Tag: Conservatory of Music

Lawrence Welcomes Chicago Symphony Orchestra Cellist John Sharp for Guest Recital

John Sharp, principal cello of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, performs a guest recital at Lawrence University Sunday, May 19 at 5 p.m. in Harper Hall. He will be accompanied by Lawrence University faculty pianist Catherine Kautsky, who played with Sharp during her graduate studies at Juillard School.

Following his recital, Sharp will conduct a master class at 7:30 p.m. in Shattuck Hall 163.  Both events are free and open to the public.

John Sharp, principal cello, Chicago Symphony Orchestra

In 1986 at the age of 27, Sharp was among the youngest players ever named a principal chair for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He joined the CSO after three years as principal cello with the Cincinnati Symphony. Prior to the CSO, Sharp also performed as a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and the New York String Orchestra.

“We are delighted to have John Sharp back on campus playing with our very own Catherine Kautsky,” said fellow cellist and Professor of Music Janet Anthony. “John is a cellist’s cellist. He has a gorgeous, elegant sound and is an exceptionally interesting and insightful musician. We are in for a real treat.”

A graduate of Juillard School, Sharp has been a featured performer across the country, including concert appearances at the Marlboro Music Festival and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.  He was the featured soloist in several CSO recordings, including Strauss’s “Don Quixote,” Beethoven’s “Triple Concerto” with Itzhak Perlman and Benjamin Britten’s “Symphony for Cello and Orchestra.”

Sharp performs on a cello made in 1694 by Joseph Guarnerius.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Adult Summer Mini-Seminars Offer Life-Long Learning Opportunities

Wine, woods and world music is on the menu for Lawrence University’s 2013 Summer Seminar series.

Modeled on its popular Bjorklunden seminar series in Door County, Lawrence is sponsoring a pair of adult, life-long learning opportunities this summer on its Appleton campus.  The three-day-long classes are conducted from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day, with lunch provided.

Professor of Biology Nicholas Maravolo, a botany specialist, leads the mini-seminar “Woods and Wine” July 23-25. Mornings in this class will be spent learning to read the landscapes of the area’s rich ecosystems through field walks, plant identifications and stimulating discussions.

The second half of the class features a leisurely lunch discussion of the scientific and cultural dimensions of wine, including wine-tasting sessions.  Transportation to the field trips and wine tastings is provided.

In addition to extensive fieldwork that has taken him to the American West, throughout Central and South America, Europe and the Pacific Rim, Maravalo has taught wine science and appreciation to a variety of audiences and has traveled the world to experience the ambience and tastes of various wine countries.

A quartet of scholars will lead an exploration of some of the world’s most interesting music and the cultures that created it in the mini-seminar “World Music” July 30-August 1. This highly interactive class will have participants making an Australian didjeridu, performing on a Balinese gamelan and learning the traditions of Native American music. No previous music training is needed.

The course will be team-taught by four members of the Lawrence Conservatory of Music:  I Dewa Ketut Alit Adnyana, director of the Lawrence Gamelan (Balinese music); Sonja Downing, assistant professor of ethnomusicology, (Balinese music); Brian Pertl, dean of the conservatory (Australian aboriginal music) and Brigetta Miller, associate professor of music (Native American music).

Registration deadline is June 28. More information is available here.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Flutist Leo Sussman Wins State Competition

Lawrence University sophomore Leo Sussman earned first-place honors in the recent Wisconsin Flute Festival Young Artist Collegiate Competition in Madison.

Leo Sussman ’15

Sussman was one of three flutists who performed a 15-minute program of his choosing in the finals held at the Pyle Center at the University of Wisconsin. Finalists were selected based on a previously submitted unedited recording of two contrasting movements from John La Montaine’s “Sonata for Flute Solo, Op. 24.” Sussman received $300 for his winning performance.

This was his second competition win as a Lawrence student. Last July, he won the San Francisco Flute Festival in his hometown.

A double degree candidate pursuing majors in flute performance and physics, Sussman is a student in the studio of assistant professor of music Erin Lesser.

The Wisconsin Flute Festival, sponsored by the Madison Flute Club, is an annual flute event featuring competitions, workshops and performances by a variety of professional flutists.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

2013-14 Lawrence University Performing Arts Series Filled with Music Legends, Rising Stars

Jazz guitar icon Pat Metheny and his Unity Group and the adventurous classical vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire are among the celebrated musicians slated to perform on Lawrence University’s 2013-14 Performing Arts Series.

