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Project Advisor 1
Project Advisor 2
For the past four years at Bard College, I focused not only on my performance technique as a flutist, but I explored composition, choral repertoire, and conducting as well. Studying at Bard gave me the opportunity to develop as a musician in all of these different directions. Therefore, it only seemed right to put a senior project together that would exhibit all that I have learned. Thus, I decided to divide the project into two concerts, a flute recital presenting my flute performance skills and a folk music concert in which I would arrange the music, rehearse a group of vocalists and instrumentalists, and perform.
In Fall 2012, I prepared a flute recital titled “Journey through Time: A Flute Celebration”. The recital consisted of works for classical flute, including the Bach Partita in A minor for flute solo, Telemann flute duet in B-flat major, Fauré Fantasie, Op.79, Copland Duo for Flute and Piano, and Bartók Romanian Folk Dances. The music was very beautiful but also very challenging for me. I worked hard, and with the help of my flute teacher, Patricia Spencer, my pianist Milena Gligić, and others, I was able to master the program with gratifying results. I also had the honor of working with Luis Garcia-Renart, who helped me prove to myself that I have a voice on flute to share with others.
In Spring 2013, I organized a folk music concert titled “Journey around the World: Timeless Music”. For the program, I wanted to include a variety of pieces from around the world that celebrated life and culture. I utilized my skills as a composer, conductor, and organizer, as well as a performer, in preparing this concert. I was lucky to find musicians who were interested and available to accomplish this project, and together we performed a program that included tangos, Russian and Ukrainian folk songs, Greek art songs, Klezmer tunes, and a premiere of my composition The Melting Pot. Prior to performing, though, I spent hours, first, compiling the program, arranging five of the songs, and finishing my composition, and then, gathering musicians, scheduling rehearsals, and directing most of the rehearsals. During the process leading up to the concert, I met with issues that needed to be solved – from fixing or changing parts, to space logistics. I realized how challenging it is to be both the organizer and performer for a concert. As I look back, I am in disbelief that we were able to pull it all together, but I feel we accomplished something special. We were able to perform music that is not usually heard in a conservatory environment, and yet is the source of the music we perform.
Unifying the two programs, as apparent in both concert titles, is the theme of exploring music in the context of time and place. In the first program, listeners travelled through time and space by listening to flute repertoire from Europe and one piece from the United States of the eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth centuries. The second program led the audience all around the world, with timeless music. I use the term “timeless” to describe folk music because the music exists outside of conventional classifications of musical time periods. For centuries, folk music has been and continues to be created to accompany regular life events. It is used to express basic human emotions of happiness, sadness, fear, and hope, among many others. It is used to celebrate life.
I am pleased to have had the opportunity to create a project, which reflects and helped me discover what I do as a musician. Thank you to all who made this year’s work possible, and I look forward to future musical endeavors!
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Serdsev, Anastasia V., "Journey through Time: A Flute Celebration and Journey around the World: Timeless Music" (2013). Senior Projects Spring 2013. 184.
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