Boston University College of Fine Arts presents three students with prestigious Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Awards

in CFA, Music, Opera, Theatre
April 30th, 2013

In addition, first-year MFA candidate awarded Joseph Ablow Memorial Painting Prize

Boston, MA – Boston University College of Fine Arts is pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Award: Tiffany Chang from School of Music for orchestral conducting, Sam Tilles from the School of Theatre for acting, and Luca de Gaetano from the School of Visual Arts for painting. The winners each received $10,000 grants to help them transition into artistic careers following their graduation later this month. The awards were presented on Friday by Benjamín Juárez, Dean of Boston University College of Fine Arts.

Tiffany Chang

plans to use the award money to provide powerful leadership and dedication to the New England Repertory Orchestra (NERO), Chang’s entrepreneurial project for development and networking opportunities for young and pre-professional musicians. Chang is originally from Taipei, Taiwan. She attended Oberlin Conservatory of Music where she completed a Master of Music Education, as well as a Bachelor of Music in both Cello Performance and Music Education and minors in Composition and Music Theory. While at BU, Chang has been deeply involved with the BU All-Campus Orchestra, Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI) Youth Artists Orchestra, and BU Opera Institute. Chang held previous conducting positions with Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras (BYSO) and the North End Music and Performing Arts Center.

Sam Tilles

plans to use the award money to assemble and support a team of devisors, and establish a workspace to finish writing Exit, Pursued by a Bear, Tilles’ work that is inspired by social reform that is relevant here and now. The story wrestles with questions, emotions, and conflicts associated with the Climate Crisis. He plans to produce the play in early 2015, hopefully launching The Boston Mosaic Theatre company, a new theatre collective dedicated to giving emerging young actors, directors, playwrights, musicians, dramaturgs, dancers, scene designers, sound designers, costume designers, light designers, and martial artists an opportunity to perform and utilize their talent. Tilles is currently completing his BFA in Acting with a minor in Philosophy. His previous training includes the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts (LAMDA), The Overlake School, and Seattle Children’s Theatre Young Actor Institute. While at BU, Tilles has performed in Buried Child, ERIN-GO-BRAGH-less, Measure for Measure, Hedda Gabler, Lord of the Flies, and God’s Ear.

Luca de Gaetano

plans to use the award money to establish a studio space and professional practice to continue developing his strengths with solid bodies of work, to further connect with the Boston art scene, and to be present in the community to show his work and to engage with a broader audience after graduation. Informed by being foreign, homeless, and emotionally strained, de Gaetano’s work often addresses, with irony, the uncanny, the ugly, the “carnival-esque,” and the demented, as facets of a deeper celebration, the one for the painful and yet marvelous research for the meaning of life. Previously, de Gaetano received a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA), Boston, and a Master degree in Architecture from Politecnico di Milano in Milan Italy. While enrolled at SMFA, de Gaetano showed his work in the Annual student show, the “Figure It Out” show, and the “Inside Out” show. While at BU, de Gaetano was the awarded the Constantin Alajolav Scholarship in 2011, 2012, and 2013. He has been included in several group painting shows in Boston including Next Generation V, Juried Show at Huret & Spector Gallery, Emerson College, and Fresh Impressions: prints from the BU MFA program at Sherman Gallery. He was also the winner of the Gamblin prize at the 2012 Boston Young Contemporaries exhibition.

The Esther B. and Albert S. Kahn Career Entry Award Fund

was established in 1985 with an endowed contribution of $1 million from Esther Kahn (SED ’55, Hon. ’86). Each spring, students completing their last semester of graduate or undergraduate studies are eligible to compete for the award. Deborah Kahn and Linda Green, the daughters of the late Esther and Albert Kahn, along with a faculty panel from CFA, select winners from throughout CFA to be awarded grants of $10,000. Kahn Award recipients have gone on to enjoy successful careers including singers, Stephen Salters, Dominique LaBelle, and Kelly Kaduce; violinist Mira Wang, actors Russell Hornsby and Ellen Harvey, scenic designer Antje Ellerman, designer Bethany Shorb, and painter Nicholas Lamia.

Joseph Ablow Memorial Painting Prize

In addition to the Kahn Award, Dean Juárez awarded first-year MFA Painting candidate, Noah Sussman, with the Joseph Ablow Memorial Painting Prize in honor of Joseph Ablow, who died on November 14, 2012, at the age of 84. Professor Ablow taught at Boston University College of Fine Arts for more than four decades. Ablow studied painting at Harvard University, Bennington College, and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, as well as with renowned master painters Oskar Kokoschka and Ben Shan. His personal attention and care of his students, something remembered by all who were fortunate to study with him, is well known. The School of Visual Arts is honored to have had Joseph Ablow at its helm as a one-time Director and Professor, and this memorial prize will continue to bestow honor on his memory.
Sussman is a Boston-based artists, born and raised in Cambridge. He graduated from Skidmore College, in Saratoga Springs, NY, in 2007, and has since maintained a steady studio practice in the Boston area.