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Sounds of Strength Virtual Event Showcases Winds, Brass, and Percussion at Curtis

Premiere of video presentation includes new performances, interviews

PHILADELPHIA—May 4, 2021—The Curtis Institute of Music presents Sounds of Strength, a video presentation that highlights the history and transformative influence of the school’s winds, brass, and percussion departments. The video premieres on Saturday, May 15 at 2 p.m. ET in a virtual event.

The presentation includes interviews of Curtis students and faculty members—many of whom are alumni with significant teaching and performing careers—as well as new chamber performances and a popular archival recording of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra.

The performances include a brass quintet by Victor Ewald performed by current students; a trio for bongos by percussion faculty member Rolando Morales-Matos; and a woodwind quintet by Jacques Ibert performed by the school’s celebrated faculty, representing principal players of the Philadelphia Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. The presentation closes with Olivier Messiaen’s expansive and boisterous Turangalîla-Symphonie, which truly demonstrates the power and prowess of these three instrument families.

Additionally Sounds of Strength will explore the history of these instrumental studios, from Curtis’s founding faculty who established the orchestra’s “Philadelphia sound” and inspired generations of pedagogy through today’s students and mentors who are reshaping the course of a classical music education during the pandemic and beyond. Interview subjects include Jennifer Montone, principal horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and Daniel Matsukawa (’92), principal bassoon of the Philadelphia Orchestra, among numerous others.

Free registration is available at Curtis.edu/SoundsOfStrength and provides admission to the live premiere as well as on-demand access to the presentation through May 31. Sounds of Strength runs approximately 45 minutes.

Curtis is grateful to the sponsors—including Jay H. Tolson, Nina Baroness von Maltzahn, Mark and Robin Rubenstein, and numerous trustees and friends of the school—whose support makes free access to this program available to the world.

Sounds of Strength is the latest in a series of annual celebrations leading up to Curtis’s centenary in 2024. Previous events have focused on the legacies and innovations of the vocal and strings departments, which are also host to some of the industry’s top performers and pedagogues.

The Curtis Institute of Music educates and trains exceptionally gifted young musicians to engage a local and global community through the highest level of artistry. For nearly a century Curtis has provided each member of its small student body with an unparalleled education alongside musical peers, distinguished by a “learn by doing” philosophy and personalized attention from a faculty that includes a high proportion of actively performing musicians. To ensure that admissions are based solely on artistic promise, Curtis makes an investment in each admitted student so that no tuition is charged for their studies. In a typical year, Curtis students hone their craft through more than 200 orchestra, opera, and solo and chamber music offerings in Philadelphia and around the world.



Virtual Showcase

Saturday, May 15 at 2 p.m. ET
Presentation remains available on demand through May 31 at 11:55 p.m. ET

Registration: Free at Curtis.edu/SoundsOfStrength.

Interviews from current students and faculty include:

  • Jeffrey Khaner, principal flute of the Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Craig Knox (’89), principal tuba of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
  • Jeffrey Lang, associate principal horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Don Liuzzi, principal timpani of the Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Daniel Matsukawa (’92), principal bassoon of the Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Anthony McGill (’00), principal clarinet of the New York Philharmonic and William R. and Hyunah Yu Brody Distinguished Chair
  • Jennifer Montone, principal horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Richard Woodhams (’68), former principal oboe of the Philadelphia Orchestra



VICTOR EWALD Allegro moderato, from Quintet No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 5
  Sarah Jessen, trumpet
  Justin Bernardi, trumpet
  Martina Smith, horn
  Robert Conquer, trombone
  Cristina Cutts Dougherty, tuba
JACQUES IBERT Trois pièces brèves
  Jeffrey Khaner, flute
  Richard Woodhams (’68), oboe
  Anthony McGill (’00), clarinet
  Jennifer Montone, horn
  Daniel Matsukawa (’92), bassoon
  Don Liuzzi, bongos
  Hamza Able, bongos
  Hanna Kim (Timpani and Percussion ’20), bongos
OLIVIER MESSIAEN Joie du sang des étoiles, from Turangalîla-Symphonie
  Curtis Symphony Orchestra
  Christoph Eschenbach, conductor



Press Contacts

Patricia K. Johnson
Senior Director of Communications and Public Affairs
(215) 717-3190

Diana Wensley
Communications and Marketing Manager
(215) 717-3129