Here's what's on the radar. There's confusion over whether or not Rochester's Artwalk has received $3.4 in federal stimulus funds. Those close to the project say no, but NYS's governor says it's going to happen. No doubt in Toronto: Canadians love the arts! Pegasus Early Music is moving its successful early music concert series to the Downtown United Presbyterian Church (DUPC) next season. Meanwhile, the recession has put DUPC in the unfortunate position of reducing its music director's hours, meaning there will be no lunchtime concerts this spring. American composer Eric Whitacre is writing a new 3-4 minute piece of music and donating it to an auction to benefit choral advocacy organization Chorus America. Any choir can "buy" rights to premiere the piece for $1,500. (As far as I know, no Rochester choirs have taken the bait.) Finally, NPR made the top of New York magazine's current approval matrix for its outstanding ratings, but caused a kerfuffle by announcing it was canceling all of its newspaper subscriptions. New information: Artwalk, the Rochester art trail, IS among 25 projects in New York State that will share $34 million in federal funding. More later . . .
On Saturday night, a panel of judges, including WXXI Music Director Julia Figueras, named Rochester's Classical Idol in the 3rd Annual Contest to benefit the Rochester Oratorio Society.
The First Prize winner was soprano Jacqueline Noparstak of New York City. She walked away with $1,500 and the chance to solo with the ROS. Second Prize and $1,000 went to baritone Evan Jones, and the Third Prize winner was soprano Elena O'Connor, who earned $500 for her performance of Rachmaninoff's mournful art song "Ne krasavica pri mne." Jones won the Audience Favorite Award.
The winners, with accompanist Richard Volpe:
Tonight, the Eastman School's new music ensemble Ossia will premiere the winner of its annual composition competition.
They'll play "3 Groups" by Colorado grad student Anthony Green. He's coming to oversee the premiere, hang out in Rochester, and collect a $500 prize.
I had the privilege of interviewing Green a couple of weeks ago. Click here to read an article. I've attached a very short audio clip of "3 Groups" which he calls a "sonic texture." More Coltrane than Beethoven, it allows the players to improvise. What do you think?