Experiences in music, art will come together in weeklong summer festival
This summer in Alfred, experiences in music and art will come together for the MostArts Festival at Alfred University (AU) Sunday through Saturday, July 6-12.
The brainchild of Dr. Lisa Lantz, associate professor of music/strings and director of the AU Symphony Orchestra, the festival is designed to bring together prominent classical musicians and aspiring amateur performers. Lantz also notes she conceived of the event as a way to enrich the cultural, economic, and educational potential of the Alfred community.
“Internationally renowned musicians have been invited to the region to share their passion for music and to engage in the broader dialogue between music and the vibrant world of Alfred art,” said Lantz. “The weeklong event will host a Festival Orchestra which will offer chamber music concerts called ‘Sound Bite Samplers’ during the noon hour in Holmes Auditorium,” Harder Hall on the AU campus, showcasing various groups of musicians who will speak about the works to be performed as the audience enjoys lunch or dessert, she explained, while “ceramic workshops by artists/AU professors Wayne Higby, Walter McConnell and John and Andrea Gill will be offered in Harder Hall, along with an assortment of other activities. Evening concerts will take place in Miller Theater at 7:30.”
In addition, another component of MostArts is the Young Artists Piano Competition for high school students ages 13-18. Six finalists will be invited to Alfred to perform the first movement of their selected Mozart Concerto (a competition requirement) with the MostArts Festival Orchestra before an international panel of judges - Ukrainian pianist Vladislav Kovalsky, American pianist Anthony Pattin, German-born pianist Andreas Klein - and a live audience. Competition participants must also play at least two contrasting works from two different periods for solo piano. The guest pianists/judges will select the overall winner of the competition.
The Grand Prize winner will receive $10,000 and will be invited back to Alfred University for a solo recital during the 2014-15 academic year; the Second Prize winner will receive $2,500, while the Third Prize winner will receive $1,500. Funding is made possible through the Alfred University Robert Hutter Memorial Fund.
The final evenings of festival week will be devoted to showcasing the competition finalists. Each evening, three-four contestants will perform the opening movement of a Mozart piano concerto with the MostArts Festival Orchestra. Audience members will be asked to cast a vote for their favorite piano contestant over two evenings who will each receive a $500 Audience Award. Finally, there will be a $500 Discretionary Prize.
The winners will be announced at a closing Gala Concert on Saturday evening followed by a Raku Extravaganza with Higby for the entire community at the “Hair Pin Turn” above the Miller Theater.
Application deadline is May 1, 2014, after which no auditions or changes in repertoire will be permitted. Each application must consist of a completed application form and a high-quality DVD showcasing the student’s abilities in performing classical music. For more information about applying for the competition, please visit http://mostarts.alfred.edu/competition.cfm or e-mail Lantz at MostArts@alfred.edu.
The judges will also be featured in concert during the festival. Kovalsky will open the week in a solo recital Sunday evening, July 6. Pattin will perform on Monday evening in a concert of transcribed gems originally for piano that are better known in their adapted orchestral form. Later in the week, Klein will perform Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto No. 2” with the MostArts Festival Orchestra.
Kovalsky is executive and artistic director of the Monmouth Conservatory of Music, Red Bank, NJ and a member of the International Keyboard Festival and Competition Faculty at Mannes College of Music, New York. Born in Khabarovsk, Russia, he graduated from the famed Rimsky-Korsakov Leningrad State Conservatory of Music where he studied under the legendary Russian pianist Nathan Perelman. Kovalsky is the highest representative, currently active in the west, of the famed St. Petersburg School of Pianism. His performances as a concert pianist and collaborative artist include tours of Russia, the United States, Canada, Korea, Japan, and all European countries. He has been honored by Steinway for his professional achievements, including his publications and lectures as well as for teaching at Georgian Court University in Lakewood, NJ.
Klein is an internationally distinguished performer who has been touted in The New York Times as “a fascinating artist with all the indispensable qualities: temperament, taste, touch, tone” and “a pianist who makes silences sound like music.” He has performed in the world’s most prestigious venues, including London’s Wigmore Hall, Berlin’s Philharmonic Hall, New York’s Kennedy Hall, and Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center. His tours have taken him throughout Europe, the United States, Mexico, and the Middle East. Klein has been invited to perform with several important groups including the legendary Berlin Philharmonic, Berlin Symphony, Stuttgart Radio Symphony, Salzburg Chamber Soloists, and Cuarteto Casals in Costa Rica. Klein is a graduate of the Juilliard School, New York City.
Pattin is an active pianist, orchestral soloist, chamber musician, accompanist, and music scholar. He gave his New York debut recital at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital hall in 1998, for which the New York Concert Review recognized him as “a pianist of definite skills and strengths.” Since then, Pattin has performed concerts throughout the United States, including at the prestigious Dame Myra Hess Concert series in Chicago. He has also appeared in Japan and throughout Europe and Central America. Pattin has appeared as a soloist with the Alabama Symphony, the Toledo Symphony, the Detroit Metropolitan Orchestra, the Arkansas Symphony, and the Abiliene Philharmonic. He is now professor emeritus from the University of Montevallo and appears frequently on the Alabama Symphony’s “Concertmaster and Friends” series. Pattin earned a bachelor of music degree from Toledo University, a master of music degree from the University of Michigan, and a doctor of musical arts degree from the University of Alabama.
Lantz, an experienced orchestral and chamber musician, has performed with many regional orchestras in Western New York including The Orchestra of the Finger Lakes, Western NY Chamber Players, and as Concertmaster of the Southern Tier Symphony. In addition to her full-time teaching position, she continues to be an active violinist and conductor for concerts in the United States, Prague, Budapest, and Rome.
She has also served as a chamber music clinician for the Delaware Music Festival at Ohio Wesleyan University and currently participates as conductor and chamber music coach for the “Vivace String Camp” at Houghton College, Houghton, NY. Within the Alfred community, she founded and is the Music Director of the Alfred University Youth Orchestra and Junior Strings.
More festival details can be found at www.MostArts.Alfred.edu under Schedule of Events; note this page will be updated weekly.
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