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Bel Canto
Contemporary Music Ensemble Wins ASOL Adventurous Programming Award
Violinist Julia Sakharova Wins Koussevitzky, Takes Second in Sorantin
Handle With Care: Daniel Austrich Performs on Rare Violin
The Fellowship Is the Thing
Winners of the 2002-03 Concerto Competition
AAA Road Trips for Oberlin Jazz Musicians: Awards, Accolades, and Applause
A Year of Adventures on the High Keys for Conservatory Keyboard ...
Blue Skies for Jeffrey Mumford
Spano and ASO Take Grammy Triple Crown
Winning Personalities

Bel Canto

Soprano Alyson Cambridge '02 is one of several Conservatory students and recent alumni to have been rewarded for beautiful singing this year.

At press time, she had just won the Metropolitan Opera's Regional Auditions, held in Washington, D.C., and will proceed to the Met's National Council Auditions Competition in New York City. After a week of coaching and rehearsing with the Met staff, she and 11 other singers will know the outcome: four winners will be announced.

Alyson CambridgeAt the regionals, she sang "Obèissons quand leur voix appelle" from Massenet's opera Manon and "Oh! Quante volte" from Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi. These arias are in her repertoire for the nationals, along with "Quando m'en vo" from Puccini's La Bohème and "Porgi amor" from Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro. The judges will tell her which aria they want to hear her sing.

"I'm thankful for the education I received at Oberlin," says Cambridge, a double-degree graduate who studied voice and sociology at Oberlin. She is working on a master's degree in opera at the Curtis Institute of Music.

"The musical academic background at Oberlin prepared me so well for all the things I'm doing now at Curtis," says Cambridge. "And I have Miss Mahy to thank for my success with the Met," she says of her Oberlin teacher, Professor of Voice Daune Mahy. "Everything she taught me in the past five years has meshed well with all I'm learning now from Marlena Malas at Curtis."

If Cambridge wins the national Met auditions, she will be the second Oberlin alumna in a row to do so. Last year soprano Carolyn Betty '99 emerged as one of four singers out of a field of 2,000 to win the Metropolitan Opera Nationals. Betty also studied with Mahy.

Other successes include those for Liora Grodnikaite '02, MM '03, who won first prize in the junior division of the Opera Columbus competition. Soprano Elizabeth DeShong '02 received an honorable mention.

Conservatory student Joseph Holmes with Barbara E. MazeVocal performance major Joseph Holmes '04, a student of Professor of Singing Richard Miller, won the 2002 Barbara E. Maze Award for Musical Excellence from the Handel and Haydn Society. He received the award last June after performing Donizetti's "Una furtiva lagrima," from L'Elisir d'Amore in the society's Vocal Apprenticeship Program recital. The recital and awards presentation took place at the New England Conserva-tory of Music.

Seven Conservatory vocalists were chosen as winners in four divisions at the 2002 National Association of Teachers of Singing Ohio chapter state auditions held in April 2002 in Columbus: baritone Scott Skiba '03 placed first in the senior men's division; Karen Jesse '04 placed first and Emily Goddard '04 placed second in the sophomore women's division; Marie Masters '05, Meagan Brus '05, and Megan Radder '05 placed first, second, and third, respectively, in the freshman women's division. Former student Nathan Arcos placed first in the freshman men's division.

Skiba also is the 2003 winner of the Akron Symphony Chorus's John MacDonald Scholarship for Voice.

Soprano Elizabeth Dehn '02 received a first place and audience favorite award in the Dayton Opera Competition, held in May 2002. Elizabeth DeShong '02 received second place, and Peter Tantsits '01 received an honorable mention.

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Contemporary Music Ensemble Wins ASOL Adventurous Programming Award

Oberlin's Contemporary Music EmsembleThe Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble (CME) won the Award for Adventurous Programming given by the American Symphony Orchestra League (ASOL) last June. The award was presented by the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) and the ASOL at the ASOL's 57th National Conference in Philadelphia.

The CME performed with pianist Ursula Oppens last November. Under the direction of Associate Professor of Conducting Timothy Weiss, they played György Ligeti's Concerto for Piano. Also on the program: Ligeti's Ramifications (for 12 solo strings, 1968-69) and William Russell's Chicago Sketches, featuring the Oberlin Percus-sion Group, led by Professor of Per-cussion Michael Rosen.

The CME focuses on music of the 20th century and on works by members of the faculty, guest composers-in-residence, and students.

