Maryland Symphony Orchestra music director receives grant

April 27, 2013|By KATE COLEMAN |
  • Elizabeth Schulze won the first Sorel Medallion in Conducting from The Elizabeth & Michel Sorel Charitable Organization Inc.
Submitted photo

Maryland Symphony Orchestra Music Director Elizabeth Schulze has been artistic director and conductor of the Flagstaff (Ariz.) Symphony Orchestra since the fall of 2008.

Earlier this month, Schulze learned that she is the winner of the first Sorel Medallion in Conducting from The Elizabeth & Michel Sorel Charitable Organization Inc.

In the organization's board of directors' announcement, Schulze was cited for the work she displayed in the International Alliance for Women in Music (IAWM) Congress in 2011 and for her continued use of women composers and artists.

The award includes a $25,000 grant to the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra for the purpose of programming its March 2014 Hispanic program.

"It's an honor to be recognized by this wonderful organization that is doing so much to expand opportunities for women in music," Schulze wrote in an email. "To be the first medallion winner is especially exciting, and the accompanying generous grant to cover a program focusing on Hispanic traditions in orchestral music will be particularly meaningful to the Flagstaff community," she added.

The September 2011 Congress, titled "In Beauty We Walk: Changing Women and the New Musical Landscape," took place at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.

Schulze recently told the Arizona Daily Sun newspaper she is proud that one of the reasons she was selected was the concert at the IAWM Congress that opened the FSO 2011 season. The orchestra performed works by seven living women composers, Gabriela Lena Frank's "Three Latin American Dances" among them. Maryland Symphony Orchestra performed Frank's composition last weekend in Hagerstown.

The Sorel Organization grant will enable the FSO to present Vanessa Perez, "an exciting emerging artist," who will perform Manuel de Falla's "Nights in the Gardens of Spain," Schulze added.

The Elizabeth & Michel Sorel Charitable Organization Inc. was established in 1996 as a private charitable foundation by their daughter, Claudette Sorel. A child piano prodigy, Claudette Sorel is the youngest graduate of The Juilliard School, completing her degree at age 9. She became a distinguished professor of piano at SUNY, Fredonia, N.Y. She died in 1999.

"Through our Medallion program, The Sorel Organization intends to create opportunities for women in composition, conducting, piano, voice and film scoring. Our mission is to keep musical excellence alive and to help stretch the boundaries for women in music," according to the mission statement on the Sorel website,

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