Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra Conductor Dr. Leslie B. Dunner previews Interlochen’s performance with the New York Philharmonic on ‘Arts Engines’

Dunner and host Aaron Dworkin (IAA 86-88) discussed the rigorous academic and artistic training at Interlochen Arts Academy, representation in classical music, the NY Phil Interlochen Scholars program, and more on the nation’s most widely viewed arts program.

Dr. Leslie Dunner

Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra Conductor Dr. Leslie B. Dunner recently appeared as a guest on the nation’s most widely viewed arts and culture program, Arts Engines.

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During the episode, Dunner previewed Interlochen’s upcoming performance at David Geffen Hall in New York City, which will include a multidisciplinary performance and a program of orchestral works by living Black American composers performed by the Arts Academy Orchestra and members of the New York Philharmonic.

Dunner and host Aaron Dworkin (IAA 86-88) also discussed the NY Phil Interlochen Scholars program, which will enable young artists from the New York area to attend Interlochen Arts Camp this summer.

“The New York Philharmonic is working with us to offer 30 full scholarships for Camp, which is fantastic,” Dunner said. “It increases the relationship and the collaborative effort we have with both the Philharmonic and with new partner organizations in education within the city of New York.”

The episode also included conversations about representation in classical music, how Dunner uses dance as an outlet for managing stress, and the conservatory-caliber artistic and academic training students receive at Interlochen Arts Academy.

“We think of ourselves on the model of a conservatory at the pre-conservatory level, and yet we have an expectation of our students to play as if they are at the post-secondary level,” Dunner said. “It’s very rigorous, but the students thrive on it. It calls for them to mature very quickly.”

Reaching audiences of more than 100,000 each week, Arts Engines highlights the perspectives of thought leaders and game-changers in the arts, revealing the human stories and real-life experiences of those who power creativity every day. The program is produced in partnership with and distributed by Detroit Public Television, Ovation TV, the Violin Channel, and American Public Media. Previous Interlochen-affiliated guests featured on Arts Engines include flutist Demarre McGill (IAC 89-91); University Musical Society President Emeritus Ken Fischer (IAC/NMC 55, 57-58, 60-62; IAC St 66); and Interlochen Center for the Arts President Trey Devey. Past episodes of Arts Engines are available to watch on-demand on the program’s website and YouTube channel.