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School of Music joins up with Atlanta Ballet and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

By Helene Erenberg

When it comes to music, as in real estate, it pays to be in a good neighborhood.

The School of Music is collaborating with two of Atlanta’s most venerated professional arts organizations — and GSU’s intown neighbors — the Atlanta Ballet and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.

As part of the Atlanta Ballet’s 2012–13 season, the Georgia State University Singers will perform live with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra in the North American premiere of David Bintley’s “Carmina Burana,” April 12-14, 2013 at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.

School of Music Director W. Dwight Coleman said that the opportunity for students to work with the company is invaluable.

“Collaborations such as these also support the university’s strategic plan to provide ‘signature experiences’ for our students, experiences beyond the normal expectations,” Coleman said, adding that he and John McFall, artistic director of the Atlanta Ballet, are discussing other ways to collaborate in the future.

The School of Music also welcomed two Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) musicians — Christopher Rex, cello, and Brice Andrus, horn — to the faculty this fall.

Christopher Rex joined the ASO as principal cello in 1979. Since then, he has appeared as a recitalist and chamber musician across the nation. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and the Juilliard School, he was a member of the Philadelphia Orchestra under director Eugene Ormandy for seven seasons.

“I’m delighted that Christopher Rex is joining our performance faculty,” said Michael Palmer, GSU’s Charles Thomas Wurm Distinguished Professor of Orchestral Studies, who served as associate conductor at the ASO in the late 1960s. “He brings a high level of artistry, as well as a tremendous reputation as a teacher.”

Coming on board as horn instructor is Brice Andrus, Atlanta Symphony principal hornist. Andrus joined the ASO in 1966 while still a student at the GSU School of Music, where he studied both piano and horn. Andrus moved up to the ASO’s principal horn chair in 1975, and currently holds the endowed Sandra and John Glover Chair.