[ students & alumni ]

Robert Bennesh founds Festival of Sacred Arts in Sweden

Porträtt Robert Bennesh

Robert Bennesh

Robert Bennesh ’14MM ’15AD, director of music at the Church of Sweden in Skanör-Falsterbo, has founded the Festival of Sacred Arts, which will launch its first season on August 11. Located in Bennesh’s home parishes in Skanör-Falsterbo, the festival seeks to provide a space in which music of various genres, art, drama, poetry, and nature intersect. The four-day event features 13 concerts, eight lectures, and other performances and exhibitions.

The festival’s name is inspired by the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, where Bennesh did course work while he was a student at the Yale School of Music.

“The artistic idea of the festival is to inspire the visitor to seek for the sacred in different art forms, in conjunction to each other, and in relation to nature,” he said. “What one finds sacred is highly personal and we hope this will be the starting point for interesting discussions.”

Since his appointment to the Church of Sweden in the fall of 2015, Bennesh has been developing a unique music program at the two medieval churches of Skanör-Falsterbo. Through grants, he has raised approximately $80,000 to develop the festival, forming partnerships with the local and provincial governments as well as other parishes, the diocese, various businesses, and individuals. MORE

Published July 12, 2016
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[ in the press ]

New Haven Convention Celebrates “The King of Instruments”

newberry-organ-consoleWNPR | By Ray Hardman

Organists from throughout the Northeast will gather in New Haven early next week for the Northeast Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists. Among the many activities planned are a series of free, public concerts featuring “The King of Instruments.”

For organists and fans of the instrument, New Haven is practically a mecca for fine organs and quality organists. Yale University alone boasts five world-class instruments.

“We do have many wonderful instruments in New Haven, a lot of organs in different styles, in academic and church settings, and a lot of music making,” said organist Joseph Ripka, one of the organizers of the AGO event. MORE

Published June 29, 2015
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[ alumni ]

Dexter Kennedy ’14MM wins Grand Prix de Chartres de Interprétation

dexter-kennedy-webDexter Kennedy won the 2014 Grand Prix de Chartres de Interprétation at the 24th Concours International D’Orgue de Chartres, one of the oldest most prestigious international organ competitions in the world. He is the first American to win the Grand Prix de Chartres since 1996.

Ordinarily held at Chartres Cathedral, this year’s competition was held October 28–November 8 at the two Paris Conservatories, with the finals in Notre Dame de Paris due to renovations to the Chartres Cathedral nave.


Published November 13, 2014
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[ alumni ]

Organist Andrew Scanlon ’03 MM releases “Solemn and Celebratory”

scanlon_andrew_webOrganist Andrew Scanlon ’03 MM recently released a new disc entitled “Solemn and Celebratory” (Raven Recordings, 2013).

Featuring music by Cook, Mendelssohn, Bach, Duruflé, Vierne and others, the CD shows the vitality and flexibility of the C.B. Fisk organ in St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Greenville, North Carolina, where Scanlon is the Director of Music. MORE

Published August 14, 2014
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Christian Lane ’08MM wins Canadian International Organ Competition

Christian Lane, a graduate of the Yale School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music, won the Canadian International Organ Competition (CIOC) this past weekend. The CIOC, which was held in Montreal, is the only international organ competition in the Americas in 2011.

In the finals, Lane and the other four finalists each played a 60-minute recital, the repertoire for which was left to their discretion – with the exception of the compulsory piece, Liszt’s Variations on Weinen, Klagen Sorgen, Zagen.

The competitors vied for a total of $72,000 in prizes, with a First Prize of $30,000. The prizes were awarded by an international jury. Lane’s prize will also include a three-year management contract with Karen McFarlane Artists, a CD recording with ATMA Classique, and career management and coaching from the CIOC.  MORE

Published October 21, 2011
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