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Friday, February 23 News

Journalist, musician to talk about remarkable, 'tough' teacher in Westport

Many people remember a great teacher who changed their lives. Award-winning journalist Joanne Lipman, founding editor-in-chief of the Conde Nast Portfolio magazine and a former deputy managing editor of the Wall Street Journal, and Chicago Symphony Orchestra violinist Melanie Kupchynsky tell the story of a remarkable -- yet tough -- public school music teacher whose students achieved remarkable success.

They will discuss their book, "Strings Attached: One Tough Teacher and the Gift of Great Expectations," at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 3, at the Westport Library.

The authors introduce the fiery Jerry Kupchynsky, who through sheer force of will, made his students into better musicians than they ever thought they could be. At the end of his life, his students traveled from every corner of the country, creating a symphony orchestra the size of the New York Philharmonic, to play one last concert together for him.

Lipman is a journalist and commentator and the member of a journalistic team that earned three Pulitzer Prizes. Kupchynsky has been a violinist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for more than 20 years, during which time the symphony has won 21 Grammys. She began studying violin at the age of four with her father, the subject of the book.

Books will be available for purchase and signing at the program, which is free and open to the public. For more information, check westportlibrary.org or call 203-291-4800.