Treasures of New York


The Juilliard School

Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School explores the rich history and legacy of one of the world’s most prestigious performing arts conservatories. With intensive programs in drama, dance and music, Juilliard has set the stage for some of the world’s most gifted artists.

AIRED: June 18, 2018 | 0:57:43



>> It is the top-ranked

performing-arts school

in the world...

>> I hope when someone hears

the word Juilliard they think

of excellence,

of discipline, of joy,

of creativity, of imagination.

>> ...a place where artists

refine their talents

and pursue their dreams.

>> I always wanted to come

to New York and go to Juilliard.

>> People ask,

"Who gave you your first yes?"

Honey, life don't have to be

like this.

I have to say Juilliard.

>> Juilliard is the place to go

when you're serious about what

you want to do with your life.

>> This is where you need to be

if you want to be

absolutely excellent.

>> Join us for an exclusive look

inside the unique world

of The Juilliard School,

where these dancers,

actors, and musicians

train with some of the world's

most renowned professionals.

>> It's like a license

to operate as a musician

if you've gone to Juilliard.

>> Grab a front-row seat

and witness

the making of tomorrow's

great performers with music

by Juilliard's very own...

>> And I'm just so excited

to work with the people here

to create the future.

>> "Treasures of New York:

The Juilliard School."

Funding for this program

has been possible by

the Jerome L. Greene Foundation.

And now here's your host,

Renée Fleming.

>> I'm standing just steps

from Lincoln Center,

where I've had the extraordinary

privilege to sing with

the Metropolitan Opera

and the New York Philharmonic,

often in performances

seen around the globe.

And I'm also steps from

another great institution

where I honed the skills

to make that possible.

The Juilliard School represents

the pinnacle

of conservatory training,

not just in the U.S.,

but internationally.

I came to Juilliard

for my post-graduate studies

in opera performance.

As a student just on

the cusp of my career,

I was thrilled to learn

alongside incredibly talented

multinational young artists.

I was given performance

opportunities and training

in every aspect of vocal

technique from the finest

instructors and coaches,

and I formed relationships

that I've treasured

and maintained to this day.

So come with me now

as we go inside

and learn the remarkable story

of Juilliard, my alma mater

and a treasure of New York.

It is late summer in Manhattan,

and move-in day on this unique

college campus.

[ Indistinct chatter ]

Students from across the country

and around the world say goodbye

to their families

and are embraced into

a new community...

>> Welcome!

>> Welcome! Whoo!

>> Whoo!

>> ...that will be their home

for the next several years.

>> Key, access card,

laundry card.

>> But these are no ordinary

college freshman,

and this is no ordinary college.

These aspiring dancers,

actors, and musicians

are about to embark on a journey

most have been dreaming of and

working towards all their

lives --

going to Juilliard.

>> Welcome back, Juilliard.

Welcome back.

I hope when someone hears

the word Juilliard they think

of excellence,

of discipline, of joy,

of creativity, of imagination.

Our new entering class

of 287 young artists.

Would our new students

please stand so

that we can recognize you all.

[ Cheers and applause ]

Excellence is not a place.

It's a process, and as soon

as you get to one level,

you have to keep going to

a new level.

>> Taking excellence

to new heights has been

one of Juilliard's defining

traits since its founding

over a century ago.

>> [ Shouts indistinctly ]

>> Its prestigious and

intensive programs in drama,

dance, and music make Juilliard

the pinnacle for any

aspiring professional artist.

>> I always look back on

those years as being just,

like, a 4-year high,

because I felt I was entering

not just the acting world

but the world of

the performing arts.

>> I have a question for you.

>> For this incoming class

and those who have come before,

arriving at Juilliard brings

a sense of excitement,


and endless possibility.

>> First days, first weeks of

Juilliard were so exciting,

and it was so scary.

[ Cheers and applause ]

But everybody was

super supportive.

It was such a community.

It was a family that was

building slowly but surely

to become

a close-knit group of artists.

>> And I remember there being

a very, very distinct

feeling in the air.

It was magic.

It was, like,

a sense of possibility.

[ Playing upbeat tune ]

That confluence of experiences

creates this energy

that kind of propels you.

I hadn't had that

sensation before.

>> So you're just going to go

one, two and three.

When I auditioned

and then got into the school,

it was thrilling for me.

First to have the idea

of coming here,

and then to actually experience

what it was at that time.

>> Go as far as you can.

You can tell with

new students who come in,

there's a kind of sense of awe,

like, "Here we are at Juilliard.

You know, can I make it?

Is this situation,

you know, bigger than

what I'm able to handle?"

So even though you know that,

there's a sense of

kind of gravitas.

You think, "Okay.

I hope I can make it here

because if you can make it here

in music or in drama or dance

for that matter, you can really

make it anywhere."

>> And many have.

Throughout its history,

Juilliard has set the stage

for some of the world's most

gifted artists

with a start-studded

roster of faculty

and alumni that have entertained

and inspired us for generations.

>> Leontyne Price, of course,

Renée Fleming, Tatiana Troyanos.

These are the sort of platinum

names in our business,

and I'm proud to say

that they're Juilliard grads.

>> I auditioned for some

schools, and I got scholarships

from different schools,

but I always wanted to

come to New York and

go to Juilliard.

