During our conversation with Jack Schatz, Trombonist, we learn just how networking was done in the 80s which still holds true today, playing your best and saying yes. Jack started as a piano student and tells the store of how he became a monster of the the low brass world of jingles, studio work, broadway and orchestra gigs. In his “spare” time Jack managed to beat cancer, teach at the college level and have a family in the big apple. In the Fall, Jack is taking on new adventures on the faculty at SUNY Purchase.
Countertenor Jeffrey Palmer, originally from Virginia, now lives and works in NYC after studying music in Bath, England. During the interview Jeffrey shares how he discovered his vocal specialty and explains how it is a differentiator, but does not let it put him “in a box” musically. As an artist, Jeffrey likes to use his voice to tell stories and entertain audiences by exploring his extensive vocal range and genres of music.
Dr. Tara O’Connor lit up the studio (as she does every place she goes) with her joviality and quick wit. In the interview it became apparent that if you really love what you do, you never need a “vacation”. Aside from teaching at numerous high-level music programs and performing in many prestigious professional performance ensembles, she makes time for personal music projects she believes in. As a flutist (not “flout-ist”) she had never felt the gravitational pull of the orchestral establishment being artistically fulfilled and free to blaze her own path as she has done so successfully. In our interview, you will not be able to help but be inspired and energized by her apparent love of music and the flute. And cooking. And photography.
Dean LeBlanc, associate clarinetist at the Metropolitan Opera and freelancer joined us for a lively conversation about so many aspects of clarinet playing. We talked about the various instruments he plays, mouthpieces, C-clarinets, reeds, bells, playing in a section, playing in varying acoustics, barrels, freelancing on Broadway, adjusting to various acoustics and how he started his freelance career.
This weeks guest, violinist, Joyce Hammann, sits down to discuss her own journey from being young and broke to playing on Broadway. Paying rent by playing music on street corners, to eventually playing Phantom of the Opera for 25 years and becoming the Concertmaster. Joyce lets us in on the duties of being a concertmaster: knowing when to step in, and when to let problems solve themselves. She also opens up about how crossword puzzles and the quite support of her colleagues helped her through her own rough patch dealing with “the pressure of perfectionism.”
New York Philharmonic’s Assistant Principal of Timpani and Percussion, Kyle Zerna talks about his position and audition process. We discussed his; transition from being a student to immediate professional, the logistics of practicing and learning, the organization of the percussion section, the importance of consistency across all the nine percussion instruments for auditions, path to choosing percussion as an instruments and how he was consistently motivated with new instrument discoveries within the percussion family, recent discovery of his ability to Deejaying and the parallel to playing percussion, timpani tuning and how his teaching has enhanced his own playing.
Janet Rarick, Associate Professor of Music Career Development at Rice University Shepherd School of Music shared how her own career developed and how she found her way to teaching. We talk about; the importance of taking chances on opportunities, the importance of having support system of colleagues, the process in creating a career class, various ways in teaching career skills, defining a successful career and finding a creative outlet no matter what career path one takes, understanding your inner critic, the importance of performance experience in helping with performance anxiety, the importance of personal skills in getting and keeping a job and the skill of speaking to an audience.
Elissa Weinzimmer, Voice and Movement Coach, found her career path when overuse and acid reflux caused her to loose her voice and through her study of Fitzmaurice Voicework® she found her path to teaching and helping others with helping others to find their own voice. After pursuing an MFA in Theatre Voice Pedagogy at the University of Alberta in Edmonton Canada she recently moved to New York City and is building her own teaching studio and Vibrant Voice Techniques. We talk about; the importance of maintaining your voice under demands, how to build a teaching studio, using technology to expand the scope of the teaching geographically, helping performers find their public speaking voice, differences between the younger voice and older voice and how to open their awareness to their instruments, when to seek vocal help and how a voice coach can help singers stay healthy.
Trombonist and Conductor Dr. Per Brevig, joined us in the studio to talk about how his career evolved over time and how it lead him to conducting. He talks about how everything in his career has been progressive. We talk about; the diversity of his career, his interest in Jazz, Big Band and Contemporary Music, the importance of playing a broad choice repertoire, the shift in his career to conducting, his promotion of avant-garde music, how to be a good colleague, his conducting schedule and positions, programming choices, finding pleasure in various repertoire as a listener, what a soloist can expect when meeting with a conductor, his involvement as founder in the Grieg Society, and about his close work with the various composers including Carlos Chávez for the premier of the trombone concerto.
Instrument case designer and maker, Howard Wiseman talked with Kevin Chavez during the summer 2014-Double Reed Conference in New York. Howard made his first case when he was 15 years old as a result of having difficulties carrying his heavy bassoon. The first order for a case was from his bassoon teacher, which lead to more requests for cases. While studying for a performance bassoon career, he continued making cases. Howard today continues to play and teach bassoon along side of his case and sports coaching businesses. Producing only bassoon cases for the first 13 years, he later branched out to other instruments and multiple instruments. A lifetime guarantee is offered with all his cases and he never compromising on quality. Known for his innovation, he is always looking towards new designs and projects following his passion for creating and building things.