching Artists, as young educators themselves, to hone their pedagogical skills. “As an educator, it’s really important to be able to effectively communicate with students of different ages and backgrounds,” Adger said. “The diversity of the students at the Morse Academy allows me to gain experience in both of those areas.”

Participants will give more than 30 performances throughout the course of the month-long program. Concerts take place Monday through Thursday at Sprague Memorial Hall, starting on Monday, July 15. Every Friday, starting Friday, July 12, Morse Academy students will perform pop-up concerts at the Yale University Art Gallery, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, New Haven Free Public Library, and elsewhere around New Haven. These concerts begin at 2 p.m. A final concert will take place at Sprague Memorial Hall on Friday, August 3, at 5:30 p.m.

MORSE SUMMER MUSIC ACADEMY

Published July 8, 2019
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