Newsletter: October 11, 2016
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Weekend Storm and Arrival Advisory

With a severe winter storm forecast to affect our area during Saturday night and Sunday, residential students are asked to postpone their return to campus to Monday afternoon or, for those whose class schedules allow, Tuesday. Students, please do not arrive on campus Sunday, and check back here throughout the storm's duration for the latest advisories. Those students whose travel arrangements do not allow for a return to campus on Monday or Tuesday will be permitted to arrive during the day on Saturday and will be able to access their residential space by ID swipe. (Please note that meal plans go into effect with the Sunday evening meal.)

Hartt Community Division students and families, please check back here during the weekend for the status of HCD activities.

Newsletter: October 11, 2016

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October 11, 2016
This edition contains general-interest articles. Our next accolades-and-events edition will be published October 25, 2016. 

In this Issue

Free Tickets Available to Hartt's 42nd Street The Musical

42nd Street The MusicalThe Hartt School presents 42nd Street The Musical in the University of Hartford's Millard Auditorium. Tickets are $20, with discounts available for seniors, groups, and those affiliated with the University of Hartford (see ticketing link for details). Free tickets are available for the Thursday and Friday shows. Please see below for instructions on how to redeem up to four tickets. Tickets are available at the University box office online, via phone, or in person. 


  • Thursday, October 13, at 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, October 14, at 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 15, at 7:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, October 16 at 3 p.m.

Based on the spectacular Busby Berkley films of the 1930's this extravagant tap dancing musical first appeared on Broadway in 1980 and enjoyed a glorious revival in 2001. Featuring such memorable hits as "We're in the Money", "The Lullaby of Broadway" and " Shuffle Off to Buffalo" this Hartt production will be under the direction of Division Director Alan Rust and Choreographed by Ralph Perkins. 42nd Street is full of rousing tap dancing, popular musical theater classics and show-stopping production numbers.

How to Obtain Free Tickets to the Thursday or Friday shows, while supplies last

Your Passcode is: ThFr42nd

The above pass code is good for up to 4 free tickets to either the Thursday, October 13 or Friday, October 14 performance of The Hartt School's production of 42nd Street. This code is not valid for the Saturday or Sunday performances.

The performance begin at 7:30 pm at the Millard Auditorium on the University of Hartford campus. 

You can redeem this passcode 3 ways: and click on the Arts and Events Box Office link. Enter the above passcode where is asks if you have a code (On the final payment screen, there will be a field for "Coupon, Pass Code, Gift Certificate.")

OVER THE PHONE860-768-4228.

University of Hartford Box Office Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 am – 5 pm. Mention the above passcode when you are asked for payment information.

IN PERSONLincoln Theater, 200 Bloomfield Ave, West Hartford, CT 06117.

University of Hartford Box Office Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 am – 5 pm. Print these instructions and bring them with you.

This passcode does not guarantee tickets. Tickets are subject to availability. There are no refunds or exchanges once you redeem for tickets, all sales are final. This is not valid on previously purchased tickets. Everyone, regardless of age, entering the theater must have a ticket.


2016 Hartt Gala

You are cordially invited to the 15th Annual Hartt Gala, Saturday, October 22, 2016 at the Hartford Marriott Downtown.

Please join us in welcoming Dean Betsy Cooper and in celebrating Hartt with a thrilling evening of live world-class music, dance, and theatre performances, dining, an exciting auction, and our famous After-Glow Party.

Black Tie Optional

All proceeds benefit The Hartt School and Hartt School Community Division scholarships, endowment, tuition assistance, and educational programming. For more information, please contact the Hartt Gala Committee at 860.659.2927 or

Reminder: Honor Star Faculty with your donation!

HCD Faculty StarDonate $15 or more to the Hartt Gala fundraising campaign and receive a star to honor an HCD faculty member. The top three faculty members with the most number of donations made in their honor will receive free tickets to the Hartt Gala. Donations may be made at the main campus office, at the Handel Performing Arts Center, and at our Simsmore Square location.

HCD Remembers Suzuki Piano Faculty Jane Bradley

Th Bradley FamilyOn September 29, 2016, we learned of the passing of our dear friend Jane Bradley who taught Suzuki piano here at The Hartt School Community Division for 45 years. Her contribution to our school, students, families, and community is immeasurable.

