CCM Student Olivier Ochanine Takes First Prize at Inaugural Antal Doráti International Conducting Competition

We are thrilled to announce that CCM student Olivier Ochanine has returned home from Budapest with first prize in hand from the inaugural Antal Doráti International Conducting Competition. Ochanine is currently pursuing his doctoral degree in orchestral conducting under the tutelage of CCM Professor Mark Gibson.

In addition to a cash prize of €1.500, Ochanine has been offered a career-advancing contract proposal with Contempoars International Artists Agency.

This exciting new competition for conductors is open to all ages and nationalities. Over the course of six days competitors advanced through five rounds in total. While the eliminatory round welcomed an unlimited number of applicants, jurors only advanced 30 people to the first round. By the end of the competition, jurors eliminated all but three outstanding contestants who advanced to the final round.

In the final round, contestants rehearsed for 60 minutes with the Budapest Symphony Orchestra MÁV. Each rehearsed two pieces, Béla Bartók’s Hungarian Peasant Songs Sz.100, and either Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6 movement I, Johannes Brahms’ Symphony No. 1 movement IV or Claude Debussy’s Prélude à l’après midi d’un faune. Directly following the rehearsal each contestant performed a work from their assigned repertoire in concert for a public audience.

The competition was judged by some of Europe’s finest conductors:

  • Tamás Vásáry (Hungary), president of the jury
  • György Lendvai, managing director of Budapest Symphony Orchestra MÁV
  • Pietro Borgonovo (Italy), artistic director of Giovine Orchestra Genovese and chief conductor of Orchestra Sinfonica di Savona
  • Vittorio Parisi, teacher of orchestra conducting at the Conservatorio G. Verdi in Milan
  • Márton Rácz (Hungary), conductor, music director, Eszterháza Centre of Culture, Research and Festivals, Esterházy Castle; Szigligeti Theatre, Szolnok
CCM doctoral student Olivier Ochanine.

CCM doctoral student Olivier Ochanine.

About Olivier Ochanine
Regularly praised for his charisma on and off the podium as well as for his breadth of orchestral repertoire, Olivier Ochanine is the youngest music director of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra in the orchestra’s history.

A native of Paris, Ochanine began music studies in France. He continued his studies in the US, and expanded his focus to orchestral conducting, taking up graduate studies and attending master classes with some of the best conducting mentors, including Mark Gibson, Gustav Meier, Marin Alsop, Larry Livingston, Robert Baldwin, John Barnett, John Farrer and Achim Holub. He obtained his Master of Music degree in Conducting from the University of Southern California (USC), where he was given the Conducting Department Award in 2003. In 2009, he began his doctoral studies in orchestral conducting at CCM.

A flutist and bassist, Ochanine earned his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Kentucky. He has also played as bassist for the Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra.

Ochanine has been invited to the California Conductors Institute several times. In 2009, Ochanine was among a handful of conductors nationally to be invited by Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director Marin Alsop to conduct in the Cabrillo Music Festival in Santa Cruz, California and to participate in a conducting workshop. He has also been a participant in CCM’s prestigious conducting workshops.

Ochanine’s term with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra, the nation’s leading orchestra, started with the 2010-11 performance season. Under his leadership, the orchestra has performed numerous Philippine premieres. In the Philippines, Ochanine is an active clinician, leading chamber music master classes at schools; he has also led conducting master classes for the Cultural Center of the Philippines. As part of his outreach mission, Ochanine serves as head visiting conductor for the Orchestra of the Filipino Youth, a program geared toward talented youth that stem from severely unfortunate financial backgrounds. Ochanine is a strong believer in advocacy and heritage, and recently won a campaign he spearheaded to save the best performance hall in Manila – the Philamlife Theater – from demolishment by a large commercial developer.

Olivier is second prizewinner in the 2015 London Classical Soloists International Conducting Competition, where he conducted the orchestra in various Beethoven symphonies. He was also selected as semi-finalist for the American Prize (2015) in the Professional Orchestra Conducting division. Finalists are announced later in the year.

Guest conducting appearances have led him to the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra, CCM orchestras and regular engagements with the Sichuan Philharmonic Orchestra. Upcoming engagements include a return to the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra and a Russian debut with the Moscow State Symphony Orchestra.

Learn more about Olivier Ochanine by visiting www.olivierochanine.com.

Learn more about CCM’s Department of Orchestral Studies by visiting ccm.uc.edu/music/orchestra.

 

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CCM Alumnus Tung-Chieh Chuang Wins Prestigious Solti Conductor’s Competition

Alumnus Tung-Chieh Chuang conducting at CCM.

Alumnus Tung-Chieh Chuang conducting at CCM.

CCM alumnus Tung-Chieh Chuang (MM Orchestral Conducting, 2009) was one of two second prize winners at the seventh Sir Georg Solti International Conductors’ Competition in Frankfurt this February. Chuang took second prize for his incredible conducting of the concert version of Leonard Bernstein‘s Overture to Candide. German conductor Elias Grandy also took a second prize award. No first prize was awarded.

