School of Nursing programs recommended for re-accreditation Fairfield University partners with national Jesuit organization and Greater Bridgeport Area Foundation to do social justice research Fairfield University wins two federal grants totaling more than $1.6 million for bilingual and special education in Bridgeport, Norwalk and Stamford Federal government awards Fairfield University sociology professor $353,000 over three years for project with five local high schools Gallery director offers insights into 20th century art criticism at the Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center to perform at Quick Center C-Span co-founder and telecommunications leader John D. Evans to discuss intellectual property and cyber terrorism at Fairfield University Fairfield University professor becomes first nurse named to an advisory board for a major consumer magazine Fairfield University's director of jazz and popular music releases CD with acclaimed French pianist St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble performs at Quick Center Auditions to be held for radio dramas at Quick Center
A National League for Nursing visiting team has recommended continuing accreditation of the School of Nursing's undergraduate program for the maximum eight years and initial accreditation of the graduate program for the maximum five years, according to Dr. Theresa Valiga, dean of the school.
The final, official decision on the accreditation status of the programs will be made by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission in December.
"Being accredited sends a message to the community - potential students, parents, nursing peers, employers, etc. - that a program has undergone an intensive peer review and been found to meet the highest standards," said Dr. Valiga. "Accreditation bolsters recruitment and the School of Nursing's reputation."
In their report, the visiting team noted the following strengths in particular:
1) The mission and goals of the University are reflected in many aspects of faculty and student academic life.
2) There is a strong commitment of the faculty to the program, the students, and helping students achieve program outcomes.
3) The plan for systematic evaluation of all program components is well developed and comprehensive.
4) Faculty are very productive in terms of publications, participation in scholarly activities, and service.
5) Students have a variety of clinical experiences that are consistent with the mission of the University.
6) The Health Promotion Center is an integral part of the clinical aspects of the Nursing program, an excellent opportunity for students, and a service to the community.
Over three days last month, the team of program evaluators interviewed School of Nursing administrators, University administrators, including President Rev. Aloysius P. Kelley, S.J. and the school's faculty, students and alumni. In addition, they observed several classes, toured the facility and library and made off-campus visits to approximately 15 of the school's clinical agencies, including the school's Health Promotion Center where they talked with students, preceptors and agency staff.
"We are proud to note that all three visitors were very impressed with our students and alumni, as well as with the faculty," said Dr. Valiga. "They commented on how articulate, well prepared, and committed to the mission of the University the students were, and they were overwhelmed with our alumni and their comments on how this program 'changed their lives.'"
The school's re-accreditation is the culmination of a two-year self-study that, according to Dr. Valiga, "gave us an opportunity to look critically at what we do, evaluate the outcomes of what we do, and identify our strengths and the areas we want to strengthen."
The School of Nursing offers a four-year undergraduate program that leads to a bachelor of science in nursing degree and a course of studies that leads to a master of science degree and fulfills academic requirements toward certification as a family nurse practitioner or clinical specialist in psychiatric mental health nursing. The school enrolls 228 full-time students in its undergraduate and master's programs.
Posted on November 1, 1997
Fairfield University is joining the Jesuit Conference Office for Social and International Ministries and working with the Greater Bridgeport Area Foundation to conduct social justice research on a local and international level.
Fairfield will celebrate and launch the new affiliation on Thursday, Oct. 10, with a daylong meeting of Fairfield faculty researchers, Jesuit Conference researchers, Foundation representatives and other guests. The day will culminate in a formal reception at 4:30 p.m. in the University's Alumni House.
The Jesuit Conference is the Washington, D.C.-based support organization for Jesuits in the United States. Fairfield is the first Jesuit university in the nation to enter into a formal alliance with the Conference's Social and International Ministries office, which does research, generates position papers and lobbies to eliminate social injustices within the system.
The partnership will initially look at five topics: refugees and the phenomenon of migration, challenges of widespread conflict and human displacement in Columbia, information systems in underdeveloped nations, banking and insurance red-lining in poor urban neighborhoods and problem solving for better health (an international and national model of the Dreyfus Health Foundation).
For the latter two topics in particular, Fairfield will also work with its neighbors at the Greater Bridgeport Area Foundation and local communities.
"By working together we have the ability to take lessons from the local community and through the research that Fairfield University and the Jesuit Conference bring to the process, truly make a difference in urban America," said Cindy Kissin, president and chief executive officer of the Greater Bridgeport Area Foundation. "This is an enormous opportunity, not only for the Foundation, but for the community and we are privileged to be invited to participate."