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Violinist Julia Sakharova Wins Koussevitzky, Takes Second in Sorantin

Violin performance major Julia Sakharova '03 won first prize in the 47th Olga Koussevitzky Competition for Strings, sponsored by the Musicians Club of New York, last April; her prize includes a New York recital debut. In November she brought home another trophy: second prize in the string division of the 43rd annual Sorantin Young Artist Award Inter-national Competition.

"Sakharova gave a wonderful performance," says Virginia Benz Anderer, who chaired the Koussevitzky. "The judges were unanimous in their decision, which took about 15 seconds to make."Sakharova

For the first round and in the finals, Sakharova performed the Adagio from Bach's Sonata in G-minor, no. 1; Mozart's Sonata in G-major, K. 301; the first movement from Strauss' Sonata for Violin and Piano, op. 18; and Ysaÿe's Sonata for Violin Solo, op. 27, no. 6. Pianist Evan Solomon of New York City was her accompanist.

Olga Koussevitzky was the second wife of famed conductor Serge Koussevitzky (1874-1951). A past president of the Musicians Club of New York, she endowed the competition, which was first held in 1955 and which features different instruments from year to year.

Sakharova, who studies with Professor of Violin Milan Vitek, is a member of the Erato Quartet, which won the 2001 Coleman-Barstow Award for Strings.

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Handle With Care: Daniel Austrich Performs on Rare Violin

Violin performance major Daniel Austrich '05 has spent the past year performing on a 1663 Andrea Guarneri violin from Cremona, Italy - his prize for winning the Deutsche Musik Instru- menten Fonds Competition, held in March 2002 in Hamburg, Germany.

Austrich, 18, was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, and has been a resident of Hamburg, Germany since 1997. He studies at the Conservatory with Alla Aranovskaya, first violinist of the St. Petersburg Quartet, Oberlin's quartet-in-residence.

A musician qualifies to enter this competition only after winning first prize at another international competition. Austrich took first prize at the Jeunesses Musicales in August 2001 in Germany.

This past January, Austrich performed on the Guarneri to acclaim on a program, shared with Aranovskaya, celebrating the St. Petersburg Festival in Zwolle, Holland. In the Zwolse Courant, Margaretha Coornstra praised his performance of Ysaÿe's Sonata No. 3 (Ballade), op. 27 as "seemingly effortless," and commented that he has already been "nicknamed the new David Oistrach . . . That would be nice. But a first Austrich would do as well."

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The Fellowship Is the Thing

Excellence may be its own reward, but a fellowship or a grant can't hurt. Here are some Oberlin students and recent graduates whose excellence has been so recognized.

Malia bendi-MeradSoprano Malia Bendi-Merad '03 received the Presser Foundation Award for 2002. She will travel to France to study baroque French secular cantatas as miniature single character operas. "I wanted a project that would be focused on performance,"she says. Performance is something with which she is familiar; she is front and center on pages 24 and 25 with cast members of Le Pouvoir de l'Amour.

Amy Guitry '98
received a Fulbright Scholarship [see page 47].

Gloria KimGloria Kim '02, BA '02, was one of only five people who received a yearlong management fellowship from the American Symphony Orchestra League (ASOL) for 2003. She began
her fellowship by managing one of the Aspen Festival orchestras last summer, and during this year she has worked with the Chicago, Greenville, and Indianapolis symphony orchestras.

Makiko Freeman '96 also received a 2003 ASOL Orchestral Management Fellowship. A double-degree graduate in trumpet performance and German, Freeman recently served as artistic coordinator for Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Project.

Debra Nagy '00, MM '02 received a Belgian American Educational Foundation grant [see page 47].

Jazz trumpeter Matthew Shulman '96 was one of just six performing artists selected as inaugural recipients, in 2002, of the Alberto Vilar Global Fellowships in the Performing Arts. The fellowship funds two years of graduate study at New York Univer-sity. "While I think I'll always need the loose atmosphere of a jazz club, I'm ready to start taking my music into the concert hall, to a consistently real listening audience," Shulman says. He made his Carnegie Hall debut last April.

Lydia Steier '00, who completed an MFA degree in directing at Carnegie Mellon University last May, won a Fulbright Scholarship. She began her Fulbright year in September 2002 as an apprentice with the Komische Oper Berlin in Germany and is presently working with Berlin's smaller opera-producing organizations. The title of her Fulbright project is "A Study of Style and Craft in Berlin's New Operatic Climate."

