Alumni News

Dance | Drama | Music



Choreography by Austin McCormick (BFA ’06) and Roger Jeffrey (BFA ’96) will be featured in the Juilliard Dance Division’s Summer Intensive in July and August.

On July 14-25, Ariel Freedman (BFA’05) will lead a workshop series in Ohad Naharin’s (’77) Gaga technique at the Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York.

Andrea Miller’s (BFA ’04) Gallim Dance Group will perform at the Joyce SoHo in New York on April 10-12. Members of the company include Belinda McGuire (BFA ’06), Troy Ogilvie (BFA ’07), and Harumi Terayama (BFA’06). The company also performed at the Flea Theater in New York in February.

Mark Morris’s staging of Purcell’s opera King Arthur, which premiered in the U.K. in 2006, was presented by the New York City Opera in March. The dancers in ithe cast included Elisa Clark (BFA ’01), Amber Darragh (BFA ’99), John Heginbotham (BFA ’93), Laurel Lynch (BFA ’03), and Bradon McDonald (BFA ’97).

Cody Green (’01) is among the 12 dancers competing on Step It Up and Dance, the new series premiering on Bravo on April 3. The series will showcase what it takes to make it big as a professional dancer, as the 12 finalists compete in weekly challenges in various dance styles for a chance to get the “final callback” and win $100,000.


Amy Kail (BFA ’91) is currently a teaching artist with Lincoln Center Institute, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and Mark DeGarmo (BFA ’82) and Dancers. Her latest article about Rudolf Laban’s work was published in the December issue of Dance Teacher magazine.


In September, Diana Fantano Hoffman (BFA ’88) launched and began teaching at an adult ballet program at Colorado Ballet in Denver, with the help of artistic director Gil Boggs, former principal soloist with the American Ballet Theater.


Ohad Naharin’s (’77) Kamluyot was performed by the Batsheva Ensemble in New York in March at the Jewish Community Center. Performing with the ensemble were Bobbi Smith (BFA ’06), Ariel Freedman (BFA ’05), Douglas Letheren (BFA ’07), and Asaf Oren ('07).


The Kazuko Hirabayashi (Diploma ’62) Dance Theater presented the premiere of two new works, Masks and Bereft, as well as a revival of three pieces (including the 1985 Song of Sorrows, performed by Sarah Stackhouse)—at the Merce Cunningham Studio in New York in March, in celebration of its 37th year.



Brian Smith (Group 36) is currently starring Off Broadway in Second Stage Theater’s production of Good Boys and True, a new play written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and directed by Scott Ellis.

Jessica Collins (Group 34) joins Benjamin Walker Davis (Group 33) and Laura Linney (Group 19) in the Roundabout Theater Company’s Broadway revival of Les Liaisons Dangereuses in May. The production will be directed by Rufus Norris.

Gillian Jacobs (Group 33) is currently appearing Off Broadway in the LAByrinth Theater Company’s production of a new play by Stephen Adly Guirgis, The Little Flower of East Orange, directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman.

David Adjmi’s (Playwrights ’02) play The Evildoers received its premiere at Yale Repertory Theater in January. The production, which ran through February 9 and was directed by Rebecca Bayla Taichman, featured Stephen Barker Turner (Group 23) and Samantha Soule (Group 31). Adjmi’s latest play, Stunning, received its premiere in Washington, D.C., at the Woolly Mammoth Theater Company in March. That production was directed by Anne Kauffman.

James Martinez (Group 31) is appearing now in the Off-Broadway premiere of Gina Gionfriddo’s play U.S. Drag, directed by Trip Cullman.

Toi Perkins (Group 31) appeared in February in a revival of Aphra Behn’s play Oroonoko at Theater for a New Audience in New York City. The production was directed by Kate Whoriskey.

