On January 19, from noon to 1:00 pm, the series will present a free concert in the auditorium featuring pianist Jeremy Samolesky, baritone Matthew Hoch, soprano Anne Duraski, violinist Guy Harrison, and clarinetist David Odom. The program will feature chamber music by Johannes Brahms. Thanks to anonymous friends of the series for helping to make this performance possible.
JEREMY SAMOLESKY, a native of Manitoba, Canada, currently serves as Associate Professor of Piano at Auburn University, where he teaches piano and serves as Piano Area Coordinator. Known for his passion for both solo and collaborative performances, Samolesky has appeared in concert as soloist and chamber pianist throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia, including a full recital at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., which was broadcast nationally on National Public Radio’s “Performance Today.”
Samolesky enjoys maintaining a rigorous performance schedule, with recent concert tours of China and Hong Kong, along with over 100 recitals and masterclasses at universities spanning 20 states throughout the U.S over the past seven years. In 2013, he was a featured lecturer and soloist at the World Piano Conference in Novi Sad, Serbia, and in 2014 gave a series of concerts and taught at music conservatories in Colombia and Ecuador. In the summer of 2015, he completed his fourth residency as a teacher and performer throughout Malaysia, sponsored by the Perak Society of Performing Arts.
Dedicated to the promotion of new music, Samolesky often works directly with living composers in preparing performances of their works, having given recent premieres by composers such as David Maslanka, David Plylar, and Carl Vollrath. Praised by critics as “brilliant,” “distinguished,” and “full of intensity and drama,” Samolesky’s debut solo CD was released on the Centaur label in 2015.
A regular orchestral performer, Samolesky has presented concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt, Brahms, and Rachmaninov. Festival appearances include the Banff Centre for the Arts, the Orford Arts Centre (Quebec), the Agassiz Music Festival (Winnipeg), the Courtenay Music Festival (B.C.), the Methow Music Festival (WA), the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival (Bonefro, Italy), and the Chigiana Music Academy in Siena. Broadcasts of his performances have been heard on Seattle’s KING FM, Canada’s CBC, CJOB, WDAZ (ND), and Troy Public Radio (AL). Dr. Samolesky was also featured in a documentary on the piano music of Sergei Prokofiev, produced by the Manitoba Television Network.
Dr. Samolesky achieved the rare distinction of graduating with two doctoral degrees from the Eastman School of Music: Piano Performance and Literature under the direction of Barry Snyder, and Accompanying and Chamber Music with Jean Barr. Eastman has permitted this double-doctorate just once before in the school’s history. In his four years at Eastman, Samolesky garnered top honors including the Barr Award, the Barbara M. King Scholarship, the Brooks Smith Scholarship, the “Excellence in Accompanying” award for three years in a row, first place in the Kneisel Lieder Competition, and the Performer’s Certificate for distinguished artistry in performance. He holds the Master of Music degree in Piano Performance from the University of Washington and the Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Manitoba.
As a teacher, Dr. Samolesky’s students are frequent competition winners and receive prestigious scholarships and assistantships at renowned graduate music programs throughout the U.S. For his achievements, he was awarded the 2012 “Excellence in Teaching” award from Auburn University. Samolesky currently serves on the executive board of the Alabama Music Teachers’ Association and would like to thank the Manitoba Arts Council for their continued support throughout his career.
ANNE DURASKI has had a long and varied career in the arts as an educator; a professional Mezzo-Soprano; a producer of opera, operetta and musical theatre; and an advocate for arts organizations.
An alumna of Auburn University, Mrs. Duraski graduated with highest honors in vocal performance and music education. She earned a Masters of Music in vocal performance from the University of Alabama and continued her education in post-graduate doctoral studies in Applied Voice at Washington University of St. Louis and the Eastman School of Music.
Mrs. Duraski made her American operatic debut with the New Orleans Opera singing the role of “Inez” in Verdi’s Il Trovatore. Her European debut came the same year when she sang “Cherubino” in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro with the Rome Festival Opera. Mrs. Duraski’s operatic career has spanned 30 years and has included international engagements as leading lyric mezzo-soprano in both the Operanhaus Zurich* and the Schleswig-Holsteinisches Landestheatre in Flensburg, Germany. In the United States she has sung with opera companies in New York, Miami, St. Louis, Atlanta, Sarasota, and Birmingham. Her most recent operatic appearance was with the Mobile Opera singing the role of “Suzuki” in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. Mrs. Duraski also founded and developed the LaGrange Lyric Theatre in LaGrange, Georgia. For thirteen years this company produced educational opera programs, full-stage operas and operettas, and musical theatre productions.
Mrs. Duraski serves as an instructor of Voice and co-opera director of the Opera Workshop in the Auburn University Department of Music.
MATTHEW HOCH is Associate Professor of Voice at Auburn University, where he teaches applied voice, diction, vocal literature courses, and serves as coordinator of the voice area. Prior to coming to Auburn in 2012, he spent six years as Assistant Professor of Voice at Shorter College, where he taught applied voice, vocal literature, and served as Coordinator of Vocal Studies. Dr. Hoch’s students have gone on to successful careers in both classical and musical theatre genres and have won awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council, the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), the Music Teachers National Association, the American College Theater Festival, and others.
Dr. Hoch has appeared as an oratorio soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician throughout the United States and as a soloist with professional ensembles including the Oregon Bach Festival; the Santa Fe Desert Chorale; the Vox Consort; Harmonie Universelle; the Hartford, Rome, and Nashua Symphony Orchestras; the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra; and the United States Coast Guard Chamber Players. He also has experience as a professional chorister, performing with all-professional ensembles such as the Spoleto Festival Choir (Italy), Conspirare, and the Carnegie Hall Choral Workshops.
