Friends of Music's blog

The Teacher Who Changed My Musical Life

  • Posted on: 14 November 2017
  • By: Friends of Music

Raymond Hanson, my beloved teacher passed away on Oct. 26, at the age of 98. He began studying piano at the age of 12. By the age of 15, he appeared as a featured soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The story is that the guest soloist who was scheduled to perform with the symphony got sick, and needed a replacement. Ray’s teacher recommended him to play the Saint-Saëns Second Piano Concerto. It was remarkable that he learned the piece, memorized it, performed it within four days.

My Family’s “Music Genes”

  • Posted on: 18 October 2017
  • By: Friends of Music

No one should be surprised that scientists have found a genetic basis for musical genius. People have long suspected an alliance between base pairs and base players, chromosomes and clarinetists. How could there not be, given the explosive productions of families like the Bachs, the Haydns, the Mozarts, and the Mendelssohns—to say nothing of the Everly and Allman brothers, the Beach Boys, the Jackson Five, and, of course, the Pointer Sisters?

Find a Story, Tell a Story in Music

  • Posted on: 18 October 2017
  • By: Friends of Music

It was 8:30 a.m. in June—pretty early for a gig for any professional chamber ensemble. But the Zorá String Quartet, the graduate quartet in residence at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, was excited, wide-eyed, and ready to meet Brittney Trenczer’s string-instrument students from Sleepy Hollow High School and Middle School.