Conductor Micah Gleason Featured on WHYY's "On Stage at Curtis"
The Rita E. Hauser Conducting Fellow shares her musical journey and conducts works by Julia Perry and Igor Stravinsky in the latest episode of the acclaimed series
“My path to Curtis was so winding and unexpected. I would definitely tell my younger self to trust the process. Don’t try to rush anything. Trust that you’re learning from every single experience you have, musical or otherwise.” —Micah Gleason
Season 18 of WHYY’s acclaimed On Stage at Curtis series opens with a portrait of Micah Gleason, second-year Rita E. Hauser Conducting Fellow at Curtis. Recognized for her diverse performance abilities as a conductor, vocal soloist, and chamber musician, Ms. Gleason entered the school in 2022 and studies with renowned conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Her musical journey began with singing, and her love for music was ignited through performance experiences in large choirs and orchestras, prompting her to study voice, opera, choral and chamber music, art songs, and smaller-scale works.
The Chapel Hill, North Carolina native was enamored with music from a young age, listening to the albums of opera singers like Kathleen Battle, taking free voice lessons at the local university with graduate students at the suggestion of her mother, and attending the Interlochen Arts Camp and the Interlochen Arts Academy in her final years of high school. Through these formative moments, she was inspired to pursue a Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance from the Chicago College of Performing Arts and Master of Music degrees in conducting and vocal arts from the Bard College Conservatory of Music.
While at Curtis, Ms. Gleason has conducted many chamber works, such Olivier Messiaen’s Oiseaux Exotiques with Ensemble 20/21, and Richard Strauss’s Dance of the Seven Veils from Salome with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra. She opened the Ensemble 20/21’s season this month with a performance of Luciano Berio’s Folk Songs, where she conducts and sings from the podium.
In this episode of On Stage at Curtis, she tackles Julia Perry‘s Study for Orchestra (also known as a Short Piece for Orchestra) with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, and Igor Stravinsky‘s thrilling tale of trickery and magic, L’Histoire du Soldat, featuring the talents of Curtis’s young musicians alongside beloved actor and narrator John de Lancie, award-winning performer David Shifrin (Clarinet ’71); and prominent soloist and chamber musician Soovin Kim (Violin ’99).
Click HERE to watch the On Stage at Curtis episode, or click the video below.
In a culmination of her studies at Curtis, Micah Gleason will present her graduation recital on Saturday, December 2, at 7:30 p.m., at Gould Rehearsal Hall on the Curtis campus, conducting Manuel De Falla’s The Three-Cornered Hat, Suites no. 1 and 2, Jesse Montgomery’s Coincident Dances, and Jean Sibelius’s Symphony No. 1, with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra. To attend this recital, click HERE. This performance will also be broadcast live on Curtis’s Facebook and YouTube channels.
Visit Micah Gleason’s official website.
Photos of Ms. Gleason courtesy of Micah Gleason Photo.