CSI Professor Will Be Featured Speaker at Lincoln Center

Dr. Sylvia Kahan will be a featured speaker at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center's Winter Festival 2012: Immortal Investments.

CSI Professor of Music Sylvia Kahan will be a featured speaker during the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Winter Festival 2012: Immortal Investments. Professor Kahan’s lecture, entitled “The Legendary Salon,” will take place on Friday, February 24 in the Rose Studio at Lincoln Center at 6:30pm.

The Immortal Investments Festival celebrates patronage, dedications, and commissions in chamber music. “The Legendary Salon” is the third of four Festival concerts and pre-concert lectures conceived by Chamber Music Society directors David Finckel and Wu Han.

Sylvia Kahan, critically acclaimed author of Music’s Modern Muse: A Life of Winnaretta Singer, Princesse de Polignac, will discuss the world of the Princesse’s influential, avant-garde salon. A Singer Sewing Machine heiress, the Princesse used her fortune to commission almost two dozen works from composers such as Fauré, Stravinsky, and Poulenc. Renowned performers like Vladimir Horowitz and Enrico Caruso performed regularly at the celebrated soirées held in her Paris mansion and her Venetian palazzo. The Polignac music salon served as the international hub for the musical avant-garde between the Belle Époque and the advent of World War II.

Dr. Kahan says, “It is such an honor to have been invited by David Finckel to participate in Chamber Music Society’s Festival. The story of the Princesse de Polignac’s patronage is endlessly fascinating. What is most remarkable is that her generous funding of composers and performers was made possible because of her sewing machine fortune. Just imagine: French high art was funded by American industrial dollars!”

A sought-after lecturer, Dr. Kahan has published books and articles on late 19th-centuryParis, music patronage, the role of women in music, and the history of music theory. As a pianist, she has performed as concerto soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician in all of New York City’s major concert halls and throughout North America and Europe. Professor Kahan teaches courses in music history and performance studies at CUNY’s Graduate Center and the College of Staten Island.  Many of her courses include the teaching of skills that enable students to write about music more clearly and confidently.

Information about “The Legendary Salon” program can be found online.  Tickets for the festival are $35 to $65 and are available at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center at Alice Tully Hall box office; by calling 212.875.5788; or online. Student rush tickets are only $10.

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