Handel is coming to Heifetz! We’re thrilled to announce a brand-new initiative for Summer 2019: The Heifetz Baroque Vocal Workshop, created expressly for aspiring and emerging professional singers who wish to deepen their understanding of Baroque music and style, through the prism of the Heifetz Institute’s renowned instrumental teaching and unique Heifetz Performance and Communication Training method.
Led by David Stern, Music Director of the acclaimed Paris-based studio and company Opera Fuoco, Chief Conductor of the Palm Beach Opera, and director of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, Heifetz Baroque will add an exciting new dimension to the Institute’s teaching philosophy that artists express their individuality not only through technically and intellectually robust music-making, but also through emotional and even physical engagement. Principal vocal instruction will be from soprano Dominique Labelle, renowned for her interpretations and teaching of the works of Handel, Mozart, and Bach.
8 to 10 singers will be enrolled in the ten-day Heifetz Baroque program, supported by a cadre of faculty instrumental artists and students enrolled in the Heifetz Institute’s summer program, who will participate in the rehearsals and a culminating public performance of scenes and arias from Baroque operas. This final concert will take place in the iconic Blackfriars Playhouse of Staunton’s American Shakespeare Center, the only replica in the Western Hemisphere of Shakespeare’s Elizabeth-era indoor theatre in London.
The Baroque Vocal Workshop will take place on the campus of Mary Baldwin University in Staunton, Virginia, known for its historic, culturally vibrant downtown and stunning natural beauty. Sandwiched in the Shenandoah Valley between the Blue Ridge and Allegheny mountains, Staunton regularly appears on lists of the nation’s best main streets and small cities in such publications as Smithsonian, Travel & Leisure, USA Today, and Architectural Digest.
Heifetz Baroque will focus on 18th– century repertoire, encompassing both the foundations of baroque style and gesture as well as its evolution to the Classical style of Mozart, Haydn, and early Beethoven.
Coaching Sessions with David Stern
Each student will have a minimum of three hour-long coaching sessions with Mr. Stern on pre-assigned repertoire that will be performed in the final concert. These coaching sessions will initially be accompanied by harpsichord, and then a full complement of strings (performing at A = 440 but in period-informed style), coached and led by Heifetz Institute faculty with renowned expertise in Baroque and early-Classical performance and style. Students will also be provided with ample practice and ensemble rehearsal time for their repertory.
Private Lessons with Dominique Labelle
During the ten-day course, each participant will receive three hour-long private lessons with the renowned vocal pedagogue Dominique Labelle, Professor of Voice at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University. Material to be studied in these lessons (whether repertoire or technical study) will be decided in consultation with the instructors.
Studio Performance Class
Each participant will also have the opportunity to perform their repertory before their studio colleagues in sessions led by Mr. Stern and Ms. Labelle.
Instrumental Rehearsals, Coachings, and Performance
Select violin, viola, and cello students enrolled in the regular Heifetz Institute program and assigned to chamber-music ensembles will also participate in the Baroque workshop, (again performing at A = 440 but in period-informed style), gaining valuable experience and insight into the genre as part of their course of chamber-music instruction. Faculty and student instrumentalists will perform onstage with the singers in the program at the Blackfriars Playhouse as part of the Baroque Vocal Workshop’s pu
public showcase performance on Tuesday, July 9, 2019.
Symposia/Workshop: Mozart Arias: From the Voice to the Violin (or Viola, or Cello)
Heifetz Baroque students will interact with students in the regular Heifetz program and tap in to the powerful teaching resources at the Heifetz Institute via a special symposium that will explore the connections between vocal and instrumental music in the music of Mozart. No special preparation will be required for this class.
Heifetz Performance & Communication Training
Heifetz Baroque will also include a mandatory component of the Institute’s Performance and Communication Training method; indeed it is the “special sauce” that sets the Heifetz Institute apart from all other summer learning experiences for musicians, and informs every aspect of our program. It strives to empower young performers to perfect their artistry by developing their physical, mental, and emotional range and connecting these with the music they play. Communication Training also provides the opportunity to forge powerful interactions with other Heifetz students.
Heifetz Baroque students will receive training in Drama, Freedom of Expression, and Movement, in sessions led by New York-based director, actor, teacher and Heifetz Institute Communication Training Director Daniel Pettrow; Drama and improvisation master John Gregorio; and the dynamic dancer, choreographer and teacher Annabella Lenzu, founder and Artistic Director of Anabella Lenzu/DanceDrama,
Students will arrive on Sunday, June 30, 2019, and participate in Opening Assessments with Mr. Stern, Ms. Labelle, and other Heifetz personnel. Instruction will begin on Monday, July 1, 2019., and the final performance will be in the Blackfriars Playhouse on Tuesday, July 9.
Click here for a complete list of Heifetz Baroque faculty.