Press Releases

SYREN Modern Dance and the Purchase Chamber Orchestra in Concert March 12

Date Released: 2/26/2008

The Purchase College School of the Arts presents a collaborative performance by SYREN Modern Dance and the Purchase Chamber Orchestra March 12 at 8 PM in the Dance Theatre Lab of the Dance Building. The general admission tickets are $15, $10 seniors. For advance reservations call 914-251-7908.

Purchase College, State University of New York, is located at 735 Anderson Hill Road, Purchase, N.Y.

The Purchase Chamber Orchestra is led by founder and conductor Matthew Oberstein. The evening’s program includes Bartok’s Romanian Folkdances; Mahler’s Songs for a Wayfarer, featuring baritone Raymond Diaz, ‘01; and Sibelius’ Pelléas et Mélisande Suite, with a new dance commission by the all-Purchase alumni company SYREN Modern Dance.

SYREN Modern Dance was co-founded in 2002 by artistic directors Kate Mehan, West Suffiield, Conn., and Lynn Peterson, Indianapolis, Ind. Ms. Mehan choreographed the new dance that will be performed to Pelléas et Mélisande Suite. Since its debut concert at City Center Studios in 2003, SYREN has produced five New York seasons at the Ailey Citigroup Theatre, University Settlement and John Ryan Theatre/Whitewave. The company has also produced and been presented at the White Plains Performing Arts Center. The company has performed by invitation on the Inside/Out Series at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, in Dancenow/NYC—The Festival, The Remember Project, LEAP! Festival, d.u.m.b.o. Arts Under the Bridge Festival, and Choreographers' Workshop, among others. 

The artistic directors, both 2002 graduates of the Purchase College Conservatory of Dance, have served as guest faculty and commissioned choreographers at Yale University, the Nutmeg Conservatory for the Arts, the Steffi Nossen School of Dance, Anderson University, Rye Neck High School, Greater Hartford Academy for the Arts, and Waterwell, a Drama Desk Award nominated theater company. 

The company also includes Kristen Antzoulis, ’06, Brooklyn, N.Y.; Beth Edwards, ’06, Syracuse, N.Y.; Isaac Gonyo, ’03, Colchester, Vt.; Jeffery Lyon, ’02, Yuba, Calif.; and Lindsay Lee, ’02, New Haven, Conn.

For more information on SYREN Modern Dance visit

The Purchase Chamber Orchestra was founded in 2006 by then graduate student Matthew Oberstein, Bellerose Village, N.Y. The 25-member ensemble is comprised of current students and alumni of the Purchase College Conservatory of Music. The ensemble provides Purchase students with the opportunity to share a stand with alumni and to build a professional relationship with active musicians in the field.

Conductor Matthew Oberstein is also principal conductor of the Artemis Chamber Ensemble and assistant conductor of Regina Opera. He made his international conducting debut in August 2005, leading the Slovak Sinfonietta Zilina in Vienna. He shared the podium with music director Paul Lustig Dunkel and the Westchester Philharmonic in front of an audience of 15,000 in 2006.  He most recently guest conducted the Purchase College Chorus in a collaboration with the Kronos Quartet. He conducts on Wall-to-Wall Bach at Symphony Space in New York City in May.

Mr. Oberstein received his bachelor’s degree in 2005 and his performer’s certificate in 2006 from the Purchase College Conservatory of Music, and earned a postgraduate diploma from the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna.

This School of the Arts collaborative event also includes lighting design by the Conservatory of Theatre Arts & Film and marketing materials produced by the School of Art+Design.

The commission of the new dance by SYREN Modern Dance was made possible by the generous support of the School of the Arts, the Purchase College Affiliates and the Office of Alumni Affairs.

The Purchase Chamber Orchestra receives the generous support of the Conservatory of Music and the Purchase College Affiliates.