Pat Metheny

Season subscriptions for both the Artist and Jazz Series or a “Favorite 4” package are now available, with discounts available to senior citizens and students. Single-concert tickets go on sale Sept. 18. For more information, contact the Lawrence Box Office, 920-832-6749. All concerts are held in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel.

“A wonderfully diverse line-up of stellar musicians makes next year’s Artist and Jazz Series concerts the place to be for lovers of great music,” said Brian Pertl, dean of the Lawrence Conservatory of Music. “I look forward to seeing lots of familiar as well as new faces there.”

The St. Louis Brass Quintet, one of America’s oldest such ensembles, kicks off the four-concert Artist Series Oct. 11. Praised by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch for creating an “atmosphere that emanates from the stage,” the group has performed more than 2,500 engagements during its nearly 50-year history. The quintet includes founding member, St. Louis native and trombonist Melvyn Jernigan as well as top musicians from throughout the country.

Internationally acclaimed violinist Rachel Lee performs Feb. 8, 2014. Lee has showcased her prodigious skill worldwide since performing at the United Nations at age nine. A Harvard University graduate, Lee is noted for her compelling stage presence and commitment to a wide-ranging repertoire. She has enjoyed solo engagements with the National Symphony, the Aspen Sinfonia at the Aspen Music Festival and repeat performances with the Seoul Philharmonic. Most recently she has made orchestral debuts with the Chicago, St. Louis, Houston and Seattle Symphony orchestras.

Rachel Lee

One of the country’s most sought-after young pianists, Orion Weiss takes the stage April 11, 2014. Weiss has toured the United States, China, Israel and throughout Europe. Since graduating from Juilliard School in 2004, he has been named a “pianist to watch” by the Los Angeles Times and hailed as an “effortlessly brilliant performer” by the Arizona Republic. In 2010, the Classical Recording Foundation Named Weiss its “Young Artist of the Year.”

A week after Weiss, the vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire, along with Spektral Quartet visits April 18, 2014. Featuring some of the country’s most talented vocalists, Seraphic Fire performs a diverse repertoire of choral works, ranging from Gregorian chant to newly commissioned works. The 11-member ensemble received two Grammy nominations in 2012 for their recordings of Brahms’ “A German Requiem,” which debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard Classical charts and a Christmas album that entered the top 10 on iTunes’ Classical chart on the day of its release.

“We’re incredibly fortunate to welcome Seraphic Fire to Lawrence,” said Stephen Sieck, co-director of choral studies at Lawrence. “The fact they were nominated for Grammys for two different projects in 2012 speaks to the level of excellence they bring. They combine the clear brightness of the best Early Music groups with the warmth and precise phrasing of the best European radio choirs.”

The Chicago-based, all-male Spektral Quartet blurs the lines between old and new music, pairing Beethoven and Mozart with Phillip Glass and Elliott Carter. Their innovative programs have become favorites of both classical music enthusiasts and new music aficionados.

Seraphic Fire

Lawrence’s 33rd annual Jazz Celebration Weekend opens the four-concert Jazz Series Nov. 8-9 with concerts by the Kate McGarry Quartet and the Yellowjackets, respectively.

Named DownBeat Magazine’s “Rising Star Vocalist” five times (2007, ’08, ’09, ’11, ’12), the “astute and sensitive” McGarry also earned a 2009 Grammy Award nomination for best jazz vocalist. Drawing upon everything from her cultural Irish tunes to musical theatre to pop favorites, her discography includes five critically acclaimed albums, including “Girl Talk,” a tribute to her favorite jazz women vocalists, which was named one of the top jazz CDs of 2012 by Downbeat.

The Yellowjackets, a smooth jazz and jazz fusion group, has been a jazz world mainstay since their formation in 1977. The four-member group, among the longest tenured groups in jazz history, has effortlessly evolved with the times, earning two Grammy Awards along the way. From their first self-titled album in 1981 through 2011’s 11-track CD “Timeline,” the Yellowjackets’ discography numbers 25 releases.

