Message from Seth Brenzel, Executive Director

Seth Brenzel headshot

Dear Walden friend,

As winter wears on, summer feels closer than ever. Along with the whole Walden team, I am immersed in planning an incredible season of programs in 2024. In this edition of InterNetzo, we are pleased to share highlights of the inspiring artists who will be in residence at Walden this summer, mentoring our students, workshopping and premiering their works, and presenting world-class performances on our summer Concert Series.

This newsletter also contains information about upcoming application deadlines and fundraising events; a recap of Walden’s leadership retreat in San Francisco; and the latest news from around the Walden community.

I hope our paths cross at a Walden event or program soon!


Seth Brenzel signature

Seth Brenzel
Executive Director

Apply for Walden 2024

Applications for the Lance Reddick Scholarship are due Friday, March 1.

Applications for the Lance Reddick Scholarship at Walden’s Young Musicians Program (YMP), including a completed financial aid application, are due Friday, March 1.

The final application deadline to apply to the Young Musicians Program (YMP) and Creative Musicians Retreat (CMR) is Monday, April 1. We encourage you to share the news with your friends, family, colleagues, students, and teachers.

Walden’s 2024 programs:

  • Young Musicians Program: June 29 – August 4, 2024, Dublin School, Dublin, New Hampshire (for pre-college musicians, ages 9-18)

Application materials for both programs are available on our website.

Write to us with any questions.

Apply Today

Upcoming Fundraising Events

Saturday, March 16, from 6 to 8 pm

Save the date for an evening of music, community, and refreshments at the beautiful Salmagundi Club in New York City.

Pedja Mužijević, an amazing pianist, a former Walden School faculty member, and the Artistic Administrator at Baryshnikov Arts in New York, will perform.

This reception and concert will celebrate Walden’s mission of inspiring artistic expression and personal growth through experiential music programs. Contributions to Walden’s Annual Fund will underwrite critical student scholarships and inspiring artist residences at Walden’s 2024 summer programs.

For more information or to RSVP, contact us or call (415) 587-8157.

Sunday, May 5, from 3 to 5 pm

Save the date for another wonderful Walden celebration and fundraiser at the DACOR Bacon House in Washington, DC! More details will be available soon. Contact us or call (415) 587-8157. with any questions or to RSVP.


Inspiring Artist Residencies at Walden 2024

Each summer, Walden’s award-winning Concert Series presents leading professional musicians and ensembles on concerts that are offered free of charge to the public and webcast through high-quality livestreams.

Visiting artists and Composers-in-Residence are integral to Walden’s programs, leading workshops, demonstrations, and dialogues that challenge and inspire Walden students.

We have an incredible roster of visiting artists and composers lined up for Walden’s 2024 summer season, with additional artists still to be confirmed.

2024 Composers-in-Residence

Oscar Bettison, Creative Musicians Retreat (CMR) Composer-in-Residence

Born on the United Kingdom’s Channel Islands to Spanish and British parents, Oscar Bettison was fascinated from an early age by the interplay between the “weird, hazy, tenuous aural image” in his imagination and the wild effort to wrestle it onto the page. After studying in Amsterdam with Louis Andriessen and Martijn Padding, he learned to embrace this creative discomfort, crashing through challenges with fantastic, imaginative twists. Bettison was recognized with a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2017, and he is currently a Professor of Composition at John Hopkins University’s Peabody Institute.

Sarah Kirkland Snider, Young Musicians Program (YMP) Composer-in-Residence

A highly acclaimed composer who has written dozens of chamber, orchestral, and choral works, Sarah Kirkland Snider has been called “one of today’s most compelling composers for the human voice” (NPR’s Deceptive Cadence). Snider’s music organically synthesizes diverse influences to render a nuanced command of immersive storytelling. She is also the co-founder and co-artistic director of New Amsterdam Records, a nonprofit label that champions new albums by creative composers and performers.


