Saturday, April 28, 2012

MYA Launches E-Auction to run until May 8

This year's MYA E-Auction will launch April 29 and run through midnight on Tuesday, March 8.  This is an opportunity for everyone to support the work MYA does.  You could think about deciding the amount of your donation and then select a premium from the many items available at MYA's on-line E-Auction.

One of our Alums donated his sports memorabilia collection which included a baseball autographed by Mickey Mantle.  Our parents and faculty also donated many music lessons.  There are also many fine restaurants and dining experiences, including Dr. D delivering a delicious home made apple pie (and, of course, staying to eat it with ice cream)!

This auction is on our own secure website.  Everyone who REGISTERS TO BID will be entered in a drawing for a pair of seasons' tickets to all MYA 2012-2013 concerts.

Thank you to all the generous auction donors who have contributed items! Please thank them when you see them or visit their businesses! And, thank you for bidding to make all this work worthwhile!

Monday, April 23, 2012

John Bruce Yeh: He's Our Man

John Bruce Yeh has had a special relationship with MYA since 2001, when he was our guest artist for a performance of the Corigliano and Copland Clarinet Concertos with Symphony Orchestra.  He returns next Sunday, April 29, to perform a Chicago premiere of Liquid Melancholy, a piece MYA commissioned from James Stephenson, MYA parent (Deanna/violin/Concert) and composer.  Pictured below is the rehearsal with the orchestra before John left on tour to Russia with the CSO.  For those of you who think you don't like "new" music, you won't feel this way when you hear Jim's listener friendly, driving and energetic piece. You won't want to miss the artistry John always displays and hearing this wonderful new solo for clarinet. Tickets will be available at the door at Pick Staiger Concert Hall.  The concert starts at 6 p.m.  All MYA students receive comp tickets to this concert and any other they aren't performing in.

John Bruce Yeh accepts the MYA Take Note Award at the 7th Annual MYA Benefit on April 14, 2012

Au Revoir, Bon Voyage

Thank you to all the MYA families who hosted 40 students from L'Orchestra du College Jean-Philippe Rameau from Versailles, France.  The youth orchestra arrived in Chicago last Sunday and stayed at Hostelling International on Congress Parkway in Chicago until Thursday night when the students aged 18 and under were taken home by MYA families for the rest of their stay.  They just boarded buses for O'Hare and their return flight back to France.

A big thank you also to The Peoples Music School and Merit Music School. .  The French orchestra's performances at their schools were met with enthusiasm and interest by attentive audiences both at Merit Music School and Hibbard Elementary School where The Peoples Music School has 170 students in a wonderful program modeled after the Venezuelan El Sistema program.  They also played a concerts at Preston Bradley Hall in the Chicago Cultural Center and last night at Bennett Gordon Hall at Ravinia.

While a lot of work and effort on everyone's part, these cultural exchanges are so valuable in young people's education, giving them an expanded perspective on the world.  We look forward to pursuing additional opportunities.

If you have additional photos, please send them to Carl.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Why is David Hyde Pierce Coming to MYA's April 14 Benefit?

David Hyde Pierce (born April 3, 1959) is an American actor and comedian. He is best known for playing the psychiatrist Dr. Niles Crane on the NBC sitcom Frasier, for which he won four Emmy Awards during the series' run. Why would he fly to Chicago to make an appearance at a music school benefit?  What's the connection?

David may be a famous actor, but he is also a musician, and for Dr. D, Founder and Director of MYA, who rarely watches television (except football games) and never caught an episode of Frasier, he is known as a classical pianist who soloed with the high school orchestra in Saratoga Springs, New York, where he taught years ago.  The piece was Beethoven's Choral Fantasy, and even back then, he was a huge talent.  Reconnecting recently at a Ravinia performance, David confirmed that he found acting easier than practicing hours and hours to be a classical pianist.

What a successful career, and what a wonderful person to come to Chicago for MYA's event, paying his own way, because he believes in our mission and the value of arts in our society.  We are most grateful that in addition to his appearance at the benefit, performing You Wont' Succeed On Broadway from Spamalot, with MYA's VX Studio Vocal Ensemble and members of our Big Band, David will also be rehearsing Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 1 with Symphony Orchestra that afternoon.  What an act of kindness, surely to inspire our students.