Peter Tantsits Tenor Peter Tantsits '01 received the Theodore Presser Music Award in 2001 that supported a research and performance project on the song literature of Benjamin Britten. Last April, accompanied by pianist Phyllis Chen '99 of Chicago, he presented Music of Benjamin Britten in Warner Concert Hall. The concert was part of a recital tour that included performances in Russia at the residence of Paul Smith, Deputy Chief of Mission at the American Embassy in Moscow; Rachmaninoff Hall in the Moscow Con- servatory; and the American Consulate in St. Petersburg. The tour continued in England at the Snape Maltings, site of the yearly Aldeburgh Festival, and in the United States at the Art Institute of Chicago and DePaul University.

Sarah TiedemannSarah Tiedemann '02 has received the Jacob Javits Fellowship for 2002-03. A flute performance major who studied with Professor of Flute Michel Debost and Teacher of Wind Chamber Music and Flute Kathleen Chastain, she is enrolled in the master of music program in performance at the New England Conservatory of Music, where she is studying with Jeanne Baxtresser. Tiedemann is writing a book on flute orchestral excerpts which will include theoretical analysis of the excerpts as well as a description of how each excerpt fits contextually within the piece from which it is drawn.

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Winners of the 2002-03 Concerto Competition

Three pianists and one violinist were chosen from 16 finalists to win this year's Concerto Competition, held in Finney Chapel in October. The winners secured spots as soloists with the Oberlin Orchestra and Oberlin Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Associate Professor of Conducting and Music Director of the Oberlin Orchestras Steven Smith, during the 2002-03 season.

Concerto Competition winnersMark Barden '03 of Cleveland and Elena Loskova '03 of Zaporogzije, Ukraine, study with Professor of Piano Studies Monique Duphil. Daniela Flonta '03 of Zalau, Romania, is a student of Professor of Pianoforte Peter Takács. Julia Sakharova '03 of Zgeleznovodsk, Russia, studies with Professor of Violin Milan Vitek.Barden performed Schnittke's Concerto for Piano and Strings with the Oberlin Chamber Orchestra in a Nov-ember concert that was broadcast live on WCLV-104.9 FM. In February Flonta presented Beethoven's Piano Concerto no. 5 in E-flat major, op. 73 ("Emperor"), with the Oberlin Orchestra. On April 6, Loskova performed Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with the Oberlin Orchestra and on April 25 Sakharova presents Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto with the Oberlin Chamber Orchestra.

This year's judges were Professor of Music Theory Allen Cadwallader, Professor of Flute Michel Debost, Assistant Professor of Violin Kyung Sun Lee, Professor of Singing Daune Mahy, Professor of Pianoforte Sanford Margolis, and Smith. Robert Sherman, host of the McGraw-Hill Young Artists Showcase on WQXR, the classical music radio station of The New York Times, was guest adjudicator.

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AAA Road Trips for Oberlin Jazz Musicians: Awards, Accolades, and Applause

Oberlin jazz musicians won raves and more throughout the Midwest this past year.

"Finally, a band that can play the blues," wrote jazz bass great Rodney Whitaker of the Oberlin Jazz Ensemble's (OJE) performance at the 44th Annual Collegiate Jazz Festival. Whitaker was a juror at the festival, held in February and March 2002 at the University of Notre Dame.

The OJE earned a superior rating, and four of its members - Jason McMahon '04 (guitar), Andrae Murchison '04 (trombone), Kassa Overall '05 (drums), and Alex Shepherd '04 (tenor saxophone) - won solo awards.

The OJE earned superior or excellent ratings across the board for improvisational skills, interpretation, rhythm, intonation, technique, how well they functioned as an ensemble, and the difficulty of the tunes they played.

Another group also won recognition last February. Playing at the Elmhurst College Jazz Festival in Elmhurst, Illinois, the Oberlin Jazz Sextet was certified "outstanding." Members include Matt Asti '04
(double bass), Brendan Cooney '02 (piano), Nick Lyons '04 (alto saxophone), Murchison, Shepherd, and Rob Schwartz '04 (drums). Cooney, Murchison, Shepherd, and Lyons were recognized individually as "excellent soloists."

"You are all a credit to a wonderful music school and jazz program. Yours was a very polished and enjoyable performance," said guest adjudicator Chris Vadala.

Last May, the Oberlin Jazz Quartet - consisting of Matthew "Moppa" Elliott '02 (double bass), Lyons, Schwartz, and McMahon - performed at Fat Fish Blue, a popular Cleveland restaurant. The appearance was part of radio station WCLV's Classic Fusion Champagne Brunch. The quartet's performances of Autumn Leaves and Pinpoint, an original piece by Elliott, were carried live, and Elliott was interviewed on the program.

During the first weekend of Sep-tember, the Oberlin Jazz Septet (OJS) made its fourth appearance at the Detroit International Jazz Festival. OJS members shared the stage with some of today's biggest names in jazz, including Branford Marsalis and Geri Allen.

