VanderCook Music News, week of May 14

Jeff Rupert with the Jazz Ensemble
Greetings! This week’s news starts with a recap of the last two weeks – and what two weeks they were! 


Undergraduate Commencement was held on May 11, with no less than 35 degrees conferred. Lifelong music educators Frank Lestina and Don Shupe received honorary doctorates and charmed the audience and graduates alike with their tag-team address. Congratulations again to the Class of 2018!
Visiting Yahama artist Jeff Rupert gave an outstanding master class on improvisation to our undergraduates on May 3, and helped blow the roof off at the Jazz & Percussion Concert that evening. Our deepest thanks to Rupert and Yamaha for making the day and evening possible.
May 9 saw the inaugural Chamber Music at VanderCook concert series. Special guests John Sharp (CSO principal cellist) and Liba Schacht (Lyric Opera violinist) teamed up with Dr. Ruti Abramovitch for exquisitely beautiful renditions of Bach and Beethoven. Stay tuned for announcements of future concerts and guests in this series!

Happening This Week

May 15
Dr. Michael Hall will perform the world premiere of a work written for him by Indonesian composer Sharon Hartanto at a benefit for the Bandung Philharmonic Foundation. More information available here.
May 17
Fresh off the commencement stage, Katherine Hebbard (BMEd ’18) will guest-conduct at Stagg High School’s Finale Band Concert in Palos Hills.
May 17-19
Dr. Michael Hall will perform at the New Music Gathering conference at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee College.
May 19
The annual Midwest Classical Record Show returns to the Holiday Inn in Skokie. This show is the only record show in the nation dedicated to classical music, featuring 100,000s of LPs and CDs of all styles: 20th/21st century, opera, chamber, Baroque, Renaissance, etc. The show opens at 9:30 a.m.; details here.
May 20
VanderCook hosts the Chicago Flute Club’s Member Showcase. VCM flute instructor Mary-Christine Stingley will be one of the many members performing in this annual showcase of talents. This year’s event includes performances by the winners of the 2017 Student Competition and the Olivet Nazarene University Flute Choir.

VanderCook in the News

Jordan Chua (MMEd ’09) graduated from Loyola University Chicago with a Doctorate in Education this month. He completed the oral defense of his dissertation, The Experiential Effects and Relationships Between Student Anxiety in Music Performance and Classroom Assessment, in February of this year and was assisted by Dr. Yu-Sui Hung as a member of his dissertation committee. Congratulations, Dr. Chua!


May 21
VanderCook faculty members Dr. Leah Schuman, Angela Presutti Korbitz, Dr. Bonnie Campbell, Dr. Diana Schmück and Joshua Wirt will perform on the WFMT (98.7 FM) program Live from Studio One. Dr. Schmück organized the event, “Leonard Bernstein and Friends presented by Daedalus Duo and Friends,” in honor of the centenary of Bernstein’s birth.

Around Town

Just some of the many worthwhile events happening in the city this week.
May 14
Chicago Sinfonietta celebrates its 30th anniversary with Praise and Punk, featuring special guests the all-brass punk band Mucca Pazza. 7:30 p.m. at Symphony Center.
May 17-19
Esa-Pekka Salonen conducts Mahler’s 9th symphony with the CSO. Info and tickets here.
May 18
The Civic Center Orchestra will perform chamber music at the Zhou B Art Center’s “3rd Friday” open house exhibition series from 7:00-9:00 p.m. Admission is free, info is here.

This Week in Music History

A great excuse to introduce students to the people and events that shaped music as we know it today…
May 14
1943: Jack Bruce, singer and bassist for the classic rock band Cream, is born today.
1952: Talking Heads’ lead singer and frontman David Byrne is born today.
1966: The Beach Boys changed music history today with the release of their magnum opus, Pet Sounds. Credited as the first record album to have been conceived of as cohesive statement, Pet Sounds broke away from the standard record company practice of using LPs merely as a collection of singles. The album would directly inspire The Beatles to create Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in response.
1998: Frank Sinatra died today in Los Angeles after suffering a heart attack. The 82-year-old Sinatra had been singing for almost 60 years, starting in the Swing era with Harry James. His contribution to popular music in general, and jazz vocals in particular, cannot be understated.
1979: The Black Keys’ guitarist Dan Auerbach is born today. 
2015: Blues legend B.B. King, whose name became synonymous with the genre he dominated throughout his life, died today at age 89. 
May 15
1948: Brian Eno is born today. Best known for his pioneering work in ambient music, Eno cemented an equal footprint in his role as a producer for acts including U2 (including The Joshua Tree), Talking Heads, Devo, Laurie Anderson, John Cale and Coldplay.
1953: UK multi-instrumentalist Mike Oldfield, whose "Tubular Bells" is known throughout the world as the theme music from The Exorcist, is born today.
1965: Krist Novoselic, bassist for Nirvana, is born today.
1966: Janet Jackson is born today.
1992: Kristin Maldonado of the a cappella group Pentatonix, is born today.
2003: June Carter Cash, second wife of Johnny and beloved singer-songwriter in her own right, at age 73.
May 16
1946: Irving Berlin’s most famous musical, Annie Get Your Gun, opens today on Broadway.
1963: Page Samuel McConnell, keyboardist of Phish, is born today.
1965: Trent Reznor, the man behind Nine Inch Nails and the Oscar-winning film score to The Social Network, is born today.
May 17
1971: Stephen Schwartz’ musical Godspell premieres off-Broadway today.
1996: Blues guitarist Johnny “Guitar” Watson died of a heart attack while on tour in Japan, reportedly collapsing mid-solo. His ferocious 1954 single “Space Guitar” pioneered guitar feedback and reverb.
2012: Donna Summer, the Disco Queen of the ‘70s, died today from lung cancer. Summer’s multi-platinum and Grammy-winning career included “Hot Stuff,” “MacArthur Park” and “Bad Girls.”
2017: It was a year ago today that Chris Cornell, one of the prime architects of the ‘90s grunge scene, died suddenly immediately after performing with Soundgarden in Detroit. He was 52.
May 18
1911: Bluesman Big Joe Turner, author of “Shake, Rattle & Roll” and  “Sweet Sixteen,” is born today.
1975: Triple-threat singer, songwriter and surfer Jack Johnson is born today in Hawaii.
1980: Singer Ian Curtis of the seminal UK post-punk band Joy Division, was found dead by self-inflicted hanging today, shortly before what would have been the band’s first U.S. tour. The remaining band members would soon regroup as New Order.
May 19
1945: Pete Townshend, The Who guitarist who became as famous for writing Tommy and “My Generation” as for smashing his guitar onstage, is born.
1952: One Jeffrey Hyman is born today. Twenty-five years later, the world will know him as Joey Ramone of the iconic U.S. punk band The Ramones.



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Chicago, IL 60616-3731
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