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February 18,
2002

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Currents--University of Rochester newspaper

Eastman launches music leadership institute

In an effort to understand the changing role of classical music in the United States, the Eastman School of Music has created the Institute for Music Leadership. The first of its kind in the country, the institute will serve Eastman students, alumni, and music professionals at all stages of their careers, maximizing musicians' leadership potential by providing opportunities for professional development, nurturing innovative ideas, and bridging the gap between the academic and professional worlds.

"The Institute for Music Leadership will become a vital 'hub' for creating, sharing, and implementing cutting-edge ideas to ensure the vitality and relevance of music in the 21st century," says Eastman Director and Dean James Undercofler.

Eastman Logo

The institute is directed by Professor Ramon Ricker, who has been a member of the Eastman faculty since 1971 and a member of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra since 1973. Susan Wharton Conkling, a Carnegie scholar in the Pew National Fellowship Program and current member of Eastman's music education faculty, is the new associate director for professional development. Both Ricker and Conkling will work under the guidance of Undercofler.

"The Eastman School has always been at the forefront of educating musicians of the future," says Ricker. "By actively promoting the school's longstanding ideals of artistry, scholarship, and leadership, the institute will serve as a center--and benchmark--for programs and activities that will ultimately lead the music profession into a new era."

Funded in part through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the institute will serve as the "umbrella structure" for Eastman's existing and future certificate, diploma, and partnership programs. These include, among others, the Catherine Filene Shouse Arts Leadership Program and certificate; the Orchestral Studies Diploma in Strings, a partnership with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra; and the diploma in Sacred Music.



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