Chuang was also awarded the competition’s Audience Prize, which was given for the first time in the history of the competition. Audiences were invited to vote on their favorite competitor and Chuang was the clear winner with a vote of more than 59%. Chuang was presented with an original Sir Georg Solti baton from his Frankfurt era and also received 10,000 Euro for his second prize award.

In addition, Chuang will be invited to conduct concerts with Frankfurter Opern- und Museum sorchester and the Frankfurt Radio Symphony. Further orchestras such as Badische Staatskapelle Karlsruhe, Junge Deutsche Philharmonie, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, and Polish Chamber Symphony Sopot, may offer guest engagement or assistance positions.

The Solti Conductor’s Competition was organized as Solti saw an urgent need to create a forum where young talents can present themselves and receive competent assessment of the standards they have reached.

367 young conductors aged between 19 and 35 years from 64 countries applied to this year’s competition. Of those 367, 20 applicants were invited to Frankfurt to participate in the first round and semifinal held from February 17-20, where they conducted the Frankfurt Radio Symphony and Frankfurter Opern-und Museumsorchester.

You can view the announcement of this year’s competition results here.

About Tung-Chieh Chuang
Prize winner at the Gustav Mahler Competition Bamberg and the Jeunesses Musicales Bucharest International Conducting Competition, Taiwan-born conductor Tung-Chieh Chuang displayed musical talent at a young age. Born in a family of musicians, Chuang learned to play piano and horn and had his first concerto appearance at age of 11.

Since winning the Mahler Competition in 2013, Chuang has attracted numerous world-wide engagements. Hailed for his command of musical tones and structures and rich palette of expressions, Chuang has worked with Die 12 Cellisten der Berliner Philharmoniker, Bamberger Symphoniker, Deutsches Nationaltheater und Staatskapelle Weimar, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bermen, National Symphony Orchestra (Taiwan), Taipei Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Jenaer Philharmonie, Filarmonica George Enescu, Filarmonica de Stat Sibiu, Severočeské filharmonie Teplice, among others.

In 2010, Chuang was the recipient of the Edwin B. Garrigues fellowship at Curtis Institute of Music. That same year he co-organized the Curtis Japan Benefit Concert in Church of the Holy Trinity, Philadelphia, where all proceeds were donated to Red Cross Japan for the 311 earthquake relief. In 2012, he organized the first-ever orchestra-flashmob performance in Taiwan, in which he led the National Taiwan University Symphony Orchestra as their principal conductor.

Learn more about CCM’s award-winning alumni by visiting ccm.uc.edu/about/villagenews/alumni.

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CCM's Concert Orchestra.

Award-Winning Conductor and Educator Aik Khai Pung is Named Assistant Professor of Orchestral Studies at CCM

Aik Khai Pung, Assistant Professor of Music in Orchestral Conducting at CCM.

Aik Khai Pung, Assistant Professor of Music in Orchestral Conducting at CCM.

CCM Dean Peter Landgren has announced the appointment of Aik Khai Pung to the position of Assistant Professor of Music in CCM’s Department of Orchestral StudiesPung first joined CCM’s faculty on a visiting basis in 2014. His new appointment becomes effective on August 15, 2015.

An all-around conductor and educator, Pung is music director of the CCM Concert Orchestra, NANOWorks Opera and Café MoMus, CCM’s contemporary music ensemble.

An alumnus of CCM, Pung (MM Orchestral Conducting, 2009; DMA Orchestral Conducting, 2014) studied under Mark Gibson, Annunziata Tomaro, Xu Xin, Zhang Yi and Ulrich Nicolai. He has also worked with Gustav Meier and JoAnn Falletta. Pung holds a BA from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing in addition to his degrees from CCM.

Prior to his engagement at CCM, Pung taught at Earlham College in Indiana, Akademie der Chinesische Bunte Blätter in Munich and Peking University in Beijing. He has served as head instructor of the Orchestral, Choir and Opera Conducting Workshop in Malaysia, and was a clinician for Montclair State University John J. Cali School of Music Orchestra Festival in New Jersey.

On top of his passion for teaching, Pung is actively involved in music festivals around the world such as Lincoln Center Festival (New York), Spoleto Festival USA (Charleston, S.C.), CCM Spoleto (Spoleto, Italy), Opera Theatre and Music Festival of Lucca (Lucca, Italy), Georgetown Festival (Penang, Malaysia) and Luminato Festival (Toronto, Canada) where he conducts and assists opera productions as well as symphonic concerts.

As a multi-instrumentalist, Pung plays the piano, violin, Er-hu (Chinese traditional fiddle), Chinese dulcimer and viola da gamba. On top of instrumental music, he is equally involved with vocal music. He programs and performs new operas as the music director of NANOWorks Opera. Aside from the music from the Classical and Romantic eras, Pung has conducted his research on the music of Guo Wenjing, Toshio Hosokawa, Nico Muhly, John Adams, Philip Glass and young composers such as CCM alumna Jennifer Jolley (MM Composition, 2009; DMA Composition, 2012), Danny Clay, Eric Knechtges, Li ShaoSheng and Marie Incontrera, among others.