Jeffrey Carlson (Group 30) will reprise his role as the Melancholy Dane in the Shakespeare Theater Company’s summer production of Hamlet, originally directed by Michael Kahn and restaged by Alexander Burns. The production will also again feature drama alumna Janet Zarish (Group 5).

Michael Goldstrom (Group 30) appeared at the Ha Ha Comedy Club in North Hollywood, Calif., in February.


Mike Doyle (Group 27) appeared Off Broadway in March in the premiere of Lincoln Center Theater’s new production of Paul Rudnick’s play The New Century, directed by Nicholas Martin.

Jimonn Cole (Group 26) is appearing now in New York City at the Keen Company in The Conscientious Objector, a new play written by Michael Murphy and directed by Carl Forsman.

This past December, Roger Benington (Directors ’97) directed Todd Almond’s Kansas City Choir Boy: Land of the Missing Girls at the Zipper Theater in New York. Benington directed Guillem Clua’s Skin in Flames at Salt Lake Acting Company in February, and in March he directed Ostrovsky’s A Family Affair at the University of Rochester (N.Y.).

David Lindsay Abaire (Playwrights ’98) wrote the book and lyrics for Shrek!, the first stage musical from the newly formed DreamWorks Theatricals and based on the book by William Steig and the popular 2001 film of the same name. The production, to be directed by Jason Moore, will have its premiere in Seattle this summer before opening on Broadway in the fall.

Sean Arbuckle (Group 23) is to appear later this spring in productions of Euripides’ The Trojan Women, newly translated by Nicholas Rudall and directed by Marti Maraden, and Kander and Ebb’s Cabaret, directed by Amanda Dehnert, at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Canada.

Kurt NaebigKurt Naebig (Group 19) directed the play Keely and Du in Chicago in February at the Infamous Commonwealth Theater. Naebig can also be seen in the Parallel Entertainment feature film Witless Protection, written and directed by Charles Robert Carner. (pictured)

Kevin Vickery (Group 19) is a producer on the documentary film Fields of Fuel, about biodiesel and sustainable energy. Fields of Fuel premiered at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival in January, where it won the Audience Award for documentary film.

Kevin Spacey (Group 12) stars in the Columbia Pictures feature film 21, directed by Robert Luketic.


William Hurt (Group 5) stars in the Columbia Pictures feature film Vantage Point, directed by Pete Travis.

Christine Baranski (Group 3) and Bradley Whitford (Group 14) star together in Boeing-Boeing, the 1960s London hit that starts previews on Broadway in March. The play, by Marc Camoletti, was directed by Matthew Warchus.


Kevin Kline (Group 1) is in the Universal Features feature film Definitely, Maybe, written and directed by Adam Brooks.



Joel Ayau (MM ’07, collaborative piano) made his debut at Carnegie Hall in February, accompanying three students of the University of Michigan at a forum presenting works by Michigan faculty members William Bolcom, Bright Sheng, and Michael Daugherty. Also in February, he performed in a recital at the Kennedy Center, playing the Pierre Boulez Sonatine for Flute and Piano, with Sarah Frisof (MM ’06, flute).

Jazz pianist Aaron Diehl (BM ’07,  jazz studies) will return to his native Columbus, Ohio, to perform a benefit concert for his elementary and middle school alma mater, Saint Mary School, on April 19. Diehl will be joined by trumpeter Dominick Farinacci (BM ’05, jazz studies) for this, his second annual concert, which will raise funds for tuition assistance.

Vince Lee (Graduate Diploma ’07, orchestral conducting), the New York Youth Symphony’s assistant conductor, conducted Brahms’s Academic Festival Overture in a program at Carnegie Hall in March that also included works by Bernstein, Ives, and Jacob Bancks, led by the orchestra’s music director, Ryan McAdams (MM ’06, orchestral conducting).