On March 15, 2014, Lawrence welcomes Pat Metheny and his Unity Group. Winner of an astonishing 20 Grammy Awards in 12 different categories, Metheny’s musicianship is legendary. A nonpareil guitarist as well as accomplished composer, his impressive body of work includes compositions for solo guitar, small ensembles, electric and acoustic instruments, large orchestras and even ballet pieces. Metheny previously performed at Lawrence in 1984.

He’ll be joined on stage by his powerhouse Unity Group that features four all-star musicians in their own right: saxophonist Chris Potter, drummer Antonio Sanchez, bassist Ben Williams and pianist Giulio Carmassi.

“Pat is one of the most original guitarists and composers on the planet,” said Jose Encarnacion, an instructor in Lawrence’s Jazz Studies department. “His music, which combines elements of folk, contemporary, progressive jazz and fusion, is always fresh and powerful.”

Kenny Garrett

The Kenny Garrett Quintet closes the jazz series May 2, 2014. In a stellar career spanning more than three decades, Garrett has established himself as the pre-eminent alto saxophonists of his generation. After launching his career with the Duke Ellington Orchestra, he has gone on to perform with many of the giants of the genre, including Art Blakey, Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Joe Henderson, Herbie Hancock, among others. The latest of his 19 albums as leader, 2012’s all-original “Seeds from the Underground,” earned two Grammy Award nominations. Garrett’s work often incorporates world music influences as reflected in his 2006, multi-award nominated disc “Beyond the Wall,” which interweaves his interests in Asian music with jazz.

This will be Garrett’s second appearance on the Lawrence Jazz Series, having previously performed in Feb. 2000.

“Kenny Garrett is one of my heroes and biggest inspiration,” said Encarnacion, a fellow saxophonist. “He is one of the most important alto saxophone players in the history of jazz. His voice is unique and in perfect alignment with the universe.”

About Lawrence University

Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Student Organist Daniel O’Connor Featured on National Broadcast of “Pipedreams”

Daniel O’Connor ’12

Lawrence University senior Daniel O’Connor will be one of four student organists featured in this week’s nationally syndicated radio program Pipedreams. The program highlights four award-winning organ students who have earned recognition for their musical virtuosity.

The program includes a recording of O’Connor’s May, 2012 performance of Stephen Paulus’ “Concerto for Organ, Strings, Timpani and Percussion” with the Lawrence University Chamber Orchestra under the direction of conductor David Becker.

“It’s certainly an honor to be featured on ‘Pipedreams’ and it was a privilege to play with the Lawrence Chamber Orchestra,” said O’Connor of Dallas, Texas. “It’s a testament to the orchestra and the leadership of David Becker to be featured on such a prestigious classical music program.”

Multiple Award-Winner

O’Connor has enjoyed great success during his Lawrence career, winning the following competitions:

• 2012 Paul Manz Organ Scholarship sponsored by Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Minneapolis, Minn.

• 2009 American Guild of Organists’ regional competition for young organists in Albuquerque, N.M.

• The Twin Cities Chapter of the American Guild of Organists’ 2010 young artists organ regional competition in Minneapolis.

• The 2011 Wisconsin National Federation of Music Clubs’ Biennial Student/Collegiate Competition.

O’Connor has enjoyed great success during his Lawrence was the winner of the 2012 Paul Manz Organ Scholarship sponsored by Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Minneapolis, Minn., the 2009 American Guild of Organists’ regional competition for young organists in Albuquerque, N.M., the Twin Cities Chapter of the American Guild of Organists’ 2010 young artists organ regional competition in Minneapolis, and the 2011 Wisconsin National Federation of Music Clubs’ Biennial Student/Collegiate Competition.

Last month, O’Connor earned second-place honors in the Wisconsin Chapter of the National Federation of Music Club’s organ competition. On Sunday, April 7, O’Connor will perform in Boston as a finalist for the prestigious Frank Huntington Beebe Fund for Musicians. He is a student of university organist Kathrine Handford.

Produced by American Public Media and hosted by Michael Barone, a member of the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame, Pipedreams is the only nationally distributed radio program that explores and celebrates the full range of the pipe organ’s art and potential.

The program airs on radio stations at different days and times throughout the country. It also can be heard online.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

 

Lawrence Piano Students Shine in Schubert Club Scholarship Competition

Daniel Kuzuhara, a junior from Madison, earned second-place honors Sunday, March 24 in the collegiate piano division finals of the Schubert Club’s annual Bruce P. Carlson Student Scholarship Competition conducted at the Landmark Center in Minneapolis, Minn.

