News Roundup 5/25: Bits & Pieces

Congratulations to Jeffrey W. Fuchs, UNC’s Director of Athletic Bands/Coordinator of Band Activities, who on May 4 received one of four C. Knox Massey Awards. These honors, which carry cash stipends, are given to employees who show “unusual, meritorious or superior contributions.” Fuchs was cited for his “knack of keeping his student band members in step and on time, both on and off the field.” The University’s complete announcement is at [inactive 12/04].
Double congratulations are due James and Dee Anderson, whose daughter Savannah Rae, their third child, was born May 8. The father is a conductor who was educated at UNC, under the tutelage of Tonu Kalam. He and his family have been in Montana in recent years but he has just been appointed Director of Orchestral Activities at the Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University in Boone, so the Andersons will soon be back in NC.
Congratulations, too, to two NC Symphony leaders, recently married. They are CEO David Chambless Worters, whose bride is the former Rebecca Duncan, and Assistant Conductor Jeffrey W. Pollock, whose other half is the former Melinda Gough. The latter’s wedding featured a string quartet consisting of Jeff Thayer, Cheryl Benedict, Suzanne Rousso and Bonnie Thron, who played Schubert and Haydn; at the reception, bluegrass took over, perhaps prompting the happy couple’s escape-to France-for their honeymoon.
Fortepianist Tom Beghin, currently on the faculty of UCLA, whom area music lovers will recall from his participation in a series of Beethoven sonata programs, performed on original instruments at Duke by Malcolm Bilson and others (including Andrew Willis, now at UNCG), has been selected as one of the National Humanities Center’s 2002-3 Fellows – he’s the only music scholar in this class – and will be working in RTP on Haydn’s keyboard sonatas. A short biography is included, along with notes on other UCLA performance practice scholars, at [inactive 11/04]. Beghin writes that he will be doing research here but is bringing his fortepiano with him in the event anyone asks him to play-which surely someone will!
Leaving NC is David James Tang, Assistant Conductor of the Charlotte Symphony and Director of the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte, who has been named Artistic Director of the Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia, replacing Donald Nally.*
[*Updated 10/10/02: We recently received a note from Maestro Tang that corrects this earlier announcement and are pleased to share his (lightly edited) correspondence here: “I just wanted to let you know that I, in fact, have not left North Carolina, nor do I plan on leaving any time soon. I am still the Director of the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte and the Associate Conductor of the Charlotte Symphony. However, I commute weekly to Philadelphia as Artistic Director of the Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia, one of a very small group of choirs to have won the Margaret Hills Award for Choral Excellence from Chorus America. I just completed my first concert in Philly with the group (the review of which is at:
[inactive 12/04]).”]
CVNC‘s John Lambert recently received the Durham Symphony’s Share the Music Award for “long standing support and distinguished service” to music in the Triangle. In addition to his work for CVNC, Lambert has written for Spectator , Fanfar e and Fi , and his short history of the first 50 years of the NC Symphony was included in an anthology by Greenwood Press. Next season marks his 25th year as a critic and commentator on classical music.
And finally, Maxine Swalin, 99, widely acknowledged as the Mother of the NC Symphony, who was (as the N&O reported) injured in an automobile accident on May 4, three days prior to her birthday, may be released from UNC Hospital as early as next week. The writers of CVNC join her many friends across the state in wishing her a speedy and full recovery.
John Kennedy Hanks, Professor Emeritus of Music at Duke, Dies
John Kennedy Hanks, Professor Emeritus of Music at Duke University, died peacefully at Duke Medical Center on Friday, May 10, 2002. A renowned interpreter and performer of the American art song, Hanks was a member of the Duke Music Department from 1954 to 1987. Professor Hanks was also a Professor at the Duke Divinity School for many years and directed the Divinity School Choir, which he took twice to the Holy Land where they performed in Manger Square in Bethlehem at Christmas. He was also a long-time member and soloist with the Duke Chapel Choir, founder of the Duke Opera Workshop, and a board member of the Duke Artist Series and Broadway at Duke, the Triangle Opera, and Kiwanis Club of Durham.
A native of Purcell, Oklahoma, Hanks sang as a teenager in churches, synagogues, and community organizations, with a cowboy band, and with casino and dance bands. While working as a page in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, he entertained a visiting President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, with a rendition of “Home on the Range.” Hanks attended the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma City University and in 1941 was awarded a fellowship at The Juilliard Graduate School of Music. World War II intervened, and he served in the Army Air Corps in India, China, and the South Pacific. He retired from the Air Force Reserve as a Colonel in 1977.
Hanks received a MS from Juilliard in 1948-studying with such renowned teachers as Anna Schoen-Rene, Queena Mario, Sergius Kagan, and Mack Harrell-and received a MA from Columbia University in 1950. Hanks taught at Smith College from 1948 to 1954 and continued his singing career, specializing in the songs of American composers, including John Duke. His recorded anthologies, The Art Song in America I and The Art Song in America II , were published by Duke University Press. Mr. Hanks also collected and performed the art songs of contemporary Israeli composers. He once performed the music of Monteverdi with Dr. Alfred Einstein, an eminent musicologist. In 1999 the University and Music Department honored John Hanks with the dedication of a voice studio and the establishment of “The John K. Hanks Fund for Voice Studies.” At that occasion many of his present and former students sang in tribute to him.
A former voice student of Professor Hanks once described herself as “his firstborn.” Many other Duke graduates share her feeling that in the powerful relationship between voice teacher and student, Hanks gave them life. Some of them have gone on to sing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, La Scala in Milan, and Covent Garden in London. A noted performer in his own right, of cowboy songs and show tunes, Lieder and opera, Professor Hanks sang at Carnegie Hall and Tanglewood, with the Boston Pops and the National Symphony of Washington.
Hanks continued to teach privately, up until his most recent illness a month ago, with the full vigor of a man in mid-career. Mr. Hanks is survived by his beloved wife Joan, and children Nancy Doyle of Loveland, Colorado, John Hanks, Jr., of Durham, Elizabeth Wilhoit of Carriere, Mississippi, Marc Tetel of Saratoga Springs, New York, Jocelyn Tetel of Los Angeles, California and one brother, Joseph Hanks of Indio, California. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, May 15 at 12:00 noon in the Ernest Nelson Music Room in the East Duke Building of Duke’s East Campus. The Service of Remembrance will be conducted by the Rev. Charles Michael Smith and Professor Eric Meyers, both former students of Mr. Hanks, and among the speakers and performers will be students, friends and colleagues from near and far, including Michael Best, formerly of the Metropolitan Opera Co., Steven Kimbrough, internationally acclaimed baritone, Ruth Friedberg, Mr. Hanks’ longtime accompanist, and members of the family.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to the “The John K. Hanks Fund for Voice Studies” at Duke University (c/o University Development, P.O. Box 90600, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708).

[CVNC is grateful to Eric Meyers and John Hanks, Jr., for providing this information for our readers.]