Miles Davis went to Juilliard.

Vacchiano was at Juilliard.

Jerry Schwartz was at Juilliard.

And we still have

the reputation.

I mean, we're what we are.

>> For the most part,

we hope that we can be

the next Viola Davis,

the next Laura Linney,

the next Robin Williams.

But then everyone

finds their path.

>> And while many graduates

do find a path to fame,

there is no one way

Juilliard defines success.

>> There's a lot of attention

paid to very prominent

graduates -- and, you know,

rightly so.

But there are also Juilliard

graduates who might

be teaching third-grade music

or a drama camp in the summers,

and to me, that is as vital

and essential and as critical

a Juilliard success story

as a marquee name.

>> But no matter where

their careers may lead,

artists come to Juilliard

first to refine their craft.

And with the campus physically

part of Lincoln Center

for the Performing Arts,

students have direct access

to some of the world's

best resources.

>> Juilliard is right

in the middle of this

extraordinarily fertile

and robust artistic environment

in dance, drama, and music,

and our students can

literally walk 150 yards

to the Philharmonic

or the Metropolitan Opera.

So it is an absolutely

unique environment being

in New York City, and, of

course, being at Lincoln Center.

>> Nestled within this pantheon

of the arts,

Juilliard houses five theaters

of its own,

where students appear in more

than 700 public performances

a year.

>> It's a really high bar

for these students.

In fact, many of them

most likely haven't been exposed

to such an educated audience

in the past.

It's very rare

that you would have

the New York Times critics come

to your school performances.

And as frightening as that

might be, it's also empowering

and exciting,

and leads to opportunities

regularly from exposure

that wouldn't happen

if they didn't have the

proximity to Lincoln Center

and that overreaching arm

that allows us to be part

of this beautiful complex.

>> Whoo!

>> Classes here may look

different than what you'd see

at a traditional college.

>> And now we go

straight to the fourth.

>> But make no mistake,

these students are hard at work.

>> Sometimes there's

a misunderstanding

in the general public

that studying in the arts

is improvisatory,

or is a way of just finding

your own path at your own pace,

and although there are elements

of that in the education,

what most people don't

understand is the level

of discipline that is

required to succeed in the arts.

>> I think the ideal Juilliard

student has to be somebody

who is fiercely determined

and dedicated

and rigorous to their art.

That's the baseline.

That's the starting point.

>> I don't know what

to do anymore.

I... Last week at work...

>> People who become artists

don't become artists

because it's expedient,

because it's something

that's going to make them rich.

They become artists

because they have no choice.

[ Soft music playing ]

They have this burning desire

to create,

to do what their art calls for.

>> The atmosphere

obviously is...

I don't want to say competitive,

but maybe it is.

But everybody here is

a serious person,

and when people audition

for Juilliard, you know,

they go for a high level.

>> It's extremely selective to

get into The Juilliard School.

And that's a very good thing,

because we're asking them to

become involved in a profession

that is extremely demanding,

that doesn't necessarily

guarantee employment

or high compensation.

We make sure that everybody

who comes through the door,

so to speak, really is ready

to go and wants the intense,

disciplined experience

that is required of them

as young artists.

>> Three, four, five...

>> And for the young artists

who dream of coming here

who audition and are part

of the small percentage

who get accepted, Juilliard

is a life-defining achievement.

>> I really wanted to

get into Juilliard.

[ Chuckles ] Like, really bad.

And I pressed the link,

and a letter opened,

and I just started screaming

because all I saw was like,


I was just so happy and filled

with joy when I got the letter.

>> John Houseman said,

"Well, Ms. Baranski,

you've gotten into Juilliard."

So I just...

To this day, that moment...

I'll never forget it.

And I went down

and joined my mother in --

She was waiting for me, and I

said, "I got into Juilliard."

So it was very big.

A very big moment.

>> People ask -- and I'm

stealing this from Laura Linney,

but they ask me,

as well, all the time, like,

"Who gave you your first yes?"

I have to say Juilliard.

Honey, life don't have

to be like this.

I mean, sometimes people

can do things

so that things are better.

It started with them

believing in me here.

>> You, our students,

represent the future

of the arts around the globe.

>> Each fall for over 30 years,

Juilliard President

Joseph Polisi has welcomed new

students to Juilliard...

>> I confer upon you the degree

of bachelor of fine arts.

>> ...and wished graduates

farewell every spring.

There unto...

I always like to tell Juilliard

graduates how much power they

have through the arts.

>> [ Speaking indistinctly ]

He brought me out on his

father's blue boat.

>> In an environment

that doesn't necessarily value

the arts perhaps as much

as they should be,

they should know that they are

very special in society.

They are the messengers

of what is the very best

in human values,

and without them,

we would be a very, very dull

and unhappy place.

>> During his 34-year tenure,

Polisi has directed

transformational change

at Juilliard,

from physical additions

like an on-campus dorm

to pioneering a new degree

program in jazz studies,

teaming up with

legendary artists

to design the curriculum.

>> There was no jazz

when I was here.

There was some anti-jazz


It was just typical kind of

ignorance that exists

and existed.

But Joe Polisi wanted

to start a jazz program here.

He positioned us in a way

to bring in students

who may have heard about us but

didn't know what we were about.

