UR Press publishes ‘Nurturing the Love of Music’

Stock photo.

The University of Rochester Press recently published “Nurturing the Love of Music,” the third volume of Vincent Lenti’s history of the Eastman School of Music.  

This addition to the written history of the school focuses on the period when Robert Freeman served as the school’s fourth director. 

Freeman was recruited to lead the Eastman School in 1972 and officially assumed responsibilities as director on July 1, 1973. He served as director until his resignation in 1996. His directorship was the second longest tenure in the school’s history, behind Howard Hanson. That tenure allowed him to exercise great influence over faculty recruitment, program development and fundraising, as well as presiding over the most significant expansion of the school’s physical presence in downtown Rochester since the original construction of 1921 and 1922.  

In addition to giving a narrative history of the school, the book features photographs and appendices of important and noted faculty members, as well as honorary degrees conferred.  

“This volume has been an especially rewarding one for me to write, in that I was a personal witness to the events that took place during this of time within the school’s history,” Lenti said. “Having lived through the events, it was a special pleasure to provide a written account of all that happened during Robert Freeman’s years of leadership at Eastman.” 

The publication of “Nurturing the Love of Music” coincides with the celebration of the Eastman School’s 100th anniversary. Because of that anniversary celebration, the book includes as its final chapter a brief summary of the post-Freeman years. 

“Nurturing the Love of Music” is available in hard and soft cover editions, priced at $39.95 and $24.95, respectively. The book is available for purchase at the Barnes & Noble Bookstore, 25 Gibbs St., or online at eastman.bncollege.com/shop/eastman/home. 

The first two volumes, “For the Enrichment of Community Life: George Eastman and the Founding of the Eastman School of Music” and “Serving a Great and Noble Art: Howard Hanson and the Eastman School of Music” also are available for purchase, with bundling options for purchasing all three at a discounted rate with the bookstore. 

Lenti earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Eastman, where he was a student of Italian pianist and pedagogue Orazio Frugoni. He joined the piano faculty in 1963 and for 26 years directed Eastman’s Community Education Division, now known as the Eastman Community Music School. In 2002, he received the Eastman’s Eisenhart Award for Excellence in Teaching. Lenti is professor emeritus of piano and continues to serve as the school’s historian. He will attend a book launch, talk and signing on Oct. 2 at Eastman.