YSM faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis wins Grammy Award

Aaron Jay Kernis

Several Yale School of Music alumni took home Grammy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 10. Please join us in congratulating the following musicians on this exciting accomplishment.

Faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis ‘83MM won a Grammy Award in the “Best Contemporary Classical Composition” category for his Violin Concerto, which was performed by violinist James Ehnes, conductor Ludovic Morlot, and the Seattle Symphony. Ehnes won a Grammy in the “Best Classical Instrumental Solo” for his performance.

Violinist Sheila Fiekowsky ’75MM and cellist Owen Young ’87MM earned Grammy Awards as members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the “Best Orchestral Performance” category for the ensemble’s recording of Shostakovich Symphonies Nos. 4 and 11. For that recording, which was engineered by Shawn Murphy, Nick Squire, and Tim Martyn, the Boston Symphony Orchestra also won in the “Best Engineered Album, Classical” category.

Erica Brenner ’89MM earned a Grammy Award for producing Songs of Orpheus, a recording that features tenor Karim Sulayman and Apollo’s Fire, conducted by Jeannette Sorrell, in a performance of music by Monteverdi, Caccini, d’India, and Landi. The recording won in the “Best Classical Solo Vocal Album” category. Brenner, who studied flute at YSM, is a member of the Recording Academy.

Published February 11, 2019
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Members of YSM community earn Grammy nominations

Missy Mazzoli. Photo by Marylene Mey

Grammy Award nominations were announced on Friday, Dec. 7, and several members of the Yale School of Music community made the list. Please join us in congratulating these outstanding musicians.

Composer Missy Mazzoli ’06MM was nominated in the Best Contemporary Classical Composition category for her work Vespers for Violin, performed by Olivia de Prato. In the same category, faculty composer Aaron Jay Kernis ’83MM received a nomination for his Violin Concerto, performed by violinist James Ehnes, conductor Ludovic Morlot, and the Seattle Symphony.

Yale Philharmonia Principal Conductor Peter Oundjian was nominated in the Best Classical Compendium category for Vaughan Williams: Piano Concerto, Oboe Concerto, Serenade to Music, Flos Campi, on which he conducted. The recording was produced by Blanton Alspaugh.

Conductor Martin Pearlman ’71MM was nominated in the Best Classical Instrumental Solo Category for Biber: The Mystery Sonatas, on which he conducted. The recording features violinist Christina Day Martinson and Boston Baroque.

Composer John Adams ’MUSHD received a nomination in the Best Opera Recording category for Adams: Dr. Atomic.

The Boston-based chamber orchestra A Far Cry, which includes alumni violinists Liesl Schoenberger Doty ’11AD and Miki-Sophia Cloud ’08MM, was nominated in the Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance category for Visions and Variations.

In the Best Orchestral Performance category, three nominations have ties to YSM. The Boston Symphony Orchestra’s recording Shostakovich: Symphonies Nos. 4 & 11, conducted by Andris Nelsons, includes alumni violinist Sheila Fiekowsky ’75MM and cellist Owen Young ’87MM. The San Francisco Symphony’s recording Schumann: Symphonies Nos. 1-4, conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas, includes alumni violinists Gina Cooper ’87MM and John Young ’MM. And the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s recording Beethoven: Symphony No. 3; Strauss: Horn Concerto No. 1, conducted by Manfred Honeck, includes alumni violinists Irene Cheng ’94MM and Louis Lev ’90MM and alumni trombonist Rebecca Cherian ’81MM.

Published December 10, 2018
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YSM honors Distinguished Music Educators

The Yale School of Music is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2017 Yale Distinguished Music Educator Awards. Ten awardees, who represent city school districts across the United States, will be honored at the sixth Symposium on Music in Schools, which takes place June 15-17 on the Yale University campus.

The recipients were identified and nominated in partnership with the National Association for Music Education and the VH1 Save the Music Foundation. They were selected in recognition of their innovative approaches to music education, their dedication to the urban communities in which they teach, and their unwavering desire to make a substantive difference in the lives of students and families.