2024 Artists-in-Residence

International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE)

Members of the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) will return for residencies at both CMR and YMP in 2024, presenting concerts of cutting-edge new music and performing student works on Composers Forums. With a commitment to cultivating a more curious and engaged society through music, the International Contemporary Ensemble—as a commissioner and performer at the highest level—amplifies creators whose work propels and challenges how music is made and experienced.

David Friend

Pianist David Friend will return as a visiting artist at CMR in 2024. A fearless performer, he has been hailed by critics for his adventurous programming, his commanding technique, and his captivating performances. His playing has been described as “astonishingly compelling” (the Washington Post) and the New York Times calls him “[one] of the finest, busiest pianists active in New York’s contemporary-classical scene.”


This GRAMMY-nominated piano duo will present an opening concert at YMP. Since joining forces as a professional duo in 2009, internationally acclaimed solo pianists Eva-Maria Zimmermann and Keisuke Nakagoshi—ZOFO—have electrified audiences from Carnegie Hall to Tokyo Japan with their dazzling artistry and outside-the-box thematic programming for piano-four-hands.

Friction Quartet

The acclaimed Bay Area-based string quartet will be in residence for Walden’s 2024 Faculty Commissioning Project at YMP. Friction Quartet will collaborate closely with members of Walden’s faculty, with rehearsals open to the Walden community, culminating in a concert of world premieres composed by Walden faculty members. Lauded for performances described as “terribly beautiful” (San Francisco Classical Voice), “stunningly passionate” (Calgary Herald), and “exquisitely skilled” (ZealNYC), Friction Quartet is dedicated to modernizing the chamber music experience and expanding the string quartet repertoire.

Aurora Nealand

The beloved bandleader, composer, performer, and improviser Aurora Nealand will return to Walden for an outdoor concert during YMP. A Walden alumna and former faculty member, Aurora Nealand has become a prominent force in the New Orleans music scene since she first arrived in 2004. She is most recognized for her performance on saxophones, clarinet, and vocals and has been at the forefront of the revival of New Orleans traditional jazz amongst the younger generation of the city’s musicians.

The Walden School Players

All distinguished musicians and specialists in contemporary music, The Walden School Players share their talent and wealth of experience with the Walden community each summer during a two-week residency at YMP. They will present a concert of cutting-edge new music and premiere student works on three Festival Week Composers Forums. The 2024 Walden School Players are Mabel Kwan (piano), Chris Wild (cello), Laura Cocks (flute), Zachary Good (clarinet), Kyra Sims (horn), Erica Dicker (violin), and Dennis Sullivan (percussion).

Walden is Hiring!

Join our summer team.

Walden is hiring for 2024 summer positions at our Young Musicians Program (YMP) in Dublin, New Hampshire. We are seeking new teammates to join our creative community, and we hope that you might help spread the word about these opportunities to your friends and colleagues.

The positions currently open are:

  • Faculty Member—Young Musicians Program (June-August 2024; Dublin, NH)
  • Staff Member—Young Musicians Program (June–August 2024; Dublin, NH)

Please contact us with any questions and inquiries. All positions are open until filled.

Young Musicians Program (YMP) Online Information Sessions

Join us to learn more about the music camp that changes lives.

Do you know a student who writes songs or arranges music? Or a young improviser who wants to strengthen their musicianship and meet like-minded peers? Or a music teacher who might like to learn about Walden’s unique curriculum?

Join us at one of our online interactive information sessions, featuring presentations and Q&A with Walden’s Executive Director, Seth Brenzel, alongside YMP leadership, faculty, staff, and students.

All YMP Info Sessions are held on Zoom and begin at 7 pm Eastern / 4 pm Pacific.

These events are open to prospective students, music teachers, and anyone else who would like to learn about Walden’s flagship program for musicians ages 9 to 18.

Walden Leadership Retreat

February 10-11 in San Francisco

Members of Walden’s year-round administration and program leadership teams met for two days of planning sessions on February 10-11 in San Francisco. On the agenda were Walden’s curriculum, strategic framework, marketing and recruiting efforts, year-round programming, finances and budget, Musicianship Course Update Project, and more. It was a productive, inspiring weekend that generated lots of great ideas and momentum as we prepare for Summer 2024—and beyond!