>> But it was his effort to

instill a sense of citizenship

within Juilliard students

that Polisi hopes

will become his legacy.

>> My hope is that individuals

will look back at my time

and say that Polisi made it

a better place, and made it

a more caring place, perhaps,

and a more forward-looking


>> In the summer of 2018,

Juilliard's beloved president

passed the baton to the next

generation's new leader,

former principal dancer

for the New York City Ballet,

Damian Woetzel.

>> I look around me, and I see

the impact

that Juilliard has had,

and the impact that it's going

to have into the future,

and I'm just so excited to be

a part of that process,

to work with the people here

to create the future.

>> A future that builds upon

the rich history

of this iconic institution.

Juilliard's story goes back

over a century, with roots

in two separate schools.

The first was created

by conductor and arts educator

Frank Damrosch, a New Yorker

who dreamed of building

a premier music conservatory

a little closer to home.

>> Damrosch wanted to found

a conservatory in the U.S.

to enable musicians

to study here

and not to have to go abroad

to Europe for their studies.

>> In 1905, he founded

the Institute of Musical Art

in New York.

Nearly 20 years later,

the city's second music school

was created under the bequest

of a wealthy textile merchant

and notable arts patron

Augustus Juilliard.

When he died, Juilliard gave

away $5 million,

almost his entire fortune,

for the advancement

of musical education.

And in 1924, the Juilliard

Graduate School was founded.

The Institute for Musical Art

and the Juilliard Graduate

School, two separate

music conservatories,

both in Manhattan,

but with two very

different ideologies...

>> The Institute was

a real school

with degree-granting programs.

They even had a kind of music-ed

program as part of it,

but the Graduate School

was a little more freeformed

in terms of students

studying with private teachers,

sometimes at their homes,

and it wasn't as formalized

of a degree program.

>> In 1926,

the two schools merged to become

The Juilliard School of Music

and took up residence

on Manhattan's Upper West Side.

>> They came together,

but for the first years,

they had separate entrances,

separate faculties,

separate boards,

and also separate libraries.

It wasn't until the presidency

of William Schuman,

which launched in 1945,

that the two schools

really became amalgamated.

>> Under the leadership

of Pulitzer Prize-winning

composer William Schuman,

Juilliard flourished.

>> I believe that

William Schuman was

the most important individual

in the growth of Juilliard

throughout the mid-20th century,

certainly into the beginning

of the 21st century

and during my tenure,

because Bill was this

extraordinary visionary.

He was a great composer, but he

was also a great administrator,

and he had this level

of creativity about developing

new ideas in the curriculum.

He wanted to teach music theory.

>> President Schuman

also established

the Juilliard String Quartet,

which has become a world-famous

Grammy Award-winning ensemble,

and in an unprecedented move,

Schuman thrusted Juilliard,

an elite music conservatory,

into an entirely different

artistic realm,

creating an undergraduate

dance program which focused

on classical ballet

and modern technique.

He brought in pioneering dance

instruct Martha Hill to lead

the new division with a faculty

that included luminaries like

José Limón and Martha Graham.

But perhaps the most significant

contribution Schuman

made as Juilliard's president

was initiating the school's move

to a brand-new arts complex

in the heart of Manhattan.

>> When the idea

of Lincoln Center

starts percolating around 1955

with John D. Rockefeller III

and a whole group of other

leaders in New York City,

Bill feels that Juilliard

should be the educational entity

for this new venture.

>> A school residing

alongside world-renowned

performance companies,

which would include the

New York Philharmonic,

the Metropolitan Opera,

and the New York City Ballet.

>> It is an absolutely

unique environment.

The concept that Bill had

of bringing Juilliard

to this arts center,

nobody had really come up

with that idea before.

>> It was a bold vision

and a massive project...

>> President Eisenhower

is taking part

in the groundbreaking ceremonies

of Lincoln Center for

the Performing Arts in New York.

This is the first chapter

in the continuing story

of a great cultural adventure.

>> that would take over

a decade to build.

During this time,

Juilliard added yet a third

academic program,

the drama division,

formed under the leadership

of Academy Award-winning

actor John Houseman

and theatrical innovator

Michel Saint-Denis.

And finally in 1969,

The Juilliard School

moved into its brand-new home

at Lincoln Center.

>> When we first moved

to Lincoln Center,

everybody called it

the Juilliard Hilton

because it resembled much more

a contemporary structure

that could be just hotel rooms

rather than studios.

>> The clean, minimalist

structure housed all three

of Juilliard's divisions

under one roof.

Not only was the building

spacious, but its location

was incomparable.

>> The difference in the

location was incredible for us.

We loved it here because

we just felt much more like

we were part of the music

scene in New York.

>> But the school lacked

on-campus housing

and other amenities,

leaving some Juilliard students

with a sense of isolation.

>> There was no campus life.

There was no campus.

>> There was no sense

of community.

There was no dorm.

Everybody was living

in different places.

>> It was sort of every man

for himself back then.

>> All of that would change

during the tenure of Juilliard's

sixth president, musician

and educator Joseph Polisi.

After coming to Juilliard

in 1984,

one of Polisi's

earliest projects was building

a residence hall located

just steps from the school.

More than just a place to live,

the residence hall created

social opportunity.

