Samantha Sherman, a voice student of Dr. Cheryl Coker, Millsaps College, Jackson, MS, collaborated with me on the writing of the art song, “The Key-Note,” (poetry of Christina Rossetti). I sent her several poems; she selected “The Key-Note,” Samantha told me why she chose the poem, spoke of favorite vocal composers, and mentioned some of her favorite musical styles. Her teacher, Dr. Coker, sent me videos of Samantha’s performances that I might get acquainted with her voice which, by the way, is very beautiful. With these thoughts in mind I wrote the music for this art song. On Tuesday, April 26, 2022, Samantha presented her senior recital which included this collaborative art song. Click the link to listen to her performance accompanied by Lynn Raley at the piano.
On February 4, 2022 Robert Voisey’s Composers Voice presented a Virtual Concert of Contemporary Quartets performed by the outstanding Argus Quartet composed of Clara Kim and Giancarlo Latta, violins, Maren Rothfritz, viola, and Audrey Chen, cello. My one movement string quartet, “One, Yet Different,” was a part of the concert. Below are the program notes for the work and a link to the performance. This work was commissioned by the Ohio Federated Music Clubs in honor of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the National Federated Music Clubs.
Program Notes: Music, a unifying force, is expressed in many differing ways. This thought, central to the National Federated Music Clubs, is this work’s basis. Opening with unison pitches in fanfarelike manner the intervals gradually grow wider leading to the opening theme in the first violin accompanied by sustained fifths in the cello with the second violin and viola offering syncopated pizzicato chords. The cello and first violin exchange roles. Finally the two inner instruments play the theme in unison with the outer ones adding the punctuated chords. Descending pizzicatos lead to sustained chords by the lower strings while the first violin plays a lengthy cadenza-like melody. The final section is in fugato-style using the melody of the NFMC national hymn, “Lasst uns erfreuen,” as thematic material. The ending is the opening in retrograde, the final note being in unison as it was in the beginning.
I recently attended the sixth International Festival of Music by Women at Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, MS. A selection from my Seven Signs (Song Cycle for Seven Vocalists and Seven Instrumentalists) entitled “Jesus Has Come at Last” (Soprano/horn) was premiered. Performers were Dana Zenobi, soprano, and Ellie Jenkins, horn. Below are the program notes followed by the live-stream.
The raising of Lazarus from the tomb is revealed through the eyes of Martha, his sister, (soprano) and the descriptive work of the horn.
I was able to attend the Sixth International Festival of Music by Women at Mississippi University for Women, Columbus, MS, March 3-5. My “Fountain Fantasy” was performed on one of the concerts by Michelle Kiec, clarinet and Jonathan Levin, piano. Here are the program notes followed by the live-stream performance.
Program notes: The clarinet opens this work with a fairly long solo meant to depict the “fits and starts” of a great design of multiple fountains beginning to display their glittering water. The piano enters and allows the clarinet to rise and fall in ever ascending passages to picture the great fountain complex. After a short solo section by the piano the clarinet begins its slow, undulating fall until the clarinet solo ending which is the opening in retrograde. Once more the fountain is still.
The premiere of the setting of the Christina Rossetti poem, “A Birthday,” for soprano and woodwind trio is scheduled for April, 2022, on a Women in Music-Columbus concert in Westerville, Ohio. Performers are: Jessica Kahn, soprano, Sarah Luckay, flute, Joy Norris, clarinet, and Alan Ray, bassoon.
At the International Festival of Music by Women at Women’s University of Mississippi in March, 2022 Dr. Marika Kyriakos, Professor of Voice at Arkansas State University, and Jerry Casey will present a lecture recital premiering her mono-drama, “Mary Magdalene at the Tomb” (for unaccompanied soprano). At that same conference two other works will also be performed, “Fountain Fantasy” (Clarinet and Piano) and “Jesus Has Come At Last” (Soprano and horn) from Seven Signs (A Song Cycle for Seven Singers and Seven Instrumentalists)
“What Shall We Bring?” (SSAATTBB a cappella) was featured at the CFAMC Virtual Conference, October 23, 2021. This work was recorded by the Concert Choir of Otterbein University, Westerville, Ohio, under the direction of Dr. Gayle Walker. The soloist was Caitlyn Mulkie.
“O, Death, Rock Me Asleep” (Soprano and Solo Violin) was featured at the NACUSA Dallas New Music Virtual Conference May 21-23, 2021. The soprano was Jessica Kahn, the violinist Erica Donahoe.
The Christian Fellowship of Art Music Composers (CFAMC) 2020 Virtual Conference was held October 17, 2020. My works presented for this conference were Suite for Brass and Percussion,(Amy Baker and Tom McKay, trumpets, Helen Doerring and Vivian Baker, horns, and Linda Dauwlder-Dachtyl, percussion); “You Speak of Color” (Tenor and solo Cello) from Seven Signs (A Song Cycle for Seven Singers and Seven Instrumentalists) a MIDI realization; and “Life and Love” from Three Love Songs (Rebecca Keck, soprano and Eileen Huston, piano).
“O, Death, Rock Me Asleep” (poetry of Anne Boleyn), a work for soprano and solo violin will be performed at the fourth annual International Festival of Music by Women at Mississippi University for Women, Columbus, Mississippi, in early March, 2020. The composition will also be performed for the National Society of Composers, Inc. 2020 Conference to be held at the University of Texas-Arlington in late March, 2020.