Pung won second prize in the Taiwan Chinese Orchestra (TCO) International Conducting Competition (2015) and was the Special Award winner for Conducting Chinese Music at the First Hong Kong International Conducting Competition (2011).

He was the first international conducting student to be accepted to the prestigious Central Conservatory of Music, the top conservatory in China, where he was awarded outstanding student in 2005.

You can learn even more about Aik Khai Pung by clicking herePlease join us in congratulating him on his new appointment.

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Choral. Jazz. Orchestra. Winds. Piano. Percussion. Guest Artists. And Much More…

CCM's 2013-14 Concert Series

With nearly 40 major concert productions planned for our 2013-14 concert season, here is just a glimpse of what’s COMING UP at CCM!

Subscription and concert flex packages are on sale now. Single tickets are on sale beginning Sept. 9, 2013. Learn more at ccm.uc.edu.

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Janelle Gelfand’s ‘Arts in Focus’ Features CCM Alumna Xian Zhang

Earlier this week, the Cincinnati Enquirer‘s Janelle Gelfand profiled former CCM student and faculty member Xian Zhang.

Zhang made history as the first female music director of an Italian orchestra when she was named director of Milan’s Orchestra Verdi in 2009.

You can read Janelle’s entire post here.

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Cincinnati Enquirer Previews CCM’s Kurt Weill Festival

This weekend, the Cincinnati Enquirer‘s Jackie Demaline provided an early look at CCM’s yearlong Kurt Weill Festival. You can read her preview here.

The festival resumes next month with a Mainstage production of Kurt Weill, Langston Hughes and Elmer Rice’s great American opera Street Scene, conducted by Mark Gibson with stage direction by Steven Goldstein. Street Scene runs Nov. 15 – 18 in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater.

Visit CCM’s official Facebook page for a behind-the-scenes look at the production!

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CCM’s Resident Kurt Weill Expert Featured in New York Times

Railroads on Parade Program Cover

CCM’s resident Kurt Weill scholar, Associate Professor of Musicology bruce mcclung, was quoted in an Oct. 21 New York Times article on the discovery of a previously unknown recording of Weill’s “Railroads on Parade” composition from the 1939 World Fair.

Record collector Guy Walker discovered the recordings in 2007 and plans to release the music on CD this month, with liner notes by mcclung. Read the full New York Times article here.

CCM’s yearlong Kurt Weill Festival kicked-off earlier this month. You can learn more about that unprecedented series of events here.

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CCM Celebrates Iconic Composer Kurt Weill With Yearlong Festival

Theatre composer Kurt Weill in New City, ca. 1945 (photo: Engel). Image courtesy of the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music.

Theatre composer Kurt Weill in New City, ca. 1945 (photo: Engel). Image courtesy of the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music.

Beginning this month, CCM will celebrate the iconic work and enduring legacy of composer Kurt Weill with an unprecedented series of events. Opening on Friday, Oct. 19, and running through Tuesday, March 12, CCM’s Kurt Weill Festival will incorporate the renowned theatre composer into a broad range of both public performances and classroom exercises.

Perhaps best known for The Threepenny Opera and its opening ballad, “Mack the Knife,” Weill’s work has been championed by performers as diverse as Louis Armstrong, Bobby Darin, Nina Simone, The Doors, Judy Collins, Teresa Stratas, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Todd Rundgren, Tom Waits, Lou Reed and Sting.

CCM’s yearlong Kurt Weill Festival will include Mainstage opera and musical theatre productions, cabaret performances, collaborative concerts, master classes and more. Funded in part by the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, CCM has never before hosted a festival of this magnitude.

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Discussing ‘The Damnation of Faust’s Visuals with CCM E-Media’s Raul Barcelona

CCM Assistant Professor of Electonic Media Raul Barcelona.

CCM Assistant Professor of Electonic Media Raul Barcelona.

This Saturday, CCM presents a unique multimedia production of Berlioz’s The Damnation of Faust. CCM E-Media faculty member Raul Barcelona recently discussed his work on the project with CCM Public Information Assistant and Arts Administration student Lillian Matchett.

Lillian Matchett: Could you give me a little background about your work at CCM?

Raul Barcelona: I’ve been here now for almost two years. My role here is Assistant Professor of Electronic Media, and I specifically teach new media and video production classes. My main focus is film making, but in the past I have also worked as a web designer and graphics designer, so I am also teaching some of those new media courses as well.

LM: Could you tell me a little about how you originally got involved with the production of The Damnation of Faust?

RB: Earl Rivers [CCM’s Director of Choral Studies and conductor] approached me to see if I would be interested in developing some visuals for the performance. He had this idea that it’s a work that is very cinematic in nature, even just by itself, and he thought that it would be a good opportunity to collaborate so that the music is accompanied with visuals.

LM: What was your original inspiration for the visuals we’ll see on Saturday?

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