James Franco, co-producer of the new film 'Goat,' currently filming in Cincinnati.

CCM Drama Students and Faculty Cast in James Franco Produced Feature Film ‘Goat’

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We are thrilled to report that four current students and one faculty member from CCM’s Department of Drama have been cast in Goat, a feature film currently shooting in Cincinnati. The Andrew Neel directed film stars Virginia Gardner, Nick Jonas and Ben Schnetzer.

James Franco, Christine Vachon, David Hinojosa, Pamela Koffler, Vince Jolivette and David Gordon Green produce in association with Killer Films and Rabbit Bandini Productions.

Goat is the story of two brothers, the younger of whom, after he suffers an assault that leaves him physically and mentally wounded, pledges the same fraternity as his brother.

CCM Drama adjunct faculty member Denise Dal Vera will play the mother of Nick Jonas. Current students Clare Combest and Annie Grove booked speaking roles, and Ryan Garrett and Spencer Lackey booked recurring extra roles in the fraternity.

Casting Director d. Lynn Meyers teaches audition techniques for students in CCM Drama, and helped the four Class of 2017 students be seen for the film. “They did great,” remarked Meyers, who also serves as the Producing Artistic Director of Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati.

CCM Drama embarked on a new film initiative this year, adding film experiences to the curriculum. All Drama students will participate in an annual 48-Hour Film Festival, and the department will produce its first co-produced film with CCM E-Media next year. You can learn more about that new collaboration here.

“CCM Drama students are in demand for film and television roles nationally, and we’re excited to see that trend continue in Cincinnati,” says CCM’s A.B., Dolly, Ralph and Julia Cohen Chair of Dramatic Performance Richard E. Hess.

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CCM Village in the spring of 2014. Photography by Dottie Stover.

CCM Welcomes Diane Petrella as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies

Diane Helfers Petrella, incoming  Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies at CCM.

Diane Helfers Petrella, incoming Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies at CCM.

CCM Dean Peter Landgren has announced the appointment of Diane Helfers Petrella to the position of Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Director of Graduate Studies. This appointment becomes effective in August of 2015.

Petrella comes to CCM from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, where she served as Associate Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy, Chair of the Keyboard Studies Division and Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. During this appointment, she also served as President of the Missouri Music Teachers Association from 2010 to 2012.

“Through the interview process, I found Dr. Petrella to be an individual who is committed to excellence, a collaborative and creative thinker, an unflappable multi-tasker and one who is eager to work with all constituents through the full spectrum of disciplines housed within CCM,” Dean Landgren commented.

Prior to her tenure in Kansas City, Petrella held a similar teaching appointment at Oakland University in Rochester Hills, Michigan from 2001 to 2006. She has also taught at Texas Wesleyan University, the University of North Texas and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and she was on the piano faculty of Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp for ten years, serving as chairperson of the camp’s piano department from 2000 to 2002.

Petrella and her husband—percussionist Nick Petrella —formed the Petrella Ensemble in 2002, which has since taught and performed throughout the United States and in Mexico, Poland, Austria and the Czech Republic, actively performing and commissioning new music. In 2006, the duo published The Musicians Toolbox: Thoughts on Teaching and Learning Music, which has been embraced by NAMM, supportmusic.com and other music advocacy organizations, and was contracted for distribution by Alfred Publications in 2012.  The Petrellas also collaborated on “I’ve Got Rhythm, I’ve Got Phrasing,” an article published in the August/September 2012 issue of American Music Teacher.

Diane Petrella is also extremely active as a solo performer and clinician. She has presented at the national conferences of the College Music Society, Music Teachers National Association, and the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Forum. She has appeared as a soloist with several regional orchestras and is active as a soloist, collaborative pianist, speaker and adjudicator throughout North America, including her recent appointment to the College of Examiners of the Royal Conservatory in Toronto, Canada. Petrella served as a member of the Program Committee for the 2014 National Conference of the College Music Society and as Chair of the Collegiate Chapter Award Committee for the Music Teachers National Association. For her service, the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance awarded her the Kauffman Award for Outstanding Service in the spring of 2015.