Call for Memories and Photos

Photo courtesy of Robin Seto, showing Walden students in 1975

Attention alumni! We are renewing a call for treasured memories and photos from your time at Walden or the Junior Conservatory Camp (JCC), to be included in a 50th/70th-Anniversary memory book.

Please aim to keep your reflections to a maximum of 250 words.

Alumni are also invited to share up to five treasured photos with the community to be included in the memory book.

Please send your memories and photos to us. We look forward to hearing from you!


Community News

Loretta Notareschi releases new premiere recording

YMP alumna and YMP/CMR faculty-member Loretta Notareschi’s Scourge Songs, recorded by the Nebula Ensemble, was released on streaming platforms in January. The poetry, about the Covid-19 pandemic, was written by Denver-based poet Alyse Knorr. In addition to the streaming audio, a video with subtitles is also available for viewing on YouTube. The cover art was partially created by YMP alum Ruby Garlow.

Katherine Balch work premiered by Pittsburgh Symphony

On February 16, the Pittsburgh Symphony premiered former YMP faculty member Katherine Balch’s musica pyralis, a work that takes inspiration from the sounds of the firefly. musica pyralis was co-commissioned through New Music USA’s Amplifying Voices program. The commission was led by the Pittsburgh Symphony and the New York Philharmonic in collaboration with the Ann Arbor Symphony, Erie Philharmonic, and Santa Rosa Symphony. The New York Philharmonic will perform the work on April 12-14. Balch was interviewed by WQED Pittsburgh in advance of the premiere.

Sarah Riskind presents “Baroque Music of the Synagogue”

On February 25, Sarah Riskind presented a concert of Jewish baroque music with the group she directs, the Baroque Artists of Champagne Urbana (BACH). In advance of the concert, Sarah was interviewed on Illinois Public Media. Riskind is a longtime Walden faculty member, having served as Choral Director at YMP for several years, and she will return to Walden as Choral Director at the 2024 Creative Musicians Retreat (CMR). A livestream of the February 25 concert can be viewed here.

David Roberts and teammate win table tennis tournament

David Roberts (at far right in the accompanying photo), a member of Walden’s Board of Directors and parent of YMP alum Marco Roberts, along with his teammate won the Over-50 Men’s Team Championship in Lima, Peru, at the 32nd International Table Tennis Open held at the Juan XXIII Peruvian Chinese School. The pair went undefeated against four teams, one from Chile and three from Peru, to win the event. Congratulations, David!

Hub New Music premieres work by Marcos Balter

Hub New Music, a past ensemble-in-residence for Walden’s Faculty Commissioning Project, performed on February 24 as part of the Celebrity Series of Boston. The program, “to hear the things we cannot see,” included a world premiere by Marcos Balter, a past Composer-in-Residence at both of Walden’s programs. The work by Balter was commissioned as part of Hub New Music’s 10th anniversary season.

Joan Tower honored by Da Capo Chamber Players

The Da Capo Chamber Players honored one of its founding members, the composer Joan Tower, with a concert on February 25 at the Tenri Cultural Institute in New York City. Tower, who is a past Composer-in-Residence at YMP and who has moderated a Walden Alumni Composers Forum, has described Walden as “one of America’s greatest hidden treasures.” The concert, in celebration of Tower’s 85th birthday, featured four of her works, spanning almost 50 years of Tower’s compositional activity.

We Want to Hear from You!

What’s been going on? If you have a recent or upcoming premiere, publication, award, new job or program, or a celebratory life event, please share the news at

Stay in Touch

You can like The Walden School page on Facebook and join The Walden School private group to hear about events and opportunities throughout the year. You can also find us on InstagramTwitterYouTubebandcamp, and at

A dance during the 2019 Young Musicians Program
A dance during the 2019 Young Musicians Program