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School of Music

Chamber music programs teach students artistry

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There are lessons musicians learn while playing chamber music that they don’t learn when playing in an orchestra. Leadership, sacrifice and responsibility make the chamber ensemble one of the most difficult, and most rewarding, experiences. The Student Chamber Music Recital at 2 p.m. today in McKnight Hall marks the beginning of a summer-long series of daily chamber music concerts for students of the Chautuauqua School of Music.

Voice, instrumental students collaborate, foster ensemble frame of mind

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The Wednesday-night voice concert series continues at 7:30 p.m. tonight in Fletcher Music Hall with a recital that is all about chamber music. This will be the first opportunity for students in the Voice Program, who up until now have performed in these recitals with only piano accompaniment, to enter the ensemble frame of mind. The singers will perform with various chamber groups from the School of Music.

Penneys gives annual piano recital

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Last year was the bicentennial celebration of two great classical composers, Frédéric Chopin and Robert Schumann. The pair, both born in 1810, left a legacy of some of the most masterful works in the piano repertoire.

Full of character

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Magic flutes, valkyries, rampant consumption — some themes in opera can be hard to relate to, and not just for the audience. Singers, like actors, perform best when they can lose themselves in a character — when they can find that common thread that connects them with their role. But how do you find something in common with a 13th-century family in Florence?

Singer, composer collaborate for voice concert tonight

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A pianist could play “Claire de Lune” today, and Claude Debussy would never hear it. An orchestra could play the “New World Symphony” next weekend, and Antonin Dvořák could never tell them what it was like to see buffalos roaming the prairies. When a musician can collaborate with a composer, it is a rare opportunity to deconstruct the imagination of a creative mind that was compelled to create a work of art.

Piano master class to address Facebook, historical context

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Thomas Schumacher is an award-winning piano soloist who has performed in concert halls around the world. But the most marvelous instrument, he said, doesn’t even make music. Schumacher will teach a piano master class at 10:30 a.m. today in the Sherwood-Marsh Studios and will stress the importance of engaging and educating the audience through that most marvelous instrument, Facebook.

Voice Students present the songs of Ben Moore

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At the Chautauqua School of Music, students often view recitals as valuable learning experiences. They are the perfect opportunity for these young musicians to perform a piece they have been working on in front of a supportive and knowledgeable audience. Because the students play what they have been working on in lessons, these recitals rarely have themes, but tonight’s recital will be an exception.

In the spotlight

Great American Picnic
July 5’s premiere performance of the Music School Festival Orchestra introduced an energetic and versatile group of young musicians ready to take on the challenges of not only difficult but very diverse repertoire. Tonight’s concert will once again display the astounding amount of progress the MSFO has made since its first concert, but it also will have some debuts of its own.

Lesenger uses master class to instruct singers on acting

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An opera production derives from the music, not the other way around, said Jay Lesenger, artistic/general director of Chautauqua Opera Company. Sometimes directors will have a concept in mind before delving into a production, but Lesenger said he believes in a firm understanding of opera and its traditions before interpreting the music for the stage. “I’m not of the school that I have to do something different to make it true,” Lesenger said. “I’m all for innovation, but that’s not how I go about looking at a piece. I don’t say, ‘How can we do this differently?’ I just say, ‘How can we do it well?’”
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