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James Bagwell

James Bagwell
Photo by Erin Baiano

Directed the Bard Festival Chorale for the concert The Key of Dreams, which was performed on March 22, 2019 at Carnegie Hall.

James Bagwell maintains an active international schedule as a conductor of choral, operatic, and orchestral music. In 2015 he was named associate conductor of The Orchestra Now while continuing his role as Principal Guest Conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra. From 2009–15 he was music director of The Collegiate Chorale; some of the highlights of his tenure with there include conducting a number of rarely performed operas-in-concert, including Bellini’s Beatrice di Tenda, Rossini’s Moise et Pharaon, and, most recently, Boito’s Mefistofele. He conducted the New York premiere of Philip Glass’ Toltec Symphony and Osvaldo Golijov’s Oceana, both at Carnegie Hall. His performance of Kurt Weill’s Knickerbocker Holiday at Alice Tully Hall was recorded live for Gaslight Records and is the only complete recording of this musical. Since 2011 he has collaborated with singer and composer Natalie Merchant, conducting a number of major orchestras across the country, including the San Francisco and Seattle Symphonies. Other recent performances in New York include conducting Philip Glass’ Another Look at Harmony at the Park Avenue Armory, and leading The Little Opera Theatre of New York’s production of Rossini’s Opportunity Makes the Thief. He has been guest conductor of The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Jerusalem Symphony, Amici New York, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, and Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, among others.

Mr. Bagwell has trained choruses for a number of major American and international orchestras, including the Boston Symphony, Mostly Mozart Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, NHK Symphony (Japan), St. Petersburg Symphony, Budapest Festival Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, and Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. He is Professor of Music and Director of Performance Studies at Bard College and Bard College Conservatory of Music.

Fall 2018

Elliott Forrest

Elliott Forrest

Hosting Janáček’s Sinfonietta, performed on April 26, 2015 at Peter Norton Symphony Space.

Elliott Forrest is a Peabody Award winning broadcaster and producer. He can now be heard on WQXR and WNYC in New York. He is heard nationally as the radio host of the syndicated concerts from The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. For WQXR he produced and hosted The WQXR Classical Comedy Contest at Carolines on Broadway, which was also shot for WNET Channel 13 in NY. He also hosts the national broadcasts of Spring for Music live from Carnegie Hall, where he has appeared more than 50 times.

For more than 12 years, Mr. Forrest was with the A&E Television Network as host of Breakfast with the Arts. He was nominated for an Emmy in 2002 and 2005. The show featured segments on movies, Broadway, rock, jazz, world, and classical music; in studio performances; and extensive interviews with guests. Over the years, he has been a host, moderator, guest speaker, and lecturer for scores of events, shows, and galas. In January of 2006 he hosted the opening concerts of the new Globe-News Center for the Performing Arts in Amarillo, TX.

Fall 2014

CornellGleeClub

Cornell University Glee Club

Appearing in the concert Music U., performed on April 19, 2015 at Carnegie Hall.

In the fall of 1868, months after Cornell University opened its doors, students banded together to form the Orpheus Glee Club. Originally composed of a vocal quartet, several accompanying instrumentalists, and a poet, the group has become a home to thousands of young men who have traveled in all walks of life, from music and medicine to agriculture and astronomy. The group has performed songs of Bernstein on Malaysian television and songs of Shostakovich in the Moscow conservatory, sung in more than a dozen languages, logged hundreds of thousands of miles, and brought music to millions of people across the globe.

The ensemble performs a diverse repertoire, ranging from liturgical settings to folk songs and from works of the Renaissance to contemporary music. In 1995, the Glee Club began a project of annually commissioning a new piece for male voices by composers such as Augusta Read Thomas, Julian Wachner, David Conte, Daniel Kellogg, Shulamit Ran, Norbert Palej, Benjamin May, Bernard Rands, Joseph Gregorio, J. David Moore, and most recently Toby Twining.

The Glee Club has been led by several notable directors, including Hollis Dann, Eric Dudley, Thomas Tracy, and Director Emeritus Thomas Sokol, who led the group for 38 years. Scott Tucker, the Glee Club’s director from 1995-2012, brought the group international acclaim with performances at the American Choral Directors Association and the Llangollen International Musical Eistedfodd in Wales, where the Glee Club placed second place in the Male Choir competition. Robert Isaacs is the glee club’s ninth conductor.

Fall 2014

Cornell Chorus

Cornell University Chorus

Appearing in the concert Music U., performed on April 19, 2015 at Carnegie Hall.

The Cornell University Chorus, founded in 1921, is Cornell’s premier treble voice ensemble. Since 2001, the Chorus has made it a special point to commission new works from women composers with the goal of expanding the contemporary repertoire for treble voices. Comprised of 50 women from a variety of backgrounds, both academic and otherwise, the Chorus performs a repertoire spanning eight centuries and ten languages, including masses, motets, spirituals, and folk, with a variety of other classical and contemporary pieces.

The Chorus performs annually throughout the academic year for a multitude of university events, including Convocation, First Year Family Weekend, Senior Week, Commencement, and Reunions weekend. In addition, the Chorus boasts extensive experience in professional settings, having appeared on the stages of Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, the Philadelphia Academy of Music, and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The Chorus has also had the privilege of working with renowned world musician Samite, of Uganda, and with Anonymous 4 in a production of Richard Einhorn’s Voices of Light.

The ensemble has made numerous successful tours of New England, the Midwest, Canada, and, most recently, California. The Chorus also travels to other institutions for competitions and festivals and has performed with other groups, such as the Toronto Women’s Chorus and the Penn State Glee Club.

Fall 2014

Bard Festival Chorale

Appeared in the concert The Key of Dreams, which was performed on March 22, 2019 at Carnegie Hall.

The Bard Festival Chorale was formed in 2003 as the resident choir of the Bard Music Festival. It consists of the finest ensemble singers from New York City and surrounding areas. Many of its members have distinguished careers as soloists and as performers in a variety of choral groups; all possess a shared enthusiasm for the exploration of new and unfamiliar music.

Fall 2018

Phillip Fargo, tenor

Philip Fargo

Appearing in the concert Music U., performed on April 19, 2015 at Carnegie Hall.

Phillip Fargo is a junior at Cornell University, originally from Henderson, NY. He is studying Marine Biology with a focus on marine diseases and immunology. He is also a member of the Glee Club’s a cappella subset, The Hangovers.

Spring 2015