Crane School of Music Students to Perform at Lincoln Center with Renowned Conductor

Students from SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music Present NYC Concert in Honor of 125th Anniversary

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The Crane Chorus and Crane Symphony Orchestra, pictured in concert at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music here, will perform the Verdi Requiem on May 1 at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center.

POTSDAM, NY (04/04/2012)(readMedia)-- Nearly 300 students from The Crane School of Music at The State University of New York at Potsdam will make their collective Lincoln Center debut on May 1, in a performance of Giuseppe Verdi's monumental Messa da Requiem under the baton of Ann Howard Jones.

In celebration of the 125th anniversary of SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music, the entire Crane Chorus and Crane Symphony Orchestra will travel to New York City for the concert at Avery Fisher Hall.

"The Avery Fisher Hall performance by the Crane Chorus and Crane Symphony Orchestra in May 2012 will certainly be momentous for The Crane School. It concludes a yearlong celebration of the School's 125th anniversary, marking its historic place in the emergence of music education in America," said Crane Dean Dr. Michael Sitton.

Leading up to the concert, the 280 students will have an intensive weeklong musical immersion experience culminating in a packed performance on Saturday, April 28, at the Potsdam, N.Y. campus, before they depart for New York City. The Verdi Requiem will be presented at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 1 in Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center.

The guest soloists are Kelly Kaduce (soprano) and former Crane students Margaret Lattimore '91 (mezzo-soprano), Dimitri Pittas '99 (tenor) and Charles Temkey (bass).

"For the first time since Crane's centennial, this concert will feature a major Crane ensemble performance in New York City, on one of the world's great stages," Sitton said. "It also brings together a performance prepared by Crane's artist faculty, delivered by Crane students and alumni and generously supported by major alumni contributions from Dorothy Gregory and Gary Jaquay. I believe that the profile of this concert mirrors the high standard of excellence constantly maintained by our dedicated faculty, excellent students and loyal alumni."

In addition to the extraordinary chance to prepare a great work along with a world-class conductor for performance in a renowned musical hall, The Crane School of Music has also turned this opportunity into a teaching moment -- both for its students and for metropolitan youth.

The College has offered free tickets to nearly 800 New York City high school students and their music teachers to attend the concert. Two Crane undergraduates studying music education also created a four-lesson interactive curriculum that the educators can use to prepare their students for the Lincoln Center performance.

"I am honored to be part of the legacy of The Crane School of Music at this special moment, and very proud that our students have the opportunity to share their talent, passion and enthusiasm for music with the world," said Dr. Ching-Chun Lai, director of the Crane Symphony Orchestra.

"In its long and distinguished history, The Crane School of Music has seen a few years that were particularly significant. Thanks in part to generous alumni, 2012 is going to be one of those years. It is my privilege to work with such talented students on one of the most important musical works ever written. For many, performing with Ann Howard Jones in New York City will be a highlight of their musical careers," said Dr. Jeffrey D. Francom, director of the Crane Chorus.

Also joining the musicians on stage will be SUNY Potsdam President Dr. John F. Schwaller, a baritone who considers himself honored to sing alongside the talented members of this prestigious and historic choir.

As part of the inaugural Lougheed-Kofoed Festival of the Arts, Ann Howard Jones, the 2012 Dorothy Albrecht Gregory Visiting Conductor, will spend the week of April 23 to April 28 at SUNY Potsdam, conducting rehearsals and masterclasses and participating in lectures and arts events for the community. The Requiem will be performed at SUNY Potsdam's Helen M. Hosmer Concert Hall on Saturday, April 28.

The Lincoln Center performance is made possible by the Adeline Maltzan Crane Chorus Performance Tour Fund, funded by Dr. Gary C. Jaquay '67, with additional support from the bequest of Brock and Janie McElheran.

About The Crane School of Music:

Founded in 1886, SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music has a long legacy of excellence in music education and performance. Life at Crane includes an incredible array of more than 300 recitals, lectures and concerts presented by faculty, students and guests each year. The Crane School of Music is the State University of New York's only All-Steinway School, and is celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2011-12.

The Crane School of Music has a tradition of immersing students into a most memorable experience of rehearsing and performing under the directorship of some of the world's most prestigious choral and orchestral conductors, including: Robert Shaw, Nadia Boulanger, Brock McElheran, Stanley Chapple, Aaron Copland, Sarah Caldwell, Gunther Schuller, Lucas Foss, Virgil Thompson, Michael Tilson Thomas and Vincent Persichetti. In the spring of 2011, renowned conductor Helmuth Rilling came to Potsdam, New York, to direct the Crane Chorus and Crane Symphony Orchestra performance of Bach's Mass in B Minor, marking the beginning of Crane's 125th anniversary year.

Crane's legacy combines innovation in music teaching with a linked commitment to excellence in musical performance from every student. This New York City performance at Avery Fisher Hall is an exciting return to the tradition of Crane students experiencing the thrill of performing with world-renowned conductors in the world's most prestigious concert halls.

About the concert:

The partnership of the Dorothy Albrecht Gregory Visiting Conductor Fund, established by Dorothy Albrecht Gregory '61, and the Adeline Maltzan Crane Chorus Performance Tour Fund, brings distinguished conductors to The Crane School of Music for festival performances by the Crane Chorus and Crane Symphony Orchestra, and funds travel for major performances to venues outside of Potsdam.

Tickets to the May 1 event are $35 for general admission, $30 for senior citizens and $15 for students, and can be purchased through Lincoln Center by visiting, or by calling CenterCharge at (212) 721-6500.

To find out more about the ongoing Crane 125th anniversary celebrations, visit

For more information about The Crane School of Music at The State University of New York at Potsdam, please visit