As a composer, I believe the role we need to fill in the 21st century is that of creator, educator, performer, and entrepreneur; my role in VisionIntoArt (VIA) fulfills this. I co-founded VIA in 1999 and it has gone through different incarnations till this day, growing with me. I have discovered I thrive as a collaborative artist. I have learned and grown from the techniques and worlds of musicians, filmmakers, dancers, poets, historians, and educators. Channeling this education into my music keeps me evolving. I believe that the 21 century composer/artist needs to be thinking about what impact one can have on their existing community, both locally and globally. It has always been my ambition to nurture community and advocacy through performance agenda. When I was young, I dreamed of creating a collective in which artists of all disciplines and different training would explore interdisciplinary ideas with music at its core-a school that would continue beyond school. I knew that being a part of a larger whole would help me learn techniques across disciplines, pushing the boundaries of what was possible within a safe playground. I am now in a small way doing this, through VisionIntoArt as a production company for my own works, and others interested in the intersections of new music, politics, and multimedia.
I have always believed the future of new art lives in education. I have taught and conducted education residencies at the Whitney Museum in collaboration with Youth Insights, the New York Philharmonic, the American Composers Orchestra, Presbyterian University, Dickinson College, Hofstra University, and Etna Fest in Italy. Each project has a designed education segment offered for high school or college. Through VIA I have had the opportunity to collaborate with artists from around the world. It is this cultural synthesis that helps VIA create works which reflect this plural understanding of American society. VIA believes this international and political bent, and inclusiveness, attracts larger, diverse audiences and contributes to a larger dialogue.
Through Young Visionaries (VisionIntoArt’s education program), Prestini has:
- Managed a fourteen member teaching troupe for the Young Visionaries program at Brandeis High School with over 250 visits/ semester, reaching over 1000 students yearly.
- Handled an $80,000 yearly budget which includes fundraising.
- Received awards such as the Blackboard Award in technology, and VH1 Save the Music grants.
- Established partnerships with Young Audiences NY, and the American Composers Orchestra.
- Established funding partnerships with the Anrol Family Foundation, the Edward and Carol Goldberg Family Foundation, the Hartford Foundation, among others.
- Directed the following initiatives: Band and Orchestra, Composition/Technology, and Film Scoring.
- Associate Director and Instructor, Making Score, New York Youth Symphony (2008-2010) Teaching composition high school-college level.
- Visiting Instructor, college level composition residencies. (2005-present)
Taught composition masterclasses at UCLA, Dickinson College, Hofstra University, Presbyterian University.
- Teaching Artist, New York Philharmonic; New York City Opera, Text Setting Course (2003-2005)
Taught composition and opera to the elementary-middle school level.
- Instructor, Very Young Composer Program, The New York Philharmonic, (2003-present)
Taught composition elementary-middle school level.
- Head of Teaching Fellows, Instructor, Assistant to the Theory Department, The Juilliard School (1999-2001)
Taught theory including 16th century counterpoint, 18th century counterpoint, and 20th Century Opera, to undergraduate college level students.
- Workshop Leader, the Association of Presenting Arts Presenters. (2009) Presentation on collaboration at national conference in NYC.
- Content Designer, Professional Training Workshops Leon Fleisher Schubert Project, Carnegie Hall. (2007)
Designed an extensive web education project for the general public that can be found on the Carnegie website, and lead a four person team including web specialists and videographers, based on “The Late Piano Sonatas Professional Training Workshops”.
- Instructor, New York State Alliance on the Arts Bootstrap series. (2007-2008)
Created Summer Professional Training workshops for artists statewide that illuminate some of the steps to success in the arts (non profit building, collaborative relationships, grantwriting, self management etc). Funded by Rockefeller Foundation.
- Workshop Director, the Whitney Museum Youth Insights Program (2007)
Directed a three month project with visual artists to create audio guides for the museum’s permanent collection. The audio guides took a multimedia turn with the inclusion of members of VisionIntoArt, who helped mentor the students in adding layers of poetry and sound.
- Workshop Leader, American Symphony Orchestra League and Meet the Composer (2005-2006)
Created education activities for orchestra administrators at the ASOL conference for Joan Tower’s ‘Made in America’ program.
- Director of Education, American Composers Orchestra (2004-2007)
Managed a revolving team of composers commissioned by the ACO in education residencies city-wide.