Standing on the shoulders of the late black music critic, Raoul Abdul, Patrick D. McCoy is committed to informing the ENTIRE community about the joys of classical music.
THE MAESTRO SERIES: A chat with conductor, scholar and author Dr. Rufus Jones
Charles Dean Dixon, conductor, was born January 10, 1915 in New York, New York to West Indian parents Henry Charles Dixon and McClara Rolston Dixon. Dixon’s parents exposed him to classical music at an early age and his mother taught him to play the violin, along with a number of other instruments. By the age of nine he was considered a musical prodigy and performed on local radio stations in New York. Dixon enrolled at Juilliard School of Music in 1932 as a violin major, but soon switched to the music pedagogy program and graduated in 1936. He then enrolled in Columbia University and earned a Master’s Degree in Music Pedagogy there in 1939. While at Julliard Dixon discovered conducting and upon graduating he formed the “Dean Dixon Symphony Orchestra,” the first racially integrated group of its type in New York City. Dixon finally returned to the United States in 1970 after his hugely successful career in Europe and Australia.
THE MAESTRO SERIES: An interview with conductor Roderick Cox
Winner of the 2018 Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award by the U.S Solti Foundation, German based American conductor, Roderick Cox, has been praised as a conductor who is “paving the way” (NBC News) and recognized as a “trailblazer…a conductor who will be amongst the vanguard” (Minnesota StarTribune). Cox has gained international attention for recent appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Houston Grand Opera, and Philharmonia Orchestra (London).
Highlights and debuts in the 19/20 season include concerts with Orchestre de Paris, Dresdner Philharmonie, Kristiansand Symfoniorkester, Mannheim Staatsorchester, and Iceland Symphony Orchestra. In the US, Roderick will debut with the New York Philharmonic for the New York Philharmonic’s Young Peoples Concerts Series, the Aspen Music Festival Chamber Orchestra, Richmond Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, the Sphinx Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony and San Antonio Symphony.
Highlights among recent engagements as a guest conductor include debut subscription concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, his opera debut with Houston Grand Opera (Bizet’s Pêcheurs de Perles)as well as further debuts with BBC Symphony, Sinfonia Varsovia (Warsaw), BBC Scottish Symphony and with Philharmonia Orchestra (London) at the Brighton Festival. Further US Summer performances included a debut with the Houston Symphony and re-invitations to The Cleveland Orchestra (Blossom Music Festival) and the Minnesota Orchestra
THE CONVERSATION SERIES: An interview with soprano Janice Chandler Eteme
American soprano Janice Chandler-Eteme’s astonishing range of concert literature includes Strauss' Four Last Songs (Reading, Baltimore, Syracuse, Harrisburg and Utah Symphonies; Florida Orchestra, Fort Wayne Philharmonic; Grand Teton and Texas Music Festivals); Philip Glass' Passion of Ramakrishna (Pacific Symphony); Mahler's Second Symphony (San Diego, Baltimore, Nashville, Cincinnati, Colorado and Pacific Symphonies; Rome's Santa Cecilia Orchestra); Haydn's Die Schöpfung (Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati Symphonies); Mendelssohn’s Lobgesang Symphony (San Diego Symphony), Lokumbe's Dear Mrs. Parks (Detroit Symphony) and Can You Hear God Crying? (Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia); the Brahms Requiem (San Diego, Baltimore, Colorado Symphonies); Mahler's Eighth Symphony (Milwaukee, Grand Rapids, American and Montreal Symphonies); Beethoven #9 (Cleveland Orchestra, New Jersey and Houston Symphonies), Barber's Knoxville: Summer of 1915 (Festival Miami, Baltimore Symphony), Tippett’s A Child of Our Time (Dallas and Santa Rosa Symphonies) and Britten’s War Requiem (Lincoln and Santa Rosa Symphonies and Evansville Philharmonic). Ms. Chandler-Eteme first came to international prominence as a favorite of Robert Shaw.
THE I, TOO SING AMERICA SERIES: An interview with opera bass Kenneth Kellogg
Praised for his "commanding stage presence" and "rich, resonant bass," Kenneth Kellogg is quickly gaining recognition as a sought after young artist. Born and raised in Washington, D.C, music has been a part of his life since grade school. Nurtured in the public school system by amazing music teachers, he participated in choirs throughout the city and began formal training at the Duke Ellington School of the Performing and Visual Arts as a Vocal and Visual Arts student. Among his roles, many are staples of opera repertoire: The title role, in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, as well as Leporello and Il Commendatore, Mephistopheles in Gounod’s Faust, Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte, Ramfis and Il Re in Verdi’s Aida, Colline in Puccini’s La Boheme, the title role of Handel’s Hercules, The King in Handel’s Ariodante, Osmin in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Sarastro and the Speaker in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Sparafucile in Verdi’s Rigoletto, Fasolt in Wagner’s Das Rheingold. He led the cast in the west coast premier of Terence Blanchard’s Champion: An Opera in Jazz, as the champion boxer, Young Emile Griffith, to rave reviews with Opera Parallele. He in an Alumnus of the Adler Fellowship Program at San Francisco Opera and the Caftriz Young Artist Program at Washington National Opera. He also trained at the Academy of Vocal Arts, Wolf Trap Opera and holds degrees from the University of Michigan and Ohio University.
THE CONVERSATION SERIES: An interview with baritone Kenneth Overton
Kenneth Overton is lauded for blending his opulent baritone with magnetic and varied portrayals that seemingly “emanate from deep within body and soul.”
Raised in Philadelphia, Kenneth Overton’s symphonious baritone voicehas sent him around the globe. Kenneth is one of the most sought after Opera singers of his generation, and successfully started his season with a return to The New York City Opera performing the role of Jake Wallace in Puccini's La Fanciulla del West . Shortly thereafter, he returned to the San Francisco Opera in "the most eagerly anticipated new opera of the season" (The New York Times, 2017); the world premier of John Adams’The Girls of the Golden West, as the cover for the role of Ned Peters. Additionally, Kenneth thrived in his Hungarian debut as Porgy in the Margaret Island Open Air Theatre’s production of Porgy and Bess where he was heralded as one of “America’s most renowned Opera singers”.
THE CONVERSATION SERIES: Acclaimed composer, pianist and conductor Damien Sneed
Damien Sneed is a multi-genre recording artist and a 2014 recipient of the prestigious Sphinx Medal of Excellence honor, which is presented annually to emerging Black and Latino leaders in classical music, Sneed has also garnered attention in a wide range of other musical genres, including jazz, gospel, pop, R&B and musical theatre. He has already been featured in the New York Times multiple times for his work in various genres. A pianist, organist, conductor, composer, producer, arranger, vocal coach, professor and arts educator. Today, he joins us to chat about his career and esteemed collaborations with the late soprano Jessye Norman.