Friday, August 15, 2014

RIP, Donald Teeters

Like so many others, I was incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of Donald Teeters on Wednesday. Boston is going to miss him intensely, and I wish he had had 20 more years of retirement so that he could have gone gallivanting around Prague and continued to enrich our lives in Boston.

Six years ago I did an interview with him for this blog. The transcript of the interview is here. And the mp3 link on that entry is out of date, so here is an updated link to the mp3.

I strongly encourage everyone to listen to this interview. Don Teeters was a great guy, and a great musician. If you knew him, you will love hearing the cadence of his voice and his twinkling personality. If you didn't, you will get a great life story and some wonderful opinions on music, Boston, and life.

He will be deeply missed.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Last concert with Anthology this Sunday at 4:30 pm!

There have been a lot of goodbye's over the past couple of months, and there will be more to come before I leave in Boston, but one of the biggest ones is coming this Sunday.

Anthology has been so important to me these past six-and-a-half years. I have been very close to and supported by everyone in the group, and rehearsals were always one of the highlights of my week. I'm really proud of all the work we did, and grateful to have had a chance to sing such a wide variety of repertoire with singers who were so excellent.

And the last concert is on Sunday! We'll be singing at Club Passim in Harvard Square (a fairly prestigious way to wrap things up!) at 4:30 pm. Everyone should come! And if you can't be there in person, I encourage you to watch online!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Mass ACDA Summer Conference will feature Conductors' Boot Camp!

Breaking my radio silence to share news of the Mass ACDA Summer Conference, which looks quite good. I won't be there myself (gotta save those pennies for my upcoming move to IL!) but I definitely recommend it to others!

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Last concert with Cantilena!

This coming Sunday, May 4 at 4 pm will be my final concert as the conductor of Cantilena! I have had such a wonderful time over the past five years with this dedicated, humorous, good-natured, talented group. I hope you will join me for my last concert with them, which is going to be a blast (and followed by delicious food!)

The program is called "Immovable Objects, Irresistible Forces: Songs of Human and Natural Wonders," and it's all about the different sorts of power we encounter in the world. We'll be singing Schubert's "Gott in der Natur," Carol Barnett's setting of Dorothy Parker's "Song of Perfect Propriety," an arrangement of Dvorak's "Largo" from his New World Symphony, Susan Borwick's bluesy interpretation of a speech by Sojourner Truth, and lots more. This concert has everything, so don't miss it! I would love to share this concert with as many people as possible. See you there!

Waves and Sun

"Immovable Objects, Irresistible Forces: Songs of Human and Natural Wonders"
Sunday, May 4, 2014 at 4 p.m.
First Parish Unitarian Universalist
630 Massachusetts Ave.
Arlington, MA 02476
$18 in advance/$20 at the door/$12 students and seniors

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Moving to IL, and goodbye to Lasell

It would seem that I am quite overdue for an update on this blog, but it's really been a rather eventful month.

All this year I spent applying to DMA programs in choral conducting. Earlier in April I found out that I have been accepted to the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and I will be moving there in August to study with Dr. Andrew Megill, who was just appointed Director of Choral Activities there in March. Needless to say, I am very happy about this; working with Dr. Megill ten years ago while doing my Masters at Westminster was wonderful, and I am looking forward to three more years of learning, especially at such a huge and terrific school.

Last night was my first set of good-bye's. The Lasell College Chorus, which I have directed since the fall of 2009, did a program of music from video games (plus two songs from Wicked.) They sounded great, and I was particularly pleased with their rendition of my arrangement of "Still Alive" from Portal (which I intend to post here on the blog when I get permission to make the sheet music available.) And then at the end of the concert they totally surprised me by getting up and singing "Seize the Day" from Newsies, which is one of my favorite Broadway pieces, and a song we had sung several times in years past. I was blown away that they had found the time to get together and rehearse during the busiest week of the semester. And they sounded really good, too! It was a very satisfying and emotional evening. I'm so proud of my kids! (I refer to anyone in any of my choruses under the age of 25 as "my kids.")

Next up is my final concert with Cantilena this coming Sunday, May 4 at 4 pm. Stay tuned for more info about that!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday, April 04, 2014

Samson Recommends...Buxtehude!

Hey, it's been a while since we did a Friday cat post!

Samson had some dental surgery last month, but I am happy to say he appears to be doing well. And he would like to recommend some music to you! Have you heard The Sixteen's recording of Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri? It's quite excellent, and Samson recommends you give it a listen!

Samson sitting on a CD of Buxtehude

Samson sitting on a CD of BuxtehudeSamson sitting on a CD of Buxtehude

P.S. I had to mess around with the photo layout quite a lot - let me know how it looks in your browser?

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Opportunistic Tuesdays

Mark your calendars - Harvard is going to be hosting a symposium "exploring the neurological, therapeutic, and social benefits of community singing."

On Friday, April 11, the group Joyful Noise will be joining the Harvard-Radcliffe Collegium Musicum for a concert under the direction of Alice Parker. The concert will be at 8 pm in Sanders Theatre, and tickets are available through the Harvard Box Office.