Augustin Hadelich (Graduate Diploma ’05, Artist Diploma ’07, violin), accompanied by pianist Robert Kulek, was presented by the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis in his Carnegie Hall recital debut in March. The program included Beethoven’s Sonata No. 1, the Bartok Solo Sonata, Bright Sheng’s A Night at the Chinese Opera (2006), and the Brahms D-minor Sonata.

In February, Alex Freeman (DMA ’04, composition) presented U.S. premieres of his works on a concert at Carleton College, where he is assistant professor of composition. Among the works performed was Blueshift, a chamber work originally commissioned by the U.S. Embassy in Finland and the Sibelius Academy in honor of Steve Reich’s 70th birthday; Magnolia for solo kantele (a Finnish plucked string instrument related to a zither), performed by Eva Alkula; and a Sonata and Three Pieces for piano, performed by Brian Lee (DMA ’04, piano), who also gave a master class at Carleton.

Alexander Hajek (BM ’04, MM ’06, voice) will be featured in the Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio production of Giuseppe Gazzaniga’s Don Giovanni and Stravinsky’s Renard in Toronto in June.

Cem DuruozCem Duruoz (Graduate Diploma ’03, guitar) presented the U.S. premiere of American composer David Hahn’s Concerto Anatolia (written for Duruoz) with the Round Top Festival Orchestra, conducted by Marcelo Bussiki, at the fourth International Guitar Festival in Round Top, Tex., in February. The four-movement work features various Turkish rhythms and melodies. On May 4, Duruoz will present a guitar recital at Weill Recital Hall in New York titled “Treasures of Anatolia.” The program will include traditional music as well as new works by Turkish composers.

Lin HongIn January, Lin Hong (MM ’03, collaborative piano) served as visiting professor at the Fujian Conservatory and Sichuan Conservatory of Music in China. Starting in February, the International Piano Festival and Academy of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music appointed him as artistic advisor in New York, for inviting international artists to perform in China. Currently he is also the U.S. coordinator for the Beijing ’08 Olympic event “Centenary Piano Extravaganza” project at the National Center of the Performing Arts, Beijing.

Maria Millar (BM ’00, MM ’01, violin) and her band, Kilterclash, which also includes acoustic/electric bassist Matt Aronoff and drummer Ulysses Owens Jr. (BM ’06, jazz studies)—performed a concert at Rockwood Music Hall in New York in February. Kilterclash has just been awarded a space grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council.

Paul Stetsenko (DMA ’00, organ) was the soloist in Bach’s Concerto in F Minor for keyboard and orchestra in a concert in February by the Alexandria (Va.) Choral Society, directed by Neil Weston, at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Alexandria.


The Enso String Quartet—which includes violinists Maureen Nelson and John Marcus (BM ’98, MM ’03, violin), violist Melissa Reardon, and cellist Richard Belcher—performed at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J., in February.

The ensemble ne(x)tworks—whose members include Cornelius Dufallo (BM ’95, MM ’97, DMA ’02, violin) and Yves Dharamraj (Graduate Diploma ’05, cello)—performed at the Chelsea Art Museum in New York in March. The program included premieres by Dufallo and Shelley Burgon. Another concert at the museum on April 5 will include premieres by Joan La Barbara, Alvin Curran, and Miguel Frasconi; the May 3 program there will include premieres by Kenji Bunch (BM ’95, MM ’97, viola; MM ’97, composition), Ariana Kim (MM ’05, violin), Chris McIntyre, and Butch Morris.

Miranda Cuckson’s (BM ’94, MM ’01, DMA ’06, violin) presented premieres of works by Douglas Boyce, Robert Cuckson, and Matthew Greenbaum in February at Renee Weiler Concert Hall in New York, with Blair McMillen (MM ’95, piano) and flutist Christoph Bösch.

