Emily Davidson (B.M. ‘10) studied Cello Performance at Hartt from 2006 to 2010. She is currently living in Boston.
What have you been up to since you graduated from Hartt?
After studying at Hartt, I continued on to the Longy School of Music of Bard College to study Early Music Performance. Since completing my Master’s, I've been freelancing in the Boston area as both a performer and a teacher. There’s a thriving early music scene here in Boston, so I often play in chamber music concerts with various local groups in addition to my own solo projects. In the last two years I released and self-produced two solo albums, BASS SOUNDS, which focus on unaccompanied cello music from the baroque period. The first album featured 17th century pieces by Domenico Gabrielli and Giovanni Battista Degli Antonii, and included the first Cello Suite by J.S. Bach to hear more familiar repertoire in a new context. I followed with BASS SOUNDS: Evolved this past July which explored 18th century unaccompanied pieces by Joseph Marie Clément Dall’Abaco and Friedrich Dotzauer. Evolved included the second Bach Cello Suite in D minor. Both are available at http://emilyplayscello.bandcamp.com.
What are you involved with right now?
In Fall 2013, I formed Emergence Quartet (www.emergencequartet.com), a period instrument string quartet that focuses on the first pieces in the genre. In our first season we appeared in The Boston Globe and on NPR's “On Point” with Tom Ashbrook. We're now getting ready for our second season. I'm also about to release an electronic album that takes baroque pieces and remixes them into electronic dance music like house, trap, and dubstep. The idea is to take two genres that seem very different and show where they overlap, essentially communicating the lasting relevance of old music. The album, OldStyle, is a collaboration with nationally-recognized Dj Cutman. You can learn more about the album at emilyplayscello.com/oldstyle.
What is one of your most memorable things about your time at Hartt?
I loved my ear training and theory classes. Regardless of instrument or major, these classes truly build and expand your musical mind and open your ears. Donna Menhart, Gabor Viragh, and Michael Schiano were all inspirations to me.
What did you learn during while at Hartt that you did not appreciate or recognize until after time passed and you had some time to reflect?
Building a Music Career was a required class for performance majors, though because it was a large lecture class it was easy to feel anonymous and not prioritize the work. However, learning how to build our career out of school is one of the most valuable things we can learn as musicians! We easily get stuck with our worries in the practice room and forget to think and plan the big picture.
What is next for you?
Releasing OldStyle on October 20, playing a solo concert of BASS SOUNDS music in the San Francisco area, and getting ready for my second season with Emergence Quartet.
If you want people to get in touch, how can they do so?
Like me on Facebook (www.facebook.com/emilydavidsoncello), follow me on Twitter (www.twitter.com/emilyplayscello), or send me an old-fashioned email at firstname.lastname@example.org.