On Saturday, there will be an all-day symposium where musicians, researchers, and disability advocates will explore the intersections of music and disability, neuroscience, wellness, and community. Renowned conductor, composer, and educator, Alice Parker, and Joyful Noise, a chorus of adults with significant physical and/or neurological disabilities, will lead symposium attendees in song.

For more information, and for the symposium schedule, check out the Harvard website, or the Facebook event.

Alice Parker is not to be missed - if you are free, you should definitely try to get to one or both of these events!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Opportunistic Tuesdays

I'll just leave this here, in case anyone is interested!

The Boston Landmarks Orchestra is thrilled to announce the return of its One City Choir this summer! The choir will be featured on Opening Night of the orchestra's 2014 season of concerts at the DCR's Hatch Shell on July 16. The featured choral work will be Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana. 

 The One City Choir, launched in the summer of 2012, is a large symphonic choir comprising committed and passionate singers from all of Boston’s 20 neighborhoods and many surrounding communities. The choir takes its name from the words of Boston civic leader Hubie Jones, who has advocated that “Boston can be one city through art and culture.” All singers in the Boston area who have experience singing in choirs are invited to join the One City Choir. 

The choir will be joined by the Back Bay Chorale. Scott Allen Jarrett, music director of the Back Bay Chorale, will prepare the choir, and Landmarks Orchestra Music Director Christopher Wilkins will conduct the performance. Members of the One City Choir will perform some movements of Carmina Burana, and the Back Bay Chorale will perform the rest.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra will provide access to practice copies for you to learn your music, and sufficient original printed copies will be obtained for the performance. An online pronunciation guide for the Latin and German text will also be provided. 

 Rehearsals are scheduled as follows: 
 Monday, July 7, 7-10 pm (choir and piano—One City Choir movements will be rehearsed first) location TBA 

Tuesday, July 8, 7-10 pm (choir and piano—One City Choir movements will be rehearsed first) location TBA 

Monday, July 14, 7-10 pm (choir, piano, and percussion) location TBA 

Tuesday, July 15, 7-10 pm (choir, soloists, and full orchestra): Christian Science Auditorium, 235 Huntington Ave., Boston (across the street from Symphony Hall, behind Horticultural Hall) 

Wednesday July 16, 5:30-6:30 pm at the Hatch Shell (concert is at 7:00 pm) Rain Location: Back Bay Events Center, John Hancock Hall, 180 Berkeley Street, Boston 

Locations for the other rehearsals will be announced shortly. Please note that the choir will be standing on risers throughout second half of the concert (approximately 65 minutes of music). If you are unable to stand for this length of time, we will make every effort to accommodate you, but until we know the final size of the choir, we cannot determine if we can fit chairs or stools on the stage. 

 If you would like to participate in the One City Choir this year, please send an e-mail with the information below to If you should have any questions or concerns, please call our Production Hotline at (617) 870-3910. 

Information to send:
 Phone Number: 
 Voice Part: 
 Choir Affiliation (if any): 

We hope you join us!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Thursday link

This article on how orchestras (and artistic ensembles in general) should consider rooting themselves in their particular homes and places is really good. The particular case in question is the resurrection of the Minnesota Orchestra, but the thoughts in the article (comparing fines wines and the concept of "terroir" to musical ensembles) could apply to any kind of artist. Hat-tip to my father.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday link

For your amusement, a fairly new Tumblr - Composers Doing Normal Shit. (Hey, Mom, I didn't name it.)

Every entry is totally delightful - and how much do I love that Caroline Shaw is on there? A lot!

Story about Caroline Shaw - I went to see the ensemble Roomful of Teeth at Wellesley last spring and they performed two of her compositions. And they were GREAT, and I remember thinking, "I need to commission her before she gets super-famous and completely out of my price range." One week later, she won the Pulitzer Prize. I console myself with the thought that at least my instincts are good.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Community Sing!

The Messiah Sings of Christmas Past are over, and the summer sings are (clearly, if you stick your head outside) not yet upon us. So what is the Boston singer to do?

Well, happily the Zamir Chorale has stepped into the breach! Sunday, March 9 at 1:30 pm, join the Zamir Chorale and director Joshua Jacobson at the Newton City Hall to sing choruses from Handel's Judas Maccabeus. More info is here; the address is 1000 Commonwealth Ave, Newton, MA (and again, note the unusual time of 1:30 pm.) Scores will be available for those who don't have their own.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Spotlight on a job!

I usually don't post awesome jobs here, because usually I want to apply for them MYSELF. :) But this job is far away from me, so I'll share.

The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Fairfax, VA is searching for a Director of Music and Arts. Full-time UU positions don't come along every day, so have at it!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday cat post!

After a very darling picture of a boy reading to a cat got popular on Reddit, everyone learned about this great program in Pennsylvania where kids get practice reading by going into shelters and reading to shelter cats. You can read about it (and see the cute pictures) here and here!