Orchestra Of St. Luke's Launches DeGaetano Composition Institute With First Edition Led By Composer Anna Clyne
The Orchestra of St. Luke's (OSL) has announced the launch of the DeGaetano Composition Institute, with the first edition taking place in July 2019 at The DiMenna Center for Classical Music. Four exceptional emerging composers will be selected through a national call-for-scores to workshop new works for chamber orchestra under the leadership of 2019 mentor and composer Anna Clyne. This new initiative was established through a generous gift from the estate of pianist, composer and teacher Robert DeGaetano, and will occur annually each July.
Participants will develop their skills by working directly with a professional orchestra, mentor-composer, conductor, and industry professionals. The Institute is tuition-free and provides participants with creative development support in the creation of a new work, an intensive one-week learning experience in New York City, culminating in the world premiere of their works by Orchestra of St. Luke's led by Ben Gernon on Friday, July 19 at The DiMenna Center for Classical Music. Another highlight will be a performance by pianist Jacob Greenberg honoring the late Robert DeGaetano, in which his music will be featured, on Tuesday, July 16 at The DiMenna Center for Classical Music. Both performances will be presented free of charge.
The national call for applicants begins September 25, 2018 and closes on November 7, 2018. Three panelists will select the finalists, with Anna Clyne and Ben Gernon selecting the four participants from the finalists' pool and the selectees will be announced in mid-January, 2019.
"Orchestra of St. Luke's is immensely grateful to the Estate of Robert DeGaetano for sharing our vision to invest the future of our artform," stated James Roe, OSL President & Executive Director. "The DeGaetano Composition Institute will literally give voice to the next generation of composers, while providing them with invaluable tools for their professional success and artistic development. Anna and Ben are the ideal partners in this endeavor."
"As a young composer, I cherished the guidance of those who helped me grow as an artist, and so over the years, music education has evolved to be a major focus for me," added Anna Clyne. "I am honored to have been chosen as a mentor to lead the first edition of the DeGaetano Composition Institute, and I am keen to bring the perspectives of the OSL musicians into the mix as the selected composers develop their work with us."
The DeGaetano Composition Institute consists of two key stages. From January to April, each participant will receive personal, one-on-one mentorship from Ms. Clyne as they develop and compose their original chamber orchestra work through three individualized remote-learning sessions. The four composers will travel to New York City for a one-week residency from July 14 - 19, 2019 with a housing and travel stipend provided by Orchestra of St. Luke's.
As part of the New York residency, participants will receive artistic sessions with the celebrated musicians of the Orchestra of St. Luke's; professional development sessions with the staff of the Orchestra of St. Luke's; networking and professional development from industry leaders; coaching in public-speaking; and guidance for funding sources and public relations.
To apply for the July 2019 DeGaetano Composition Institute, composers must be 18 years of age as of December 2018 and a legal resident of the USA. Applicants must submit two sample works composed within the past five years, one work for chamber ensemble, one work for orchestra; two letters of recommendation, each from someone who is familiar with the work of the applicant and can speak to the applicant's compositional work and capacity; and a CV or resume. Details are available on the Orchestra of St. Luke's website at www.OSLmusic.org.
Robert DeGaetano was a graduate of The Juilliard School, where he studied with Adele Marcus and Rosina Lhevinne. He was the first musician ever to be awarded a Rotary International Scholarship, enabling him to live in Paris and continue his piano studies with Alexis Weissenberg. Upon the recommendation of musicians David Oistrakh and Sviatoslav Richter, Mr. DeGaetano embarked on a concert career represented by Sol Hurok. He made his New York recital debut in Alice Tully Hall and his orchestra debut with the San Antonio Symphony. He made his Carnegie Hall recital debut in February, 1999. His touring schedule took him to all 50 states as well as the major music capitals of Europe. In addition to recitals, Mr. DeGaetano was a guest soloist with orchestras across the United States, including those of Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, San Antonio, San Diego and the Boston Pops.
In 1986, Robert DeGaetano emerged as a composer and performed the New York City and domestic and international tour premieres of his own first Piano Sonata. He was commissioned by Michigan's Jackson Symphony Orchestra to compose his first Piano Concerto, which he premiered in March of 1998 to equally enthusiastic response. The Challenger, his suite for solo piano written in tribute to the seven astronauts killed in the 1986 space shuttle tragedy, was commissioned by Alice Tully. The world premiere occurred in the presence of the astronauts' families in November 1987 at Lincoln Center. This performance of Mr. DeGaetano's moving musical portraits was filmed live for television and featured on a special segment of "CBS Sunday Morning."