Fairfield is also looking for a Jesuit university in Central or Latin America to work with on the project, said Rev. James Bowler, S.J., university facilitator for Catholic and Jesuit Mission and Identity.
Much of the faculty research at Fairfield dovetails with the Office for Social and International Ministries' mission, Bowler said. The partnership has the potential to involve a host of Fairfield faculty and students doing research that supports Fairfield's Jesuit mission.
"One of the main things that makes a Jesuit and Catholic university distinctive is the value-based research done by its faculty," Fr. Bowler said. "This offers us an opportunity to combine and expand the extraordinary amount of social justice-oriented research done by the Fairfield faculty under one umbrella."
"This collaboration will provide both students and faculty with opportunities to jointly publish important research leading to addressing major social problems," said Mary Frances Malone, Ph.D., associate academic vice president at Fairfield University.
Fairfield will offer the Jesuit Conference Office support services in areas of research, policy development and model programs. The University will also collaborate toward the development of a model for interdisciplinary research that will partner with grass roots parishioners and commit two or three seminar classes to working on particular policy issues.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35 , No. 74
At a time when enrollment of immigrant and "limited English proficient" children in Connecticut is growing at four times the rate of overall enrollment, Fairfield University's Graduate School of Education & Allied Professions has garnered two grants totaling $1,644,521 for two programs that foster bilingual education.
Project TELL (Teachers of English Language Learners) will receive $798,832 over four years to prepare 25 in-service teachers to obtain a graduate degree in bilingual education or TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and/or to assist them to meet Initial Educator Certification and endorsement requirements in bilingual education or TESOL.
Project BiSEP (Bilingual Special Education Professionals) will receive $845,689 over five years to prepare 25 bilingual candidates to serve students with limited English proficiency and/or students identified as having exceptional learning needs.
The school districts of Bridgeport, Norwalk and Stamford will recruit educators for both programs, which are being funded by the U.S. Department of Education's National Professional Development Program. Both programs provide tuition reimbursement for all participants.
Enrollment of Norwalk students whose first language is not English, went from 803 in 2000 to 895 in 2001 to 1,005 in the first nine months of 2002, said Eva de Lourdes Diaz-Edwards, Ph.D., supervisor of bilingual and ESL for Norwalk Public Schools.
"We have a growing population and very limited numbers of teachers available," Díaz-Edwards said, noting that the district went to Orlando to recruit educators.
The grant will help the local schools "grow their own" bilingual and ESL teachers, Díaz-Edwards said.
Elda Kluth, special education and student services director for the Norwalk Public School System, said she has worked successfully on similar programs with Fairfield University. "Fairfield University has been instrumental to Norwalk," Kluth said.
In the last two to three years, the Stamford Public School System has also seen big increases in enrollment of immigrants, whose first language is not English, said Lupe Dauplaise, director of programs for English Language Learners. "In order to deal with that influx we need more highly qualified teachers," Dauplaise said.
Carol LaBruno, director of the Stamford Public School System's special education programs, said the system is in need of bilingual special education instructors.
"We've already begun the process of seeing who might be interested in taking applications," LaBruno said.
Project TELL builds on a series of grants awarded to Fairfield University since 1995 to train bilingual teachers, said Sr. M. Julianna Poole, S.S.N.D., Ed.D., project director of the grant. "Project TELL will enable us to continue to support the recruitment and training of teachers in the critical shortage areas of bilingual education and English as a Second Language," Sr. Poole said.
Fairfield University is the only institution of higher education accredited by the Connecticut State Department of Education to offer Initial Educator Certification in Bilingual Education on the graduate level and one of two accredited to provide Initial Educator Certification in TESOL. Fairfield has been offering courses in Bilingual Education and English as a Second Language since 1972.
David Aloyzy Zera, Ph.D., director of Project BiSEP and director of the Program in Special Education, said BiSEP "has the potential to dramatically and positively affect the education of a significant number of persons." Candidates for the program will receive initial certification in Special Education with cross-endorsement in Bilingual Education, as well as a master of arts degree or a certificate of advanced study.
The educators "will be trained to work in a variety of settings to better meet the needs of an under-served population," Dr. Zera said.
