The Unconservatory: An Overview
The Unconservatory has a strong history of working with schools and universities at all educational levels, including the Santa Rosa City School Systems in California, Nicholls State University in Louisiana, Southshore Conservatory in Massachusetts, Cypress Lake High School for the Arts (Fort Myers), Miami-Dade Community College, the University of Miami, South Miami Senior High School and many others.
Before leaving California the directors coordinated many special projects that gave music students professional experience. Among these were the production of over 900 printed musical examples for the book Harmonic Experience (Inner Traditions International, Rochester, VT) by composer and author W. A. Mathieu. Students and teachers worked together to aid the author in the production of this epic musical reference work.
Directors Kirk Whipple and Marilyn Morales moved to Miami in 1997. The Unconservatory gained official status with the State of Florida during this year and has continued to establish a long-term presence in Florida. The directors have been selected for the competitive State Touring Artist Rosters in Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina. They have concertized extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad. On March 6th, 2002 Whipple & Morales performed their original works for two pianos at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. This performance can be viewed by visiting the following link:
The directors of The Unconservatory have been performing in the South Florida area since 1988. Performances have been held at various local venues including the University of Miami, the Koubek Memorial Center, Manuel Artime Performing Arts Center, Joseph Caleb Auditorium and South Miami Hospital. Events have been supported by individual donors, corporations and organizations including Hale Piano, Elsa's Pianos, Bobbs Pianos, Pepsi Corporation, South Florida Center for the Arts, Commerce Bank and Publix Supermarkets. Support for a permanent space for The Unconservatory is currently being explored by the Board of Directors of The Unconservatory.
Whipple & Morales have released several recordings of original compositions and arrangements for two pianos, including, most recently, Celebrating Americans, recorded at the University of Miami. They have collaborated with Bird Road Arts District, Miami French Consulate, Miami Hispanic Ballet, Miyama Ryu Classic Arts and other local and international artists. Whipple & Morales directed the 2003 Superintendents Honors Keyboard Festival, which featured over 100 outstanding young Miami-Dade County musicians.
The annual Gala For Two Pianos continues to play an important role in promoting the activities of The Unconservatory to the local community. The Unconservatory continues to promote music and education locally, nationally and globally. "Concert Artists in the Schools" program was promoted to Miami Dade schools during the last fiscal year and is being expanded to schools statewide in Florida and select schools nationally. "The Unconservatory Young Artists Network" has been recently formed to support the efforts of serious music students. The Unconservatory maintains a musical and educational web site www.unconservatory.org with the help of musical artists and educators from our planet.
The Unconservatory Festival Orchestra (a.k.a. "The U.F.O.") was formed at Gala For Two Pianos 2004. Visit The U.F.O. online at www.unconservatory.org/ufo.
Unconservatory Fellow Educators and contributors include:
Kirk Whipple, Pianist and Composer, National Executive Director, Miami, FL
Marilyn Morales, Pianist and Composer, National Artistic Director, Miami, FL
Kenny Blacklock, Violinist and Composer, Webmaster, Branch Director, Sausalito, CA
Eric Swanson, Bassist and Composer, Branch Director, Agua Dulce, CA
Marilyn Brown, Pianist, Branch Director, Wareham, MA
Mark Krueger, Web Administrator, San Francisco, CA
Mickie Willis, Author, Baton Rouge, LA
W. A. Mathieu, Pianist and Composer, Sebastopol, CA
Steve Bruner, Comedian/Author, Los Angeles, CA
The Unconservatory Home Page: www.unconservatory.org