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News Archive: Newsletter

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Student, Faculty, Parent & Alumni News FALL 2015

Do you have news, photos or videos to share? Please send an email to Photo above: SMS student Vian Wagatsuma performing in the Kaufman Music Center International Youth Piano Competition Winners Showcase Concert at Merkin Concert Hall in June. SPECIAL MUSIC SCHOOL (K-8) SMS was selected to receive a 2015 Blackboard Award as part of this year&rs…

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Kaufman Music Center Executive Director Lydia Kontos Receives National Guild Award

Kaufman Music Center Executive Director Lydia Kontos Receives 2015 National Guild Milestone Certificate of Appreciation   Certificate honors long-standing commitment to ensuring equitable access to quality arts education Kaufman Music Center’s Executive Director Lydia Kontos will be honored with the 2015 National Guild Milestone Certificate of Appreciation for …

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Creating a New Culture for Classical Music: Teen Ensemble Face the Music Launches 10th Season

“There’s only one rule: Face the Music only performs work by living composers. The result is a subculture where Radiohead and Portishead cross-pollinate with Bartók and Dvořák, where orchestral music feels newly relevant as a medium of self-expression.”               …

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Advice from Virtuoso Violinist Joshua Bell

What would you ask virtuoso violinist Joshua Bell if you had the chance? Last spring, Special Music School students had an amazing opportunity to enjoy a special private performance at SMS High School and receive advice from one of the world’s greatest classical performers. Here are a few examples of what Joshua told them: “Classical music can be relaxing, but…

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A Note from The Executive Director, Lydia Kontos

Dear Friends, The stage is set for a wonderful new season at Kaufman Music Center! The fall concerts at Merkin Concert Hall have gotten under way, and it has been thrilling to see audiences joyfully connect with artists like Dawn Upshaw, Lucy Shelton, Carol Burnett and Tyne Daly. Our hallways are bustling with musicians of all ages – from Special Music School Kinder…

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What’s the Perfect Age to Take Up an Instrument? 40. 60. Or 85.

Marjorie Forbes really wanted to play the oboe. For years, she vowed that she would learn but never felt that she had the time. When she retired at age 68, she found a teacher she loved, and all the pieces fell into place. Now 82, she plays every week with chamber ensembles at Kaufman Music Center’s Lucy Moses School (LMS). “I’m just having the best time…

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An Interview with Liz Callaway

Now in its 16th season, Kaufman Music Center’s Bound for Broadway brings together teams of lyricists and composers of new musicals, who share their creative process with the audience as well as songs from the shows. These performances are hosted by Broadway veteran and Tony nominee Liz Callaway, best known for her roles in musicals like Merrily We Roll Along, Follie…

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Remembering Friends of Kaufman Music Center

Veronica Pellitteri, a Special Music School alumna who joined the school in 1997, passed away in October of this year following a car accident. She was 23 years old. A gifted pianist and vocalist, Veronica attended LaGuardia High School and later studied voice at Berklee College of Music. Veronica moved to Italy, where she was born, in 2010. She began attending medical sc…

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The NY Philharmonic’s Principal Clarinetist is a Big Fan of Special Music School

Anthony McGill has been very busy lately. Fresh from performing and recording Carl Nielsen’s Clarinet Concerto at Avery Fisher Hall last month, the New York Philharmonic’s new principal clarinetist was preparing for a much smaller – but very important – concert on February 3 in support of the music program at Special Music School, Kaufman Music Cen…

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Crossing the Sonic Spectrum: Five Years of Ecstatic Music

When the Ecstatic Music Festival (EMF) launched five years ago, genre categories still held sway, and it was still somewhat audacious for a pop artist to compose music for a classical orchestra, or a string quartet to perform at a downtown rock club. In the context of the vital, thriving new music scene right now, the concept of genre can seem quaint if not downright anti…

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