Two Cincinnati Middle School Students Win Grants to Attend the CCM Experience Camp

Two Cincinnati students who participated in the Educational Theatre Association’s JumpStart Theatre program will have the opportunity to attend the CCM Experience performing arts camp at the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. Thanks to a generous gift to CCM from the Cincinnati Symphony Club, JumpStart Theatre students Keyshawn Townsend from Aiken New Tech High School and Tychod “Jay” Smith from Oyler School will each receive a grant that will cover camp tuition for the students to attend July 9-20.

Tychod “Jay” Smith at JumpStart Theatre.

Tychod “Jay” Smith at JumpStart Theatre.

JumpStart Theatre is a three-year scalable program designed to bring musical theatre into schools that currently do not have a performing arts program, created by the Cincinnati-based national association, Educational Theatre Association, in collaboration with New York City-based companies iTheatrics and Music Theatre International (MTI). Townsend and Smith participated in the program during the 2017-18 school year, which culminated in a showcase performance at Memorial Hall in May.

CCM has contributed to JumpStart Theatre by sharing resources of costumes and props for student productions. The two organizations are also connected through CCM Preparatory and Community Engagement (CCM Prep) instructors Becca Kloha Strand and Dee Anne Bryll, who are both program coordinators at JumpStart Theatre. Strand is the director of the musical theatre track at the CCM Experience, where Bryll is a guest artist. CCM Prep Coordinator of Special Projects and Programs Amy Dennison is the director of the summer arts camp.

Keyshawn Townsend at JumpStart Theatre.

Keyshawn Townsend at JumpStart Theatre.

Strand said, “Keyshawn performed the role of Horton the Elephant in Seussical, Jr. last year at Aiken New Tech, as a part of the JumpStart Theatre program. As a leader both on stage and off, he truly embodied the role of Horton. The CCM Experience camp will be a wonderful opportunity for Keyshawn to exercise and grow his talents as a younger performer.”

Tiffaney Hamm, enrichment program manager at Oyler said, “Tychod is a special young man with a lot of talent. We chose him for this camp because his dream is to perform on stage, as he wants to have a life of acting and performing. This was Jay’s first year at Oyler and he came alive, forming great connections with his cast mates and peers. He continues to work hard in school even when obstacles get in the way. He is a really great kid, and I am proud to have him as a student.”

Offered through CCM Prep, the CCM Experience is an exciting new two-week summer program that combines dance, theatre and music for students ages 8-15. Students study at one of the finest performing arts schools in the country and take classes in multiple areas of concentration including instrumental music, acting, musical theatre, voice or dance. Each day students will have the opportunity to try something new, take a tour, make their own props, costumes and instruments, and learn more about how to be a professional artist. The program culminates with a fantastic showcase where students are put front and center on one of CCM’s stages.

“We look forward to our first CCM Experience Camp and are excited to welcome the two Cincinnati Symphony Club scholarship recipients from JumpStart Theatre,” said John Martin, Assistant Dean of CCM Preparatory and Community Engagement. “CCM Prep, the Cincinnati Symphony Club and the Educational Theatre Association share the same goal — to support excellence in the performing arts and provide engaging and accessible arts education to the community at large.”

Learn more about the Educational Theatre Association online at

About Jumpstart Theatre
The JumpStart Theatre pilot started in Cincinnati in the 2015-16 school year, and three schools moved to self-sustainability this year after completing three years in the program: Holmes Middle School, Finneytown Middle School, and James N. Gamble Montessori High School. In November 2017, the first expansion to St. Louis and San Diego was announced, and in June, 2018 an expansion to Atlanta for the 2019-20 school year was announced. In total 39 middle schools will have sustainable musical theatre programs where there previously were none.

About CCM Preparatory and Community Engagement
CCM Prep offers a wide variety of programs in music, dance and theatre arts for all ages and levels — pre-professional students preparing for a future in the performing arts and arts enthusiasts of all ages and abilities. Programs are offered throughout the year for youth, teens and adults at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and through numerous satellite locations and community partnerships. We aim to provide excellent and accessible arts opportunities within a highly creative environment that educates and inspires the whole student, serving as a catalyst for transforming and empowering our communities. Learn more at or contact CCM Prep directly by emailing or calling 513-556-2595.

CCM News Student Salutes
Spring scenes on campus, CCM.

CCM Summer Hosts Opera Bootcamp for Singers, Conductors and Pianists

The UC College-Conservatory of Music combines its annual Opera Bootcamp and Opera Studio summer programs into a dynamic new program designed to develop career skills for conductors and singers alike. If you are an aspiring pianist, coach, stage director, conductor or singer, apply for the new Opera Bootcamp summer program, which occurs July 8-30 at CCM.

Training singers and conductors alongside each other builds a depth of understanding often not acquired until well into your professional career. In the three-week program, participants will mount two opera productions, Gianni Schicchi and Les mamelles de Tirésias, and one program of staged Mozart scenes and arias — all with orchestra and in their respective original languages. Both French and Italian language instruction will be offered to support the assigned repertoire.