Robert DeGaetano was born in New York City in 1946, and passed away in Florida in 2015. About Orchestra of St. Luke's and St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble Orchestra of St. Luke's (OSL) began in 1974 as a group of virtuoso musicians performing chamber music concerts at Greenwich Village's Church of St. Luke in the Fields. Now in its 44th season, the Orchestra performs diverse musical genres at New York's major concert venues and has collaborated with artists ranging from Renée Fleming and Joshua Bell to Bono and Metallica. In fall 2018, celebrated expert in 18th-century music Bernard Labadie will begin his tenure as the Orchestra's fifth Principal Conductor. OSL's signature programming includes a subscription series presented by Carnegie Hall, now in its 32nd season; an annual multi-week collaboration with Paul Taylor American Modern Dance at Lincoln Center; an annual summer residency at Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts; and a chamber music festival featuring appearances at The Morgan Library & Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, and Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center. The Orchestra has participated in 118 recordings, four of which have won Grammy Awards, has commissioned more than 50 new works, and has given more than 175 world, U.S., and New York City premieres. Nearly half of OSL's performances each year are presented free of charge through its education and community programs, reaching over 10,000 New York City public school students. Additionally, OSL provides free instrumental coaching and presents student performances through its Youth Orchestra of St. Luke's and its Mentorship Program for Pre-Professional Musicians. OSL built and operates The DiMenna Center for Classical Music in Hell's Kitchen, New York City's only rehearsal, recording, education, and performance space expressly dedicated to classical music. The Center serves more than 500 ensembles and more than 30,000 musicians each year. For more information, visit OSLmusic.org
London-born Anna Clyne is a Grammy-nominated composer who has been commissioned by a wide range of ensembles and institutions. Her work has been championed by world-renowned conductors and her music has been performed at diverse venues worldwide. Appointed by Music Director Riccardo Muti, Clyne served as a Mead Composer-in-Residence for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra from 2010-2015. She also served as Composer-in-Residence for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, L'Orchestre national d'Île-de-France, and at Brazil's Inverno do Campos do Jordão Festival, the Mizzou New Music Festival with Alarm Will Sound, the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, and the 21c Liederabend, a biennial festival of song at the Brooklyn Academy Of Music's Next Wave Festival.
This season, Clyne is an Artist-in-Residence at National Sawdust in Brooklyn. She was additionally selected by the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA to serve as the Music Alive Composer-in-Residence with the Berkeley Symphony through the 2018-2019 season.
During the 2017-2018 season, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Thomas Dausgaard performed the world premiere of Clyne's Beltane in Glasgow. Recent highlights include the premiere of her mandolin concerto for Avi Avital, Three Sisters, premiered with the Kremerata Baltica; Masquerade for the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Marin Alsop at the Last Night of the Proms; This Midnight Hour for L'Orchestre national d'Île-de-France (with the US premiere by the Seattle Symphony and Ludovic Morlot); This Lunar Beauty for the Britten Sinfonia and soprano Julia Doyle; Abstractions for Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra; RIFT, a symphonic ballet in collaboration with choreographer Kitty McNamee for Marin Alsop and the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra; Pocket Book VIII for Roomful of Teeth; and her violin concerto, The Seamstress, performed by Jennifer Koh with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, with additional performances by the Princeton Symphony Orchestra, São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
Clyne is the recipient of several prestigious awards; she was nominated for the 2015 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for her double violin concerto, Prince of Clouds. She is also deeply committed to music education, having served as the Director of the New York Youth Symphony's award-winning program for young composers, Making Score. She has worked together with education and community outreach initiatives of National Sawdust and El Puente with the New York Philharmonic's Very Young Composers Program and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She also developed a collaboration with art therapist Caroline Edasis to explore music, memory, and composition through working with people with Alzheimer's.
She holds a first-class Bachelor of Music degree with honors from Edinburgh University and a Master of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music. About Ben Gernon Ben Gernon's participation in the DeGaetano Institute marks his first appearance with the Orchestra of St. Luke's. In the 2018-19 season, Gernon's engagements include concerts in London and Dubai with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and concerts across the UK and on tour to Bucharest with the BBC Philharmonic. He returns to the Czech Philharmonic for his third visit, and to the Swedish Radio Symphony, BBC Scottish Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony orchestras and Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse and he makes his debut with the Swedish Chamber, Royal Northern Sinfonia and Warsaw Philharmonic orchestras.
A keen opera conductor, Gernon makes his debut in 18-19 at English National Opera conducting Simon McBurney's production of The Magic Flute and returns to Royal Swedish Opera for a new production of Madama Butterfly following his debut last season conducting The Magic Flute. In 2017 Gernon returned to Glyndebourne Touring Opera for a production of The Barber of Seville and made his Stuttgart Opera debut the previous season, conducting The Marriage of Figaro.
Recently, Gernon has made significant debuts with the Vienna Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, DSO Berlin, Munich Chamber, and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic as well as regular engagements with most of the UK's orchestras, including the Philharmonia and City of Birmingham Symphony orchestras, and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra at the BBC Proms. He has recently made two recordings, with the Czech Philharmonic for Signum Records and with the BBC Scottish Symphony for Hyperion.
Ben Gernon studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Sian Edwards, with whom he still works closely, and with Sir Colin Davis, who was a profoundly influential figure in Gernon's musical development.