Fairfield University's program in psychology and special education has grown tremendously under the guidance of graduate school Dean Margaret Deignan, said Dr. Zera. Fairfield University recently underwent a five-year re-accreditation process and was awarded passing scores in all areas with a large number of commendations and a significant number of high-distinction scores.
Candidates interested in applying for Project BiSEP should contact Dr. Zera at 203-254-4000, ext. 2528. Candidates interested in Project TELL should contact Sr. Poole at 203-254-4000, ext. 2873.
Media inquiries can be made to Dr. Zera and Sr. Poole as well as to Fairfield University's Office of Public Relations at 254-4190. Journalists can also contact Michael Giannotti at 576-7304, for the Bridgeport Public School System; Sheri McCready at 854-4005, for the Norwalk Public School System; and Sarah Arnold at 977-4095, for the Stamford Public School System.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 98
The federal government has awarded Fairfield University $353,000 over three years to enable Kurt Schlichting, Ph.D., professor of sociology and anthropology at Fairfield University, to implement a Geographic Information Systems program in five area high schools.
Central High School in Bridgeport, Fairfield College Preparatory School, Kolbe Cathedral High School in Bridgeport, Rice High School in New York City and Weston High School, will all receive training and GIS software, which students use to plot data onto maps.
For example, a study on urban development can be enhanced by showing students a map of population density throughout Fairfield County.
But that is just the beginning. GIS can map data to illustrate income disparity in the United States or global environmental concerns in Asia. Maps can be made with historical data to provide students with a picture of development over the years.
"It's great because it's visual, and you can improve students' analytical skills and geographical literacy," Schlichting said.
The software is a valuable tool for increasing students' knowledge, said JoAnne Jakab, principal of Kolbe Cathedral High School in Bridgeport.
"I'm very excited about this because we are always seeking to increase students' skills, particularly critical thinking and analyzing data," Jakab said.
The grant is a boon to the area, said Rep. Christopher Shays (R-Bridgeport).
"This funding will facilitate a valuable partnership between Fairfield University and neighboring high schools and allow them to keep pace with new technologies," Shays said.
Schlichting's "University-High Schools Collaboration: Analytical Skills, Technology, International Studies" program will receive $141,453 in the first year, from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE).
Only 61 of the 1,313 applications received by the Comprehensive Program were awarded money, according to Joan Krejci Griggs, program officer and coordinator of the Comprehensive Program for FIPSE, which is part of the U.S. Department of Education.
"This is an extremely competitive grant," Griggs said, adding that Fairfield's application received funding, in part, because it put new technology to innovative use and will work with high schools.
"Lots of studies have said that we need to invigorate secondary education," Schlichting said.
The GIS software increases students' use and understanding of technology in addition to providing a virtually infinite number of social and geographical lessons.
Eventually, Schlichting would like to offer the program to as many area high schools as possible. The five current high schools were asked to participate in the initial program because they all have past working relationships with Fairfield University, Schlichting said. The first step will be to visit each high school and evaluate its computer resources. The FIPSE grant will not fund computer hardware, but if a school requires more hardware, such as a server, Fairfield University will seek other funding to build up the high school's computer resources.
The grant will fund the $2,500 to $3,000 cost per high school to install GIS software and fund some of the faculty from each high school to spend about a week at Fairfield University during the summers to learn about the software. Those faculty members will continue to receive support on use of the program from Fairfield University via the Internet.
The grant will fund a GIS specialist, Chris Calienes, to work with the schools and their faculty. For the last three years, Calienes has trained and supported Fairfield University professors using the GIS program in their classes, thanks to funding from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Adrian & Jessie Archbold Charitable Trust.
Calienes has worked with a wide range of classes at Fairfield University, from international studies to statistics. He helps professors design specialized exercises for their classes that highlight a given lesson. To study social problems, for example, the class might create a map of urban poverty.
"You look at space as a variable," Calienes said. "There are wealthy areas and there are poor areas of the world. Do they tend to be clustered or spread out?"
"Dr. Schlichting has been a leader in introducing GIS technology into a variety of disciplines here at Fairfield University," said Orin Grossman, Ph.D., academic vice president at Fairfield. "It is entirely consistent with our Jesuit mission that he has expanded his outreach to include partnerships with high schools, many of which have large numbers of minority students.
"This grant will allow these students access to the most sophisticated technology and training all too often available only to the richer high schools," Dr. Grossman said. "By seeking to create a more level playing field of opportunity, Dr. Schlichting and the other faculty and students involved are truly living out the Jesuit ideal of men and women for others."
