A L U M N I P R O F I L E Q&A with alumnus Ryan Turner
TURNER (M.M. ’98, THEATER) IS THE NEWLY APPOINTED ARTISTIC DIRECTOR OF BOSTON’S FAMED EMMANUEL MUSIC AND THE DIRECTOR OF CHORAL
ACTIVITIES AT PHILLIPS EXETER ACADEMY. IN ADDITION TO THESE ROLES, HE HAS MAINTAINED AN ACTIVE SOLO CAREER IN ORATORIO, RECITAL AND OPERA.
Q: When did you know you wanted to pursue a career in music?
RT: As a junior in high school I sang the Brahms Requiem in the Texas All-State Choir conducted by Robert Shaw. I knew then that this is what I needed to do!
Q: What makes The Boston Conservatory unique?
RT: The school offers students a unique environment where they can work and learn with artists outside their discipline. As a musician this experience rounds out one’s perspective and approach.
Q: What does performance mean to you?
RT: As a conductor it means enabling musicians to perform at their best and to communicate humanity with the audience.
Q: What was the most important thing you learned at the Conservatory?
RT: Humility, preparation and the importance of taking risks.
Q: What was your favorite class and why?
RT: Vocal coachings with Cathy Rand were challenging, humbling, eye-opening and revealed the wonder of the relationship between words and music.
Q: How did the Conservatory prepare you for your career?
RT: As a graduate student, I often felt out of my comfort zone—this is often where real learning and self-discovery happens. The lessons have been invaluable.
Q: What is your advice to aspiring artist?
RT: Work hard, have thick skin and be ready for and open to the unexpected.
F A C U L T Y P R O F I L E Q&A with
faculty member Andy Vores
VORES IS AN ACTIVE COMPOSER OF OPERA, CHAMBER MUSIC, CHORAL AND VOCAL MUSIC. HE IS THE CHAIR OF COMPOSITION, THEORY AND MUSIC HISTORY, AS WELL AS THE BOSTON CONSERVATORY’S FIRST FACULTY TRUSTEE.
Q: What was your first introduction to music?
AV: There was a lot of music in my home growing up. My mom played our piano often and I took both piano and clarinet lessons.
Q: How did you choose The Boston Conservatory as your place of work?
AV: I feel more like it chose me. I was asked to apply for my current position and to teach a masterclass as part of the application process. After the masterclass, I was sold!
Q: What makes the Conservatory unique?
AV: The fact that it is one of only a handful of conservatories in the United States working at this rigorous pre-professional level. Also, unlike other conservatories, we provide this intense experience in music, in dance and in musical theater—there’s no other school doing exactly what we do here.
Q: What is your favorite Conservatory moment?
AV: I always enjoy hearing back from alumni about how well prepared they are for graduate programs, doctoral programs and performing or composing careers. As an educator, this is especially rewarding to hear.
Q: What is the best part about teaching?
AV: The students! But also the fact that as I teach, I am constantly learning. Q: What advice would you give to aspiring artists?
AV: That enthusiasm and talent will get anyone so far, but that creating art is eventually an act of will. The more prepared you are the stronger, more versatile and more nimble your artistic muscles will be.
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