>> One of the key

philosophical underpinnings

of the residence hall

was not only to have

the students together,

but by design mix actors,

dancers, and musicians.

You had to interact

with somebody whose discipline

was very different,

very much apart from yours.

>> More major changes

to the campus were completed

in 2009 as part of a massive

$1.2 billion transformation

of the entire Lincoln Center


Juilliard's structure was given

a modern face-lift by the

prestigious architectural firm

of Diller Scofidio + Renfro,

the same designers

behind the High Line.

>> If you look at the facade

of the building there,

there is a moment where

the travertine actually changes.

It's a very, very subtle change,

and the fenestration

on the building

shifts to another rhythm.

That line, that joint line

is the end of the old Juilliard.

Beyond that is the expansion,

and this travertine

came from the same quarry

as the travertine

just to the side of it in Italy,

the same family quarry.

>> The architects added

more than 45,000 square feet

of teaching and performing space

to the existing structure,

which hovers elegantly above

a re-imagined lobby

for Alice Tully Hall.

This new facade was encased

entirely in glass,

opening up Juilliard

to the bustling street below.

>> After Diller and Scofidio

literally peeled the building

like a sardine can,

there's completely transparency,

and it's a simple

but radical act

that, if you're on a bus

on Broadway and look

towards the Juilliard building,

you're now seeing the stuff

of the arts happen.

>> That transparency also

affirms Juilliard's belief that

art cannot exist in isolation.

For President Joseph Polisi,

this idea

is of critical importance.

>> Without artists,

we would be a barren globe,

and that's not going to be the

case because the young people

who are coming out of Juilliard

are dedicated to making sure

that the arts flourish

and that the human values that

are represented in those arts

keep coming forward

to remind the world's population

that, you know,

this can be a special place

and a caring place.

>> Walk down any given hallway

at Juilliard and observe

creativity in motion.

Behind every door,

transformation is happening.

>> Is this a dagger

which I see before me?

>> You might overhear somebody

practicing some lines

or a bit of a Shakespeare

or August Wilson or Chekov,

or someone practicing

a song that they're

singing for singing class,

and then walk down the hall

to the dance division

and hear Chopin or Bartók,

and people at the barre dancing

or some young

choreographer making something,

and then right past that,

there's music coming out of

the jazz division.


>> In that lovely din

is the vitality

of what defines this place.

>> And what defines this place

can only be understood

when witnessed firsthand.

>> Sorry I left like that.

>> Pretty much everybody left.

>> It is in these classrooms

where students are transformed

to reach their fullest

potential as artists.

>> Yes, and you can feel

that impulse to go forward from

the sounds and the words, yeah?

>> Here, to learn is to do.

[ Up-tempo jazz music playing ]


[ Classical music plays ]

Within the music division,

a student can earn a degree

on almost any instrument.

But some rely on others

to play for them.

[ Classical music playing ]

>> It's very difficult to say

what it is

that makes good conducting.

Just because you have

certain elements

of a good conducting technique

doesn't necessarily translate

into fabulous,

you know, in the moment,

brilliant music making.

It's uncanny how,

with one gesture,

the sound of the orchestra

can be entirely different.

[ Music crescendos ]

They can either be more together

or less together,

but also the essential quality

of the sound shifts

according to the physicality,

the presence, the aura.

That's one of the hard things

about learning

to be a conductor.

You need an orchestra

to properly understand

how certain things feel.

The Lab Orchestra is one

of the most important elements

of the conducting program, and

one of the things that makes,

I think, this particular program

special, if not unique,

is a first-rate orchestra

that meets every week

for 2 1/2 hours,

and my students

get to conduct it.



So how do you teach it?

I guess it's a question of even

what it is.

I think you should count it out.


You should count out the bar.

It's a little early.

As much as possible, the hands

should not be kind of pedestrian

or, you know...

I switch around what I do.

Just make eye contact with him,

and he says, "Ah"...

Sometimes I just

make general comments

about kind of the mood that

I'm sensing coming out of them

or what I feel their physicality

is projecting.

Sometimes I'll give very

specific technical instructions

about what their hands should

do -- whether, at the end of a

beat, it should stop, or whether

it should bounce or rebound.

Sometimes I'll get up

and demonstrate.

[ Music decrescendos ]

And everybody --

You just think the sound

and then reveal it.

Don't make it happen.

Just reveal the sound.

Sometimes I'll just hold

their hand and give kind

of gestures that I feel like

they should be trying to do.

Or I'll actually conduct

and have them put their hand

on my arm

so they can feel

where my impulse is.

I mean, there are a lot of

different ways you can

approach it, but the main thing

is to actually sense

what it feels like to actually

have that touchable experience,

that palpable connection

with what it really feels like

to give a gesture

and to have something come back,

either what you want

or not exactly what you want.

>> At the end of each semester,

the student conductors take

the podium at Lincoln Center's

prestigious Alice Tully Hall.

[ Classical music playing ]

>> It's, like, a license

to operate as a musician

if you've gone to Juilliard

because it's...

Everybody knows Juilliard.

And if you've gone to Juilliard,

there's a kind of assumption,

usually well-founded,

that you're probably going to be

pretty good at what you do.

It's hard to find a situation

in which there's a school

that combines with an orchestra

in quite this way,

so I'm pleased that we've been

able to have the classes

and the study, but also

to really let my students

have a window into basically

what I do in real life.

