Oberlin had a big night at Music’s Biggest Night, the 2024 Grammy Awards. 

During the February 4 pre-telecast ceremony, Oberlin horn professor and composer Jeff Scott won Best Classical Compendium for his composition Passion For Bach And Coltrane.

The recording features performances by Imani Winds (whose Oberlin alumni members are flutist Brandon Patrick George ’08, oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz ’94, and bassoonist Monica Ellis ’95) as well as jazz percussionist Neal Smith ’96. Imani Winds will also be performing at Warner Concert Hall on March 7, a free bonus concert on the 2023-24 Artist Recital Series.

The award for Best Opera Recording—The Metropolitan Opera’s recording of Terence Blanchard’s Champion—was given to the conductor, producer, lead soloists, orchestra, and chorus, including two alums: violinist Laura McGinnis ’83 and music librarian Nishana Gunaratne Dobbeck ’09 in the The MET Orchestra, as well as Rosalie Sullivan ’99, an alto in the Metropolitan Opera Chorus.

The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s recording of Thomas Adès’ Dante won Best Orchestral Performance. Numerous alums are members of this orchestra, including Principal Clarinet Boris Allakhverdyan ’06, Associate Principal Viola Ben Ullery ’04, Oboist and Solo English Horn player Carolyn Hove ’80, Associate Principal Oboe Marion Arthur Kuszyk ’88, and Bass Trombone John Lofton ’77.

Bass-baritone Dashon Burton ’05 won his third Grammy, as his group Roomful of Teeth took home Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for 2023’s Rough Magic. Burton also sang with Roomful of Teeth on composer Jessie Montgomery’s Rounds, a release that won Best Contemporary Classical Composition.

“The American Project,” a collaboration with pianist Yuja Wang and the Louisville Orchestra, won Best Classical Instrumental Solo. Members of the orchestra include violist Jennifer Shackleton ’94 and principal bassoonist Matthew Karr ’78.

In addition to the above winners, numerous Oberlin alums and other Conservatory faculty members (including Professor of Conducting Timothy Weiss and Professor of Advanced Improvisation and Percussion Jamey Haddad) were nominated for Grammy awards this year across classical, contemporary, jazz, American Roots, and world music categories.


Watch Imani Winds’ Ellis and Spellman-Diaz accept the Best Classical Compendium Grammy Award



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