Students at Weston High School have enjoyed using the software in smaller collaborations with Fairfield because it enables them to solve real problems that they could face in the working world, said Mary Murphy, Ph.D., an English teacher at Weston.
"They sense that it's a very legitimate thing," Murphy said. "It isn't some sort of school-designed exercise." The software also provides up-to-the-minute data, Murphy said. "It enhances programs with the inclusion of information we could not otherwise obtain," she said.
Rice High School, a private school in New York City, will be among the first collaborators.
"The program is valuable to us because it would continue to put Rice High School on the forefront of technology used by secondary school students," said John Spinale, social studies chair at the school.
Spinale added that the software goes beyond the typical search for information that students are accustomed to with use of the Internet.
"With a lot of technology today, so much is about just retrieving data," Spinale said. With the GIS software, "they're creating their own results."
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 92
Diana Mille, Ph.D., director of the Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery at Fairfield University, will present "Rising Above Our Fears - Criticism in the Twentieth Century" on Wednesday, Dec. 4 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at the gallery located in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts at Fairfield University. The talk is the secDond of four Director's Choice lectures on selected topics in modern and contemporary art scheduled for the 2002-03 season.
Dr. Mille will explore and simplify the more difficult methods of analysis or criticism used to describe art in the 20th century.
Those attending can also view the gallery's current exhibit, "Sal Sirugo - From the Intimate to the Infinite." The exhibit, which closes Dec. 8, includes works by Sal Sirugo, a highly original abstract expressionist who considered abstract spaces, landscapes and semi-abstract heads, often on canvasses only a few inches in height and width.
Admission to the Director's Choice lecture is $5. Participants are invited to bring a brown bag lunch. For more information, call (203) 254-4000, ext. 2969.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 97
The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the nation's premier repertory chamber ensemble, will offer the first of three concerts this season at Fairfield University's Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts on Saturday, Nov. 16 at 8 p.m. Violinist Cho-Liang Lin, cellist Gary Hoffman and pianist André-Michel Schub will perform the complete piano trios of Johannes Brahms. A pre-concert "Art to Heart" discussion with New York Times music writer Robert Sherman will take place from 7 to 7:40 p.m.
The evening's program will include Brahms' Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano in C minor, Op. 101, Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano in C major, Op. 87, and Trio No. 1 in B major for Violin, Cello and Piano, Op. 8.
The resident company at Lincoln Center, the Chamber Music Society is devoted to the outstanding performance and creation of chamber music. Its pioneering structure of 18 artist members augmented by invited guest artists allows Artistic Director David Shifrin to present concerts of every instrumentation, style and historic period. In addition, the CMS is committed to new works, having commissioned more than 110 pieces in its 32-year history.
The CMS calls Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall home, but it has performed in national and international venues and on Public Radio International's "Chamber Music New York." The CMS has been included in nationally televised broadcasts of "Live from Lincoln Center" and makes regular appearances on National Public Radio's "Performance Today."
In 2001, the CMS won a Grammy nomination for "The Complete Works of Claude Debussy," a highly-acclaimed triple disc. Recorded live between 1995 and 1999 in various venues around the world, the album features more than 15 artists, including pianist André Watts and harpist Nancy Allen.
Among those artists was Mr. Shifrin, who does double duty for the CMS, serving as artistic director and clarinetist. A native of Kew Gardens, Queens, N.Y., Mr. Shifrin has been a member of the CMS since 1989. He became artistic director in 1992 and he is also the artistic director of Chamber Music Northwest, a summer festival in Oregon.
As a soloist, Mr. Shifrin is in demand with orchestras all over the world. He appears frequently with such ensembles as the Emerson, Guarneri and Tokyo quartets. Mr. Shifrin, a Yale University faculty member, is a past recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant and Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and he received a 1989 Grammy nomination for his Mozart clarinet solo with the Mostly Mozart Orchestra.
Born in Taiwan in 1960, Cho-Liang Lin began violin lessons when he was just five years old. At the age of 12, he went to Sydney, Australia, to continue his musical studies. Three years later, inspired by Itzhak Perlman, he arrived in New York and auditioned for Mr. Perlman's teacher, Dorothy DeLay, at the Juilliard School. Within two years of his enrollment Mr. Lin won the first Queen Sofia Violin Competition in Madrid and his concert career was launched. He is now a member of the Juilliard faculty.