Douglas Quint (MM ’94, bassoon) presented a recital of music for bassoon by Hindemith, Osborne, Bitsch, Vivaldi, and Zelenka at the CUNY Graduate Center in Manhattan in February. Joining Quint were David Shimoni (MM ’00, collaborative piano), Paolo Bordignon (MM ’98, DMA ’04, harpsichord), James Roe (MM ’02, oboe), Lisa McCullough (MM ’96, oboe), Aaron Boyd (BM ’00, violin), Lev Zhurbin (BM ’01, viola), Tom Rosenthal (BM ’00, viola), Alberto Parrini (MM ’98, cello), and bassist Rachel Calin.

A three-concert series at the Renee Weiler Concert Hall in New York in March, titled Keys to the Future and curated by pianist/composer Joseph Rubenstein, was devoted to contemporary music for solo piano and featured Stephen Gosling (BM ’93, MM ’94, DMA ’00,  piano), Marina Lomazov (MM ’95, piano), Blair McMillen (MM ’95, piano), and Tatjana Rankovich (BM ’84, MM ’85, piano) among the performers. One of the works performed was Martin Kennedy’s (DMA ’05, composition) Theme and Variations (2004).

Gil Shaham (’90, violin) and Akira Eguchi (MM ’90, piano) will be presented on Lincoln Center’s Great Performers series on April 2 at Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York. The program will include works by Walton, Bach, Rodrigo, and three works by Sarasate, in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the composer’s death.


Gregg August (MM ’89, double bass) will perform with the J.D. Allen Trio (also including Allen and Rudy Royston) on April 7 at the Jazz Standard in New York, to celebrate the worldwide release of the trio’s album I Am–I Am on Sunnyside Records this month.

Maria (Andreasian) Andriasova-Esparza (BM ’87, piano) was awarded a Top 100 Musicians Award from the International Biographical Center in Cambridge, U.K., in November. This season she has been performing art/music installations in cathedrals and churches in the U.S., Mexico, France, and northern Spain with her husband, American sculptor, painter, and iconongrapher Guillermo Esparza.

Pianist Joel Fan (Pre-College ’87) performed on the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Accolades series in March. The eclectic program of world-influenced music, his New York solo recital debut, included the premiere of Kirchner’s Sonata No. 3, The Forbidden, written for Fan in 2006, as well as works by Adnan Saygun, Dia Succari, Qigang Chen, Prokofiev, Beethoven, Villa-Lobos, Chopin, and Liszt.

Sam Ruttenberg (MM ’86, percussion) gave a snare drum and drum set clinic at the Inter American University of Puerto Rico in February. Musical, technical, and coordination aspects of drumming were demonstrated, along with excerpts from his new book, Drum Tips (HoneyRock 2008). Sabian, Vic Firth, and Remo were the sponsors. Hosts were Freddie Santiago and Samuel Rosado.

Maria Radicheva (BM ’84, MM ’85, violin) curated a concert at the Bulgarian Consulate in New York in February that featured young musicians who are either recent graduates or current students at the Manhattan School of Music, where she is on the violin faculty.

Chin Kim (BM ’82, MM ’83, DMA ’98, violin) and David Oei (’72, piano) performed in February in the Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium at the United Nations. The program, which included works by Paganini, Janacek, and Schoenfield, also featured soprano Yunah Lee (MM ’95, voice/opera) and pianist Kyung-A Yoo performing works by Debussy, Chausson, and Lehar. The concert was presented by the Korea Music Foundation and sponsored by the Korean Cultural Service New York and the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea to the U.N.

Rich RidenourRich Ridenour (MM ’82, piano) commissioned composer Peter Boyer to write a work for piano and orchestra titled American Rhapsody. Co-commissioners include the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra, Elgin Symphony Orchestra, and the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra. Premiere performances have been scheduled from February to April 2008. This spring Ridenour will also appear with the Erie Philharmonic and the Lansing and Decatur Symphonies.

