Late Spring 2017

Recent Orchestral, Academic and Professional Appointments 

  • Michael Accinno (BM '06) - Appointed Chancellor's Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, Riverside
  • Michelle Black (MM '14) - First Violin Section, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
  • Tommy Carpenter (MM '15) - Cello section, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
  • Sophia Cho (BM '14) - First Violin section, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
  • Stephen Farrell (MM '17) - Trombone, United States Naval Academy Band in Annapolis, Maryland.
  • Daniel Hawkins (MM '17) - Utility Horn, San Francisco Symphony
  • Natalie Hoe - (MM '17) - Principal Clarinet, The Florida Orchestra
  • MuChen Jessica Hsieh (MM '17) - Principal Second Violin, Houston Symphony Orchestra
  • Andy Liang (BM '12, MM '14) - Second Violin section, Seattle Symphony Orchestra
  • Ryan Little (MM '17) - Principal Horn, Naples Philharmonic, Florida
  • Andrew Pedersen (MM '17) - Double Bass section, Houston Symphony Orchestra
  • Daryl Robinson (MM '14) - Assistant Professor and Chair of Organ Studies at the University of Houston's Moores School of Music and Cathedral Organist for Christ Church Cathedral, Houston.
  • Daniel Smith (BM '13) - Associate Principal Double Bass, San Francisco Symphony
  • Alicia Valoti (MM '10) - Appointed Assistant Professor of Viola and Chamber Music, Central Michigan University
  • Hugo A. Valverde Villalobos (current Master's student) - Fourth Horn, Sarasota Orchestra
  • Joshua Vonderheide (current AD student) - Associate Principal Percussion, Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra

Competitions, Awards, Performances and Premieres 

Alumnus Aaron Blake (MM '10) was one of five top winners of the 46th annual George London Awards Competition for American and Canadian singers. He was awarded the George London-Lissner Charitable Fund Award of $10,000.

Bass-baritone Nicholas Brownlee (former Master's student) was one of three winners to receive a 2017 Richard Tucker Career Grant as part of the Richard Tucker Music Foundation. He also performed with the LA Opera singing Angelotti in Tosca

Grammy award winning Sasha Cooke (MM '04) performed with Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra followed by a performance of Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Major, Op. 83 by Shepherd School Professor of Piano Jon Kimura Parker.

The Dover String Quartet (MM '13) has been awarded a 2017 Avery Fisher Career Development Grant. This prestigious grant provides professional support to young promising musicians.

Alumna Gabriela Lena Frank (BM '94, MM '96) had her work Conquest Requiem premiered by the Houston Symphony. She is also The Houston Symphony's composer-in-Residence.

Alumnus Calvin Griffin (MM'14) has joined ADA Artist Management. The ADA team works to nurture the careers of the finest performances from emerging to internationally renowned artists.

Pianist Jason Hardick (MM '01, DMA '07) will be a special guest at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music 2017-2018 season.

Composer Charles Hulka's (DMA '13) work Por la Fuerza las Tierras won first place in Divison 1 of the Tribeca New Music 2017 Young Composer's Competition.

Cellist Coleman Itzkoff (BM '14) was one of eleven gold medalists in the string section of the 1st Berline International Music Competition.

Alumna Joanna Latini (MM '17) will be joining the 2017-18 Barbara and Halsey Sandford Studio Artist Program at the Kentucky Opera.

Alumna Alison Lee (MM '15) won second place in the 2016 Midwest International Piano Competition.

Current undergraduate composition student Paul Novak won first place in the Sarah and Ernest Butler Texas Young Composers Competition.

2015 George London Award winner and alumna Sarah Mesko (MM '10) performed a set she titled Stars and Night, at this season's George London Foundation Recital Series at The Morgan Library & Museum.

Shepherd School piano student Stephanie Ng won second place in the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition performing Beethoven's Emperor Concerto No. 5 with the Waring Festival Orchestra.

Alumnus Kolio Plachkov (MM '12) performed Mozart's Horn Concerto No. 4 in E-flat Major with the Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra.

Alumna Hilary Purrington (BM '13) was among the sixteen winning composers in the 2017 American Academy of Arts and Letters awards in music. She received the Charles Ives Scholarship of $7,500 which is given to composition students of great promise.

Alumnus Tomasz Robak (BM '13) performed Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Parma Symphony Orchestra at the Valley Gorge Auditorium in Cleveland, Ohio under Maestro Laycock.

Alumnus Brenton Ryan (MM '11) performed with the San Diego Opera singing Gastone in La Traviata

Alumna Stephanie Sanchez (AD '17) will be a young artist at the 2017 Glimmerglass Festival and will be joining Arizona Opera as a studio artist for the 2017-2018 season.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Glenn Korff School of Music named alumnus Sergio Ruiz (DMA '04), professor of music and chair of the Georgia College Department of Music, as its new director.

Tenor Jack Swanson (MM '16) was one of seven winners to receive a 2017 Sara Tucker Study Grant as part of the Richard Tucker Music Foundation.

Soprano Erin Wall (MM '00) made her debut with the Quad-Cites Symphony in March singing Richard Strauss' Four Last Songs (1948) and Richard Wagner's Liebestod as part of Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde (1865).