Many of you expressed your condolences on our Facebook page. Former student Benjamin Dix wrote this touching reflection, an excerpt of which is shared below.

Benjamin DixI wanted to share sympathy and thoughts with the family of Jane Bradley and The Hartt School Community Division. Jane was my first piano teacher [...].

I am 42 now. My success in life has a lot to do with Jane Bradley. She took me as a student in 1980 when I was 6. I had just recovered from a very serious blood transfusion and was completely blind in one eye. [...] Jane Bradley told me I could be a great pianist and even gave me lessons at home, rather than at Hartt, when I had just had many surgeries throughout the 80s. [...]

She made sure she let me know that when people clapped for me when I was through performing, that it was because I performed well and deserved the recognition. People did not clap for me because they felt sorry for me. [...] People clapped for me because I performed with a standard of excellence, which was taught and instilled in me by Jane Bradley.

I hope everyone takes time to remember Jane Bradley: what a great piano teacher, friend, and human being.

— Benjamin Dix

Memorial Service for Jane Bradley
Saturday, October 15, 2016 at 3 p.m.
Christ Church Cathedral
45 Church Street (corner of Main)
Hartford, CT 06103

In lieu of flowers, gifts, and condolences, the family encourages financial support of the following:

Our thoughts are with the Bradley family during this time. 

How to get your music performed

The following was originally published on the blog Composer’s Toolbox, a blog run by composer and Hartt Community Division Registrar Dan Lis.

A lot of us write music. Some of us don’t write much music, but still take music composition seriously. No matter how much music you write, some of it is likely unperformed. That begs the question: How do I get my music heard?  How do I get my music performed?

Sure, you can apply to score calls, festivals, and competitions. Sites like The Composer’s Site are great resources for finding players and organizations who solicit new music, but I disagree with paying application fees unless it is something you have a real shot at. Remember, you will be competing against hundreds of other great composers and may be given little attention.

So, you have a stack of scores (and/or folder of PDFs on your computer). You ask yourself, “How do I hear this music live?”

The simple answer is make friends.

Go to concerts. Introduce yourself to the ensemble(s) and conductor(s) afterwards. You might mention that you're a composer. These relationships take a lot of time to build. Don't focus on getting your music performed, focus on relationships with fellow musicians. When you are part of a musical community, you will have friends who are either willing to play your music, know people who would love your music, or solicit you to write music for them. Here is a list of other ways you can make friends besides going to concerts:

  1. Become active at a local school, college, or university
  2. Start blogging or create a podcast
  3. Start a new music ensemble
  4. Go to public events, including informal shows at local establishments
  5. Become a music teacher and get involved in your community
  6. Visit or join an artist collective or community ensemble
  7. Host concerts, promote other musician's events, or donate to related fundraising projects
  8. Participate in a summer festival
  9. Go to an artist residency
  10. Start a correspondence with someone whose work or performance you enjoy
  11. Join social media groups and be active in them (no spamming with your material!)
  12. Have coffee with local musicians/conductors/administrators
  13. Get together with other musicians for "listening parties." 

In order to hear your music live, you have to be an active part of the musical community. The networking apparatuses and chains of connections are astoundingly tight and complex. Get outside your “silo”, get inside a network, enjoy fellow musicians’ company, learn from them, be humble, don't feel entitled to getting performances, and be a part of the community.  But, please know that that should not be your primary goal. Being a musician is oftentimes as much about supporting others and being a part of the community as it is making music. We're in this together. There is no getting ahead of others–a rising tide lifts all boats. Get involved and make friends!

The role of competition within the HCD Dance Department

By Chair of Dance Carol Roderick

HCD Preprofessional dancersUntil recently, ballet competitions were most often held for professional dancers on an international level and occurred only every few years. It was understood that it is difficult to compare the abilities of preprofessional students since students are “unfinished” and still have the potential to change and grow tremendously, especially in the final few years of training. The one notable exception has been the Prix de Lausanne, which has always been for students, rather than working professionals.

