Conductor Joseph Young named artistic director of Conservatory's ensembles

With this installment of Cheers, we introduce a new format for our long-standing feature touting the recent appointments and accolades of our faculty and staff. Rather than bringing you a monthly roundup from the entire university, we'll be letting each entity shine on its own. Here's what's happening at Peabody. Keep watching At Work for more.

Hailed as one of the most gifted conductors of his generation, Peabody alumnus Joseph Young has been named the Ruth Blaustein Rosenberg Artistic Director of Ensembles at the Peabody Conservatory, following an international search. In this role, Young will lead the programming and direction of all Peabody Conservatory instrumental ensembles. In addition, he will work with Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Music Director Marin Alsop, who leads the graduate conducting program.

Image caption: Joseph Young

Currently assistant conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Young conducts more than 50 concerts a season, including programs on the classical series, family concerts, and various other concerts geared to specific audiences. He also is music director of the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, where he is credited with being the driving force behind the ensemble's artistic growth.

"Joseph Young is exactly the right leader to shape Peabody's reimagined ensembles program and create excellent, meaningful, relevant, and diverse performance opportunities for our students," says Fred Bronstein, dean of the Peabody Institute. "His artistry and energy on the podium will engage and inspire both our student performers and Baltimore audiences. And his keen understanding of the varied roles artists and ensembles must play in communities today is a quality critical to the success of 21st-century musicians and music organizations."

Young's appointment comes as the Peabody Conservatory prepares for the fall 2017 launch of the new Breakthrough Curriculum in Music Leadership, a model at the forefront of arts training in the United States. The curriculum is designed to help students gain skills in performance, career development, and citizen artistry to meet the demands of today's changing musical landscape. An instrumental ensembles program developed as part of the curriculum will move students through a rotation of varied ensemble experiences to ensure training across a range of performing contexts, musical styles, and ensemble configurations.

More from Peabody

  • On April 19, the anniversary of the death of Freddie Gray, Composition faculty member Judah Adashi and cellist Lavena Johanson, a 2013 MM graduate, released a recording of Adashi's The Beauty of the Protest, for singing cellist. The piece was inspired by the work of photographer Devin Allen, specifically his documentation of the 2015 Baltimore Uprising. The track was engineered by Scott Metcalfe, director of Recording Arts and Sciences at Peabody. Half the proceeds will go to BmoreLeadFree, a campaign to raise awareness of Baltimore's ongoing lead poisoning crisis and its threat to children's health. On May 16, Johanson and poet Tariq Touré debuted a new version of the piece, combining Adashi's music with Touré's poem "April 27." The performance was featured as part of the Johns Hopkins Diversity Leadership Council's Diversity Recognition Awards ceremony.

  • A review of An Organ Legacy, a CD by faculty artist Jeremy Filsell, was featured in the May 2017 edition of The American Organist. The review describes Filsell's performance as "consistently brilliant, commanding, and musically satisfying." An Organ Legacy features the works of Jean Langlai, Maurice Duruflé, Marcel Dupré, Olivier Messiaen, and others performed on the 172-rank organ of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., and marks 50 years of music at the shrine and the 40th anniversary of the organ.

  • Samuel Mungo, an internationally renowned opera pedagogue, has been appointed managing director of the Peabody Opera Theatre following an extensive search. Beginning in the fall, he will shape the Peabody Conservatory's opera curriculum, lead student recruitment efforts, and oversee the program's two mainstage productions and other performances each academic year. Involved in opera as a director, singer, and teacher for more than 30 years, Mungo is particularly well-known for his ability to add strong acting technique to singers' vocal skills.

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