Yale School of Music Alumni Take Home Grammys

Yale College and the Yale School of Music might not have been decked out in Armani at the Grammys on Sunday, but the University did make a handsome showing at the Awards.

Six Yale graduates were among this year’s winners and nominees. Yale alumni were also among the Oscar nominees announced on Tuesday morning.

The alumni Grammy winners were:

David Lang, a School of Music alumnus and currently a member of the composition faculty, who won in the category Best Small Ensemble Performance for his “The Little Match Girl Passion.” Lang was winner of the Pulitzer Prize in composition in 2008.

Sharon Isbin, an alumna of Yale College and a School of Music-trained guitarist, who won for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (without Orchestra) in “Journey to the New World” (with Joan Baez and Mark O’Connor).

Yale College graduate Marin Alsop, who was the conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra on the recording of Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto, which won a Grammy for Best Classical Contemporary Composition. Alsop was also nominated for Best Classical Album for her recording of Leonard Bernstein’s Mass.

As members of the Enso Quartet, Yale School of Music graduates Maureen Nelson and Richard Belcher were nominated in the category of Best Chamber Music Performance for their recording of Ginastera: String Quartets.

Longtime faculty member and School of Music graduate Yehudi Wyner was nominated in the category of Best Classical Contemporary Composition for his Piano Concerto “Chiavi In Mano.” Wyner was the winner of the 2006 Pulitzer Prize in Music, and is one of 20 Yale affiliated composers to have received that honor. The Pulitzer honor roll begins with Yale College graduate Charles Ives (Class of 1898), who received the award in 1947, and includes such other notables as Quincy Porter, Elliott Carter, Ned Rorem and Roger Sessions.

Alumni Oscar Nominees
The Yale School of Music was also represented in the Oscar nominations announced on Tuesday morning: Tony Award winning composer Maury Yeston was nominated for Best Song for “Nine,” and Marco Beltrami for his original score for “The Hurt Locker.” Beltrami was previously nominated for his score to “3:10 to Yuma.” He has also composed scores for “Scream,” “I Robot,” “Blade II,” “Hellboy” and “The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.”

Another noted Yale alumna made Oscar history on Tuesday: With her 16th Oscar nomination—as Best Actress in the movie “Julie & Julia” —Yale School of Drama graduate Meryl Streep became the Academy’s most nominated actor of all times.

Yale College graduate, composer Thomas Newman, holds yet another Oscar record. The winner of five Grammys, the film score composer for “WALL-E,” “American Beauty” and “The Shawshank Redemption” has been nominated for 10 Academy Awards, making him the most-nominated composer never to have won the Motion Picture industry’s most coveted prize.

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Media Contact

Dorie Baker: dorie.baker@yale.edu, 203-432-1345