[ Finale plays ]

[ Cheers and applause ]

>> For a Juilliard artist,

real life will most likely mean

performing in front

of an audience.

[ Jazz music playing ]

In this master class, students

are thrust into the spotlight

for an invaluable

one-on-one lesson

with world-renowned

jazz musician Wynton Marsalis.

>> Well, when you come

to Juilliard, you get to be

around the greatest students

and teachers in the world.

[ Smooth jazz playing ]

Jazz is such a difficult

art form to study

because it's about

human interactions.

Being around this many creative

people makes you creative,

and just the synergy

and the kind of symbiotic way

that you can work with this

quality of student and teacher

is definitive in your life.

Stop. Stop right here.

Let me explain

something about this.

Relax. Okay? Listen.

I want to explain something

about this section.

♪ Bo, bo, dee-bee, dee, bo-dee

dee, do-la ♪

♪ Dee, dee, dee

You remember, we also

talked about that rhythm,

that African rhythm on top of

the six on top of the four.

♪ Dee, dee-dee, dee-dee,

dee-dee, doo ♪

But this is the first time he --

Louis Armstrong is combining

two or three different ways

of playing, okay?

One, he's playing fanfares.

♪ Doh-bo, doh-bo, doo, doo,

bee-dee, doo, dee-dee ♪

Like a --

That's more kind of like a aria.

He's stretching out.

♪ Dee, dee, boo, bee-dee,

boo, dee-daaa, da ♪

His genius is, he can put a lot

of different music together in a

short time.

Now when he gets

to that shuffle --

♪ Doh-bee, bee-dee, doo-dee, dee

loo-dee-ee-ee, doo-de♪

[ Jazz music playing ]

But from each of my students,

I learn something different...


...because each one has

different characteristics

and different things that

they know how to do.



It is difficult,

especially when you're younger,

to expose yourself to people

and to reveal things

about yourself.

When you play to people,

it's humbling, man.

You're offering

this to somebody.

You don't know them.

It's shy. It's embarrassing.

I want you to enjoy

what I'm playing.

I want you to enjoy what I'm


I'm playing to you.

Now Miles Davis was known,

so he could turn his back.

[ Laughter ]

But that's already been done.

Once one person did that,

another person can't do it.

That was his thing.


I just want them to be strong,

and I want them to be able

to realize their potential.

But I want them to be for real,

and I don't want them to lack


It's up to you have your own

standard of integrity,

and you maintain it

at all times.

I stay up all night

learning these chords.

The less people know

about what you're doing,

the less cats in the band know,

the less people care,

the more you got to care.

Does that make sense?

>> Yeah.

>> And what more do you want

from your education?

You want to be able

to be productive

and be a force in the world

with your creativity,

and when you have these years

that you can study,

you have the luxury of studying,

if you're fortunate

to have that,

there could be no finer place

for you to come.


[ Applause ]

>> While the jazz students study

this relatively modern genre...

[ Classical music plays ]

...musicians in the

Historical Performance Program

focus on repertoire

that is centuries old.

>> The way that we play music

now is absolutely

not the way that people thought

or played music 100 years ago.

>> Students even play

on authentic period instruments.

>> It is an attempt

to re-create music of primarily

the 17th and 18th centuries

in a way that we think

it might have sounded like

when it was played

for the very first time.

>> Being a


department, it has a very

rigorous approach to the

intellectual side of the music

and investigating it,

but it also has the high

conservatory aspect,

demanding a very, very high

level of instrumental skills.

So, in a way, it has really

the best focus from both

sides of the discipline.

Just take it right through

the cadence, and she

can come in where she wants.

You actually came in early,

which was fabulous.

>> I did.

[ Laughter ]

>> It's great because it's like,

the whole audience is like,


Just make it a shocking --

That's great.

They're wonderful

people to teach.

They're very, very motivated.

They've really been prepared

for the profession.

Come on. Yes!

It's a whole education

in itself, and it's not

just about the music.

It's all sorts of stuff

that goes along with it.

You learn how to process music.

You understand

how music is written.

There's a lot of

mathematics in music.

There's all sorts of things

that you can get from music

which will help in every other

part of your education.

We're not producing robots.

We're producing individual minds

coming out of this course

with their different wants,

needs, and desires.

Excellent, guys.


They're treated

like professionals,

which is fantastic.

It's a very, very unique

opportunity here at Juilliard.

It's fantastic for them.

Think I've unleashed monsters.

>> Yeah!

>> Okay. Let's go on.


[ Cast singing in

foreign language ]

>> Of all the instruments taught

in Juilliard's music division,

there is only one

that we're born with.

[ Cast singing in

foreign language ]

>> When singers begin with us,

they're relatively beginners

because, you know, the voice

is an organic instrument

which lives inside you,

and it can't really grow

until you're fully grown.

So unlike a violinist or pianist

who can start practicing hard

when they're 5 years old,

a singer has to really wait

until they're past puberty

and into adulthood to really

begin to train their instrument.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> And they go through a long,

arduous, disciplined kind

of training to be able

to bring out of themselves

something which is uniquely them

but which speaks also

uniquely through that music.

