John J. Cali School of Music - Spring 2010

On the Move

News Highlights. . .

Music Therapy Day a Huge Success

In February, the annual Music Therapy Day took place in the John J. Cali School of Music's Jed Leshowitz Recital Hall and was a huge success.  The full day event, planned for college-bound students interested in the Music Therapy program, consisted of a greeting and information session, including an introduction to the University, the College of the Arts, the John J. Cali School of Music, and the Music Therapy Programs.   Prospective students were then able to attend the Guided Imagery and Music course, as well as get a brief tour of the brand new John J. Cali School Building. The group then broke for lunch, and returned to view several documentary films featuring examples of music therapy in action. The day concluded with a full campus tour. Montclair State offers both an MA in Music Therapy and an MA in Music, with a Music Therapy Concentration. To find out more about the program, click here.


In Memory of Violinist Oscar Ravina

Oscar Ravina, New York Philharmonic violinist, professor of music at Montclair State University, beloved teacher, husband, father, and grandfather, died at home on February 25th after a long illness, comforted by hospice care.  Born in Warsaw in 1930, Ravina studied at the Leningrad Conservatory, and continued his studies after World War II at the Bruckner Conservatory and the Academy of Music in Vienna.  Encouraged to emigrate to the US by Isaac Stern, he arrived in New York in 1950 and worked in the Radio City Music Hall Symphony before joining the New York Philharmonic in 1963.   As a Philharmonic musician he worked with the greatest conductors of his generation and performed on five continents.  Active in chamber music he co-founded and led the Philharmonia Virtuosi of New York and the Ravina String Quartet and performed with the New York Philharmonic Chamber Ensembles.  A devoted, passionate, and beloved teacher, he was named professor emeritus after his retirement from Montclair State University, where he taught for over twenty-five years.  He is survived by his wife, Ruth Ravina, two sons (Mark Ravina and Bernard Ravina), and seven grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to:  MSU Foundation - Oscar Ravina Talent Grant in Music, c/o Keith Wiggs
Montclair State University, 1 Normal Avenue, Montclair, NJ 07043
Tel: 973-655-3443


People Spotlights . . .


Valerie Bernhardt (Visiting Specialist – Voice) appears on the roster of the Metropolitan Opera for the 2009-2010 season, as a cover in From the House of the Dead by Janácek. Ms. Bernhardt also made her German operatic debut in July 2009 as Abigaille in Verdi’s Nabucco with Theater Pforzheim.

Paul Cohen (Visiting Specialist – Saxophone) performed with the Greenwich (CT) Symphony  in Symphonic Dances by Rachmaninoff; performed on four different saxophones (sopranino, soprano, alto, tenor) in works of Ravel and Pautza with the Plainfield Symphony; and premiered the wind version of the Concerto for Soprano Saxophone by Jennifer Higdon. He was active in presenting masterclasses and coachings, including lecture/demonstrations at the American School in London. He was artist-in-residence at the Royal Welch Conservatory of Music and Theater in Cardiff Wales. Boosey and Hawkes published three arrangements by Prof. Cohen of music by Aaron Copland for saxophone quartet.

Lisa DeLorenzo (Music Education) was a presenter at the National Network for School Renewal (NNER) national conference in Bellevue, WA (October 2009).  In December she was an invited clinician for string orchestra at Arts High (Newark, NJ).  She has also been a clinician for in-service workshops in the Paramus School District. She is a presenter at the New Jersey Music Educators Association (NJMEA) convention and Collegiate NJMEA conference at MSU

Alan Ferber (Visiting Specialist – Jazz Trombone) played in the Broadway revival of Ragtime. Despite its brief run, it garnered some stellar reviews. He also performed on the John Hollenbeck Large Ensemble's Grammy-nominated CD. He played trombone on a west coast tour with Charlie Hunter's Trio with fellow brassmen Curtis Fowlkes and Eric Biondo, as well as Eric Kalb on drums, and Charlie on 7-string guitar. The Asphalt Orchestra, a mobile new music ensemble in which he plays, and for which he arranges, performed a sold-out concert at the opening of the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center.  The New York Times was there and reported it as a band where "virtuosity, playfulness, compositional ingenuity and sheer visceral power mingle."  David Patrick Stearns of the Philadelphia Inquirer named Asphalt Orchestra among the Best in Classical Music 2009, alongside the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Andrew Hertz (collaborative pianist) was music director of Revision Theatre’s The Full Monty in the summer of 2009. He also had a reading of his musical Burbach/Lupone! at Ars Nova in September. Two of his MSU musical theatre students, Paul Pilcz and Allison Strong, were in Bye Bye Birdie with John Stamos on Broadway.