Petrella holds a DMA in Piano Performance from the University of North Texas, an Artist Diploma from Texas Christian University, an MM in Piano Performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a BM in Piano Performance and Music Education (magna cum laude) from Eastern Illinois University.

Please join us in welcoming Diane Petrella to the CCM family!

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Participants from the Music for Youth in Cincinnati's (MYCincinnati's) free youth orchestra program in Price Hill.

CCM Hosts Gathering of Midwestern “El Sistema” Inspired Programs This Weekend

This Saturday, May 9, CCM will welcome “El Sistema” inspired programs from throughout the region for the Fourth Annual Midwestern Seminario.

Hosted by CCM’s Preparatory Department and Office of Community Engagement, the event will draw nearly 200 young performing artists who are involved in programs inspired by “El Sistema,” Venezuela’s National Network of Youth and Children Orchestras. Over the past 35 years, El Sistema has evolved into a world-renowned youth development program, which uses music as a vehicle for social change. El Sistema’s success in helping children build better futures has led to the creation of similar programs in over 30 countries around the world.

Participating programs include North Limestone Music Works (Lexington, KY), Shift: Englewood Youth Orchestra (Chicago), Q the Music (Dayton, Ohio), MYCincinnati (Cincinnati) and the Avondale Youth Orchestra (Cincinnati).

The Seminario‘s guest speakers will include CCM Dean Peter Landgren and UC President Santa J. Ono.

The program on Saturday, May 9, will culminate with a participant’s concert at 4 p.m. in CCM’s Corbett Auditorium. The concert is free and open to the general public!

The concert will be conducted by CCM alumni Eddy Kwon (BM Jazz Studies, 2011) and Isaac Selya (DMA Orchestral Conducting, 2014), along with Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras Artistic Director Daniel Chetel.

“We believe in the power of the arts to bring people together to create a strong, vibrant community,”  explains CCM Director of Community Engagement Anne Cushing-Reid. “This gathering reflects our ongoing commitment to community engagement and collaboration. We are also proud to support the efforts of the CCM students and alumni who are working locally with MYCincinnati, through a grant provided by ArtsWave.”

You can learn more about the other community engagement initiatives fueled by ArtsWave’s grant support here.

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Cincinnati Children's Choir, Ensemble-In-Residence at CCM.

The Cincinnati Children’s Choir Premieres the Winner of its 2015 Competition for Emerging Composers During Annual Spring Concert on May 3

Celebrate "Angelic Spring" with the Cincinnati Children's Choir on May 3, 2015.

Celebrate “Angelic Spring” with the Cincinnati Children’s Choir on May 3, 2015.

CCM presents the Cincinnati Children’s Choir’s annual spring concert, “Angelic Spring,” at 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 3, in Corbett Auditorium. A CCM ensemble-in-residence, the Cincinnati Children’s Choir is directed by Robyn Lana.

Highlights of “Angelic Spring” include Ban Ban Caliban, a choral setting of Shakespearean text composed by Dan Forrest. Performed by the Cincinnati Children’s Choir Bel Canto Choir, the piece is a quirky, fun, octatonic setting for treble choir, piano and percussion including cabasa, ratchet, vibraslap and police whistle. The performance of this piece coincides with the CCM Department of Choral Studies’ ongoing Shakespeare Quadricentennial celebration.

The Bel Canto Choir will also premiere the winner of its national competition for emerging composers. This year’s winner is Kevin Padworski from Denver with his pieceVidi Aquam.

In addition to the Bel Canto Choir, the Con Brio, Vivace and Allegro and Piccolo Coro Choirs, as well as the Cincinnati Girl Choir and Cincinnati Young Men’s Choir will be performing music from around the globe, singing of travel, hope and love. The concert will feature many alumni of the Cincinnati Children’s Choir, along with this year’s graduating seniors.

