A bevy of young composers, performers, writers, and music fans will descend on Peabody Institute's Mount Vernon campus next year when the conservatory welcomes the third annual New Music Gathering, scheduled for January 7–9. The conference will be dedicated to supporting and promoting new performances and works, and over its three days artists and academics from around the country will present a series of panels, workshops, and concerts. The conference's keynote address will be given by Marin Alsop, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and, as of this academic year, Peabody's director of graduate conducting.
The Gathering and the addition of Alsop to the faculty are two of the many ways that Peabody, the country's oldest conservatory, is positioning itself to be a leading institution in classical music's future. Under Dean Fred Bronstein, Peabody has implemented a number of new initiatives, ensembles, grants, and lecture series in an effort to focus on new music created by Peabody students and the classical music community at large. Last spring Bronstein announced the Dean's Incentive Grants, which fund faculty and student projects that focus on innovation, interdisciplinary initiatives, or community partnerships. Over the summer he announced the Dean's Symposium, a series of guest speakers who will come to the campus to talk about classical music now, including New York's alternative music venue co-founders David Handler and Justin Kanton and Kennedy Center president Deborah Rutter. Additionally, this semester witnessed the debut of the Now Hear This, a chamber ensemble dedicated to performing the works of living composers.