Dmitry Rachmanov (BM ’81, MM ’82, piano) presented a program titled “Alexander Scriabin: The Russian Prometheus” at the 92nd Street Y’s Russian Sundays series in New York in February, and at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y., in March, collaborating with Russian professor Marina Kostalevsky. Also in February, Rachmanov gave a recital and a master class at Oakland [Mich.] University’s Piano Enrichment Day, and presented a lecture-recital on Scriabin and Stravinsky piano sonatas at the Michigan State University at East Lansing. He performed in September and January as part of the Piano Passions series at the Tenri Cultural Institute in Manhattan, where he returns on April 26. The March/April issue of Piano magazine includes Rachmanov’s feature article on the Russian pianist Grigory Ginzburg.

Luis Biava (BM ’80, MM ’81, cello) will conduct the Temple University Symphony Orchestra in its Carnegie Hall debut on April 2. The program will include Nielsen’s Clarinet Concerto (with soloist Ricardo Morales), Mussorgky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, and the premiere of Temple alumnus William McGlaughlin’s The Heart’s Light, An Essay for Orchestra.

Upcoming concerto appearances for Sara Davis Buechner (BM ’80, MM ’81, piano) include those with the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra in Boston and the McGill Chamber Orchestra in Montreal, both in May; the South Bohemian Chamber Orchestra in the Czech Republic in June; and the Music in the Mountains Orchestra in Nevada City, Calif., also in June. Her upcoming solo performances include concerts for the Britt Festival in Oregon and the Festival Vancouver in Canada, both in August. In May she will record another CD for Koch International Records, featuring the music of Dana Suesse.

David Krakauer (MM ’80, clarinet) will present a professional training workshop titled Exploring Klezmer, for individuals and chamber ensembles, from April 8 to 13 at Carnegie Hall. The workshop is under the auspices of the Weill Music Institute at Carnegie Hall.


Jonathan Haas (MM ’78, Professional Studies ’79, percussion) directed the New York University Percussion Ensemble in February and March in a percussive theater collaboration titled CoMotion, presented by Blessed Unrest at the Interart Theater in New York. Performers included Simon Boyar (BM ’03, percussion), Jesse Brickel (Pre-College ’06), and Jacqueline Russo (Pre-College ’07, percussion).

Paul-André Bempéchat (MM ’77, piano) is the author of Jean Cras (1879-1932), a biography of the French composer that will be published by the British firm Ashgate Publishing Group in August. A research associate at the Center for European Studies at Harvard University, Bempéchat focuses his work on the interplay of music, literature, and politics to examine the survival of minority cultures within France and the Hapsburg Empire. He currently serves as president of the Lyrica Society for Word-Music Relations.

Three programs will be presented on the Cutting Edge Concerts series this month at Symphony Space in New York. Titled “Shaping Sound: Architects, Composers and Concert Halls,” the series is presented by Welltone New Music, directed by Victoria Bond (MM ’75, DMA ’77, orchestral conducting), and pairs each concert with a talk by an architect who has designed concert halls. The premiere of Dalit Warshaw’s (MM ’97, DMA ’03, composition) Erato will be offered on April 14, along with scenes from Bond’s opera Mrs. President (about the first woman running for president, in 1872) and current D.M.A. student Huang Ruo’s Four Fragments. Other concerts take place on April 7 and 21. Performers in the series include Cornelius Dufallo (BM ’95, MM ’97, DMA ’02, violin), Yves Dharamraj (Graduate Diploma ’05, cello), and Ariana Kim (MM ’05, violin).

Concert Royal, directed by James Richman (MM ’75, harpsichord), performed with the New York Baroque Dance Company in A Tale of Two Cities at Symphony Space in New York in February. The program featured Baroque music and dance from Paris and London.

The Tokyo Quartet—whose members are violinists Martin Beaver and Kikuei Ikeda (’73, violin), violist Kazuhide Isomura (Diploma ’71, violin), and cellist Clive Greensmith—wrapped up its season at the 92nd Street Y in New York in March with a program that included works by Webern, Haydn, and Dvorak.

