Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Dayton Phil hires new Principal Keyboardist...

...and it's me!

I performed a successful audition yesterday afternoon for the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra at Dayton’s Schuster Center, made it through two rounds, and was awarded the job after consideration by the audition committee (which was chaired by music director Neal Gittleman). I played Chopin’s Impromptu Op. 29 and several excerpts of standard orchestral literature by Stravinsky, Shostakovich, Gershwin, Respighi, and Tchaikovsky. It was a mean and technically demanding list, and I was sweating bullets in the final round!

This is a really great career move for me, and I am very excited about achieving a performance post with such a wonderful group in a nearby area. My position will begin in the fall (I am waiting on a contract for the time being). As some of my readers know, I’ve actually been playing as a substitute with the orchestra for about five years now. The real job came open just this past spring after former keyboardist Michael Chertock resigned the position. (I'm grateful to Michael for giving my colleagues and myself the opportunity!)

So it turns out I have two performance positions with two different orchestras: one now with Dayton, and the other with the IRIS orchestra in Germantown, Tennessee (where I’ve been principal keyboard for the last six years). This is a rare and fortunate circumstance for a pianist, so I will probably enhance the blog in the near future with posts about orchestral and large-ensemble keyboard practice.

TO MY STUDENTS: Rest assured! This is a part-time position (mostly in the evenings), so I will continue to teach at Slater Academy as much as possible. Since the drive up to Dayton does take commuting time, I may have to give up teaching regularly during the evening. But I will strive to accommodate everybody to the best of my scheduling ability. Since we have until the fall anyway, everything remains the same for now. Please be in touch if you have questions about how this might affect your lessons.

Last but not least, I’d like to say “thanks” to my students and their families for their patience and flexibility over the last five years. Many times I needed to reschedule lessons at the last minute so that I could rehearse and perform with the DPO as a sub. (Thanks also to Becky Slater, who allowed me to get away with this kind of behavior!) That experience helped give me the edge I needed to win a job like this, so I appreciate everybody’s willingness and good humor during those hectic times.

4 comments:

Chris Foley said...

Josh! You rock!

John said...

Congrats dude, you played a mean audition and you sounded great!

Jason Heath said...

That's awesome, Josh! Congratulations. The blog's looking great as well. I notice that you are adding some hacks, widgets, and the like!

Joshua Nemith said...

Thanks Chris, John, and Jason for all of the "comment" support! Now that the audition is over, I look forward to doing some more blogging...