The National Orchestra of Belgium (NOB) announced, earlier this week, that in September of 2017, Hugh Wolff, New England Conservatory's (NEC) Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood Director of Orchestras will take over the baton from Andrey Boreyko, who has been NOB's orchestra's music director since 2012.
As A Far Cry founding member Megumi Stohs Lewis tells it, when the orchestra was created in 2007, several members were finishing up graduate degree programs at the New England Conservatory. Not all of the “Criers” are NEC alums, but the conservatory grounds proved to be a thoughtful gathering spot for most of the original members. Everyone, though, was interested in exploring chamber music, with many having played under Donald Palma in NEC's finely tuned chamber orchestra.
At the age of nine, Miguel Vásquez was an aspiring classical violinist/cellist in Panama. There on the isthmus, though, getting proper musical education proved difficult--especially as his skills improved. His grandfather, Luis Vásquez--a professional double bassist, guitarist and English horn player--first inspired the would-be musician. And years later, the younger Vásquez still remains thankful for the dutiful instruction provided by his elder.
Sarah Jarosz grew up in Wimberley, Texas, a town just outside of Austin. At a very early age, she earned credibility in the space where roots, Americana and contemporary folk intersect. Ever since, Jarosz's sterling reputation has been built on three fronts: gifted multi-instrumentalist (guitar, mandolin, banjo), expressive and distinctive vocalist, accomplished songwriter. It's not just her peers who are taking notice.
Violinist Xiang “Angelo” Yu was born in Inner Mongolia, an area he calls, simultaneously, “one of the least modernized” yet "one of the simplest and most beautiful places in the world.” At the tender age 11, he moved with his family to the bustling central coast city of Shanghai. A stark contrast in locale, indeed.
Rap and orchestra, a bond that usually fits in the studio and has become almost a staple of the hip-hop "ballad," has brought students from Berklee and the New England Conservatory (known as the From the Top band) together to back local rapper Lotus Taylor in a Wiz Khalifa cover.
"I don't remember actually making a choice to become a musician." -- MONICA GERMINO
For more than a year, Groupmuse has been organizing classical music house parties in the Boston area. These parties have really taken off in Boston and are popping up in other cities as well.
Here, then, is Scott Joplin's 'The Red Back Book'--as played by Gunther Schuller and the New England Conservatory of Music.