EMPIRE STATE YOUTH ORCHESTRA CARLOS ÁGREDA, MUSIC DIRECTOR 2020-2021 SEASON | SPRING EDITION VOLUME 1
Challenging • Exciting • Rewarding • Worthwhile We focused completely on making sure our musicians were able to continue rehearsing and making music while maintaining all COVID protocols. And we were thrilled to make it happen. It was not ever easy, but if we needed some motivation, all we had to do was drop by a rehearsal (appropriately masked!) and see the absolute joy of our musicians who were still able to #soundtogether. And we are proud to say that there was not one case of COVID within our Ensembles that was contracted from any ESYO endeavor. Now we are looking to next year, and while we aren’t sure what it will bring – we do know that, after the last year, we are prepared. And ready. And excited. Why are we writing? To ask you to please help us fill the bucket that was depleted by COVID, so we start next season free of the financial drain from this year, which included: • The $100,000 unexpected rehearsal space rental; • The cost of live streaming every rehearsal all year long for all ensembles; • The cost of producing 26 concerts virtually; • The cost of designing and subsidizing all PPE for 10 different instruments. We so appreciate all of your past support. Now, at this critical juncture, we are asking you to join with us again. Your support will make sure Jenna doesn’t have to worry about financial obstacles to join; that Carl will get the extra help needed through Sectionals; and that all the musicians will experience the best teaching possible through Master Classes. It’s a whole lot of serious fun! All our very best, Rebecca Calos Executive Director Anne-Marie Gorman Doyle Director of Development
CARLOS ÁGREDA, MUSIC DIRECTOR SpringUP with ESYO! Twelve ESYO ensembles blossom on the virtual stage performing the music you love. Enjoy each mainstage performance from the comfort of your own home with ESYO’s new Virtual Concert Hall! WEDNESDAY JUNE 9, 2021 TO SUNDAY, JUNE 13, 2021 VIRTUAL CONCERT HALL POWERED BY ESYO.ORG SPONSORED BY
SCHENECTADY, NY 12305 | 518.382.7581 | ESYO.ORG 2020 -2021 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Kurt Bratten Co-Chair Patty Michaelson Co-Chair Caitlin Mochrie Treasurer Mary Clyne Secretary Keith Abatto Daniele Adkins Robert Altman Brian Axford Robert Bengraff Heather Chan James Haertel Andrew LaCoppola Kara Lais Michael Lister Barry Richman Christopher Shiley Elizabeth Silver George Vorsheim Omar Williams Andrea Restrepo Operations Assistant, Symphony Orchestra & String Orchestra Manager, & Librarian Anne-Marie Gorman Doyle Director of Development Justin Cook Marketing & Publications Manager Sam Herman Administrative Assistant, Graphic Designer, & Brand Manager Mark Foster ESYO Youth Percussion Ensemble John Antonio ESYO Repertory Percussion Ensemble Genoveffa Vitale ESYO Chamber Percussion Ensemble & Concertino Percussion Ensemble Dr. Robert Hansbrough ESYO Wind Orchestra Lee Russo ESYO Youth Jazz Orchestra David Fisk ESYO Repertory Jazz Orchestra Julie Taylor ESYO Concertino Wind Choir Scott Hopkins ESYO Concertino Brass Choir Rae Jean Teeter Melodies of Christmas Chorale Teresa Gatta Norton String Teaching Artist at Proctors Matthew Johnson Lead Strings Teaching Artist at Proctors Amarie King Wind Teaching Artist at Van Corlaer & Proctors Lin Polster CHIME at Proctors Site Manager Bridie Schnore Yates Site Leader & String Teaching Artist Nicholaus Smith Brass & Percussion Teaching Artist at Proctors Susan Wheeler Van Corlaer Site Leader & Band Teaching Artist Monica Wilson-Roach CHIME Master Teaching Artist ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF Rebecca Calos Executive Director Lisa Stulmaker Finance Director Sue Lascoe Director of Operations & Repertory Orchestra Manager CONDUCTING STAFF Carlos Ágreda Music Director & ESYO Symphony Orchestra David Beck ESYO Repertory Orchestra Joseph Gumpper ESYO String Orchestra Leo Milman ESYO Concertino Strings Richard Albagli ESYO Youth Percussion Ensemble & ESYO Repertory Percussion Ensemble CHIME STAFF Jared Shortmeier Administrative Director Connor Armbruster String Teaching Artist in Troy Jessica Bowen Troy Site Leader and String Teaching Artist Nyasia Darby CHIME at Yates Site Manager Cathy Gatta String Teaching Artist at Yates
Dear Friends, I am incredibly excited to welcome you to our ESYO SpringUP Festival to celebrate the closure of this unique season. After the outbreak of the COVID-19 Pandemic we entered this season with a lot of uncertainty and challenges, and this ESYO SpringUP Festival is the materialization of the power of youth to overcome challenges for the sake of music, which is the reason why this is incredibly moving and inspiring. When COVID-19 threatened to silence ESYO, our vibrant young musicians refused to be silent. Inspired by their passion, our conductors and staff worked hard to incorporate creative strategies designed to keep everyone safe. We split our large orchestras into smaller chamber orchestras, commissioned the creation of specialized PPE for our winds and brass musicians, stayed social but kept