Opera Bootcamp faculty includes internationally renowned professionals from CCM and visiting faculty members. CCM faculty includes Mark Gibson, Amy Johnson, Kathryn Lorenz, William McGraw, Andrea Tutt, Marie-France Lefebvre and professor emeritus David Adams. Visiting faculty members include Vernon Hartman, stage director; Steven Mosteller, coach; Joyce Miller, Italian language instructor; Jose Maria Condemi, stage director; Ken Weiss, coach; and Louis Pelletier, coach.

Professional biographies for each faculty member are available online at

All singers begin Opera Bootcamp with a two-day intensive on July 8 and 9, which includes training in traditional lyric stagecraft, Michael Chekhov acting technique, period movement, dances used in opera and career mentorship specific to the industry. These special sessions are led by Johnson, Tutt and Hartman. Conductors and pianists begin their Opera Bootcamp training on July 10.

This program is process oriented. It’s bootcamp! You are trained. The skills taught can be applied quickly and effectively to have great impact on your success as an artist.

CCM’s 2017 Opera Bootcamp is now accepting applications. The application deadline is April 15, 2017; enrollment for CCM Summer Programs is limited.

Visit for application details and more information on Opera Bootcamp.

CCM News Faculty Fanfare Student Salutes

Study Baroque Music in CCM Summer Program for Harpsichord and Cello

Keyboardists and cellists are invited to apply for the Continuo: Harpsichord and Cello summer workshop at UC’s College-Conservatory of Music. Led by CCM Assistant Professor of Keyboard Michael Unger, the program runs June 5-7, 2017.

“This will be our third summer offering the Continuo: Harpsichord and Cello workshop,” Unger said. “I am excited that cello and harpsichord students have the great opportunity to collaborate with each other, to learn about continuo and chamber music techniques, and to experiment with Baroque performance practice questions through the hands-on study of eighteenth-century repertoire.”

Participants will study with Unger, who is a multiple award-winning harpsichordist and cellist, and visiting faculty member Adriana Contino, an internationally acclaimed cellist from Anderson University.

During the three-day program, students will participate in solo chamber music coachings, group performance classes on Baroque technique and interpretation, and seminars on Baroque performance practice and continuo technique. Students will also have opportunities to perform in recitals on June 6 and 7.

CCM’s 2017 Continuo: Harpsichord and Cello workshop is now accepting applications. The application deadline is April 15, 2017; enrollment for CCM Summer Programs is limited.

To learn more about the Continuo: Harpsichord and Cello workshop, please visit

CCM News Faculty Fanfare Student Salutes
CCM's Mainstage Series production of 'Macbeth.' Photo by Mark Lyons.

Apply Now for CCM’s Summer Playwrights Conference

UC’s College-Conservatory of Music presents the Playwrights Conference from June 12-17, 2017. Now in its second year, this program is organized by CCM Assistant Professor of Acting Brant Russell and is open to aspiring and experienced playwrights alike.

“This year’s conference will host writers from all backgrounds and levels of experience,” Russell said. “Whether you’re a seasoned writer or a theater-lover who wants a boot-camp experience in the fundamentals of playwriting, we’d love to hear from you.  The community we create over the week-long conference is supportive, diverse and artistically adventurous.”

Participants in CCM’s 2016 Playwrights Conference work on their plays during a group session.

During the Playwrights Conference participants will write, take master classes with industry professionals and attend readings of their works. The week-long program offers a Development Track for participants who already have a play that they want to work on during the conference, along with a Fundamentals Track for participants who want to learn the nuts and bolts of playwriting.

Participants will also get to hear their work read a loud by CCM actors during nightly “Play Barn” sessions, lead by CCM Acting Chair Richard Hess. The ensemble of actors will bring the plays to life at the program’s 10-Minute-Play Festival, a public performance of the new works scheduled for the final night of the conference.

Conference participants will have an opportunity to work with a host of renowned theatre professionals, including award-winning playwright MJ Kaufman and Huntington Theatre Company director of new work Lisa Timmel.

Timmel will serve as the conference’s lead instructor and resident dramaturg, while Kaufman will serve as playwright-in-residence. Kaufman has been commissioned to write a new play for this year’s conference, which will allow participants to witness this new work develop over the course of the program.

CCM’s 2017 Playwrights Conference is now accepting applications. The application deadline is April 15, 2017.

To learn more about how you can bring your ideas from page to stage, please visit

CCM News Faculty Fanfare
Classical guitarist Oscar Ghiglia Celebrates 42 years of residency at CCM on Oct. 9

CCM’s Classical Guitar workshop returns July 10-16

The 33rd annual Classical Guitar Workshop at CCM returns July 10-16, featuring master classes for aspiring artists and a series of free public recitals.

Classical guitarists of all ages and skills levels will participate in the classes and ensembles as well as special sessions focused on recital preparation, specific guitar composers, period styles, early music instruments, guitar construction and more.

The weeklong workshop, co-directed by faculty members Clare Callahan and Rodney Stucky, includes a series of free public recitals, beginning with the Faculty Ensemble at 8 p.m. on Sunday and concluding with the Participants Recital at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 16.

