Violinist Jacqueline Levine Receives Usdan's Isaac Stern Scholarship


Violinist Jacqueline Levine, an 18 year-old senior at Plainview Old Bethpage-John F. Kennedy High School and a two-time scholarship award-winner of the Nassau Music Educators Association, has been awarded the new Isaac Stern String Scholarship at Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts for 2012. The scholarship, funded by a generous grant from the Linda and Isaac Stern Charitable Foundation, covers tuition for a full summer of study at Usdan Center.

Mr. Dale Lewis, Usdan’s Executive Director, said “We are delighted to have a student of Jackie’s caliber as the winner of the first Isaac Stern Scholarship. Jackie is not only a fine violinist, but she is a scholar as well. Usdan’s faculty believes that she represents the intent of the Stern Foundation, that of supporting an outstanding musician who will take full advantage of Usdan’s outstanding program and faculty.

Jacqueline Levine returns to Usdan in 2012, having studied at the Center in two prior seasons. She has attended additional summer music festivals, including the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, and the Aspen Music Festival and School. Jacqueline studied violin at the Manhattan School of Music pre-college division for three years, and she was selected for the 2011 All State Orchestra, where she held one of the principal violin chairs. She has also been selected for the Nassau All County Music Festival for each of the past seven years. Jacqueline’s teachers also admire her service to the Long Island community. She has given numerous performances at veteran’s homes, community centers, and elementary school, and she is the President of the Tri-M Music Honor Society at POB-JFK High School. Jacqueline will attend Princeton University this fall.

Virtuoso violinist Isaac Stern - musician, educator, humanitarian and savior of Carnegie Hall - was one of the twentieth century’s most renowned, beloved, and recorded musicians, as well as the teacher and mentor to many of today’s leading performers. Mr. Stern made his recital debut at the age of fifteen, and by the age of twenty-two he had performed at Carnegie Hall, the institution that he later saved and then served as President for thirty years. From the late 1940’s until his death in 2001, Isaac Stern toured on every continent, performing 200 concerts each year.

Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts ( has introduced the arts to more than 70,000 children since its founding in 1968. The Center is open to all young people who are interested in the arts, from age 6 to 18, and no audition is needed for most courses. Alumni have performed with the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and many other major orchestras and ensembles. Alumni have won Grammy Awards for classical music producing, have achieved fame in jazz (Jane Monheit), and on Broadway, television and film. (Actors Natalie Portman, Olivia Thirlby, and Lisa Gay Hamilton; Sirius radio host Seth Rudetsky; Playwright Michele Lowe).

Usdan’s curriculum includes more than 40 programs in music, art, dance, theater, writing, nature & ecology, and chess. Admission is based on an expression of interest in the arts, and one third of Usdan students attend on scholarship. During the Center’s summer season, 1,600 young people travel to its 200-acre Long Island campus on buses that serve most towns in the New York metropolitan area. Although Usdan’s mission is for every child to establish a lifetime relationship with the arts, the unique inspiration of the Center has caused many to go on to careers in the arts. Usdan alumni regularly appear with major orchestras such as the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic, in Broadway shows, and in major dance companies such as New York City Ballet, and American Ballet Theater. The Center’s daily concerts have presented such visiting artists as the Tokyo String Quartet, Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax, André Watts, Canadian Brass, James Galway, and hundreds of others. Usdan also offers special opportunities for advanced high school- age performing and visual artists. These include Music Staff Internships, a Summer Ballet Intensive, and a program of immersion in the visual arts and college preparation for selected high school age a students. Further information is available on the Center’s website, Usdan Center is an agency of the UJA-Federation of New York.

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