“The Yale School of Music is continuing its tradition of recognizing exceptional music teachers working in schools across the United States,” YSM Associate Dean Michael Yaffe said. “This year, we’re focusing specifically on the leadership of educators in city schools whose work is made more critical by a growing disparity in opportunities for music-making in America’s cities.”

The biennial Symposium on Music in Schools provides a national forum for the discussion of the role that music and music-teaching plays in community development. The 2017 Symposium, which will focus on the role that music-making plays in America’s city schools, will mark 10 years since the Music in Schools Initiative was launched with an endowment from the Yale College Class of 1957. MORE

Published May 12, 2017
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[ students & alumni ]

Laura Jeppesen ’71 MM Receives GRAMMY and Harvard Honors

Laura Jeppesen

Laura Jeppesen

Alumna Laura Jeppesen ’71 MM has recently received awards from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and Harvard University. She was part of the Boston Early Music Festival team that won a 2015 GRAMMY for “Best Opera Recording,” Charpentier’s La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers and La Couronne de Fleurs for CPO (Classic Produktion Osnabrück). She also recently received an award from Harvard University for excellence in teaching, reflecting student evaluations in a course on Renaissance music in which she taught students to play the viola da gamba.

More about Laura Jeppesen

As a teacher of the viola da gamba, Ms. Jeppesen specializes in music of the French Baroque, and is an exponent of the composer Marin Marais (1656-1728).

Ms. Jeppesen teaches viola da gamba at Boston University, Wellesley College and has a private studio.

Ms. Jeppesen is principal violist of Boston Baroque and plays viola and viola da gamba with many Boston-based ensembles including The Boston Early Music Festival Orchestra, The Boston Museum Trio and The Handel and Haydn Society.

Published June 9, 2016
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[ alumni ]

Alumni receive Grammy nominations


Darrell Ang

Several Yale School of Music alumni were among the musicians nominated for Grammy Awards. The nominations for the 2016 awards were announced Monday, December 7.

In the category of Best Orchestral Performance, conductor Darrell Ang ’08 MM was nominated for his recording of Zhou Long and Chen Yi’s Symphony Humen 1839. The recording, which featured the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, was released on the Naxos label.

In the category of Best Choral Performance was Pablo Neruda: The Poet Sings, recorded on Harmonia Mundi with Craig Hella Johnson ’90 MMA, ’95 DMA leading the ensemble Conspirare.

Brad Wells ’05 DMA and the vocal octet Roomful Of Teeth were nominated in the category of Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for Render, released on New Amsterdam Records. There are numerous YSM alumni among the members of Roomful of Teeth. MORE

Published December 7, 2015
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[ alumni ]

Hollywood film composer Thomas Newman releases collaborative album with Rick Cox


Thomas Newman, composer

Thomas Newman ’77BA, ’78MM and Rick Cox released the album 35 Whirlpools Below Sound on Cold Blue Music in October. This jointly composed and performed collection of 19 electro-acoustic works has been slowly developing over time. Newman, a 12-time Oscar nominee and six-time Grammy winner, and noted new-music composer/performer Rick Cox have been collaborating for 25 years.

The music has been called both enigmatic and eclectic, exploring a somewhat improvisational world through its series of sometimes interlinked, sometimes contrasting pieces built of often mysterious and fantastical juxtapositions of sounds.

Newman is a highly regarded film-music composer (WALL-E, The Shawshank Redemption, American Beauty) who has also written non-film-related works for such ensembles as the Kronos Quartet and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. While at Yale, Newman studied with Jacob Druckman, Bruce MacCombie, and Robert Moore. MORE

Published October 28, 2014
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Former YSM composers among Grammy winners

Awards for alumnus Robert Aldridge, former faculty member Joseph Schwantner

Robert Aldridge ’97MMA, ’00DMA won a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Classical Composition at the 54th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony last Sunday in Los Angeles.

