Tag Archives: Aaron Copland School of Music

Queens College honors late jazz great


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Photo by James Fidela

The legacy of a late Queens College music professor will live on with a memorial scholarship in his name.

Queens College and the Aaron Copland School of Music paid tribute to Howard Brofsky Tuesday, establishing the Howard Brofsky Memorial Scholarship in Jazz in his honor.

Brofsky passed away on October 17 at age 86. He taught up until 10 days before he died, officials said.

“He especially loved the classroom,” said Edward Smaldone, director of the Aaron Copland School of Music. “He will be missed by the entire Aaron Copland School of Music and Queens College family.”

Photo courtesy of Queens College

Brofsky, a lifelong jazz performer, chaired the music department shortly after beginning his career at the college in the 1960s. He is also credited for swaying administration to start a jazz program, despite early resistance that “sometimes disheartened” Brofsky, said his wife, Robin Westen.

“But he believed in the power of jazz and its importance. That’s why he persevered. It came from his heart,” she said. “He set up the program and then quietly stepped back and let it unfold and blossom.”

Brofsky’s “quiet strength” paved the way for the program to become one of the best in New York, the college said in a release.

 

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Music will be ‘Bach’ in the classroom


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of Queens College

One woman is on a mission to bring classical music “Bach” to school.

Maxine Fisher, a literature professor at Queens College (QC) and a devout music lover, plans to provide free, classical music concerts to local elementary and middle schools in East Elmhurst, Woodside and Middle Village this spring.

“You’re never too young to learn to appreciate classical music,” said Fisher, who grew up in Maspeth.

The “Bach to School” program — which was created with the help of Edward Smaldone, the director of QC’s Aaron Copland School of Music, and a $1,500 grant from the QC Foundation — features interactive, fun lessons and easy to understand pieces of music, Fisher said.

“Even just a few minutes of listening to classical music each day with your children will have a great impact on their musical appreciation for years to come,” she said.

The program’s inaugural performance was held for first-through-eighth- graders last December at St. Stanislaus School in Maspeth. It featured a pianist and a Julliard-trained violinist, who is studying for a Master of Arts degree in music at QC, Fisher said.