>> [ Sings indistinctly ]

>> Then they have to be

proficient in English, Italian,

French, and German.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> And then they have to learn

to be actors who can

hold their own on a stage

for hours at a time.

You know, these operas are

lengthy and deep and intense.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> And I'm proud to say

that we have a really strong

track record at bringing people

through that arduous journey.

>> You are sitting on the bench

over here with Nardo.

Nardo is kind of, like,

looking at you here.

>> Okay.

>> Mary is both an acting

teacher here at Juilliard

and a director, so right now,

she's preparing, as a director,

a marvelous opera which

Mozart wrote as a very young man

called "La Finta Giardiniera."

>> Please, we're

desperate for you.

It's about a woman

who's on the run

from an abusive relationship.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> So she's working with a

young soprano, Christine Price,

who plays the kind of saucy,

frustrated maid

in this production.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> She's trying to lure in the

other servant in the household,

who is a gardener and fascinated

by her wit and her charm.

We move around the space.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> And we try to tell a story

that isn't just, you know,

in our minds or in the text,

which can be a problem

when you get into a staging

in the professional world

but actually exists

in three dimension.

>> [ Singing in

foreign language ]

>> And I think you'll be seeing

the process of translating

Mozart's notes

and the librettist words into

a characterization which really

grows out of Christine Price's

own experience.

>> Whether singing an opera

or playing in an orchestra,

Juilliard's music students

study a craft

that can elevate humanity.

>> I'm an idealist.

I still think that music

and the arts and culture

are absolutely essential

to defining

who we are as people.

And musicians, in a sense,

have to carry the torch for

themselves, and for what

music is and what it

can mean for people.

It's all connected.

>> What connects the soul

of music directly to the body

is dance.

Here, in the second

of Juilliard's three divisions,

students train rigorously

in a variety of techniques.

>> Left, right...

>> These first-year students

are learning an original piece,

commissioned by the school

to be performed at the annual

fall showcase,

aptly called "New Dances."

>> Two and three...

One of the things that I find

that I'm trying to do

is to gently impart information

about being as specific

and unaffected with the way that

they're approaching the movement

that I am asking them to do

Draw things out,

more curves rather than strong,

straight angles.

And simultaneously, I am trying

to stay out of their way...

Five... that they have

an opportunity to discover what

they are doing for themselves.

...8, 9, 10.

>> The choreographers

that have been brought in

"New Dances" have --

I don't want to say sky-rocketed

after their time here, but a

number of them have really...

It's been a catalyst,

that experience,

for their choreographic career.

>> Do this and then...

>> John Heginbotham was

such a wonderful, bright energy.

>> Oh, that's gorgeous.

And you're like that.

Great. Great.

>> He had a lot of fun

with the dancers but, I think,

also got a lot out of them.

>> You know what?

Can you make this really closed?

>> It's been awesome to kind

of see how he works, as well.

Kind of, how do you go about

making a 20-minute piece,

and the strategies

that he uses and how he uses

the music so well,

and he's been awesome

about giving everyone

an opportunity to dance,

an opportunity to shine.

>> Is this four?

The only way that this piece

works that we're making together

is if everybody

contributes their energy

and their skill and their hearts

and their souls,

so they're going to have to work

together to make it happen.

It's already happening

in the studio,

so I fully trust that

that's going to happen onstage.

And it's going to be really

great to watch that,

you know, in its fullest form.

>> I love to dance

because I think it connects me

to a deeper part of myself.

Art has the opportunity

to move the world

in a way that nothing else does.

Dance is a great opportunity

just to kind of let

everything that's happening go

and be whoever you want to be

in that moment,

channel what you're going

through, through your movement.

Outside, we'll goof around,

but it's, like, when we're in

the classroom,

we're in the class,

and we're all here to work.

Our role as artists is to not

take that job lightly.

>> The significance of art

and the impact it can have

on people can be felt

throughout Juilliard...

>> You always beggin'

him for stuff.

>> ...particularly in drama,

the school's third division,

where students learn to portray

the full range

of human emotion onstage.

>> So what are these people

talking about?

They might as well be talking

about the mating

habits of Venusians.

>> A Juilliard actor obviously

is a craftsman at one level,

but also, I think they're

in service to their community

to enact and embody stories.

>> I was never ambivalent

about Prior.

I love him.

>> The actor stands at the

center of a theatrical event,

and watching another human being

undergo an experience

might give you an experience.

>> ...the laws of love.

>> I'm dying.

>> And you're changed.

>> He's dying.

You just wish you were.

>> And you see the world


>> Lighten up, Louis.

>> I dare not fight, but I will

wink and hold out mine iron.

>> A Juilliard actor learns

to embody characters

across a broad range of theater.

>> He killed my daughter.

>> But it's not just actors

who come through Juilliard's

renowned drama division.

>> Setting: a small

New England town

with a lot of woods and wet...

>> A unique playwriting

program program,

led by some of the theater

world's most respected writers,

fosters the creation

of new works for both

the stage and screen.

>> Great. So a little bit --

So, like, it should come

a little closer together,

so just...

>> And with a wealth of talented

actors at their disposal,

Juilliard's playwrights

get a rare chance

to test out their ideas.

>> It's worth a try.

>> I'll see you tomorrow.

>> Okay. See you tomorrow.

>> They get their work read

by Juilliard actors

in these labs.