“Competition” is not a part of the motivation or reward tradition in the professional dance world. We begin our training and finish it at different times and at different rates of speed. We train together in the ballet class even though our work is also individual and dependent upon the very important relationship we develop with our teachers, choreographers, coaches, and fellow students. When we dance on stage, we are certainly not competing with each other, but rather creating a work together, unified by the music and the choreography, which we share. Furthermore, our first performance experiences are in ensembles, with the progression to smaller demi-soloist and soloist roles coming only as we grow, mature, and develop technically and artistically. In truth, even some professional dancers never have the opportunity to appear on stage in solo roles.

However, in recent years, it has become common to see students competing on local, national, and even international levels in such competitions as YAGP (Youth America Grand Prix) and the Junior Divisions of the major international ballet competitions, such as Jackson, New York, Varna, Moscow, etc. An increasing number of artistic directors and ballet masters from professional companies are attending those competitions and using them as central “audition sites” for hiring dancers or inviting talented students into their schools. Some companies are even setting aside a certain number of contracts for new dancers until they have the opportunity to see these competitors in daily classes, rehearsals, and on stage. Therefore, it has become more desirable for some students to participate in these competitions.

As a school, competing just for the sake of competing is not beneficial, since our goal is not just to win competitions, but, rather, to make performing artists. But we also want to make sure that our students are given opportunities, and that they benefit from the intensive coaching and rehearsal which is often a huge part of these competitions.

Preparation and coaching for performance is a time-consuming and very specialized part of any training program. Unfortunately, with the advent of so many competitions, many schools have found it necessary to make difficult choices regarding allocation of precious studio time and faculty resources. “Repertoire” classes have become “variations” classes (a designation which implies solo, rather than ensemble work), and material that used to be part of the program of study for all students is available to a smaller number of “competitors.”

So, there are many things to consider when contemplating entry in a competition—questions which concern students, parents, faculty, and the school as a whole. Most importantly, we must decide which competitions are appropriate for our students, and how this work can benefit each dancer individually and the training program as a whole.

When a school participates in a competition, it is with some very specific goals in mind:

  1. To provide students with the opportunity to prepare and rehearse repertoire in an intensive and focused coaching setting—which is an integral part of the life of a performing dancer;
  2. To reinforce the connection between the technical training class and the development of performance-quality work;
  3. To deepen the students’ familiarity with, and understanding of, the classical ballet repertoire, tradition, and aesthetic;
  4. To provide the time and opportunity to work in greater detail than is sometimes possible within daily group lessons;
  5. To provide students with an opportunity to travel and experience the broader dance community, participate in valuable workshops, and gain inspiration and encouragement from their peers around the world;
  6. To raise the artistic and technical level of students through individual coaching and preparation for stage work;
  7. To establish local, regional, national, and international connections and recognition for our school, its standard of training, and our students;
  8. To take our place in the ever-changing world of professional dance.

It is our goal to provide whatever benefits are part of the competition process without diminishing the training which we are committed to providing to all students in our program.

Creating a link within each level of study between technical training and repertoire is an important part of the development of any performing artist. If it is done correctly, the rehearsing of repertoire reinforces the mastery of the technique, and visa-versa. It is expected that the work in the daily lesson will create the foundation for mastery of repertoire, and that coaching in rehearsal will be carried back to the daily lesson.

A major difficulty in preparing students (rather than professionals) for competitions is that most classical ballet solo repertoire is actually intended for the professional dancer—a soloist in a professional company—who has already completed his/her technical training and has risen above the level of the corps de ballet.

Therefore, it is likely that there will be elements within each solo variation which have not yet been mastered by the young student. It is essential to select the appropriate repertoire for each student, making sure that he/she is technically ready and capable of executing that variation. Otherwise, the experience will not be beneficial, and may in fact discourage the student and/or impede progress.


The HCD e-letter is a great place to publish accolades, news, and events concerning HCD faculty, students, and staff. If you have an article or upcoming event to submit, please email and indicate “HCD e-letter submission” in the title.

The next events and accolades e-letter is scheduled to be published on Tuesday, October 25, 2016. Please submit events and accolades by Monday, October 17. The next informational e-letter is scheduled to be published on Tuesday, November 8. Please submit articles by Monday, October 31.