As the 2014-15 season gets underway, I'll be writing program notes and giving pre-concert lectures for a variety of institutions, including the San Francisco Symphony and the California Symphony.

My current class at the Fromm Institute begins Tuesday, Jan. 6. It's called "Music as Mirror" and discusses eight separate compositions as products of, and commentors on, the culture in which they were created.

I have taught Music 27 - Introduction to Music for 21 years now for the Fall Freshman Program at the University of California, Berkeley. Again this fall I'm shepherding a group of undergraduates through the glories of the Western musical tradition.

I maintain a personal blog called Free Composition. The blog covers a wide range of topics, even sometimes music, so check it out frequently.


Peripheral Pianism

I may have been raised and trained as a pianist, but my relationship with the instrument has been rocky at best. Only during a very limited period of my life did the piano become really central to my career as a musician, but that unnatural attachment led soon enough to an all-stops meltdown. For the past fifteen years I have had the career I want to have, and not the one people told me I was supposed to have. That career includes the piano only peripherally; I play the occasional recital, and that's about it.

more quotations

About Scott Foglesong

Scott Foglesong is a pianist, musician, teacher, writer, cat-lover, music history devotée, occasional computer geek and sometime programmer. He has been on the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music since 1978; nowadays he serves as a department chair in addition to enjoying the honor of educating some of today's most promising young musicians. In 2008 he was named recipient of the Sarlo Family Foundation Award for excellence in teaching. He has taught Music 27 (Introduction to Music) for the Fall Freshman program at UC Berkeley since 1991, is associated with the San Francisco Symphony, both as a Contributing Writer and as an "Inside Music" lecturer for the Symphony's weekly subscription concerts, and is Program Annotator for both the California Symphony and the New Hampshire Music Festival, after formerly serving in the same capacity for the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra. Professor Foglesong was formally educated at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore and the San Francisco Conservatory, but his informal education continues everywhere, without cease.

Here's what's coming up:

January 6

My winter term class "Music as Mirror" begins at the Fromm Institute at USF.

January 18

Program Notes for the California Symphony: Rossini: Overture to The Barber of Seville; Tchaikovsky: Capriccio italien; Saint-Saëns: Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso for Violin and Orchestra; Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio espagnol; Sibelius: Valse triste; Copland: Four Dances Episodes from Rodeo

January 20

Spring semester classes begin at SFCM.

January 24

Recital at the SF Conservatory of Music, 8:00 PM. Works of Scriabin, Debussy, Rachmaninoff, and Ravel.

February 8

Presentation for the Pierre Monteux Society at the SF Symphony. "Maître Pierre: The Life and Times of Pierre Monteux". (For Monteux Society members only.)

February 15 and 22

Program notes for the San Francisco Symphony "Great Performers" series: András Schiff, piano, in programs of late sonatas by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert.

February 26 – March 1

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: John Luther Adams The Light that Fills the World, Brahms Violin Concerto, Schumann Symphony No. 1, Spring

March 11 – 14

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: Handel Royal Fireworks Music, Haydn Sinfonia concertante,
Haydn Symphony No. 103, Drumroll

March 25 – 27

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: Bruckner Symphony No. 8

May 2

Presentation for Road Scholar: Music that Tells a Story: Class 9:00-11:30; lunch, class 11:00-2:30. (Hilton SFO Bayfront, Burlingame)

May 3

Program Notes for the California Symphony: Visconti: World Premiere (to be announced); Grieg: Piano Concerto; Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4

April 30 – May 3

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: Ravel Mother Goose Suite, Salonen Nyx, Stravinsky The Firebird

May 27 – 31

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: Stravinsky Jeu de cartes, Elgar Cello Concerto,
Mussorgsky-Ravel Pictures at an Exhibition

June 17 and 19

Lectures at the San Francisco Symphony on: Beethoven Overture to The Creatures of Prometheus,
Piano Concerto No. 4, Ah! perfido, Symphony No. 6, Pastoral

July – August

Program Notes for the New Hampshire Music Festival (Plymouth, NH)

August 8

Presentation for Road Scholar: Sonatas. Class 9:00 - 11:30; lunch; class 1:00 - 2:30 (Hilton SFO Bayfront, Burlingame)