Aldridge is a professor at the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University. Along with librettist Herschel Garfein (also of Montclair State), he was awarded the Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for the opera Elmer Gantry.

In addition, the recording of the opera won the Grammy for Best Engineered Album, Classical. The CD’s producer, Blanton Alspaugh, had been nominated for a Grammy for Producer of the Year (Classical), but he did not win in that category. (Read more about Aldridge’s win here.)

The Grammy Award for Classical Instrumental solo went to a performance of Joseph Schwantner‘s Concerto for Percussion and Orchestra. Christopher Lamb was the soloist; Giancarlo Guerrero conducted the Nashville Symphony.

Joseph Schwantner was a member of the YSM composition faculty from 1999 to 2003.

Published February 17, 2012
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Patrick Quigley ’02MM receives two Grammy nominations

Patrick Quigley ’02MM, a choral conducting major who studied with Marguerite Brooks at the School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music, received two Grammy nominations this year.

Quigley is the founding artistic director of Seraphic Fire, a national ensemble of professional singers. His nominations are in two categories for two different projects. The awards will be announced in February 2012.

For the recording of the Brahms Requiem, nominated in the category of Best Choral Performance, Seraphic Fire was joined by the Professional Choral Institute and pianists Scott Allen Jarret and Justin Blackwell. Among the vocal soloists was baritone Paul Max Tipton, a 2010 graduate of the vocal program at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and Yale School of Music.

A Seraphic Fire Christmas, a collection of traditional Christmas carols and music heard at King’s College, Cambridge, was nominated in the category of Best Small Ensemble Performance.

In eight seasons, Patrick Dupré Quigley has built Seraphic Fire into a nationally recognized ensemble, now considered one of Miami’s five major performing arts institutions. Mr. Quigley has commissioned and premiered numerous works, including the Pulitzer Prize-nominated Road from Hiroshima: A Requiem by Shawn Crouch and the acoustic version of Ingram Marshall’s Hymnodic Delays. Known for its high-quality and exciting performances of baroque and new music, Seraphic Fire is also the first classical ensemble since the Benedictine Monks of Silos to reach the Top Ten on the Billboard Pop Charts, appearing with international pop-star Shakira on her platinum-selling album Oral Fixation 2.

Published December 1, 2011
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Paul Jacobs ’02MM, ’03AD wins Grammy for Messiaen recording

Paul Jacobs. Photo by Stefan Cohen.

Paul Jacobs ’02MM, ’03AD was awarded a Grammy on Sunday by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. He won in the category of Best Instrumental Soloist Performance without orchestra for his recording of Olivier Messiaen’s Livre du Saint-Sacrement. The recording, his second album, was released in September on the Naxos label.

In an interview in December, Jacobs said, “Who would have believed that twentieth-century French organ music would be up for a Grammy?”

According to one article, Jacobs is the first organist to ever win a Grammy. He is currently the chairman of the organ department at the Juilliard School in New York.

Jacobs performed the complete Livre du Saint-Sacrement on the Newberry Organ in Woolsey Hall as part of the Yale School of Music’s celebration of the Messiaen Centenary in December 2008.

Published February 14, 2011
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Grammy Awards for David Lang, Sharon Isbin, Marin Alsop

David Lang, faculty composer

David Lang, faculty composer

At last night’s ceremony, Grammy Awards went to Yale School of Music faculty composer and alumnus David Lang (DMA, Yale School of Music) and alumnae Sharon Isbin (BA, Yale College; MM, Yale School of Music) and Marin Alsop (BA, Yale College).

The Grammy for Best Small Ensemble Performance was awarded to David Lang’s The Little Match Girl Passion, in a Harmonia Mundi recording by Ars Nova Copenhagen & Theatre Of Voices, conducted by Paul Hillier.

Sharon Isbin won the prize for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (Without Orchestra) for her CD Journey To The New World (with Joan Baez & Mark O’Connor) on Sony Classical. MORE

Published February 1, 2010
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