Jeffrey Swann (BM ’73, MM ’73, DMA ’80, piano) was featured in February at Steinway Hall in New York, in an all-Bach program to benefit the Rosalyn Tureck International Bach Competition. Other performers included Svetlana Serdar (’93, voice), Anat Malkin-Almani (BM ’97, violin), and Golda Vainberg-Tatz (Postgraduate Diploma ’85, piano).

The North/South Consonance Ensemble, directed by Max Lifchitz (BM ’70, MM ’71, composition), honored composer Harold Schiffman on his 80th birthday with a concert at the Morgan Library in New York in March. Performers also included Aaron Boyd (BM ’96, violin), Lisa Hansen (BM ’81,  flute), and Gary Hamme (MM ’78, oboe).


The Zukerman ChamberPlayers, which include Pinchas Zukerman (Professional Studies ’69, violin) and Ashan Pillai (’95, viola), were joined by cellist Carter Brey for their last concert of the season at the 92nd Street Y in March. The program included music by Mendelssohn and Schubert.

Miriam Brickman (MS ’67, piano) was presented by the Riverdale Yonkers Ethical Culture Society in March. The program, titled “A Panorama of Galicia,” featured works by Mozart, Chopin, Liszt, Ligeti, Tansman, Kurtag, Ullmann, and Ronald Senator, who also gave a talk as part of the event.

Paul Tobias (BM ’67, cello) participated as a guest artist with Ensemble Pi in a concert in the Great Hall at Cooper Union in New York in March titled “The Rest Is Silence,” commemorating the fifth anniversary of the war in Iraq. Among the other performers were Sycil Mathai (Advanced Certificate ’01, trumpet) and Airi Yoshioka (MM ’95, DMA ’02, violin).

Elizabeth Wolff (MS ’67, piano) was presented by the Leschetizky Foundation in a recital at the Tenri Cultural Institute in Manhattan in February. The program included works by Beethoven, Brahms, and Mario Berlinguer.

The Music Collection, a chamber ensemble directed by fortepianist Susan Alexander-Max (BS ’65, MS ’66, piano) that also includes violinist Simon Standage and cellist Jennifer Morsches, performed at Banqueting House in Whitehall, London, in March. The program included works by Haydn and Beethoven.

Julie Jaffee NagelJulie Jaffee Nagel (BM ’65; MS ’66, piano) was awarded the Karl A. Menninger Memorial Prize by the American Psychoanalytic Association in January for her paper, Psychoanalytic and Musical Perspectives on Shame in Donizetti’s “Lucia di Lammermoor.” She also received the Nathan Segel Award last June for this paper from the Michigan Psychoanalytic Institute. The paper has been accepted for publication in the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association.

Moshe (Morris) Cotel (BM ’64, MS ’65, composition) premiered his "Chronicles II: More Lessons From a Jewish Life at the Classical Piano" at Valley Beth Shalom Synagogue in Encino, Calif., in January under the co-sponsorship of the Jewish Music Commission of Los Angeles and the Harold M. Schulweis Institute. The program, which includes his own compositions and original transcriptions, is a sequel to his original "Chronicles" recital, which was created as his rabbinical thesis and paired classical music with rabbinical monologues (and which marked its 80th performance in February).


Ten songs from Rachel, a Yiddish tragic opera by Aaron Blumenfeld (’54, composition), were performed in September at Congregation Beth Israel in Berkeley, Calif.

Pianist and composer Avraham Sternklar (Diploma ’51, piano; Postgraduate Diploma ’52, chamber music) appeared at the Great Neck House in Great Neck, N.Y., in February, performing his work A Promise Fulfilled for piano, based on paintings by Tea Sternklar, the composer’s mother. Sternklar’s Two Etudes For Piano (2007) were premiered at the Park Avenue United Methodist Church in New York in February by Rorianne Schrade (BM ’85, MM ’85, piano), who also performed the work at the Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts on Long Island.

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