New York Youth Symphony to Honor Alan Fletcher and Dani Bedoni

By: Oct. 04, 2017
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The NYYS's 55th Annual Benefit Gala will honor Alan Fletcher and Dani Bedoni, two outstanding individuals who have continually given their talents and support to arts organizations around the world. We are ever grateful for their contributions to the community, and are excited to honor them with the Theodore L. Kesselman Award for Arts Education, and the Johanna & Leslie Garfield Award for Arts Philanthropy.

The gala will take place on Tuesday, October 24th at the Tribeca Rooftop at 6:30 pm and includes an evening of fine dining and dancing with music by the NYYS Jazz Band, Andy Clausen, director.

ABOUT THE HONOREES:

Alan Fletcher, one of this country's most accomplished music administrators and respected composers, was born in Riverside, New Jersey, and earned his baccalaureate at Princeton University and his master's degree and doctorate at Juilliard. He studied composition with Roger Sessions, Milton Babbitt, Edward T. Cone, and Paul Lansky and piano with Jacob Lateiner and Robert Helps. In 1985, Mr. Fletcher was appointed to the faculty of the New England Conservatory of Music, teaching composition and theory and serving successively during his 16-year tenure at the school as Dean, Provost, and Senior Vice President. From 2001 to 2006, he was Professor of Music and Head of the School of Music at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, after which he assumed his current position as president and CEO of the Aspen Music Festival and School.

Dani Bedoni is a trained classical musician and business administrator who has advocated passionately for arts programs over 30 years. In particular she has advocated for the Venezuelan El Sistema model music program internationally since 1986. Ms. Bedoni serves on the boards of Harmony Program, El Sistema USA, New England Conservatory, KidzNotes, and InternationalContemporary Ensemble. She is also on the Education Committee of the New York Philharmonic, and a former member of the Advisory Board of Bravo! Vail Music Festival and ProChamber Music in Caracas. Ms. Bedoni earned degrees from the Universidad Metropolitana and Conservatory Simón Bolívar both in Caracas, Venezuela, and worked in financial roles at Iskia S.A., Invercapital in Caracas, and Credit Lyonnais Bank in Paris. Ms. Bedoni and her husband Gonzalo Rodriguez live in New York City with their three children, Gonzalo, Lorenzo, and Daniela.

ABOUT THE AWARDS:

The Theodore L. Kesselman Award for Arts Education was established in 1995 to recognize significant dedication by an individual or institution making outstanding contributions in nurturing young people in the arts. The award is named in memory of Theodore L. Kesselman, who served as NYYS Board President from 1985-1994.The Theodore L. Kesselman Award for Arts Education was established in 1995 to recognize significant dedication by an individual or institution making outstanding contributions in nurturing young people in the arts. The award is named in memory of Theodore L. Kesselman, who served as NYYS Board President from 1985-1994.

The Johanna and Leslie Garfield Award for Arts Philanthrophy was established in 2015 to recognize individuals who have provided leading support to arts organizations in New York and beyond. The award is named for the Garfields, who hail from the NYYS founding family and both of whom continue to serve on its emeritus board.

The New York Youth Symphony is the most awarded youth program of its kind in the nation, recognized for its innovative, tuition-free educational programs for talented young musicians. Founded in 1963 as an orchestra to showcase the metropolitan area's most gifted musicians ages 12-22, its activities have since grown to encompass programs in chamber music, conducting, composition, and jazz, with performances at world class venues including Carnegie Hall and Jazz at Lincoln Center. Through its commissioning program, First Music, the NYYS has commissioned over 140 works from young composers since 1984.

The careers of world-renowned conductors, musicians, and composers have been assisted by their early experiences with the New York Youth Symphony. Our former music directors and program alumni include Leonard Slatkin (Detroit Symphony Orchestra), Myung-Whun Chung (Tokyo Philharmonic), David Alan Miller (Albany Symphony Orchestra), Miguel Harth-Bedoya (Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra), Marin Alsop (Baltimore Symphony Orchestra), Cho-Liang Lin (Soloist; Rice University), Gary Levinson (Dallas Symphony), Michael Tiscione (Atlanta Symphony), Lawrence Dutton (Emerson Quartet), Kenneth Mirkin (New York Philharmonic), Joel Smirnoff (Juilliard String Quartet), Fred Zlotkin (NY City Ballet), and Pedro Diaz (Metropolitan Opera Orchestra), among many others.


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