After a wonderfully full month of singing contemporary music and working with living composers, I’m gearing up for one last gig before some vacation. This recital, The Sky’s a Triplet, is part of the Classics by the Bay festival in Parrsboro, Nova Scotia. There are concerts all weekend long, but my concert is on Sunday afternoon, 2 PM, at Trinity United Church. You can find a schedule and ticket info on the website.
The inspiration for this recital came from several places. Initially, I intended to have a full recital of Spanish/Latin influenced music. As a result, there are a number of songs with Spanish themes, and songs by Spanish or Latin American poets and composers. Then, I began to think about why I connect with Spanish/Latin music, and I realized it’s the playfulness and seduction in the music and text that I love. Its warmth, lusciousness, and evocativeness. Of course this is true of a lot of music, including our own North American music… so I expanded the recital to include some local (living!) flavour 🙂
Click on the composers’ names for websites and more info. For Canadian composers, don’t forget to search the CMC website for works that you can purchase and borrow.
The first composer I want to mention is Stephen Bachicha (USA). I am singing two selections from his song cycle, New Mexico Fragments (poetry by Valerie Martínez, composed for Susanne Mentzer): The sky’s a triplet and Why have you come. We’ve never met in person, but I feel like we have (that counts, right?); and I’m looking forward to singing more of these works, as well as more of his other works. I foresee many future collaborations here.
Aunt Helen, by Monica Pearce (CAN), is receiving its third performance on this program. It was premiered last August in Halifax as part of the Opera from Scratch program, and I sang it earlier this month at the CMC in Toronto. This opera short projects snapshots of folklorist Dr. Helen Creighton, a pioneer in collecting our folksongs. I am delighted to be able to perform this work again, and for an audience of Maritimers, no less. Monica and I have worked together before; and, I very much cherish our collaborations.
While I was in Vancouver earlier this month, I met emerging composer, Matthew Emery (CAN). He was gracious enough to send me his work For broken and tired am I, which I had heard a colleague perform during the VISI program. I truly cannot wait to sing this piece for you.
Of the more established North American composers on the program, I am performing works by Imant Raminsh (CAN), John Greer (CAN), and Jake Heggie (USA). I have had the pleasure of working with both John Greer and (very recently) Jake Heggie. I’m thrilled to perform their works, Si os partieredes al alba (Three Spanish Lyics), Elegy for a Calf (A Sarah Binks Songbook) , and A Lucky Child (At the Statue of Venus).
After my rehearsal with my collaborative pianist today, my friend and colleague, Tara Scott, I am feeling very, very grateful for the beautiful music we have at our disposal. Many of you know that it is my personal mandate to help promote emerging composers and their works, so please feel free to share this post/information–I know that these composers would love others to perform their works, too! Contact them!
Go go gadget contemporary music–music for us, by us, and about us.