Mr. Lin is the founder of the Taipei International Music Festival, the first large-scale international music festival in the history of his native country. An advocate for contemporary composers, Mr. Lin has premiered concertos by Tan Dun, Joel Hoffman, Bright Sheng, Elie Siegmeister and others. He has also released several recordings on the Sony Classical label, including two that earned Grammy nominations and one named Record of the Year by Gramophone.
Gary Hoffman is a Canadian-born, Chicago-raised, Indiana-educated cellist now living in Paris. The son, nephew and brother of professional musicians, he made his debut in London at the age of 15. In 1986, he became the first American to win the Rostropovich International Competition.
In addition to engagements with major orchestras and festivals around the world, Mr. Hoffman has made guest appearances with the Emerson and Tokyo quartets and he has toured extensively with David Golub and André Watts. His most recent recordings include works by Rachmaninoff, Chopin, Arensky and Tchaikovsky. A 1995 recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant, he has been an artist with the CMS since 1993.
Born in France, pianist André-Michel Schub came to the United States with his family when he was only eight months old and he's been a New York City resident ever since. Mr. Schub started piano lessons when he was four and made his recital debut at his current musical home, Alice Tully Hall, in 1974. He attended Princeton University and transferred to the Curtis Institute, where he studied with Rudolph Serkin from 1970 to 1973.
Mr. Schub is a frequent guest with some of the world's finest orchestras, including the Boston Symphony, the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. His recordings for Vox Cumlaude and CBS Masterworks include works by Beethoven, Brahms and Liszt, as well as an all-Stravinsky album with Mr. Lin.
Since 1997, Mr. Schub has been artistic director of the Virginia Waterfront International Arts Festival.
Tickets to the CMS performance are $30. For tickets, call the Quick Center box office at (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396 or visit the website, www.quickcenter.com.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 83
John D. Evans, co-founder of C-Span and internationally recognized telecommunications industry leader and visionary will speak at Fairfield University on Thursday Nov. 21, 2002 at 1:30 p.m.
University College at Fairfield University, in partnership with The Ireland Chamber of Commerce in the U.S., Inc., is pleased to present John D. Evans. Evans' lecture, entitled "The Digital Age and The Humanities," will be presented at 1:30 p.m. in the Dolan School of Business Dining Room.
With the digital age quickly expanding global communication, the important issues of intellectual and property rights, the continued threat of cyber terrorism and the accessibility, integrity and accuracy of information must all be carefully addressed.
"To be educated," said Evans, "is to swim easily in the world of the information revolution."
"Ireland is very interested in the whole telecommunications revolution," said Tim Moynahan, a Waterbury-based attorney and president of the Connecticut chapter of ICCUSA. "The speech revolves around the digital age. That's relevant to the economies of Connecticut and Ireland."
Evans is chairman and chief executive officer of Evans Telecommunications Co., an investment, consulting, and operating company in the cable television and telecommunications industries. One of the co-founders of C-Span in 1977 and its chairman in the early 1990's, Evans continues to be an active member of the board.
Strongly interested in the application of technological innovation to medical problems and social issues, Evans is also founder of the John D. Evans Foundation. Evans is committed to AIDS and cancer research and the protection of the environment. His career over the past three decades reflects and has helped shape the dynamically changing telecommunications field.
"We are pleased to offer this opportunity to hear John D. Evans, a significant creative force in our post modern society," said Edna Farace Wilson, Ed.D., dean of University College at Fairfield University. "We are always looking for ways to enhance the university's involvement with the Ireland Chamber of Commerce in the United States because of our study abroad programs in Ireland and our faculty's interest and research activities in Irish Studies."
A box luncheon, preceding the lecture, will be served at 12:30 p.m. The ticket price for ICCUSA members is $10; $20 for non-members and $5 for Fairfield University students attending the 1:30 p.m. lecture (luncheon not included). For reservations please call Elizabeth Hastings at (203) 254-4000, ext. 2688. Seating is limited.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 88
Anne Manton, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, associate professor in Fairfield University's School of Nursing, was recently appointed to the Health and Medical Advisory Board of Family Circle Magazine.