>> I think you can, like,

own the stage a little more.

>> Okay.

>> Just be bigger and, like,

"This is this. This is that."

>> It's basically

a cold reading.

But the playwright has an hour

to talk to the actors,

and then -- wham! --

it's like the door is open,

and we all file in,

and the room is filled with all

this history of other writers

who have come through,

and so there's a great, like,

festive atmosphere.

>> I don't like

how you talk about me.

>> You don't get to have an

opinion about that anymore.

>> I thought you were going

to move away and not show up

where I am and talk about me.

>> And we'll hear a play

read for the first time,

and for a writer to sit

in a room of people

and hear their play and feel

what an audience is doing

and feel when they respond

or feel when they're lost

is invaluable.

>> But, wait.

Brenda, I was supposed to have

a break an hour ago.

>> We want to know how

those actors felt as they were

going through the experience

because that's what's valuable

to playwrights to hear.

>> I don't know what to do.

>> Go find yourself.

>> I want to know what you're

feeling so I can see

if I'm doing my job right,

and it's the best training

program model in the world.

>> Brenda has never heard

of such a thing.

[ Laughter ]

She's covered in a pool

of confusion.

Her head feels like a bucket.

Her hands are made of ice.

>> Theater to me is not like

getting dressed up

and going to Broadway.

Theater for me is hearing

a piece come into the world.

>> A knot is not your enemy.

>> And if I can help with that,

I am a happy person.

>> Something is wrong with me.

>> Oh.

>> Or something's right.

I'm not sure.

>> Being an actor or learning

to be an actor is a great way,

the best way to get

an education.

>> I -- I think so.

>> The values around acting,

which are generosity,

curiosity, collaborative spirit,

making things together

that you can't make by yourself

are human values that we crave

and we need in our society,

it seems to me more than ever,

and so whether people

turned out to be actors known

or not known at all or doing

something entirely other,

we feel like they're part

of that Juilliard community.

We're immensely proud

of the human values

that are threaded through

everything we do as we also

teach the craft of acting.

>> During the course of their

study, Juilliard actors,

dancers, and musicians are not

only perfecting their skills.

They are encouraged to share

their talents with the world.

>> We have a civic

and a social responsibility.

Art has a meaning.

It's not just about sitting in a

practice room playing something.

It's about being

in the community, transforming

lives and connecting people

to our human heritage.

>> The artists that are being

educated here are constantly

reminded of that outward arc.

>> From the very beginning

of his presidency,

it was Joseph Polisi's view

that artists have

a responsibility to society,

and so he instituted

the "Artist as Citizen"

motto as central

to the Juilliard education.

>> One of the first things

we did was send

our students to hospitals,

hospices, nursing homes,

AIDS centers, and allow them

to perform and interact

with individuals there.

It takes our students

out of their comfort zone,

and they start thinking

about what their art means.

Not to be technically perfect,

but rather to have a human

communication through their art.

>> So, we're from the

Juilliard School, and we came

to hang out with y'all.

>> One place that students visit

is Covenant House, New York,

a youth homeless

shelter in Manhattan.

>> I hope you guys enjoy it.

One thing that I know we were

all craving was being able

to share our art with people,

because I think we forgot

how healing it was

and how inspiring it is

for us to share it.

♪ Covenant House, hey

♪ Covenant House, hey

♪ How you doing?

I think our main thing was,

we want to bring joy.

If there is one person

that smiles in the crowd,

laughs in the crowd,

then we did it.

>> On Monday when she wakes,

she cries in the morning,

and it sounds like laughter.

>> But it is not only

the audience who benefits

from these performances.

>> I found that our young

students started growing

and understanding their role

as artists

within a larger context...

>> So the boy, Love,

is perjured everywhere.

For ere...

>> ...and also that they became

more communicative artists

because of the process.

>> Slumped in front of my


nestled between bedroom

door and memorabilia.

>> I see students

that are searching.

They know that there's something

else that they could be doing

with their artistry

while they're here

to stretch themselves.

♪ Hoo, hoo

>> ...three, four.

>> Students may participate

in a number of

community-engagement projects

sponsored by the school.

>> We have students that have

graduated from Juilliard

and gone on to create

organizations that teach young

people to play instruments.

>> One such person

is Jessica Garand.

While studying for

her master's degree,

she received seed funding

from Juilliard to create

the Opportunity Music Project,

a nonprofit offering

free or low-cost

private music instruction

to underprivileged kids.

>> I wanted to start a program

that would provide the same kind

of amazing access to the arts

that I was experiencing while

I was a student at the school.

>> Garand started out

with only seven students.

>> I was the only teacher then,

when I was in my second year

of master's,

and the program has since grown

to have about 14 teachers

and 125 students this year.

We offer violin, viola, cello,

and, this year, the double bass.

We have, like,

13 new double-bass students,

which is really fun.

[ Laughs ]

>> Garand credits Juilliard

for the success of her program.

>> Being able to just have a

network of such amazing artists

to work with,

to be on the faculty team,

and just to kind of call up,

you know, the administration or

my previous teachers for advice,

it's a wonderful community to be

a part of here in New York City,

and I'm very grateful

to be an alumni of this school.

>> Whether Juilliard students

become teachers or performers,

the experiences they had here

follow them for life.

