Achievements celebrated at annual Honors Dinner

Carol Colburn Grigor, recipient of the Samuel Simons Sanford Award

Left to right: Benjamin Polak, Peter Salovey, Samuel Simons Sanford Award winner Carol Colburn Grigor, and Robert Blocker

The Yale School of Music held its annual Honors Dinner on Sunday, May 7, welcoming students and alumni, faculty and staff, and distinguished guests to the Yale Commons for an evening of celebration. After thanking recently retired staff members for their service and acknowledging the University officers who were in attendance, YSM Dean Robert Blocker presented Carol Colburn Grigor ’69MMA CBE with the School’s highest honor, the Samuel Simons Sanford Award. Grigor, Blocker, said, “is one of America’s most generous … most thoughtful philanthropists.” Composer and former Edinburgh International Festival director Jonathan Mills congratulated Grigor via video.

Willie Ruff, recipient of the Nathan Hale Award

Left to right: Benjamin Polak, Peter Salovey, Nathan Hale Award recipient Willie Ruff, and Robert Blocker

Dean Blocker, with University President Peter Salovey and Yale Provost Benjamin Polak at his side, presented longtime YSM professor Willie Ruff ’53BM ’54MM, who will retire at the end of the semester, with the University’s prestigious Nathan Hale Award. “He’s changed all our lives,” Blocker said, before attendees were shown a video tribute to Ruff’s life and work. In a nod to the man who indirectly inspired him decades ago to study at YSM, Ruff said, “I thank, most of all, Charlie Parker.” The jazz office in the Yale School of Music’s Adams Center for Musical Arts was recently named in Ruff’s honor.

Left to right: Benjamin Polak, Peter Salovey, Ian Mininberg Distinguished Service Award winner Warren Lee, and Robert Blocker

Blocker presented the Ian Mininberg Distinguished Service Award to pianist Warren Lee ’00MM and the Cultural Leadership Citation to retiring Yale Collection of Musical Instruments curator William Nicholas Renouf ’71MMA. The Collection’s director, William Purvis, accepted the Citation on behalf of Renouf, who was unable to attend the Honors Dinner. Before presenting student prizes, Blocker referenced an impressive number of awards and successes earned and realized this year by students, faculty, and staff. He recognized longtime YSM faculty pianist Peter Frankl, who plans to retire in the fall, for his dedication to the School community.

At the end of the evening, Blocker told the students in attendance, “Claim the future. It belongs to you. You will make us better.” What follows is a list of the student prizes awarded during YSM’s 2017 Honors Dinner. MORE

Published May 9, 2017
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Inside YSM: Matthew Gray ’17MMA, horn

Matthew Gray

Meet horn player Matt Gray ’17MMA, who spoke with us recently about his experiences studying with Prof. William Purvis.

“The dynamic in the YSM horn studio is similar to that of a big family,” Matt said. “Each member of the family has strengths and weaknesses, but together we are a capable and formidable group. This sense of family and camaraderie comes directly from Prof. Purvis.

“Prof. Purvis has a style of teaching that focuses directly on the steps his students should take to assess and improve their own playing while also motivating and encouraging his students to pursue their own strengths to the fullest degree.”

While at YSM, Matt has worked in the Concert Office and has developed an interest in the administrative side of the field. MORE

Published May 5, 2017
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YSM musicians featured in Essex Winter Series program

purvis

YSM faculty hornist William Purvis

The Yale School of Music will be well-represented when the Essex Winter Series kicks off its 40th season on Sunday, Jan. 8. Along with YSM faculty hornist William Purvis, the series’ 2017 Fenton Brown Emerging Artists — percussionist Sam Um ’17MM, trumpet players Aaron Plourde ’17MMA and Nozomi Imamura ’17MM, trombonist Matthew Russo ’12MM, and tubist Joseph Guimaraes ’18MM — will perform an arrangement of Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man. Plourde, Purvis, and Russo will also perform as a trio on the program, which features an impressive roster of musicians and a diverse collection of works.

The mission of EWS is “to bring the finest music, in live performance, to the Connecticut River Valley and Shoreline Region during the winter months and to cultivate its appreciation to the widest audience,” according the the series’ website. The Emerging Artists program offers young, up-and-coming musicians the opportunity to perform in schools and retirement homes in the Connecticut River Valley and along the shoreline. MORE

Published January 7, 2017
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Collection presents Smithsonian Chamber Players April 10

Smithsonian_piano_trioThe Yale Collection of Musical Instruments presents the Smithsonian Chamber Players on Sunday, April 10 at 3pm.

The Smithsonian Chamber Players will perform an All-Beethoven Program including the Violin Sonata in F major, Op. 24, “Spring” and the Septet in E-flat Major, Op. 20. The ensemble will include Vera Beths, violin; and Kenneth Slowik, piano in the Violin Sonata, joined by Nicholas Cords, viola; Robert Nairn, double bass; Charles Neidich, clarinet; Dominic Teresi, bassoon; as well as the director of the Yale Collection of Musical Instruments and YSM faculty member William Purvis, horn for the Septet. MORE

Published April 9, 2016
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Concert remembers composer, former dean Ezra Laderman March 2

Ezra LadermanThe Yale School of Music presents a concert in memory of the late Ezra Laderman on Wednesday, March 2 at 7:30 pm. Laderman served as Dean of the Yale School of Music from 1989 to 1995 and on faculty as professor of music until his retirement in 2014.