The group was judged on improvisation, musicality, program, time and rhythm, intonation, and overall presentation. Of a possible 100 points, the judges gave the OJS scores of 100 and 115.

This year's OJS includes Bryan, Lyons, McMahon, Murchison, Overall, Stephen Wood '03 (bass), and Josiah Woodson '03 (trumpet).

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Spencer Myer Thomas Rosenkranz Micheal Sponseller
A Year of Adventures on the High Keys for Conservatory Keyboard Students and Graduates

It has been a high-octane year for Conservatory keyboardists.

Giacomo Battarino AD '02 won top prizes in three major international competitions, including a first prize at the European Music Competition, held in Moncalieri (near Turin), Italy, in October-November 2002.

Joel Corelitz '02, a TIMARA (Technology in Music and the Related Arts) major, was chosen as Keyboard magazine's Unsigned Artist of the Month for April 2002.

Recovering from a fractured arm, Mudi Han '06 won the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra's Youth Piano Concerto Competition in October 2002. He studies with Professor of Pianoforte Peter Takács.

Spencer Myer '00 won first prize at the 2002 Heida Hermanns Inter-national Piano Competi-tion, sponsored by the Connecticut Alliance for Music and held last December in Westport, Connecticut.

Thomas Rosenkranz '99 was one of five pianists selected as finalists for the 2002-03 Classical Fellowship Awards, sponsored by the American Pianists Association.

As part of the award for receiving a top prize at the Eighth International Murray Dranoff Duo Piano Com-petition in December 2001, Svetlana Smolina '03 will perform later this year with her partner, pianist Maxim Mogilevsky, at New York's Merkin Hall. She studies with Professor of Pianoforte Monique Duphil.

Timothy Spelbring '03 received the Ruth and Paul Manz Organ Scholar-ship for 2002 from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. An organ performance major, he studies with Professor of Organ David Boe. Michael Sponseller '97, AD '00, won first prize in the 2002 Jurow International Harpsichord Competi-tion, sponsored by the Southeastern Historical Keyboard Society and held in March 2002 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Daniel Sullivan '02 was the featured performer in the recital series of the Chicago Chapter of the American Guild of Organists in April 2002 at Grace Lutheran Church in River Forest, Illinois. Sullivan earned the spot by winning first prize in the 2002 Gruenstein Memorial Organ Competi-tion, sponsored by the Chicago Chapter.

Herman Whitfield IIILast January, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra premiered the Scherzo No. 2 in E minor by Herman Whitfield III '06. In February, Whitfield performed his Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra in C-sharp minor - another premiere - with the Philhar-monic Orchestra of Indianapolis. Whitfield is a double- degree and triple-major student who studies piano with Takács, composition, and politics in the College of Arts and Sciences.

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Blue Skies for Jeffrey Mumford

Assistant Professor of Composition Jeffrey Mumford says he draws much of his inspiration from clouds. Con-sidering this penchant of his, it is ironic that his past year has been unusually sunny.

The brightest beam shone down in March 2003, with an Academy Award in Music from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. The award, to be presented at the academy's annual ceremony in May 2003, honors outstanding artistic achievement and acknowledges Mumford as a "composer who has arrived at his own voice."

The previous March, he received his second commission from the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO), which will perform the commissioned work, amid the light of quickening memory, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in June 2003.

Jeffery MumfordThe NSO premiere will be the culmination of a busy season for interpreters of Mumford's music, several of whom are Oberlin alumni. In December 2002, violist Wendy Richman '01 performed wending on a concert of Mumford's music at Columbia University's Miller Theater, part of its Portrait Series profiling American composers. Mumford, who studied with Elliott Carter, is referred to by the Miller brochure as "one of ... Carter's most fascinating musical heirs."

Allan Kozinn, writing about the concert for The New York Times, said the program of works "described not only a personal style, but also a philosophy of music making that embraced both raw passion and a gentle, imagistic poetry."

Mumford is currently composing a piano quintet to be premiered in 2004 by pianist Amy Dissanayake and the Pacifica Quartet (with violinists Sibbi Bernhardsson '95 and Simin Ganatra '96).

This past year Mumford also received an ASCAP award, a Ucross Residency Prize from the Herb Alpert Foundation, and an Individual Artists Fellowship from the Ohio Arts Council, which he will use to produce a new CD of his works on Albany Records that will feature the Corigliano Quartet, pianist Margaret Kampmeier, violist Richman, and the CORE Ensemble.