This year’s faculty list boasts a diverse array of educators from the United States and South America: Renato Butturi (University of Evansville), Carlos Pérez (University of Santiago, Chile), Jeffrey Van (University of Minnesota), Karl Wohlwend (Otterbein University) and Stanley Yates (Austin Peay State University). Guest coaches Christopher Wilke, Sarah Wilke, Jeremy Collins, John Alvarado, Amy Brucksch, Kevin Ebert, Michael Fogler, Richard Goering, Julie Goldberg, John Hedger, Christopher Hubbard, Kevin Mulhall, Larry Snitzier and Andrew Winner will also help with instruction.

For workshop fees, an online application, a full workshop schedule and additional information, please visit the Classical Guitar Workshop page on CCM’s website or call 513-281-2865.


CCM Classical Guitar Workshop
2016 Recital Series

8 p.m. Sunday, July 10
Faculty Ensemble Recital
Featuring Renato Butturi, Clare Callahan, Rodney Stucky, Jeffrey Van, Christopher Wilke, William Willits, Karl Wohlwend and Stanley Yates
Location: Cohen Family Studio Theater

8 p.m. Monday, July 11
Guitar Chamber Music Recital
Cohen Family Studio Theater

8 p.m. Wednesday, July 13
Douglas James and Hazel Ketchum Recital
Location: Cohen Family Studio Theater

8 p.m. Thursday, July 14
Stanley Yates Recital
Cohen Family Studio Theater

8 p.m. Friday, July 15
Solos, Chamber Music and Guitar Orchestra
Location: Corbett Auditorium

2 p.m. Saturday, July 16
Participants Recital
Corbett Auditorium

Admission & Parking Information
All recitals are free and open to the public and take place on the CCM campus at the University of Cincinnati.

Parking is available in the CCM Garage (at the base of Corry Boulevard off of Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus.

For additional information, call 513-281-2865 or visit


Story by CCM graduate Kevin Norton (DMA Saxophone, 2015)

CCM News

Art of the Piano Concert Series Continues Tonight With Awadagin Pratt and Dennis Thurmond Joint Recital

CCM faculty member and World Piano Competition Artistic Director Awadagin Pratt.

CCM faculty member and World Piano Competition Artistic Director Awadagin Pratt.

CCM’s Art of the Piano summer festival and concert series continues at 7 p.m. this evening with a joint recital featuring Tai Chi of Improvisation author Dennis Thurmond and World Piano Competition Artistic Director (and CCM Artist-in-Residence) Awadagin Pratt.

Thurmond and Pratt’s program promises to be a true blending of genres, as the duo present the world premiere of “VII Structures” for two pianos, bass and percussion, which has influences from Bill Evans to Sergei Prokofiev to Keith Jarrett to Olivier Messiaen.

Pratt also promises that the concert will feature a rousing Fourth of July encore!

CCM News

CCM Video: Introducing CCM’s Summer Film Scoring Institute

Earlier this month, CCM launched a new two-week immersion program in contemporary film music composition and production.

Under the direction of CCM Professor of Commercial Music Production Thomas Haines, the CCM Film Scoring Institute gives young composers the opportunity to work with acclaimed industry professionals like Blake Neely (TV’s Arrow and The Mentalist), Jeff Rona (movies Traffic, Black Hawk Down and The Thin Red Line), Tyler Bates (TV’s Californication and Low Winter Sun), Jack Smalley (movie orchestration on The Last of the Mohicans, The Gladiator and Conan the Barbarian) and Lennie Moore (video games Fighter Within and Halo: Combat Evolved).

From June 2 – 13, students will experience 60 hours of instruction in writing labs, master classes and recording studios.

In today’s video, Haines and Neely discuss the industry in general and what our young recruits are doing during their residency at CCM. Stay tuned for more behind-the-scenes looks at this exciting new summer program.

Learn more about the CCM Film Scoring Institute by visiting

CCM News CCM Video

CCM Announces Partnership with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and World Piano Competition

2012 World Piano Competition Gold Medal Winner Alexander Yakovlev.

2012 World Piano Competition Gold Medal Winner Alexander Yakovlev.

Cincinnati’s World Piano Competition, an annual classical piano competition featuring top performers from across the globe since 1956, is undergoing an expansion with two exciting new collaborations and instituting a variety of changes aimed at enhancing the quality of the event and making Cincinnati a truly world-class destination for classical piano performance.

Primary among the changes at the re-imagined competition, already a highly respected event, are partnerships with two of the city’s cultural cornerstones – the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) and the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (CSO). Beginning with the July 2013 competition, finalists in the Artist Division will have the distinct honor of performing with the world-renowned CSO, made up of some of the world’s finest musicians and an ensemble that regularly collaborates with classical music’s premier performing artists. The performances featuring the finalists  will be led by CSO Associate Conductor Robert Treviño. The event will also move to CCM, one of the nation’s top performing and media arts conservatories, where the acclaimed faculty will oversee upgrades to the competition’s jury system.

Learn more about this exciting new partnership in today’s issue of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

CCM News