Thursday, April 30, 2009

Live From The Shadows Of The Nation's Capital's Culture Palaces (Classical Musicians Practice While Achim Freyer Contemplates Enlarging Wagner's Ring)

“Clifton Williams unbuttons his suit jacket, sits at a baby grand and prepares to conquer composer [Sergei Prokofiev's "Suggestion Diabolique”.]. The night is young and old, depending on your perspective. The clock says 8:47. But it is a school night. The church sanctuary is empty. And there is Clifton, alone at the slightly out-of-tune piano. Eyes closed. Shoulders hunched. Fingers in a painful fury, chasing music. …

A junior at Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Northwest Washington, Clifton has just two days to practice before he travels to Boston, where he will play before a live audience on "From the Top," NPR's popular showcase for the country's best young classical musicians. Washington listeners can hear it at 6 p.m. this Sunday, on classical WETA, 90.9 FM, or watch the video at Clifton recently won a $10,000 scholarship from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, which partners with "From the Top" to aid exceptionally promising low-income students. The scholarships have helped them buy instruments and pay for tuition. Clifton plans to use the money for music school, travel expenses, and a piano.” ...

DeNeen L. Brown “Grand Achievement: Teen Pianist From Southeast [D.C.] Orchestrates an Unlikely Rise” Washington Post April 30, 2009


Photo credits: Thomas Cole The Voyage of Life (Youth) (c) National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. 2009; (c) Lois Raimondo and the Washington Post 2009; and detail of The Voyage of Life photographed by Elizabeth Roy via Wikipedia Commons.


Please recall that Sharon Percy Rockefeller's Classical WETA-FM, in the Nation's Capital, does not program American classical music because her WGMS-legacy executives told her not to do so. ['Classical WETA' is the result of a merger of PBS's WETA and WGMS.]


Achim Freyer is consumed by [the Los Angeles Opera's $32 million] 'The Ring of the Nibelung'


Cecilia Rouse is a member of the White House's Council of Economic Advisers. She has studied the existence of discrimination in symphony orchestras.


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