Carnegie Mellon University
January 26, 2012

Press Release: Carnegie Mellon University Announces the School of Music's Centennial Anniversary

Celebration Kicks Off Thursday, Jan. 26 in New York City

Contact: Dana Casto / 412-268-4921 /

PITTSBURGH—Carnegie Mellon University's School of Music will celebrate 100 years of putting students in the nation's leading orchestras and opera houses, at the Grammys, on Broadway, and as influential faculty members at 5 p.m. this Thursday, Jan. 26 at the Doubles Club in the Sherry-Netherland Hotel, 783 5th Ave.

The one-night only performance features several well-known alumni artists. Highlights of the event, which is open to interested media, include:

  • Performances by sought after opera singers: tenor Jeffrey Behrens (BFA'03), performing "Dentro il mio petto" from Mozart's "La finta giardiniera"; and baritone Liam Bonner (BFA'03) performing "Yeletsky's Aria" from Tchaikovsky's "Pique Dame."
  • The announcement of a special centennial partnership between CMU's School of Music, recognized for its K-12 teaching programs and producing faculty members at prestigious colleges and universities, and the New York City Department of Education. The partnership aims to help expose local public school students to classical and contemporary music. Up to 1,000 tickets for a Carnegie Mellon concert, April 2 at New York's famed Carnegie Hall, will be distributed to New York City students.
  • A similar ticket distribution for school-age musicians in public and private schools will take place in the Pittsburgh area, where Carnegie Mellon's main campus is located. A concert also will be performed in Pittsburgh on March 31, and will be broadcast live by Pittsburgh radio station WQED-FM (89.3).

In anticipation of the Jan. 26 event at the Doubles Club, Interim Head of the School of Music Denis Colwell said, "We couldn't be more pleased to have Jeffery and Liam performing on Thursday to share their talent with us. They've been more then gracious with their time and as I am sure you will find they are only a sample of the immense talent that will be on stage for the concerts in March and April."

Planners say the extraordinary concert events — March 31 at Pittsburgh's Benedum Center and April 2 in New York City's Carnegie Hall — showcase only a few of the illustrious School of Music alumni, including Behrens and Bonner singing the Belcore/Nemorino duet from Gaetano Donizetti's "The Elixir of Love." Joining these alumni will be the School of Music's world-class students in the Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic, Repertory Chorus and Concert Choir. Faculty members Ronald Zollman and Robert Page will conduct. Others slated for the all-star performances include:

  • Graham Fenton (BFA'05) singing the hit song "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You" from the Broadway show "Jersey Boys."
  • New York Philharmonic's Howard Wall (BFA'72), San Antonio Opera's principal horn Peter Rubins (BFA'86), CMU faculty member William Caballero (principal horn, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra), and Brice Andrus (principal horn, Atlanta Symphony) will perform Schumann's "Konzertstück for Four Horns." Chicago Symphony's principal horn Dale Clevenger (BFA'62) will conduct. Clevenger received a Carnegie Mellon Alumni Association Distinguished Achievement Award in 2011.
  • Highly acclaimed sopranos Lisa Vroman (MFA'81) and Christiane Noll (BFA'90) also will be performing in the concerts. Vroman starred in the Broadway production of "The Phantom of the Opera" as Christine Daae — she garnered Theatre Critic's awards for the role in a record-breaking run in San Francisco, and did a return engagement at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. Noll was nominated for a Tony Award and Drama Desk Award for her portrayal of Mother in the Kennedy Center Revival of "Ragtime." Manu Narayan (BFA'96), screen actor/vocalist, will be the master of ceremonies for both concerts.

Download an overview of CMU's School of Music.

Download the schedule of events for the School of Music's Centennial Celebration.