The concert will feature selections from several of Laderman’s compositions, as well as spoken and video tributes from his Yale colleagues.

The world premiere of Laderman’s Partita for Solo Violin will be performed by alumnus Benjamin Hoffman.

Frank Morelli and Ole Akahoshi, both members of the School of Music faculty, will play movements from the Partitas for solo bassoon and solo cello, respectively. MORE

Published February 23, 2016
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YSM students to perform at Kennedy Center on Feb. 19

kennedy1As part of the Kennedy Center’s Conservatory Project, five YSM students will perform at the Kennedy Center on Friday, February 19.

For the Yale School of Music’s 2016 showcase, the Videnia Quintet will perform a wide-ranging program of original works and arrangements for woodwind quintet. The members of the quintet are flutist Felice Doynov ’17 MM; oboist Lydia Consilvio ’17 MM; clarinetist Bixby Kennedy ’16 MM; hornist Cody Halquist ’16 MM; and bassoonist Cornelia Sommer ’16 MM.

Their program will begin with György Ligeti‘s Six Bagatelles, originally written in 1953 for solo piano under the title Musica riservata. They continue with an arrangement by hornist Cody Halquist of Verdi‘s 1841 Overture to Nabucco, and will then perform an intricate work by YSM composition faculty Martin Bresnick titled Just Time. MORE

Published January 28, 2016
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Frankl and colleagues present celebratory recital Feb 6

Peter Frankl, piano

Peter Frankl, piano

The Faculty Artist Series at the Yale School of Music presents a concert celebrating Peter Frankl‘s 80th birthday year on Saturday, February 6 at 4:00 pm.

Frankl, a pianist, will team up with fellow YSM faculty members Ani Kavafian, violin; Ettore Causa, viola; Ole Akahoshi, cello; Stephen Taylor, oboe; David Shifrin, clarinet; Frank Morelli, bassoon; William Purvis, horn; and Janna Baty, soprano. In various configurations, they will perform music from Schumann and Saint-Saëns to Dohnányi and Dutilleux.

The program opens with three duets: Camille Saint-Saëns‘ Five Songs for oboe d’amore and piano; Robert Schumann‘s Three Romances for bassoon and piano; and Henri Dutilleux‘s Choral, Cadence et Fugato for trombone and piano. MORE

Published January 12, 2016
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CANCELED: Brass of Yale performs at Carnegie Hall Jan. 24

Yale Brass Trio

Yale Brass Trio

Update 1/23: We regret that, because of the severity of the blizzard, this concert has been canceled.

The Yale School of Music continues its acclaimed Yale in New York series on Sunday, January 24 with a program of music for brass. The concert will highlight the school’s acclaimed brass faculty as well as the contributions to the brass repertoire of past and present Yale composers. The program honors the late composers Ezra Laderman and Gunther Schuller, both of whom served on the Yale faculty.

The evening is anchored by the Yale Brass Trio, comprising William Purvis, horn; Allan Dean, trumpet; and Scott Hartman, trombone. They are joined by fellow faculty member Carol Jantsch, tuba, and numerous YSM students and alumni.

Ezra Laderman

Ezra Laderman

A former dean of the Yale School of Music, Ezra Laderman (1924–2015) joined the Yale faculty in 1988 and served as Professor of Music until his retirement in 2013. He also served as the president of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. William Purvis, Allan Dean, and Scott Hartman will perform the New York premiere of his Brass Trio, written in 2005. MORE

Published January 5, 2016
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Yale horns and clarinets offer studio recitals Dec. 12 and 14

hornsThe Yale School of Music presents two recitals featuring the horn studio of William Purvis, on Saturday, December 12 at 4:30 pm, and the clarinet studio of David Shifrin on Monday, December 14 at 4:30 pm.

Yale Horns

The Yale horn studio offers a program entitled Siegfried and Friends, featuring Karl Stieger‘s Reingold Fantasy after Wagner, for eight horns, which includes Siegfried’s heroic horn call from Götterdämmerung. The studio will also present a variety of other chamber works for horn, including obscure nineteenth century composer A. Corret‘s Duo Concertant No. 1, für Horn und Gitarre; selections from Brahms‘ famous Trio for horn, violin, and piano; Paul Hindemith‘s Sonata for four horns; and the Chanson from Kerry Turner‘s Carmen Fantasy for eight horns. The program will also highlight two works for solo horn, Elliot Carter’s Retracing II, and Laszlo Rooth’s Quiet Monday, for horn and piano. MORE

Published December 11, 2015
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Yale Brass Trio performs music by Laderman and more Nov. 10

Yale Brass Trio

Yale Brass Trio

The Faculty Artist Series at the Yale School of Music presents a recital by The Yale Brass Trio on Tuesday, November 10 at 7:30 pm.

The members of the trio, who all serve on the Yale School of Music faculty, are William Purvis, horn; Allan Dean, trumpet; and Scott Hartman, trombone.  They will be joined by award-winning guest pianist Mihae Lee.

After opening with music from the early Italian Renaissance, the program will honor the memory of Ezra Laderman with a performance of the late composer’s Brass Trio.

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Published November 2, 2015
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