Dr. Manton, a Trumbull resident, has been a nursing educator for more than 15 years and a faculty member in the Fairfield University School of Nursing since 1995, during which she served at one point as acting dean. In addition she has more than 25 years of experience as an emergency nurse, as well as practice in other aspects of healthcare. Dr. Manton is the recipient of numerous nursing awards and was elected last year as a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN). Dr. Manton frequently contributes articles to nursing publications and is a past president of the Emergency Nurses Association, one of the largest specialty nursing organizations in the nation.
Letters from nurse readers encouraged Family Circle to add a nurse to its existing board of nine doctors and one pharmacist, said Jean Maguire, health and nutrition director for Family Circle.
"Nurses are so crucial to the proper care of patients," Maguire said. Members of the advisory board help evaluate story ideas, review materials for accuracy and provide quotes for articles.
"Anne Manton had both the academic credentials and the hands-on experience we were looking for," Maguire said. "And being named a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing is one of the highest honors that can be bestowed on a nurse. We're very pleased to have her on the advisory board."
"I'm honored to have been selected to do this and I really hope that I can bring a new level of knowledge about nursing and healthcare to the consumer," Dr. Manton said.
Dr. Manton will share her insights on the economic, social and cultural impacts of rising health care costs at a forum October 10 at the Trumbull Marriott. The forum is sponsored by the Bridgeport Regional Business Council (BRBC) and Health Net of the Northeast, Inc. Registration for the event is $30 for BRBC members and $35 for non-members. Call Carole Adzima at 335-3800 for reservations for the forum.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 73
Bassist Brian Torff, director of jazz and popular music at Fairfield University, and award-winning pianist Florence Melnotte have released "Another Great Day," their first CD of jazz standards and original music.
The duo began playing together in 2000 and has performed in clubs, concerts and jazz festivals, bringing an intricate interplay and empathy to the world of improvised music. Their debut CD, recorded in Massachusetts in 2001, showcases their virtuosity and chemistry on swing standards "That Old Feeling" and Yardbird Suite, as well as impressionistic originals by Ms. Melnotte and Mr. Torff.
Mr. Torff has an extensive performing and recording history. His career began in 1974, when bassist Milt Hinton offered him a chance to tour with jazz singer Cleo Laine. During the 1970s, Torff recorded and performed with pianists Mary Lou Williams and Marian McPartland and toured internationally with violin virtuoso Stephane Grappelli. He also played in pianist Erroll Garner's last group and worked with Oliver Nelson and the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra.
Mr. Torff recorded three albums with jazz piano master George Shearing and the duo toured extensively and played for President Reagan at the White House in 1982. Their third album won a Grammy for vocalist Mel Torme.
Mr. Torff is also a noted composer. He has written scores performed by the Boston Pops, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Pittsburgh Symphony and has appeared as a conductor, composer and clinician for many college and high school jazz festivals.
The New York Times called Mr. Torff "a virtuoso bassist, imaginative and distinctive in his solos, but more than that, a solid composer and arranger."
Born in Paris, Ms. Melnotte studied at l'ecole Normal de Musique de Paris for seven years and has performed solo and with groups for several years. She is most widely known for her work with the innovative Four Roses quartet with whom she tours Europe regularly. Her Florence Melnotte Quartet won first prize honors at the Tremplin d'Avignon in 1995, the Jazz sous les pommiers (Jazz Under the Apple Trees) competition in 1994 and the Tremplin Jazz du Val d'Oise in 1993. The quartet also won second prize at the National Jazz Competition at the Défense in Paris in 1994.
Ms. Melnotte, who now lives in the United States, has performed with James Zollar, John Silverman, Vincent Mascart and Michel N'Ba and has appeared on numerous recordings.
Mr. Torff and Ms. Melnotte launched their CD with a performance with drummer Tony Tedesco on Friday, October 11 at Silvermine Tavern in Norwalk. The CD, on the Bassline Records label, is available at Cutler's in New Haven, Sally's Place in Westport, the Fairfield University bookstore and online at www.briantorff.com.
Posted on October 15, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 78
St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble, New York's preeminent chamber group, will perform on Friday, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. at Fairfield University's Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. A pre-concert "Art to Heart" discussion with Howard Kissel, chief drama critic for the New York Daily News, will take place from 7 to 7:40 p.m.
St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble is the artistic core of the larger Orchestra of St. Luke's. The ensemble includes 21 virtuoso artists who perform nationally and internationally with a repertoire ranging from the Baroque to the contemporary.