our distance, adapted to new orchestra layouts, and learned to play our part without having a stand partner. Even in the face of quarantine, many students logged on and attended rehearsal using ESYO Stream, our new online rehearsal platform. As challenging as the last several months have been, we've done our best to turn each challenge into an opportunity. Our decision to create smaller orchestras have allowed us to discover and explore new repertoire, and our Virtual Concert Hall allows virtual audiences from Albany to Europe and even Cajicá in Colombia the chance to invite ESYO into their homes. Most importantly, the opportunity to play together in-person after months of remote learning has reignited our appreciation for our friends, neighbors, and the music we love. This Festival represents the commitment, passion and strength of each young ESYO musician. And it is deeply inspiring that the new generations continue to demonstrate that the arts matter, that overcoming paradigms and working hard for the arts is worth it for the greatness that Music awakens in humanity, particularly in our times, particularly in our societies. It's a testament to our resolve, and proof that we were able to overcome the challenges presented by the pandemic powered by that belief. We made it, and that is why these concerts mean a lot to us; we are grateful we were able to record and produce beautiful music for you to enjoy at home. I hope that you enjoy tonight's concert as much as our musicians enjoyed working through this challenging season, and log on in the future to enjoy the beautiful music that comes from the joyful pursuit of musical excellence. So, this is a message of appreciation to YOU, our audiences and supporters that continue to echo our mission to empower youth to change the world. This season gave us a lot of lessons, and, undoubtedly, ESYO is "springing up" out of this season with a lot of growth and we are equipped with new amazing tools to continue impacting the lives of the beautiful young people that believe in the power and magic of music. Best, Carlos Ágreda Music Director ESYO Symphony Orchestra Conductor
Empire State Youth Orchestra (ESYO) is continuing to challenge and inspire more than 600 of the most talented youth from the Capital Region of New York, Western New England, and all walks of life to achieve musical excellence through intensive instruction and high-level performance. Through twelve performing ensembles and ESYO CHIME, ESYO is igniting a lifelong love of music in the youngest members of our communities, and breaking boundaries between communities and backgrounds to grow the future of music. ESYO’s progressive program nourishes students in elementary through high school, growing with them as they expand their musical and personal capabilities. But, the ESYO experience is about more than exceptional music. Through the ESYO experience, young people build confidence, practice teamwork, and cultivate personal drive, giving them the skills to achieve success in music, college, and beyond. ESYO alums go on as leaders in fields as diverse as engineering and art. They can also be found in all areas of the music industry – from national orchestras and recording studios to music classrooms. ESYO also seeks to expand its impact beyond its membership, believing music can be a catalyst for social change in the communities in which ESYO musicians live, learn, and play. This belief is why ESYO has helped raise more than $8 million for Albany Medical Center’s pediatric oncology program through the Melodies of Christmas concerts. To further expand its impact, ESYO launched ESYO CHIME in 2015. Through free, daily music instruction and mentorship, ESYO CHIME provides young musicians in Schenectady, Albany, and Troy schools with comprehensive support from elementary school through high school. The CHIME team places children on the path to musical excellence and cultivates skills needed to succeed in all areas of life, including collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking. Founded by parents and music teachers Barry Richman, Eleanor Barnes, and Lois Lyman in 1979, the ESYO experience now includes everything from concerts at Carnegie Hall to benefit performances, master classes with exceptional musicians like the Shanghai Quartet, DEKA Quartet, and the Musicians of Ma’alwyck to international tours of Europe and Asia. All of this would not be accomplished without the support and the generosity of many individuals, corporations, and foundations whose gifts are an investment in the future of music. The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged us to learn, but not just in a classroom. It has challenged us to rehearse, but not always in a rehearsal room. It has challenged us to perform, both in-person and online. This season, join ESYO as we return to the stage and celebrate the grand opening of our first-ever Virtual Concert Hall. For more about ESYO or to pledge your support go to esyo.org. If you are a young musician interested in joining ESYO, there is a place for you! For information on auditions visit esyo.org/join.
