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Ithaca College School of Music Receives Three National Awards

 ITHACA, NY — The American Prize — an annual series of national awards that recognize excellence in music performance and conducting — has bestowed honors to the Ithaca College Symphony Orchestra and its conductor, Jeffery Meyer, assistant professor of music performance. The orchestra placed third nationally in the orchestra performance category, while Meyer was named a second-place winner in the orchestra conducting category. Both honors were given in the college/university division. In addition, Meyer achieved third place in the American Prize in Orchestral Programming — Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award competition, named after the former music director of the Lithuanian State Opera and longtime educator at the Hartt School of Music.

The American Prize awards recognize performance excellence in seven categories, each of which has several divisions, including professional, community and college/university. Entrants are judged solely through recorded performances; there is no live competition. The judges made their decisions based on artistic quality, overall effect of the performance, musicality, rhythmic incisiveness, tone quality, intonation and knowledge of style.

“The School of Music prides itself in providing its students with a substantial and comprehensive musical education,” Meyer said. “This latest opportunity to compete with other musicians at a national level is just one example of what we offer.”

In addition to the American Prize, the Ithaca College Symphony Orchestra was recently awarded the 2010–11 ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) Award for Adventurous Programming. Composed of close to 100 musicians, the orchestra is dedicated to performing a symphonic repertoire that ranges from the baroque through the 20th century, as well as contemporary works. The orchestra will perform its first concert of the season on Sunday, Oct. 16, in Ford Hall in the James J. Whalen Center for Music. Beginning at 4 p.m., the program will offer works by Brahms, Strauss and Fuhong Shi.

Born in Chicago, Meyer began his musical studies as a pianist and continued to study composition and conducting. In addition to serving as director of orchestras at Ithaca College, he is the founder and artistic director of the St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic in Russia. He has appeared with orchestras in the United States and abroad, including the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra and the Orchestra Sinfonica “Haydn” di Bolzano e Trento. In recent concert seasons, he has conducted and performed as a piano soloist and chamber musician in venues in the United States and Canada as well as Russia, Italy, Spain, Germany and Southeastern Asia.

For more information, contact Molly O’Shea Polk, marketing communications manager in the School of Music, at or (607) 274-3370.