Daniel Kuzuhara ’14

One of five current Lawrence piano students to advance to the finals, Kuzuhara received a $1,500 scholarship for his performance. He previously won the 2011 Neale-Silva Young Artists Competition sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio.

Also competing in the finals were junior Anthony Capparelli, who was awarded honor mention recognition, senior Jonathan Gmeinder, junior Cameron Pieper and sophomore Elizabeth Vaughan.

Leonard Hayes, a 2011 Lawrence graduate, also advanced to the finals and earned honorable mention recognition.

Yi-Yang Chen from Taiwan, a graduate student at the Juilliard School studying under 1973 Lawrence graduate Robert McDonald, earned first-place honors.

Held each spring, the Schubert Club’s student scholarship competition awards approximately $50,000 annually to young musicians in six categories: combined brass and woodwinds; guitar; organ; piano; strings; and voice in age groups ranging from seventh-grade through graduate school.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Four Student Musicians Share Top Honors in State Competition

Four Lawrence University student musicians earned first-place honors at the 18th annual Neale-Silva Young Artists competition held March 24 in Madison.

Sam Golter ’13

Senior Sam Golter, a flutist from Springfield, Va., was named one of six Neale-Silva winners for the second straight year.

Trevor Litsey, tuba, a junior from Birmingham, Ala., and the saxophone-marimba duo of sophomore Joe Connor and junior Gregory Riss, both from Oregon, Wis., shared top honors with pianist Garrick Olsen, a student at Waukesha’s eAchieve Academy virtual school and UW-Madison cellist Alison Rowe in the state competition sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio. Each musician received $400 for their winning performances.

Trevor Litsey ’14

This was the eighth consecutive year and 13th time in the past 15 years that Lawrence students have won or shared top honors in the Neale-Silva event.

The competition is open to instrumentalists and vocal performers 17-26 years of age who are either from Wisconsin or attend a Wisconsin college. Lawrence musicians accounted for seven of the competition’s 15 finalists. Also representing Lawrence in the finals were Kinsey Fournier, clarinet; Laetitia Lehman-Pearsall, piano; Daniel Reifsteck, marimba; and Tess Vogel, piano.

Joe Connor ’15 (l.) and Gregory Riss 14

Golter, Litsey, Connor and Riss will reprise their winning performances Sunday, April 7 at 12:30 p.m. in Madison’s Chazen Museum of Art. The concert will be broadcast live statewide on WPR’s Classical Music Network.

The Neale-Silva Young Artists’ Competition was established to recognize young Wisconsin performers of classical music who demonstrate an exceptionally high level of artistry.  It is supported by a grant from the estate of the late University of Wisconsin Madison professor Eduardo Neale-Silva, a classical music enthusiast who was born in Talca, Chile and came to the United States in 1925.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Lawrence Student Musicians Shine in State Competitions

Lawrence University musicians collected two firsts and two seconds in the 2013 Wisconsin National Federation of Music Clubs’ Biennial Student/Collegiate Competition.

Kinsey Fournier, a senior from Conway, Ark., and Tess Vogel, a sophomore from Southbury, Conn., earned first-place honors in the clarinet and piano divisions, respectively. Each was awarded $1,000 prizes and will advance to the national competition. National winners will be announced in April.

Anthony Capparelli, a junior from River Falls and Daniel O’Connor, a senior from Dallas, Texas, earned second-place honors in the WNFMC’s piano and organ divisions, respectively, and received a $750 prize. Vogel and Capparelli study in the piano studio of Catherine Kautsky. O’Connor, a finalist for the prestigious Frank Huntington Beebe Award, is a student of university organist Kathrine Hanford, while Fournier is a student of associate professor David Bell.

The WNFMC competition, conducted via submitted audition tape, is open to musicians 19-25 years of age in 13 categories. Students are required to perform a repertoire from memory covering a challenging range of 4-5 musical styles, depending upon the category.

Additionally, Alexis VanZalen, a senior from Holland, Mich., earned second-place honors in the recent American Guild of Organists Young Organists Competition in Milwaukee. She received a cash award of $500.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

 

Lawrence Wind Ensemble Performing at National Conference in North Carolina

The Lawrence University Wind Ensemble will find itself in the national spotlight when it performs Thursday, March 21 at the 2013 National Conference of the College Band Directors National Association at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro

Lawrence’s wind ensemble is one of only nine from around the country that was chosen for this year’s national convention. Selections were based on submitted unedited audition tapes of live performances.