“Angelic Spring” is the start of a very busy season for the members of the Cincinnati Children’s Choir. Later on this summer, the ensemble will travel to Vatican City to perform in a mass at St. Peter’s Basilica. The Cincinnati Children’s Choir has also been asked to represent the USA at the World Expo in Milan, performing under the American flag. The annual Expo gathers countries from around the world to state their thoughts on a chosen theme. This year’s theme is “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.”

The Cincinnati Children’s Choir travels often, although international performances generally happen only once every three years. Since the ensemble had traveled to Beijing in 2014 for the International Children’s Choir Festival, this latest international opportunity was an unexpected honor!

Director Robyn Lana explains, “Participation in the program fosters joyful fulfillment, a sense of achievement, increased independence, confidence and leadership qualities in our choristers.”

Performance Time

5 p.m. Sunday, May 3

Location
Corbett Auditorium, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Purchasing Tickets

Tickets to the Cincinnati Children’s Choirs spring concert are $12 for general admission, $6 for non-UC students and FREE for UC students with valid ID.

Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online now through our e-Box Office! Visit ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice for CCM Box Office hours and location.

Parking and Directions

Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit uc.edu/parking for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit ccm.uc.edu/about/directions.
____________________

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

CCM News
Talya Lieberman in CCM's Mainstage Series production of 'Hansel and Gretel.' Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM Artist Diploma Student Talya Lieberman Wins Outstanding Performance Award at 2015 Lotte Lenya Competition

CCM artist diploma student Talya Lieberman.

CCM artist diploma student Talya Lieberman.

We are happy to report that soprano Talya Lieberman, an Artist Diploma candidate in CCM’s Opera program, won the Lys Symonette Award for Outstanding Performance of an Individual Number during the final round of the 2015 Lotte Lenya Competition.

Sponsored by the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, this year’s competition was held at the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music on April 18. Named in honor of Weill’s musical assistant on Broadway, the Lys Symonette Award comes with a cash prize of $3,500.

Now in its 18th year, the Lotte Lenya Competition is an international theatre singing contest that recognizes exceptionally talented young singer/actors, ages 19-32, who are dramatically and musically convincing in a wide range of repertoire, from opera and operetta to contemporary Broadway musicals, with a focus on the works of Kurt Weill. The judges of this year’s competition were Rebecca Luker, James Holmes and Theodore S. Chapin. You can view a full list of this year’s competition winners by visiting www.kwf.org/previous-winners.

Lieberman is the latest in a long line of CCM-trained singers to take home top honors at the Lotte Lenya Competition. CCM alumna Lauren Roesner (BFA Musical Theatre, 2013) took Third Prize in the 2013 installment of this prestigious international theater singing contest. CCM alumna Caitlin Mathes (MM Voice, 2009; Artist Diploma in Opera, 2010) earned First Prize in 2011 and fellow alumna Alisa Suzanne Jordheim (BM Voice, 2008; MM Voice, 2010; DMA candidate) progressed to the final round of the competition that same year.

About Talya Lieberman
Originally from Forest Hills, New York, Talya Ilana Lieberman is currently pursuing an Artist Diploma at CCM as a student of CCM Professor of Voice William McGraw.

A soprano, Lieberman will be singing Susanna in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro with Wolf Trap Opera as a Filene Young Artist this coming summer. She has been invited to make her recital debut with the San Francisco Opera Center as part of their Schwabacher Debut Recital series this spring. She was most recently seen performing Gretel in CCM’s Mainstage Series production of Engelbert Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

This past summer she sang the title role in Handel’s Semele as part of the Schwabacher Concert Series (Merola Opera Program). Highlights from 2013-14 include performing selections from Canteloube’s “Chants d’Auverge” with the CCM Philharmonia, as well as performing David del Tredici’s “Haddock’s Eyes” with CCM’s Café MoMus ensemble. She won the Irma M. Cooper Vocal Competition (Columbus Opera, 2014) and Alida Vane International Voice Competition (2013) in Latvia, where she studied on a Fulbright scholarship for the 2012-13 school year.

