The 2014–15 season at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) will feature the fourth full season of the Alumni Recital Series, initially launched in April of 2011. This was originally conceived as a platform for alumni performers to return to SFCM and present recitals to demonstrate their subsequent progress. The coming season, however, will feature not only alumni performers but also composers. As the result the full season will provide a fascinating balance of tradition and departure from tradition. Here is the schedule as it has been planned:
Friday, September 12: The featured alumna will be soprano Erica Schuller (’09). However, she will perform with MUSA, a chamber ensemble playing period instruments, six of whose members are ’12 graduates: violinists Emily Botel and Natalie Carducci, cellists Gretchen Claassen and Laura Gaynon, violist Addi Liu, and harpsichordist Esther Ho Man Lam. The other two members of MUSA are violist Clio Tilton and harpsichordist Derek Tam. In addition to accompanying Schuller, MUSA will also perform a recent composition by Danny Clay (’13), “La Folia,” commissioned under their Art Inspiring Art project and given its premiere at the Young Performers Festival held in conjunction with the Berkeley Festival & Exhibition this past June (with a special preview recital arranged by the Seventh Avenue Center for the Arts and Spirituality).
Thursday, January 22: This program will feature two chamber ensembles, all of whose members (with one exception) are alumni. The three guitarists in the Mobius Trio, Mason Fish, Matthew Holmes-Linder, and Robert Nance, are all ’11 graduates, while two of the members of Areon Flutes, Jill Heinke (’06) and Sasha Launer (’11), are alumnae. The remaining flutist in the ensemble is Kassey Plaha. The program will feature more music by Clay, as well as his teacher Dan Becker (’89). In addition Areon will perform music by Hugh Lobel, the winner of their 2014 International Composition Competition.
Wednesday, February 11: This concert will feature another soprano alumna, Lisa Delan (’89). The program will be a tribute to Kristin Pankonin, a member of Delan’s graduating class, who died this past July 20 at the age of 54. Delan will be joined by cellist Matt Haimovitz, an alumnus of the SFCM Pre-College program. The pianist for the evening will be Haimovitz’ frequent colleague, Christopher O’Riley.
Saturday, March 21: The final event in the series will be a solo piano recital by Yongmei Hu (’90). The program will feature two major compositions from the nineteenth century. The first of these will be Franz Schubert’s D. 760 (“Wanderer”) fantasia in C major. The second will be the original piano version of Modest Mussorgsky’s suite Pictures at an Exhibition.
All four performances will begin at 8 p.m. The February concert will take place in the Recital Hall, and the other three will take place in the Concert Hall. All tickets will be sold at $20 for general admission, with a $15 rate for students, seniors, and Friends of the Conservatory. The Box Office is located in the SFCM lobby at 50 Oak Street, a short walk from the Muni Van Ness station. Box Office hours are 10 a.m.–4 p.m., Monday through Friday; and the Box Office can be reached by telephone at 415-503-6275.