The Nelly Berman School Presents: “Rising Stars: a Spotlight on Award-Winning Students”

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HAVERFORD, PA – 12/07/2017 (PRESS RELEASE JET) — The Nelly Berman School of Music is pleased to announce its annual winter “Rising Stars: a Spotlight on Award-Winning Students” concert. The concert will take place on Saturday, December 16th at 3:30 PM at St Luke Church, Bryn Mawr, PA and will feature award-winning students playing violin, piano, cello, and chamber music. Tickets will be available at the door and are $15 for adults and $10 for students. All proceeds will go directly to the scholarship fund of the NBS Classical Music Institute a 501 (c ) (3) non-profit. To learn more about the concert visit

Described by Elena Berman, director of the Nelly Berman School as “undoubtedly some of the most extraordinary young musicians in the Greater Philadelphia Area and beyond,” students on the concert include winners of numerous international, national, regional, and local music competitions. Some of the students practice four or more hours per day and many of these students take two, one-hour lessons a week or more. 

Nelly Berman, the founder of the Nelly Berman School of Music, was a classical music teacher in the former Soviet Union where classical music was considered an indispensable part of overall education. For very talented students, the Soviet Union provided a free serious music education with individual lessons, theory, choir, solfeggio, and more. When faced with the difference between how serious music education was in the Soviet Union and less serious in the United States, her dream became to infuse American music education with the same serious approach that she was a product of. 

Founded by Nelly Berman together with her husband David Lefkowitz, her daughter Elena Berman, and Caroline McCarthy, former president of the board, the NBS Classical Music Institute was founded to make a difference in the way American children study music. Through providing scholarship that is based on both merit and financial need, the institute allows students to have a serious music education at the Nelly Berman School of Music which includes multiple lessons per week, chamber music, performance opportunities, and theory/history classes. 

The results of this training are apparent in the excellence of its students’ achievements. Students of the NBS Classical Music Institute have appeared in music festivals in Italy, France, Monaco, Israel, Russia, and the United States. They have appeared at Carnegie Hall, The Kimmel Center, and on NPR’s  “From the TOP.” Additionally, they have performed as soloists with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Delaware County Symphony, Ocean City Pops, Ambler Symphony, Pottstown, and Old York Symphonies.

Four alumni of the scholarship program include:

Leah Bedenko — a vocal performance major in her freshman year at the Manhattan School of Music. She attended the Nelly Berman School as a voice student for three years prior to attending Manhattan School on scholarship. Prior to coming to NBS, she had never sung. Elena Berman, director of the school discovered her talent in her initial evaluation. 

Eliza McCarthy — studied with Elena Berman at the Nelly Berman School. She recently won the 2013 British Contemporary Piano Competition. The Guardian has described her playing as “Unclassifiable, raw nerve music.” She also coaches Contemporary Piano and teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. 

After NBS she studied at the Yehudi Menuhin School of Music and then the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She says of her deciding to study piano and attend the Nelly Berman School:“Within a month, we had a second-hand upright moved into our living room and found a Russian émigré mother-and-daughter dream-team with a new music school nearby.”

Daniel Schlosberg — his compositions have been performed by the Dover Quartet, Minnesota Orchestra, Nashville Symphony Orchestra, Albany Symphony Orchestra, Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, Aspen Contemporary Ensemble and at Carnegie Hall, Royal Albert Hall and more. He is a 2014 recipient of the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and two ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards. As a pianist, he plays with several chamber ensembles around the world and has worked with such luminaries as David Shifrin, Peter Wily, Ani Kavafian, and the Imani Winds. He is currently completing his DMA at Yale University. The Wall Street Journal has called his music “witty” and “ingenious.” 

Ethan Lee — Is currently studying pre-medicine at the Washington University in St. Louis. While a student at The Nelly Berman School he performed as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra as a winner of their “Greenfield” student soloist’s competition.

To learn more about the Nelly Berman School and the NBS Classical Music Institute visit 

Media Contacts:

Company Name: Nelly Berman School of Music
Full Name: Elena Berman
Phone: 610-896-5105
Email Address: Send Email

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About the Author: Geoff Serka

Geoff is a former Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, is an award-winning travel, culture, and parenting writer. His writing has appeared in many of the nation’s most respected and credible publications, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, and on the cover of Smithsonian Magazine. A meticulous researcher who’s not afraid to be controversial, she is nationally known as a journalist who opens people’s eyes to the realities behind accepted practices in the care of children.