Oberlin Faculty, Alums Win 2024 Grammy Awards

Multiple musicians receive awards in the classical and opera categories

February 6, 2024

Office of Communications

Oberlin horn professor and composer Jeff Scott and members of Imani Winds on the Grammys red carpet
At the Grammy Awards, Oberlin horn professor and composer Jeff Scott (far left) won Best Classical Compendium for his composition “Passion For Bach And Coltrane”. The recording features performances by Imani Winds, a group featuring multiple Oberlin alums: flutist Brandon Patrick George ’08 (second from left), bassoonist Monica Ellis ’95 (third from right), and oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz ’94 (second from right).
Photo credit: Courtesy of Imani Winds/Facebook

Oberlin had a big night at Music’s Biggest Night, the 2024 Grammy Awards. 

During the February 4 pre-telecast ceremony, Oberlin horn professor and composer Jeff Scott won Best Classical Compendium for his composition Passion For Bach And Coltrane.

The recording features performances by Imani Winds (whose Oberlin alumni members are flutist Brandon Patrick George ’08, oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz ’94, and bassoonist Monica Ellis ’95) as well as jazz percussionist Neal Smith ’96. Imani Winds will also be performing at Warner Concert Hall on March 7, a free bonus concert on the 2023-24 Artist Recital Series.

The award for Best Opera Recording—The Metropolitan Opera’s recording of Terence Blanchard’s Champion—was given to the conductor, producer, lead soloists, orchestra, and chorus, including two alums: violinist Laura McGinnis ’83 and music librarian Nishana Gunaratne Dobbeck ’09 in the The MET Orchestra, as well as Rosalie Sullivan ’99, an alto in the Metropolitan Opera Chorus.

The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s recording of Thomas Adès’ Dante won Best Orchestral Performance. Numerous alums are members of this orchestra, including Principal Clarinet Boris Allakhverdyan ’06, Associate Principal Viola Ben Ullery ’04, Oboist and Solo English Horn player Carolyn Hove ’80, Associate Principal Oboe Marion Arthur Kuszyk ’88, and Bass Trombone John Lofton ’77.

Bass-baritone Dashon Burton ’05 won his third Grammy, as his group Roomful of Teeth took home Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for 2023’s Rough Magic. Burton also sang with Roomful of Teeth on composer Jessie Montgomery’s Rounds, a release that won Best Contemporary Classical Composition.

“The American Project,” a collaboration with pianist Yuja Wang and the Louisville Orchestra, won Best Classical Instrumental Solo. Members of the orchestra include violist Jennifer Shackleton ’94 and principal bassoonist Matthew Karr ’78.

In addition to the above winners, numerous Oberlin alums and other Conservatory faculty members (including Professor of Conducting Timothy Weiss and Professor of Advanced Improvisation and Percussion Jamey Haddad) were nominated for Grammy awards this year across classical, contemporary, jazz, American Roots, and world music categories.

Watch Imani Winds’ Ellis and Spellman-Diaz accept the Best Classical Compendium Grammy Award

You may also like…

Haoyuan Gao Wins Oberlin's 2024 Nexial Prize

June 11, 2024

Haoyuan Gao ’24, a biology and neuroscience double major with minors in book studies, chemistry, and East Asian studies, has been named the winner of Oberlin’s 2024 Nexial Prize. The award is presented to an outstanding science student with aspirations for interdisciplinary research.
a smiling student wearing a suit coat and tie