Music

Stanford Mohr Visiting Artist Majel Connery reimagines the string quartet

What happens when you imagine the string quartet as a theatrical genre? How can the inherent showmanship of the four musicians expand to interact with voice, acting and operatic performance? These are the questions Mohr Visiting Artist Majel Connery examined in her winter class, Theatricality and the String Quartet, with help from Pulitzer Prize-winning composer…

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Stanford musicologist brings the 15th century to life

Audiences often trust that performers know the history of the music they present, but even for the most dedicated performers there are unanswered questions. How, for instance, were ensemble performances experienced during the Renaissance? Do we experience them similarly today? For Jesse Rodin, associate professor of music, questions like these are central. “We might not…

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Stanford’s St. Lawrence String Quartet brings Beethoven to the San Francisco County Jail

Music lives and thrives in all sorts of unexpected places: theaters and living rooms, dingy warehouses and brightly lit stadiums. It blasts through car stereos and provides quiet comfort in moments of solitude. Stanford’s ensemble-in-residence, the St. Lawrence String Quartet (SLSQ), brought live music to an unexpected place, far removed from the concert hall. They…

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Stanford Live features world-class artists, integrates them into campus life

When the Danish String Quartet visited campus this past October, the members didn’t simply drop in for a public performance of Wallin, Janácek and Beethoven at Bing Concert Hall and head home. They also joined in a chamber music reading session with students and the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Stanford’s ensemble-in-residence. “They all read together…

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Stanford hosts Rolston String Quartet

“Where words fail, music speaks.” This simple adage, attributed to 19th-century Danish author of children’s fairy tales Hans Christian Andersen, still rings true today. His words get to the heart of why we listen to music – for its ability to express what we would otherwise never know how to say. The music of the…

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Bringing Baby back at Dinkelspiel Auditorium

Sixty years ago, one of the first successful American operas, The Ballad of Baby Doe, made its West Coast premiere at Stanford’s then brand-new Dinkelspiel Auditorium. The opera, based on the true and tragic story of Elizabeth “Baby” Doe Tabor and her romance with the wealthy silver king Horace Tabor, was commissioned by Colorado’s Central…

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Stanford alum returns to campus as visiting artist to explore connections between his art and other disciplines

When artist Will Clift, BS ’02, MS ’03, was at Stanford, his course load included classes on nearly everything but making art. As an undergraduate he majored in integrative design, an individually designed program that combined engineering, philosophy and psychology. He then earned a master’s degree in management science and engineering. With the exception of…

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Commitment to reforms paves way for Stanford Band resumption

Stanford Provost John Etchemendy has accepted proposals from the Stanford Band to address concerns about its organizational conduct. Convinced by the strength of those proposals, the provost is replacing a previously announced Band suspension with a pathway for the Band to resume activities as a student-run organization. In a Thursday letter to Band leadership, the…

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Harry Elam appointed vice president for the arts and senior vice provost for education

Harry Elam, vice provost for undergraduate education at Stanford since 2010, has been appointed to two additional key leadership roles in the Office of the President and Provost. He will now oversee the non-departmental arts programs as well as direct and coordinate critical efforts in education, President Marc Tessier-Lavigne and Provost-designate Persis Drell announced Monday.…

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Stanford Symphony Orchestra tours Catalina Island

In an annual tradition, 18 members of the Stanford Symphony Orchestra traveled down the California coast and then 26 miles across the sea to arrive at Catalina Island last month. This is the fourth year that the ensemble has made the trip to perform at the Catalina Island Museum’s Annual Holiday Symphony Concert at the…

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Gaieties marks its 105th year

As Stanford celebrates the year that it turns 125, Ram’s Head Theatrical Society is celebrating a Stanford tradition almost as old: Big Game Gaieties is turning 105. Gaieties is an original, student-written, student-produced musical parody thatPoster for Gaieties is performed in Memorial Auditorium the week before Stanford’s Big Game against Cal. This year, Gaieties is…

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Stanford Philharmonia conductor orchestrates a set of challenges

Each of the four works to be performed in Stanford Philharmonia’s first concert of the academic year presents a challenge of one sort or another, which is all part of Anna Wittstruck’s plan. Wittstruck, the acting assistant professor and interim music director and conductor of orchestral studies in the Department of Music, conducts Stanford Philharmonia,…

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Islamic Voices: Music of the Arab Spring

Music directly fueled the outbreak of the Arab Spring protests, which began in late 2010 in the streets of Tunisia and then spilled over into Egypt and spread across the Middle East and North Africa. As these protests and demonstrations of dissatisfaction with local governments were met with violent repression, revolutionaries responded with unparalleled forms…

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You never know where the Stanford Band will show up

Visitors to campus Saturday may have been a tad surprised to find members of the LELAND STANFORD JUNIOR UNIVERSITY MARCHING BAND playing various tunes from the White Plaza fountain and pool in front of the bookstore, as well as the fountain and pool in front of the Bing Wing of Green Library. That is, the…

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Medieval songs reflect humor in amorous courtships, Stanford scholar finds

Medieval courtship brings to mind images of chivalrous knights worshipping fair damsels, expressing their love for their ladies in refined and poetic language. But courtship did not play out this way for all medieval knights. Neidhart von Reuental (1190-1237), a medieval German poet, composed songs about a fictional knight whose amorous pursuits were often obstructed…

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Five things about Season Five at Stanford Live

CHRIS LORWAY was recently appointed executive director of Stanford Live and the Bing Concert Hall. Stanford Live will be celebrating its fifth anniversary. So there are five things he wants readers to know about the upcoming season: First, Stanford Live is celebrating five birthdays—those of American composers John Adams, Philip Glass and Steve Reich and…

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