Paul Hostetter (Director of Orchestral Studies) completed a two week, seven city tour of China conducting orchestras in several cities including Shanghai and Nanjing over the New Year's holidays. He was joined by Aaron Wunsch, pianist on the Juilliard School faculty, and Claremont Trio cellist Julia Bruskin.

During the 2009-2010 season, Gregory Lamar's students are performing major roles in opera productions throughout the world, including Il Tabarro (Metropolitan Opera), Die Walküre (Hawaii Opera), Ariadne auf Naxos (Bayerische Staatsoper München), Don Pasquale (Komische Oper), Tannhauser (Staatstheater Nürnberg), Carmen (Teatro alla Scala), Die Zauberflöte (Volksoper Wien), Das Rheingold (Opéra Bastille), Lucia di Lammermoor and The Rake’s Progress (Royal Opera Copenhagen), and  Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Gothenborg Opera Sweden).

David Lopato (Adjunct Professor – Introduction to Jazz) released a new CD titled Many Moons. It is all original pieces for solo piano.

Eric Olsen (Adjunct Professor – Theory) has performed recently as a classical and jazz pianist and conductor. Performances include appearances with vocalist Gail Allen at Cecil’s Jazz Club (West Orange, NJ); with Kevin Maynor, bass, at Essex County College (Newark, NJ) in Darfur, a Dramatic Cantata, with Kevin Maynor, bass; and in the Union Congregational Church Concert Series  (Montclair, NJ) where he is music director, in highlights from Mozart’s Don Giovanni.

Stephen Oosting (Voice) presented a workshop on "Psychological Issues in the Voice Studio: an Introduction" for the members of NJNATS at Columbia Teachers College on January 23 in conjunction with Dr. Rose Oosting, PhD. This is work connected to his pedagogy research. He performed Britten's Serenade with Ron Brubaker, French horn (Metropolitan Opera Orchestra), and Ron Levy, piano (MSU), in two concerts in Pennsylvania in May 2009.

Steven W. Ryan (collaborative piano) was the piano soloist with the Greater Trenton Symphony Orchestra for their New Year's Eve concert.  In Fall 2009, he played with the rock band Kansas (Carry On My Wayward Son!) for one of their New Jersey concerts. 
Marissa Silverman has recently published articles in Research Studies in Music Education and Visions of Researching Music Education. She was invited to lecture on “The Praxial Concept of Music Education” at Temple University (PA), on “Stravinsky, Taruskin and Aesthetics in Music Research” and “The Values of Music and Music Education” at the New York University Department of Music and Performing Arts (NY)
Peter Stewart
sang a role with the American Symphony Orchestra in the American premiere of Fervaal by Vincent D'Indy. He participated again in the Waverly Consort's Christmas Story, at the Kennedy Center, the Cloisters among other venues.

Gwendolyn Toth (Visiting Specialist – Harpsichord) recently conducted a sold-out performances of the Monteverdi Vespers in Washington DC and New York City. Comments included "maximum variety amid effortless unity was particularly apparent under the direction of ARTEK director Gwendolyn Toth." (Philadelphia Inquirer) and "It was a fine evening, presumably with every quarter comma in place, and cheered loudly by the packed house." (New York Times).
David Witten
was a guest speaker at Harvard University's Festival celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. His topic was "Ballet Music of Nikolai Tcherepnin." He performed a solo piano recital and presented a solo photography exhibition, both sponsored by Amici di Santa  Andrea, in Melzo, Italy. He performed a recital of piano music of Manuel M. Ponce at the "Viva Mexico" Festival in Boston, presented by New England Conservatory. He also gave a solo piano recital and taught masterclasses in Qingdao, China.

Meg Zervoulis (Adjunct Faculty - Keyboard Harmony and Musicianship) was chosen for the Goodspeed Opera House Musical Direction Intensive.



In October 2009, Jacek (Jack) Blaszkiewicz (’10, student of Mark Pakman) successfully performed Liszt's transcendental etude Eroica in Carnegie Hall.



Adam Cavagnaro (BMus ’08 – Vocal Performance) has been accepted to the Young Artists program of the Toledo Opera.

Leslie Friend (BMus ’06 - Vocal Performance) won the Rocky Mountain regional auditions of the Metropolitan Opera National Council and will compete in the semi-final auditions at the Met in the spring. She was accompanied by Robert Spillman.

Violinist Tina Na Huang (Performer’s Certificate ’09) joined the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra in September 2009. She returned to perform with the Symphony with pianist Lang Lang in Carnegie Hall as part of their Chinese Festival with conductor Yu Long.