Great News for Hannah Shute!

Photo provided by University of Florida

Hannah Shute (2014) was one of 10 cellists selected to participate in the Sitka International Cello Seminar with Zuill Bailey and Melissa Kraut. Other cellists are coming from CIM, Indiana, Peabody, Royal College of Music, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and more. She will attend this festival, and then fly to Italy for another festival.

She also was admitted to the Meadowmount School of Music.

She was named the Presser scholar at University of North Florida.

Jessica Robinson Stinson performs with LaGrange Symphony Orchestra

We are so proud of Jessica Robinson Stinson (2003) for performing a Mozart concerto with the LaGrange Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Richard Prior. Yay, Jessica! Big year for her, this, and winning the Opera job.

Alumni enjoy playing music with Jun-Ching Lin

Jun-Ching played chamber music during one weekend in March with Jenny Chun (2002), who is teaching privately in Atlanta now, and Lee Sheehan (2005), who is studying law at Georgetown in Washington, D.C. We hear Lee is graduating and has a job lined up already.


Franklin Pond Alumni Help Celebrate ASO TDP Anniversary

What an exciting night it was at Symphony Hall on Saturday, February 9! The 25th anniversary celebration of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Talent Development Program brought many TDP alumni back into town, and since I’ve (Ronda) been with the program since it’s inception, I know most of the “kids”. They aren’t kids any more — they are accomplished professionals. The Mendelssohn Octet included my former student (who played beautifully) Chelsea Sharpe, and Franklin Pond alum Drew Forde (#ThatViolaKid). Chelsea is playing with the New World Symphony in Miami, and Drew is based in L.A., traveling all over the country playing and speaking about his love of music and the viola.

Mason Johnston Does It Again!

Mason Johnston (2011, 2011-12 FIS, 2012-13 FIS, 2013, 2014), Franklin Pond alum on the cello, was the youngest (ALMOST 21!) finalist in the nationwide Rapido! Competition sponsored by the Atlanta Chamber Players. He was one of 5 finalists in the country to be chosen to have his work played by a trio of ACP players — also ASO musicians. The judges were Robert Spano, Michael Gandolfi, and Jennifer Higdon, and the main sponsor was Atlanta’s own Ron and Susan Antinori. It was so exciting, and, although he didn’t win this time, he is still a winner and we are very proud of him. Mason is in the white shirt in the pictures. Best of luck Mason for a bright future.

And BRAVO cellist and Franklin Pond faculty member Brad Ritchie for mastering 6 new and difficult pieces so beautifully on that program.

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Congratulations to Mason Johnston!

We are SO proud of alumnus Mason Johnston (cello 2011, 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013, & 2014). We know he is destined for greatness! Music has always been in his bones.

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Update from Tim Richardson (2008 & 2009)

Tim Richardson (2008, 2009) has been hired by University of Southern California to collaborate in their chamber music program this fall, and he will be working directly with Glenn Dicterow (the former concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra).

Update from Stephen Upshaw (2003)

(From Stephen Upshaw’s newsletter)

Dear friends and colleagues,

After a busy summer season which ranged from the Schubert Octet in the Cheltenham Festival to a run of Lutoslawski at Sadler’s Wells with Rambert Dance, I’m writing to share a few exciting events which you might be interested in.

Firstly, on October 31 I’m incredibly excited to be giving the world premiere of composer Benjamin Graves’ “Four Fa├žades” for solo viola and seven players alongside my colleagues in the Riot Ensemble.
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Way to go, Wick Simmons!

This video by alum Wick Simmons (2009 & 2010) recently hit You Tube. He always LOVED playing. We’re so proud of him!

Christopher Wang makes headlines!

Fox 5 Atlanta recently featured Christopher Wang (FIS 2013-14 & Summer 2015) for his spirit and talent, as he plays for patients inside the Winship Cancer Institute infusion center at Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital.

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