Pianist Simone Dinnerstein, Artist In Residence
Thinking Outside The Bachs
A Residency for the 2018-2019 Season
A series of recitals, concerto performances with orchestras, and an appearance with a dance company will serve as anchor dates for the residency. This will be greatly augmented by Dinnerstein's Bach-Packing To School program in five area elementary schools, lecture opportunities for college students and adults, recitals for individual school music programs, and masterclasses for MW's annual Young Artist Competition participants.
Major projects include:
- Multiple weeks at five area schools of her Bach-Packing program, where she teaches elementary school youth about the importance of Bach's works.
- Lectures to adult learners through the Assumption College's continuing education program for seniors (known as WISE) on Bach's Goldberg Variations.
- Finally, there will be several main series concerts featuring Dinnerstein--one as a concerto soloist with The Worcester Chorus in Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy, one with Boston chamber orchestra A Far Cry, another with fellow pianists Dan Tepfer, Awadagin Pratt, and Philip Lasser performing Bach works for multiple keyboards, and finally, New Works for Goldberg Variations with Pam Tanowitz's dance troupe interpretation of this Bach piece.
Since 2012, MW has been significantly increasing its community engagement and educational programs. These programs have included regular masterclasses and coachings by visiting artists, day and week-long residencies, open rehearsals and Q&A sessions, and access to performances through MW's free ticket program. Since the 2013-2014 MW Season, widely sought-after pianist Simone Dinnerstein has been central to these efforts through her school visits and Bach-Packing program, in conjunction with her multiple recitals and concerto appearances in Worcester. She has performed in three historic venues, offered two rounds of educational programming at both the college and youth levels, and was instrumental in MW’s free Havana Lyceum Orchestra community concert. In planning for MW's 160th anniversary year, and due in great part to the strong relationship between the organization and pianist, we approached Dinnerstein to serve as MW's first ever concert season artist-in-residence.
- The Festival Singers Program of the Worcester Chorus worked with chorus students from Burncoat Middle School this season thanks to dedicated volunteers from the adult chorus.
- Pianist Simone Dinnerstein returned to perform with the A Far Cry orchestra and follow up the next day by working with students at the Worcester Arts Magnet Elementary School.
- The Boston Brass Residency Week brought this acclaimed ensemble to Burncoat High School, Southbridge High School, and South High School. The South High Band was invited to perform with Boston Brass at the public concert in Mechanics Hall. The ensemble also performed for student groups in free concerts in Mechanics Hall.
- Cellist Rene Schiffer of the baroque ensemble Apollo's Fire worked with student musicians at Burncoat High School the morning after their performance in Tuckerman Hall.
- Advanced level piano students from the studio of teacher Faina Kofman performed two concerts for students at the Jacob Hiatt Elementary School in May. The performance was followed by an interactive Q&A session.
- Music Worcester brings forward in a planned enhancement of an existing program called "Tickets to Opportunity", reaching out to educator contacts and area organizations with sponsored tickets to events for youth & families in Worcester and surrounding communities. Worcester Public Schools students and families attended many performances this season, including Igudesman & Joo: And Now Mozart, the Worcester Chorus' Handel's Messiah performance in December 2016, orchestras, ensembles and the Russian National Ballet production of Cinderella.
- February 2017 brought the return engagement of Chris Brubeck and his trio Triple Play. The artists presented a coaching session/masterclass for the jazz students at Joy of Music Program, which was held in the school's new Shapiro Concert Hall. Many students attended the concert at Mechanics Hall that evening.
- In April 2017 Latitude 41 Piano Trio performed in the Shapiro Concert Hall at J.O.M.P. and the concert was attended by many area students and families.
- Pianist Simone Dinnerstein returned for a concert at Tuckerman Hall on 1/10/16, the Bach Goldberg Variations, which she followed the next morning by attending the Worcester Arts Magnet elementary school grades 4/5 and presenting her "BachPacking To School" program to the students.
- Members of the Band of the Royal Marines and Scots Guards visited a local high school on the day of their performance on 1/26/16 and the South High School band group attended the performance as well as a Jr. ROTC Color Guard marching the British bands into Mechanics Hall.
- Conductor Boguslaw Dawidow of the Polish Baltic Philharmonic Orchestra followed a concert at Mechanics Hall on 2/12/16 with a masterclass the following morning at the Burncoat High School, working with the orchestra.
- The St. Lawrence String Quartet performance in 2/2016 at Brooks Hall, Holy Cross offered an open rehearsal/masterclass the afternoon prior to the concert.
- The 3/15/16 performance by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra also offered a masterclass opportunity, bringing Maestro Dmitry Yablonsky in a Worcester high school music program.
- The great Austrian brass ensemble Mnozil Brass performed in Mechanics Hall on 4/4/16 which was attended by South High Band and other student groups and families. The brass musicians attended a band rehearsal at South High as well, interacting with the band students and providing a masterclass.
- Post-performance Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing concert 11/16/14, a masterclass held in Washburn Hall at Mechanics Hall, for students of all ages! Anyone who brought their violin to the concert was welcome to join in.
- The Worcester Chorus of Music Worcester's Festival Singers initiative connects adult mentors with high school age singers. The students learn and sing a portion of the annual holiday Handel's Messiah with the adult chorus. Students from South High in Worcester and Wachusett R.H.S participated this year, made possible by the generous donation of time and talent of chorus members.
- The Canadian Brass ensemble concert was well attended by the South High School Band and other students and families on 1/23/15. Members of the ensemble spent the afternoon at the school, having lunch with students after a coaching session. What we started calling "Band Night" was a great success.
- The Worcester Symphonic Project on 2/22/15, a 2nd year of production, was a collaborative performance of classical symphonic music featuring an 80-piece orchestra uniting Worcester College student musicians (including WPI, Clark U., Assumption College, College of the Holy Cross), area adult professional and amateur musicians, and advanced youth musicians. Open to all ages, the structure and mission was inspired by El Sistema programs in other cities and around the world.
- Chris Brubeck's Triple Play on 5/17/15 was another post-concert masterclass and coaching opportunities for student musicians. This event as held right in the Great Hall of Mechanics Hall and young jazz musicians from Worcester's Joy of Music Program were up on stage with the great jazz and blues musicians of Triple Play.