David Kim taught a master class for selected students from the Drexel University Orchestra in preparation for a concert on Nov. 23. Photo credit: C. Shan Cerrone.
World-famous violinist and concertmaster of The Philadelphia Orchestra David Kim will join the Drexel University Orchestra from Drexel’s Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design for a concert on Sunday, Nov. 23. The concert will be held in the Main Auditorium in Drexel’s Main Building (3141 Chestnut St.), beginning at 7:30 p.m.
During the first half of the concert, the Drexel University Orchestra will perform Johannes Brahms’ “Academic Festival Overture” and “Capriccio espagnol” by Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. After an intermission, Kim will join the students onstage for a performance of Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky’s “Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35.”
The concert will be followed by a reception and an opportunity to meet Kim. The concert is free and open to the public. No RSVP necessary.
On Oct. 29, Kim mentored eight selected students in a master class at Drexel. The students performed a piece of their own choosing and received one-on-one feedback from Kim. Students, faculty and the general public observed in the audience. After the class, Kim joined the whole orchestra for a rehearsal, in preparation for the upcoming concert.
“David Kim’s master class was an opportunity that few students at few institutions get to attend,” said Carson Lloyd, a physics major in the College of Arts and Sciences and one of the eight students selected to participate in the class. “In the quick and to-the-point format of a master class with an audience much larger than that of a private lesson, the amount of knowledge and change that can be felt, seen and made is incredible, especially with the expertise and enthusiasm of Mr. Kim.”
Playing for David Kim was like a dream come true.
“Playing for David Kim was like a dream come true. Aside from being a world-class violinist, he is also a really nice down-to-earth guy and I am honored to have gotten the opportunity to be critiqued by someone of his caliber,” said Errol Oliveros, a freshman biological sciences major in the College of Arts and Sciences.
In addition to Lloyd and Oliveros, students selected to participate in the master class included cellists Cyrus Ahmadi, a sophomore biomedical engineering major in the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems, and Keziah Sheldon, a freshman physics major in the College of Arts and Sciences; violist Michael Flynn, a freshman chemical engineering major in the College of Engineering; and violinists Seung Cho, a sophomore materials science and engineering major in the College of Engineering; Hanjie Liu, a pre-junior computer science major in the College of Computing & Informatics; and Joseph Zia, a junior software engineering major from the College of Computing & Informatics.
The students were selected by Rosalind Erwin, who became director of the orchestra last year. In the past year, Erwin has expanded the former string ensemble into a full symphony orchestra made up of 61 students, performing standard orchestral repertoire.
“Because Drexel doesn’t have a music major, the orchestra is made up of students who are engineers, physicists, mathematicians and so on, who are playing music just because they are passionate about it,” said Erwin. “It really brings the entire university together. And we are thrilled to have the concertmaster of a major orchestra and a performer of such caliber joining us onstage. The students are gobsmacked.”
Violinist David Kim was named concertmaster of The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1999. He appears as soloist with The Philadelphia Orchestra each season as well as with numerous orchestras around the world. Conductors with whom he has performed include Kazuyoshi Akiyama, Myung Whun Chung, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Rafael Frubeck de Burgos, Vladimir Jurowski, Peter Oundjian, and Wolfgang Sawallisch. He also appears internationally at festivals such as MasterWorks (USA) and Pacific (Japan).
As a highly sought-after pedagogue, Kim presents master classes at schools and institutions such as Juilliard, the New World Symphony in Miami, Princeton, Yale and the Korean National University of Arts. He serves as Artist in Residence at the Hyogo Performing Arts Center Orchestra in Japan, performing and holding master classes several times each season.
Rosalind Erwin has appeared as guest conductor with orchestras and ensembles in Europe and has been active as a conductor and music educator throughout the United States. Erwin currently holds the positions of music director/adjunct faculty of the Drexel University Orchestra in the Westphal College of Media Arts and Design, and director/artistic staff of the Philadelphia Young Artists Orchestra, feeder orchestra to the venerable Philadelphia Youth Orchestra. An accomplished instrumental performer, Erwin appeared as clarinet soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony and performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra. During her tenure as music director of the Pottstown Symphony Orchestra, Erwin elevated this regional orchestra to exceptional artistic heights, expanded educational outreach and brought contemporary music into the mainstream of concert programming.
About the Drexel University Orchestra
The Drexel University Orchestra is a full symphony orchestra comprised of strings, woodwinds, brass and percussion. The members of the group have the opportunity to further their individual and ensemble playing skills through weekly rehearsals and a concert performance at the end of each quarter. The orchestra's repertoire consists of works from the standard orchestral repertoire, and has included symphonies, suites and overtures by Beethoven, Wagner, Mozart, Bizet, Bach, Brahms and Mahler. Performance scholarships are available for string players for the Drexel University Orchestra (woodwind, brass and percussion scholarships for orchestra are provided through the Concert Band). Auditions for the Drexel University Orchestra and scholarship recommendation are held during Accepted Students Weekends in March and April.