ESYO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA CONDUCTOR Described as “a major career in the making” by Seen and Heard International, Colombian conductor and composer Carlos Ágreda is noted for his dynamic presence on the podium and breadth of repertoire, with musical interests ranging from opera and choral to contemporary and Latin-American music. Currently Music Director and Conductor of the Empire State Youth Orchestra, Ágreda was formerly a Conducting Fellow at the Curtis Institute of Music under the mentorship of Yannick Nézet-Séguin. He was also previously the Music Director at Corporación Coral y Orquestal de Colombia. Ágreda first came to international attention when he reached the third round in the Cadaqués Orchestra International Conducting Competition in 2013 at the age of 22, the youngest of the short-listed candidates. Since then, he has worked with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, Manchester Camerata, Curtis Symphony and Liverpool Mozart orchestras amongst others and has conducted a number of fully-staged opera productions with Opera Philadelphia and Curtis Opera Theatre. Highlights of the coming season include his inaugural concert as Music Director with the Empire State Youth Orchestra, a return to the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia as well as concerts with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Medellín. An advocate of new music, Ágreda has conducted more than thirty world premieres. Particular highlights have included a concert of new works by British composer Jonathan Harvey at London’s Wigmore Hall and an appearance at the New Music North West Festival in 2016. He was invited to lead the Conducting Workshop at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival 2016 and in 2017, joined the Cabrillo Contemporary Music Festival as Conducting Fellow. As assistant conductor, Ágreda has worked alongside internationally renowned names such as Juanjo Mena, Yan Pascal Tortelier, David Robertson, Jon Storgårds and Sir Mark Elder with orchestras such as the Saint Louis and Pittsburgh symphony orchestras. He has also collaborated professionally with Sir Andrew Davis, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, and Osmo Vänskä and has been invited to participate in many high-profile masterclasses with Stéphane Denève, Leonard Slatkin, Vasily Petrenko, Cristian Macelaru and Michael Tilson Thomas, to name a few. Ágreda is passionate about social transformation through art and community education, as well as the power of symphonic music to bring young people together. He has been involved in projects with Play on Philly (POP) and All City Orchestra in Philadelphia, Stockport Youth Orchestra in the UK and the Orquesta Unimúsica in Colombia. He was also the Music Director of a special community project at the Bogotá City Hall in collaboration with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Bogotá. Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Carlos Ágreda studied conducting and composition at the Juan N. Corpas University under the mentorship of Jorge Alejandro Salazar, graduating with summa cum laude honours in 2012. He continued his conducting studies at the Royal Northern College of Music on the prestigious Master’s programme under the tutelage of Clark Rundell and Mark Heron, graduating with distinction in 2016 before taking up a Conducting Fellowship at the Curtis Institute of Music. As a composer, Ágreda has won several prizes, including First Prize for both the Stockport Youth Orchestra Composition Competition (2016) and the Gustavo Gómez Ardila Composition Competition (2012). Several of his compositions have been performed by the leading professional orchestras in Colombia.
PROGRAM Virtual Concert Hall SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Wednesday, June 9, 2021, 7:00 PM SYMPHONY STRING ORCHESTRA & REPERTORY ROMANTIC ORCHESTRA AT THE SPRINGUP FESTIVAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA | SYMPHONY STRING ORCHESTRA CARLOS ÁGREDA, CONDUCTOR GEORGE WALKER Lyric for Strings CLARICE ASSAD "Impressions" Suite for Chamber Orchestra (Mvts. 2, 3, 5) ANTONÍN DVORÁK ˇ Serenade for Strings, op.22, B.52, E major (Mvts. 1, 2, 3) REPERTORY ORCHESTRA | REPERTORY ROMANTIC ORCHESTRA DAVID BECK, CONDUCTOR FRANZ LISZT Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 in d minor JOHN TATGENHORST Poem for Orchestra BEDRICH SMETANA ˇ Dance of the Comedians from “The Bartered Bride" MAKING A DIFFERENCE This performance is made possible in part by the generosity of
FIRST VIOLINS Caitlin Weinheimer Concertmaster Kristine Kim Assistant Concertmaster Cadence Young Justin Dong Juni Kwon Minyi Chen VIOLAS Peyton Roach Principal Annika Robin Assistant Principal Grace Wei Isabella Wheeler Jethro Lee SECOND VIOLINS Pallavi Datta Principal Ingrid Colafati Assistant Principal Daniel Joung Will Vartuli Sarah Biazon Caitlin Chung Sungwon Lee BASS Sophia Barnes Principal Jordan McMaster Assistant Principal CELLOS Trey Coughlin Principal William Wu Assistant Principal Vincent Zhang Stilian Mile Ani Gregori Asadourian Delaney Bryson REPERTORY ROMANTIC ORCHESTRA FIRST VIOLINS Xuning Ying Concertmaster Faith Borkowski* Assistant Concertmaster Joshua Bourassa Hyunseo (Eric) Kim Georgia Burtt* Romeo Vashishth* Fay Hu SECOND VIOLINS Nguyet-Vien Le Principal Ela Yucel Assistant Principal Annalise Bourassa Lillian Rogers Maxwell Wang VIOLAS Matthew Kenyon Principal Samuel Wang Assistant Principal CELLOS Joanna Chen Principal Casey Gao Assistant Principal Josephine Calareso Christina Cheng Aman Patel BASS DeVaughn Miller FLUTES Inari Sohn Rachel Zeh OBOES Madeleine Stewart Melinda Wetzel CLARINETS Emma Edgar Cristina Rojo BASSOON Gigi Stewart HORNS Marie Collison Hannah Shufelt TRUMPETS Jay-Era Johnson Elyse Roepe TROMBONES Ronan Tiu Anthony Zhang BASS TROMBONE & TUBA Michael Blostein* TIMPANI Austin Ernst *Guest
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