The evening's program shows the variety for which the ensemble is known. Opening with Handel's "Concerto grosso in G Major, Op. 6 No. 1" and Corelli's "Concerto grosso in G minor, Op. 6 No. 8," it moves into two Telemann works, "Oboe Concerto in D minor" and "Concerto in E major for Flute, Oboe d'amore and Viola d'amore." The concert also features Pachelbel's memorable "Canon and Gigue in D major" and concludes with Bach's "Concerto for Two Violins in D minor."
The 11 musicians who will perform at the Fairfield concert are: Mayuki Fukuhara, Anca Nicolau, Naoko Tanaka and Mitsuru Tsubota, violin; Louise Schulman, viola; Daire FitzGerald, cello; Elizabeth Mann, flute; Stephen Taylor and Melanie Feld, oboe; John Feeney, bass; and Robert Wolinsky, harpsichord.
Taylor will be the soloist for the Telemann oboe concerto and soloists for the triple concerto are Feld, Mann and Schulman, who will play the viola d'amore, an instrument with six strings that are played and six strings under the fingerboard that resonate sympathetically. Field will play the oboe d'amore, an instrument akin to the English horn that has a deeper, mellower sound than an oboe. The soloists for the double concerto are Tanaka and Fukuhara.
The ensemble began in 1974, when St. Luke's President and Executive Director Marianne Lockwood and music entrepreneur Michael Feldman spearheaded a recital series at the Church of St. Luke's-in-the-Fields in New York City's Greenwich Village. Since its humble beginnings, the ensemble and the orchestra have branched out, now performing in small groups and larger orchestras, accompanying opera singers in recital and playing children's concerts. The ensemble doesn't have a permanent home, shuttling instead between concerts in Carnegie Hall and frequent recitals at the Brooklyn Museum of Art and the Caramoor Music Festival in Katonah, NY. It's also known for its free rush hour concerts at Temple Emanu-El, the world's largest Jewish house of worship.
"It drives us nuts sometimes, but it's so bloody exciting," Ms. Lockwood told Chamber Music magazine this summer.
And St. Luke's isn't playing the same stuffy program each time. The ensemble is known for both its rigorous performance schedule and its challenging programs, which have included Bach and Brahms, as well as Philip Glass, André Previn and Zhou Long. The group even joined Metallica in concert for a performance of the heavy metal band's greatest hits.
The ensemble's more than 70 recordings include two Grammy-winning releases, John Adams' "Nixon in China" and Samuel Barber's "Knoxville: Summer of 1915." Recent recordings are "Haydn: Morning, Noon and Evening," "Bel Canto" with soprano Renée Fleming, and a soon-to-be released double CD of Bach's Brandenberg concerti.
The members of St. Luke's are as passionate about education as they are about their music. Through the St. Luke's Arts Education Program, the artists go into schools as an ensemble and play, then show their instruments to the students and talk about their lives and how musicians work together.
"There is communication while we're playing," St. Luke's Director of Chamber Music Krista Bennion Feeney told Chamber Music. "When we're playing, we're often able to communicate what we don't say. That's the human stuff that goes into making music - and that's what's so important."
Tickets to the St. Luke's concert are $30. For tickets, call (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396. For more information, visit the website, www.quickcenter.com.
Posted on October 20, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 103
Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts will hold auditions Tuesday, Oct. 29 for a series of radio dramas to be performed this season. Auditions will be held by appointment starting at 7 p.m. and both seasoned veterans and novices are welcome.
The first radio drama will be presented Saturday, Nov. 23. The title of the evening is "High Adventure on the Radio" and the show will include a fantastic tale of undercover agents in Nazi territory, a ridiculously implausible children's program and a hair-raising story of three men trapped in a lighthouse with thousands of rats clawing their way in.
The second radio drama, "Science Fiction from the Golden Age," will show what writers of the past thought of the future. It will take place on Saturday, Feb. 8 and features an overpopulated society in which man hunts man, hostile invading aliens and a quirky scientific courtroom drama. The third show, "Classic Crime Fighters," is a visit with vintage heroes from cowboys to private detectives. The performance date is Saturday, March 29.
All three shows will take place in the Wien Experimental Theatre under the direction of Daniel Smith. Those auditioning will be asked to read new material and should not prepare an audition piece. Radio or voice over experience is a plus, but not required.
To schedule an appointment during audition hours, call the Quick Center box office at (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396.
Posted on October 20, 2002
Vol. 35, No. 89