Lieberman made her New York City debut prior to departing for Latvia, singing in concert with Schubert & Co. In the summer of 2012 she participated in the voice program at the Chautauqua School of Music, where she was featured in Villa-Lobos’ “Bachianas Brasileiras” with the cello studio.

Lieberman is a convert from the orchestra pit and started singing after receiving her master’s degree in trumpet performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts under the tutelage of Judith Saxton. She completed her BA at Duke University with highest distinction in linguistics (Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude). She is a two-time winner of full tuition and stipend—winning the Russell-Seybold Award and Italo Tajo Award, respectively—at CCM’s annual Opera Scholarship Competition.

Lieberman has lived a few lives before coming to opera full-time; she worked on sleep apnea research as a research coordinator at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, served as program coordinator for the El Sistema inspired program Play On, Philly!, and had a short stint as a singer-songwriter. She is an avid student of contact improvisation and various forms of meditation. She loves reading, writing, editing, working with children, teaching and being an aunt.

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CCM presents 'You're Welcome (A Cycle of Bad Plays),' running April 23 - 25, 2015.

CCM’s Studio Series Comes to a Close With the Debate Society’s ‘You’re Welcome (A Cycle of Bad Plays),’ Running April 23 – 25

CCM’s Studio Series concludes with a production of Hannah Bos, Paul Thureen and Oliver Butler’s You’re Welcome (A Cycle of Bad Plays), running April 23 – 25 in the intimate Cohen Family Studio Theater. Admission is free, but reservations are required. Tickets become available through the CCM Box Office at noon on Monday, April 20.

First produced by Bos, Thureen and Butler’s Brooklyn-based theatre company, the Debate Society, You’re Welcome makes its CCM debut under the direction of Assistant Professor of Drama Brant Russell, who also performs in the play. This marks the first time that Russell has both directed and acted in a production.

Russell explains that You’re Welcome is loosely about why people pursue theatre and why we love it. He says it’s a “raucous comedy and a damning critique of theatre as an art form.”

Comprised of five short plays, including a farce, an anti-drunk driving PSA, a staged reading of a play called “Monsters Trucks,” a 15-minute improvised piece and a “wheels come off” piece, You’re Welcome is theatre at its best, making fun of itself while maintaining its truthfulness.

Amidst the comedy and silliness, there are also moments of emotional honesty. Russell recently directed CCM’s Mainstage Drama Macbeth this past October and wanted to do something different. He chose You’re Welcome because he wanted to find the “smartest, stupidest thing… a play that was self-effacing, intelligent but not heady, goofy but with integrity.”

With a cast of only nine composed mostly of juniors and a few sophomores, the students have been able to work closely together. Recently, the members of the Debate Society came to CCM for a workshop and got the students into teams for writing and acting exercises.

Junior Drama major Alison Sluiter says she plays herself in this production. She explains, “There’s a lot of give and take amongst my fellow cast mates. Creativity is in the air constantly whenever we are in the space, especially during a scene where we have incorporated improvisation. It has been both challenging and joyous during these rehearsals, pushing my scene partners without breaking character. When working with people you’ve known in the past three years, we know each others’ buttons and it’s fun to play and explore possibilities.”

Performance Times

  • 8 p.m. Thursday, April 23
  • 8 p.m. Friday, April 24
  • 2 & 8 p.m. Saturday, April 25

Location
Cohen Family Studio Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Reserving Tickets
Admission to You’re Welcome (A Cycle of Bad Plays) is free, but reservations are required. Tickets become available at noon on Monday, April 20. Please visit the CCM Box Office or call 513-556-4183 to reserve. Limit two tickets per order.

Parking and Directions
Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit uc.edu/parking for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit ccm.uc.edu/about/directions.

____

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation 

Drama Studio Series Sponsor: Neil Artman and Margaret Straub

Community Partner: ArtsWave

CCM News
CCM alumnus Tung-Chieh Chuang.

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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