Winter 2010: Of Note

Portrait of Robert Spano

Robert Spano

Andrew Eccles/Special

Atlanta Symphony Director to Become Artist-in-Residence

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This spring, Emory and one of Atlanta’s most prominent figures in the arts will make beautiful music together when Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Music Director Robert Spano begins a three-year appointment as a University Distinguished Artist-in-Residence.

Maestro Spano will coteach seminars, lecture, and present programs on literature, philosophy, science, and musicology for three weeks during each of the spring semesters from 2010 to 2012, actively participating in Emory’s scholarly community.

Spano will first collaborate with Emory music professor Steven Everett on metaphysics and the origins of music. The project, “Tonality and Sonata Form: Pythagorean Tuning, Numerology, and Cosmology,” comprises lectures and a three-concert series, which will focus on the violin sonatas of Mozart and Brahms and the cello sonatas of Beethoven with Spano at the keyboard.

“It has always fascinated and inspired me that, before studying philosophy at the Platonic Academy in Athens, the aspiring student first needed to study arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music,” Spano says. “The intellectual underpinnings of Western music and their relations to these other disciplines are perhaps best expressed in Pythagorean theory. I eagerly anticipate exploring the interdisciplinary nature of music within the vital intellectual environment at Emory and am deeply honored to have been invited.”

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