Mumford was also commissioned by WCLV-104.9 FM, Cleveland's classical music radio station, to write an original fanfare marking the station's 40 years in broadcasting.

Fanfare (good dial days) We Celebrate Luminous Voices, for winds, brass, and timpani, was recorded by an Oberlin ensemble conducted by Associate Pro-fessor of Conducting Timothy Weiss.

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Spano and ASO Take Grammy Triple Crown

Professor of Conducting Robert Spano '83, music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO), won all three awards for which he and the ensemble were nominated when the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences handed out Grammy awards for Best Classical Album, Best Choral Performance, and Best Engineered Classical Album this past February.CD cover: Vaughan Williams

Spano conducted the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus to the triple crown with its recording
of Ralph Vaughan Williams' A Sea Symphony for Telarc Records, featured on the Conservatory web site's "Listening Room."

Allison Vulgamore '80, a member of the Oberlin College Board of Trustees, is president of the ASO; her husband, Peter Marshall '77, is the orchestra's principal keyboardist.

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Winning Personalities

TIMARA and jazz performance major Cèsar Alvarez '03 was invited by the Ninth International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival, Primavera en la Habana, to present his electronic composition sides/lados in Cuba last March

Andrea Brown '02 received a Student Achievement Recognition (StAR) Award from the Music Teachers National Association for academic excellence, successful teaching experience, and demonstrated leadership abilities. She is teaching private piano at Pillsbury Baptist Bible College in Owatonna, Minnesota.

Soprano Alyson Cambridge '02, violinist Yang Xu '02, and pianist Kyung-Eun Na '03 received scholarship awards from the Tuesday Musical Club in its annual competition, held in March 2002 at the University of Akron.

Professor of Composition and Music Theory Randolph Coleman received an Individual Artist Fellowship for 2002 from the Ohio Arts Council. Coleman is chair of the Conservatory's Contemporary Music Division.

Composer Jonathan Dawe '87, a faculty member at the Juilliard School of Music, received a commission in April 2002 from the Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation in the Library of Congress and the Koussevitzky Music Founda-tion, Inc., to write a new work for the Brentano String Quartet.

David DeSoucey '03, a double bass performance major, received an honorable mention in the International Society of Bassists multiple-instrument composition competition for his composition "TRAANS," a work for three contrabasses. DeSoucey studies with Professor of Composition Randolph Coleman.

Robin EubanksLast May Assistant Professor of Jazz Trombone Robin Eubanks was selected for a jazz commission from ASCAP in cooperation with the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE). Eubanks' "Full Circle," composed in honor of jazz pianist Marian McPartland, was premiered by the Jamie Begian big band during the IAJE's annual conference in Toronto. Eubanks also was awarded a commission from Chamber Music America; his work, which he describes as "sort of a jazz suite," was premiered by Eubanks' band, Mental Images, at Kansas State University in February.

Jonathon FieldDirector of Opera Theater Produc-tions Jonathon Field was a finalist in the classical music category of Northern Ohio Live magazine's 2002 Awards of Achieve-ment for his Lyric Opera Cleveland production of Don Giovanni. Field is the organization's artistic director.

Trombonist Andy Hunter '02 won the Frank Rosolino Jazz Solo Competition, sponsored by the International Trombone Association, in May 2002.

Alex Klein '87, principal oboist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO), received a 2002 Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance with Orchestra for the CSO's Teldec Classics recording of the Strauss Wind Concerti.

Wendell LoganProfessor of African American Music Wendell Logan received a 2002-03 ASCAP Award for the unique prestige value of his catalog of original compositions. Logan's latest piece, "Ask Your Mama," a work for big band, soprano, and tenor based on the classic Langston Hughes poem Ask Your Mama: Twelve Moods for Jazz, was commissioned by Cleveland's Tri-C Jazz Fest and premiered last April. "Ask Your Mama" was reprised in Oberlin in November in a Finney Chapel performance that featured the Oberlin Jazz Ensemble; the concert was aired live on WCPN, Cleveland's public radio station, with a simulcast on wcpn.org.

Composer Keeril Makan '94 received a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters for 2003. Makan studied at Oberlin with composition faculty members Richard Hoffmann and Randolph Coleman.

Christopher Rouse '71 won a Grammy Award in 2002 for Best Classical Contemporary Composition for his Concert De Gaudi for Guitar and Orchestra. Guitarist Sharon Isbin recorded the work with conductor Muhai Tang and the Gulbenkian Orchestra on the Teldec Classics label.

Composer David Schober '97 was honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2002 with a Charles Ives Scholarship. The award is given to "students of great promise." Schober is in the doctoral degree program at the University of Michigan.

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