Science Meets Music

Science Meets Music: “Seasonal Singing of Birds: From Gonads to the Brain”

Apr 18,
  • Time:
  • Location: The Benjamin School

In the Northern Hemisphere, many birds cease singing in fall and restart singing in the next spring breeding season, since singing is crucial for the males’ reproductive success. Likewise, female birds chose “their” mates in part due to the male’s song quality and singing performance. Dr. Gahr’s presentation will focus on the neural circuits that are important for song production and mate choice. In particular, he will discuss which genetic and hormone-dependent mechanisms are involved in the developmental and seasonal plasticity of these neural circuits.

Dr. Manfred Gahr

Dr. Gahr joined the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, located near Munich, in 2004 to study how the brain regulates sexual behaviors and sex-specific brain functions.

Marina Lenau, violin

Marina Lenau, a Ukrainian-born American violinist, began performing internationally as a soloist and as a member of various chamber groups at an early age. She holds First Prizes from numerous International Competitions. Lenau has performed recitals in Russia, Ukraine, Europe and the United States. Lenau has recently completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts degree at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, studying with the world-renowned violinist Glenn Dicterow.

Valentin Mansurov, violin

Valentin Mansurov, prize winner of competitions in former U.S.S.R, Canada, and the United States, has been actively performing in solo recitals, chamber music concerts in Europe, North and South America. Mansurov started his violin studies as a seven year old at Uspenskiy’s School for Musically Gifted Children in Uzbekistan. Mansurov has pursued further college degrees in Turkey, France, Canada, and the United States.

Chauncey Patterson, viola

Chauncey Patterson is principal viola for both Palm Beach Symphony and Florida Grand Opera, and viola for the Bergonzi String Quartet at University of Miami. He has been principal viola of the Denver and Buffalo Symphonies, and for 15 years was viola with the Miami String Quartet, an internationally renowned and extensively recorded ensemble. He was also interim viola of the Fine Arts Quartet.

Claudio Jaffe, cello

Claudio Jaffé is the cellist for the Delray String Quartet and principal cellist of the Florida Grand Opera and Palm Beach Symphony. He made his orchestral debut at the age of 11, performing a concerto written specifically for him. Trained as a solo cellist, Jaffé received four degrees from Yale University including the Doctor of Musical Arts. He is a prizewinner in numerous national and international competitions, and has performed in some of the most prestigious concert halls around the world, from NYC to Brazil to Tokyo.