>> I really feel like

I blossomed out of the school.

Like, I feel like my Juilliard

was my seed, and I feel like

when I did sprout

in my professional career,

it was definitely

due to the foundation

that Juilliard gave me,

and it just sort of all kept

coming together.

>> You never know who

you're going to meet.

That's the greatest thing,

I think, of anything

from coming to Juilliard

is the people that I've met,

my colleagues and different

people I've formed relationships

with who are now in my life.

>> As a jazz student

at Juilliard, Jon Batiste formed

a group named Stay Human...

>> Jon Batiste and Stay Human.

Everybody, give it up

for the band!

>> ...which went on to become

the house band for

"The Late Show with

Stephen Colbert."

>> That's beautiful, when

you can meet people

and form real relationships.

>> Before actress

Danielle Brooks starred in hit

show "Orange is the New Black,"

she was earning her stripes

in the Juilliard drama division.

>> Good!

I really grew into a woman here,

a different human being --

someone much more open-minded.

Someone much more focused.

Someone much more confident

because of this place.

>> I have always

credited Juilliard for the fact

that I've had such a long

and varied career.

>> In return, award-winning

actress Christine Baranski

offered practical advice

to the class of 2016.

>> It is all about showing up.

That is our passion, our task,

our responsibility,

our privilege.

Our presence,

with a capital "P," is required.

>> With invaluable training

and experience,

Juilliard graduates will go on

to face new artistic challenges.

>> The different kinds

of artists that are coming

out of here --

innovators, world changers --

I don't know that those

are words that people initially

associated with Juilliard,

which sounds like this

very fancy place.

>> More than a place

or a building, Juilliard is

and has always been

a haven for artists

to advance their craft.

>> One of the greatest things

about Juilliard is that

it's constantly evolving.

It never, at least not since

Joseph Polisi became president,

sat on its laurels.

>> We have a tradition

of excellence

that's over 100 years long.

It is an extraordinary legacy.

But, that said, my attitude and

my colleagues' attitude is that

we have to keep getting better.

We have to keep working

with our young artists,

every new generation,

every new class that comes in

and adapt to the changes

and the needs of what the future

are in our society.

>> And that future is global.

One of Polisi's final acts

as president of Juilliard

was launching an extension

campus in Tianjin, China.

>> Juilliard has always been

an international school

in the sense that close

to 30% of our students are from

outside of the United States.

But what we're saying now

is that we're a global school,

that we reach out from New York

instead of everybody

reaching to us in New York.

>> At the end of the 2018

school year,

the Juilliard community

came together to honor

and celebrate President Polisi's

historic 34-year tenure,

one that left an enduring mark

on this renowned institution.

>> I think that Joe Polisi

was a fantastic

and transformative president.

He made us more aware

of the world we live in,

of our responsibilities,

and he is the embodiment

of what we want, a man of

so much integrity and feeling.

He's put us on great ground

to face the future

with confidence,

and I know that Damian has come

in, and he too is brilliant.

>> I'm absolutely delighted

that my successor will be

Damian Woetzel,

the extraordinary dancer

and arts activist

who has done so much in his time

to bring the arts

to communities large

and small all around America.

I can't tell you how delighted

I am that I'll be passing

the baton to Damian

in the time ahead.

>> Juilliard, of course,

is done with intention.

It's not passive.

It's an active participation

in creating the artistic future

of not only New York City,

not only of America

but of the world.

So to me, Juilliard represents

that possibility

of that reverence

for the great artistic works

and how we treat them,

and they're our philosophical


It's how we touch the stone,

so to speak,

when we encounter Shakespeare

or we encounter Balanchine,

or -- I mean, I think about

Wynton Marsalis talking about

jazz, and I immediately think,

"Oh, my God.

The history that he represents,

the way he describes it,

is creating the philosophically

sound artists of the future."

That's Juilliard.

>> I mean, there's an amazing

personal touch, I think,

that Juilliard is able to bring

despite being large

and iconic and famous

and having a kind of momentum

that's part of a big sweep

in the kind of grand scheme

of things.

It's not just

an amazing music school.

It's an amazing school.

>> To be able to create

a safe space for people

where they can be their freest,

most creative self

is a tremendous gift

to not only oneself,

but those around you,

the community around you.

>> The individuals coming out

of this program

have a unique position

as new leaders in the field,

and I think that

they should feel empowered

to break new ground,

to think outside of the box.

To really be changing the field

from the inside out

could start inside here.

>> The arts are

the soul of society,

and when you have an institution

that is in charge of teaching

the arts and culture

and so on and so forth,

that is a treasure.

It's a treasure that you cannot

afford to let go

because we'll be less

of a society without it.

So that's what Juilliard

is about.

>> Juilliard may look a bit

different today than it did

when I studied here,

but the high caliber of training

and commitment to artistic

excellence remains the same.

If I can speak for the hundreds

of enrolled students

and the thousands of alumni who

have passed through the halls

of this venerated school,

we came here because

we are passionate, and utterly

devoted to the performing arts,

and we left here with the tools

we need to serve

a higher mission --

to inspire audiences

and touch people's hearts.

I'm Renée Fleming.

Thank you for watching

"Treasures of New York."

>> Funding for this program

has been made possible by the

Jerome L. Greene Foundation.







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