The Lawrence University Wind Ensemble under the direction of Professor Andrew Mast

“Performing at this national conference is an immense honor and each of these incredibly talented and hard-working musicians is going to surprise some people,” said Andrew Mast, conductor of the 58-member ensemble. “I could not be more proud of the incredible work and dedication each student has put into this performance. We’re all excited to represent Lawrence University to a national audience.”

The ensemble will tune up for their moment in the national spotlight by performing twice on the way to North Carolina: March 19 at Worthington Kilbourne High School  in Columbus, Ohio, and March 20 at Athens High School in  Raleigh, N.C.

This will be the second time Lawrence’s wind ensemble has been featured at a national conference.  It made its first national conference appearance in 1993 in Columbus, Ohio, under the direction of Bob Levy.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.

Broadway Superstar, 2012 Tony Award Winner Audra McDonald Performs March 10 in Artist Series Concert

Broadway superstar and award-winning actress Audra McDonald brings her luminous soprano voice and an incomparable gift for dramatic truth-telling to the Lawrence University Memorial Chapel Sunday, March 10 for an 8 p.m. performance. The concert is part of Lawrence’s 2012-13 Artist Series.

Tickets, at $30 for adults and seniors, and $15 for students, are available through the Lawrence Box Office in the Music-Drama Center, 420 E. College Ave., 920-832-6749.

McDonald is replacing previously announced Broadway star Kelli O’Hara, who had to cancel her appearance. Series orders for the Kelli O’Hara performance will be honored for the Audra McDonald concert. If ticket holders have any questions or would like to exchange their tickets for another event or receive a refund, contact the Lawrence University Box Office.

McDonald, who made her Broadway debut in 1992 while still a student at Julliard School, earned a record-tying fifth Tony Award last year for her portrayal of the beautiful-but-downtrodden Bess in “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess.” She is the only actress to win five Tonys within a 20-year period, as well as the youngest performer and first African-American to do so.

In a review of the production, which won the 2012 Tony Award for “Best Revival of a Musical,” The New York Times gushed, “For devastating theatrical impact, it is hard to imagine any hurricane matching the tempest that is the extraordinary Audra McDonald. She is, in a word, great.”

McDonald, 42, the first person in Broadway history to win three Tony Awards before the age of 30, also has been honored with Tonys for her performance in “Carousel” (1994), “Master Class” (1996), “Ragtime” (1998) and “A Raisin in the Sun” (2004).

“Lawrence is absolutely thrilled to welcome Audra McDonald to our Artist Series,” said Brian Pertl, dean of the conservatory of music. “Rarely has there been a singer of such musical acclaim in so many genres. From opera to musical theater, from television to the concert stage, she wows audiences wherever she performs. The conservatory is buzzing with excitement for her performance. We can hardly wait.”

Away from Broadway, the versatile and multitalented McDonald has dazzled audiences with equal aplomb on the world’s great opera stages and in roles on film and television.

She has sung with virtually every major American orchestra, including Boston, San Francisco, Chicago and National symphonies, the Los Angeles and New York philharmonics and the Cleveland and Philadelphia orchestras.

McDonald is a two-time Grammy Award winner for her work on the Los Angeles Opera production “Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny.”

As an actress, McDonald may be best known for her portrayal of Dr. Naomi Bennett on the ABC television series “Private Practice” for four seasons (2007-11). She was Bessie in the Peabody Award-winning CBS program “Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years,” had a recurring role on NBC’s hit series “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” and played Jackie Brock on the political drama “Mister Sterling.” In a 2008 made-for-TV adaption of “A Raisin in the Sun,” McDonald earned her second Emmy Award nomination for her role as Ruth Younger.

Other honors include four Drama Desk Awards, three Outer Critics Circle Awards, an Ovation Award, a Theatre World Award, and the Drama League’s 2000 Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre and 2012 Distinguished Performance Award.

Born in Berlin and a 1993 Julliard School graduate, McDonald is one of only two Americans in more than 100 years invited to appear as a guest soloist at the Last Night of the Proms, London’s famous international classical musical festival.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2013 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. Follow Lawrence on Facebook.