Dr. Hoch is the 2016 winner of the Van L. Lawrence Fellowship, awarded jointly by the Voice Foundation and NATS. He is the author of three books, including A Dictionary for the Modern Singer (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014), Welcome to Church Music & The Hymnal 1982 (Morehouse, 2015), and Voice Secrets: 100 Performance Strategies for the Advanced Singer (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016) coauthored with Linda Lister. His articles have appeared in the Journal of Singing, Opera Journal, Chorister, and Journal of the Association of Anglican Musicians, among others. From 2008–2016, he served as Editor-in-Chief of VOICEPrints: The Official Journal of NYSTA.
Dr. Hoch has presented his research at national and international conferences, including the International Congress of Voice Teachers, Pan-European Voice Conference, Pan-American Vocology Association, NATS, College Music Society, Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities, National Association for Music Education, Voice and Speech Trainers Association, National Opera Association, Acoustical Society of America, International Horn Symposium, Hymn Society of the United States and Canada, Voice Foundation Symposium in Philadelphia, and the International Symposium on Singing and Song in St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. He is a “double alumnus” of the NATS Intern Program, completing the program as an intern in 2006 and hosting the program at Shorter College in 2009. In 2007, he was awarded the NATS Voice Pedagogy Award and completed all three levels of Somatic Voicework™ certification with Jeannette LoVetri. In 2013, he was selected as a Master Teacher for NYSTA’s Comparative Pedagogy Weekend at Columbia University.
Dr. Hoch earned the Bachelor of Music degree from Ithaca College with a triple major in vocal performance, music education, and music theory; the Master of Music degree from The Hartt School with a double major in vocal performance and music history; and the Doctor of Musical Arts in vocal performance from the New England Conservatory. He has studied advanced voice pedagogy with Johan Sundberg, Scott McCoy, and Ingo Titze, and in 2015 completed the Certificate in Vocology at the National Center for Voice and Speech in Salt Lake City. In 2016, Dr. Hoch was a named a Fellow-in-Residence at the University of the South. In addition to his academic life, he serves as Choirmaster and Minister of Music at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Auburn, Alabama, where he lives with his wife, Theresa, and three children: Hannah, Sofie, and Zachary.
Violinist GUY HARRISON has held principal positions with the Jackson Symphony (MI) and Lubbock Symphony (TX) Orchestras as well as Associate Concertmaster of the Lansing Symphony Orchestra (MI). Originally from Australia, he performed regularly with both the Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras before moving to the United States. Dr. Harrison has performed with the Arkansas, South Bend, Saginaw, Traverse, Northwest Indiana and Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestras, and has toured extensively in Australia, as well as the USA, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore, Indonesia, and New Caledonia.
Dr. Harrison works with middle school, high school and youth orchestras and in 2013 was the clinician for the All-West Middle School Honor Orchestra (Memphis, TN). He is a certified classroom teacher and has taught in the Texas public school system as well as having established private studios in Texas, Michigan, Indiana, Arkansas and Alabama. He served as the Director of Education for the South Bend Symphony Orchestra. His research interests include string teacher preparation, youth ensembles, musician wellness, string pedagogy and new music.
Dr. Harrison is Assistant Professor of String Music Education at Auburn University where he teaches applied violin & viola, chamber music, and music education courses. He serves as musical director of the Auburn University Youth Orchestra and in 2015 launched the Auburn University Music Project, an after-school orchestral string program for local elementary students. Dr. Harrison completed his Doctoral degree in Violin Performance at Michigan State University in 2012 under the direction of Dr. Walter Verdehr. He also holds degrees from the University of Adelaide (B.M. with Honors), and Michigan State University (M.M.).
Dr. Harrison performs on a J.B. Vuillaume circa 1858.
Clarinetist DAVID ODOM has a thriving career as soloist, chamber artist, orchestral musician and educator. He engages audiences near and far, having performed on four continents to critical acclaim. He has been featured on television and radio, including broadcasts on Georgia Public Broadcasting, Public Broadcasting Atlanta, and Brazilian public television TV Cultura. He recently made his Spivey Hall recital debut in Atlanta, Georgia and completed a US Midwest tour that included a performance at the International Clarinet Association ClarinetFest 2016 in Kansas. Other recent performances include the VI Festival Internacional de Música de Campina Grande in Brazil and the International Clarinet Association ClarinetFest 2015 in Madrid, Spain.
Known for his “sweet, focused sound” and ability to “handle expansive phrases gently,” Odom enjoys bringing the clarinet to center stage. As a concerto soloist, his repertoire includes music of Copland, Weber, Finzi, Crusell, Ticheli, and the perennial audience favorite, Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto. His eclectic recital programming is a fusion of old and new, combining standard repertoire, such as Brahms and Debussy, with newly-composed works from composers such as Augusta Read Thomas and David Maslanka. He frequently performs transcriptions and arrangements that defy convention, such as the Piano Preludes of Scriabin and Gershwin and the Prokofiev Flute Sonata. His debut solo recording with pianist Jeremy Samolesky, Max Reger: Complete Works for Clarinet and Piano, will be released by Albany Records in October 2016. He has also recorded with the Nashville Chamber Orchestra and the Atlanta Opera Orchestra.
Odom is Principal Clarinet of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. He is Associate Professor at Auburn University and holds degrees from Florida State University, University of Colorado, and Stetson University. He has presented or performed at the conferences of the International Clarinet Association, College Music Society, Music Teachers National Association, and National Association of College Wind and Percussion Instructors. He is a D’Addario Woodwinds performing artist.