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Music by Request with Sphinx LEAD

Sphinx LEAD
Abigayl Venman
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Sphinx LEAD cohort members outside of Interlochen Public Radio. L to R: Vanessa Kestner, Christopher Anderson, Yvette Loynaz, LaSaundra Booth, and Rod Vester. Not pictured: Alexa Smith

Recently, six members of the Sphinx LEAD program visited Interlochen Center for the Arts for a leadership retreat.

We invited them to curate a special edition of Music by Request during their visit.

Each person chose a piece of music and told us why it was special to them.

Listen to the entire episode on demand, and learn more about these six Sphinx LEAD cohort members below.

Listed in order of appearance in the program

Vanessa Kestner, Director of A Gift for Music

  • Arturo Márquez, Danzon no. 2

Roderick Vester, Director of Contemporary Music and Assistant Professor of Contemporary Music at Shenandoah University

  • Johann Sebastian Bach, Prelude and Fugue in A minor (BWV 543)

Christopher Anderson, director of Marketing and Sales for the Washington Ballet

  • Frank Ticheli, Vesuvius

Yvette Loynaz, director of Artistic Administration at Opera Theater of St. Louis

  • Michael Abels, Delights and Dances

Alexa Smith, Chief of Staff and Assistant Vice President for Special Initiatives at the Manhattan School of Music

  • Ralph Vaughan Williams, Serenade to Music

LaSaundra Booth, Founder and Executive Director of the Wake Forest Community Youth Orchestra

  • Mary D. Watkins, "Soul of Remembrance" from Five Movements in Color
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About Sphinx LEAD

Sphinx LEAD is one of many programs offered by the Detroit-based Sphinx Organization, a social justice organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts.

“LEAD” is an acronym for “Leadership in Excellence, Arts, and Diversity.” Each cohort is made up of Arts leaders of color who participate in a curriculum of mentorship, networking, and leadership retreats at top institutions.

Enrique Márquez, who was named Director of Music at Interlochen Center for the Arts in 2021, is an alumnus of the Sphinx LEAD program.

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Dr. Amanda Sewell is IPR's music director.