Monday, October 31, 2011
Ritz Chamber Players
10th Anniversary Opening Concert
The Ritz Chamber Players
Mainstage Concert Series
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Jacoby Symphony Hall/Times-Union
Center for the Performing Arts
'I am trying to find out the location of the music materials that belonged to the late pianist William Duncan Allen'
The African American pianist William Duncan Allen was born in Portland, Oregon December 15, 1906; and died in Richmond, California August 19, 1999. Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, whose email address is firstname.lastname@example.org,
makes this research request:
“I am trying to find out the location of the music materials that belonged to the late pianist William Duncan Allen, student of Egon Pei, teacher of Sylvia Olden Lee, and frequent pianist for most of the significant singers since Paul Robeson.”
[Cleophas R.E. Adderley (b. 1955)]
On Oct. 30, 2011 AfriClassical posted: “Cleophas R.E. Adderley, Composer of 'Missa Caribe' & first Bahamian Grand Opera, 'Our Boys.'” Dr. Christine Gangelhoff of The College of The Bahamas writes, in part:
Thank you for your interest in the works of Cleophas Adderley, I have informed him of the postings on your site, which is very exciting news. Thanks again for your support.
Michael S. Wright comments:
I was most impressed with the excerpt from Sanctus in ‘Missa Caribe’.
“If the rest of the work is of this high standard, it should take its place alongside ‘Missa Luba’ and will be great fun for choirs.
Sunday, October 30, 2011
[Cleophas R.E. Adderley]
The International Journal of Bahamian Studies, Vol 17, No 1 (2011) features a fascinating and in-depth interview with a leading classical music composer in the Bahamas, Cleophas R.E. Adderley. The interview was conducted March 23, 2011 by two students and Prof. Christine Gangelhoff of The College of The Bahamas. It is titled From Classical To Calyspo: An Interview with Bahamian Composer and Conductor, Cleophas R. E. Adderley by Christine Gangelhoff, Ruebendero Gibson and Crashan Johnson.
We also present excerpts from an interview which appeared in the blog Native Stew:
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
By Staff Writer, For the Guardian
Cleophas Adderley was born in Nassau, Bahamas. He received his elementary education at Western Junior School and secondary education at the Government High School. He went on to study at the University of the West Indies where he received his L.L.B (Hons). He was called to the Bahamas Bar in 1980. Adderley also studied orchestration.”
“Mr. Adderley is a pillar in the cultural development of The Bahamas. After some 14 years working the field of law, first in the private practice and then as the legal advisor at the offices of the Attorney General, he became the Founder/Director of the Bahamas National Youth Choir.” “Mr. Adderley also serves as the Director of the Senior Choir of the Parish Church of the Most Holy Trinity, Founder and Director of the National Choir of The Bahamas, former Director of Culture and the Executive Director of National Musical Heritage and Research.
“Mr. Adderley is also an accomplished composer. He is the composer of the first Bahamian grand opera 'Our Boys,' which is also the first opera to have been written and performed in the English-speaking Caribbean. He is also the composer of the first Bahamian Concert Mass, 'Missa Caribe'.
“Also to his credit he composed the music and rhythms for the play 'You Can Lead A Horse to Water' by Winston Saunders which played to rave critical acclaim locally; in San Francisco; at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland and at Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Mr. Adderley has written and arranged music for piano, pipe organ, choir and solo voice. Some of his choral compositions have been published by Hal Leonard Corporation, the largest publisher of choral music in the United States. Mr. Adderley has also produced numerous commercial compact discs of choral music. Additionally, he produced and conceived the cultural show for the Opening Ceremonies of the 1995 and 1998 Bahamas Games.”
Menuetto is second movement of 'Sonata for Harp with Flute Accompaniment' of Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges
[Un contemporain atypique de Mozart: Le Chevalier de Saint-George; Michelle Garnier-Panafieu; YP Éditions (2011)]
On Oct. 29, 2011 AfriClassical posted: “Bibliography on Caribbean Art Music; Video of 'Sonata For Flute And Piano' (4:46) of Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges.” Dr. Christine Gangelhoff, Assistant Professor of Music at The College of The Bahamas, announced the project on Caribbean Art Music, which has been published in The International Journal of Bahamian Studies, Vol 17, No 1 (2011). It includes music from the Bahamas, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Jamaica and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Dr. Gangelhoff provided two links, one to the Journal and another to Caribbean Art Music, the Cariclassical YouTube Channel:
The URL for the Sonata for Flute And Piano is:
We have received suggestions about the identity of the work of Saint-Georges from Jean-Claude Halley, Catherine Pizon, Dominique-René de Lerma and Prof. Michelle Garnier-Panafieu, Musicologist, Université Rennes II. Prof. Garnier-Panafieu is author of a recent book in French on the music of Saint-Georges, Un contemporain atypique de Mozart, Le Chevalier Saint-George, (An Atypical Contemporary of Mozart, Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges). She has graciously provided AfriClassical.com with a summary of the book for the Saint-Georges Biography page. See No. 51 in the Table of Contents of that page.
Catherine Pizon has advised us that the work on the YouTube video “...is exactly the menuetto of the Sonate Pour la Harpe avec Accompagnement de Flute Par M. Saint-Georges [Sonata for Harp with Flute Accompaniment by Monsieur Saint-Georges], (s.d.) (sans date) classified by Michelle Garnier-Panafieu as (Ms.,F-Pn/Vm76118), en mi bémol majeur [in E flat major], in her excellent book that you also mentioned on your blog: Un contemporain atypique de Mozart, Le Chevalier Saint-George.”
Prof. Michelle Garnier-Panafieu has made a contribution in French in which she thanks Dominique-René de Lerma for the information, and confirms the information provided by Catherine Pizon on the basis of the book Un contemporain atypique de Mozart, Le Chevalier Saint-George. Prof. Garnier-Panafieu writes that the “Menuetto (Minuetto)” in question refers to the second movement of the Sonata for Harp with Flute Accompaniment by Monsieur de Saint-Georges. She adds that the source manuscript is held in the Department of Music of the National Library of France, as “Ms/F-Pn/ Vm7 6118,” and the source is microfilmed as “R. 28 622.” She reports that the parts for harp and flute are separate. To clarify the succession of movements, Prof. Garnier-Panafieu indicates that the “Menuetto (Minuetto)” is the second movement of the work, not the third.
[James DePreist (Copyright 2008 Richard Termine; Photo Credit Richard Termine)]
Juilliard School Press Release
"Conductor James DePreist Leads the Juilliard Orchestra in Only Carnegie Hall Concert of the Season on Monday, December 5 at 8 PM; Program Includes Works by Mozart, Tchaikovsky, and George Tsontakis
"Juilliard’s Principal Conductor James DePreist leads the Juilliard Orchestra in their only Carnegie Hall concert of the season on Monday, December 5 at 8 PM. The program features Juilliard alumnus George Tsontakis’ Perpetual Angelus; Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5, 'Turkish' (soloist to be announced on November 9); and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6, 'Pathétique.' Mr. DePreist conducts the Juilliard Orchestra in two other concerts this season - on Thursday, March 29, 2012 at 8 PM and on Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 8 PM, both in Alice Tully Hall.
"Tickets at $30 (parquet, 1st and 2nd tiers) and $15 (dress circle and balcony) will be available on October 31 at the Carnegie Hall Box Office, by calling CarnegieCharge at (212) 247-7800, or online at www.carnegiehall.org." [AfriClassical.com profiles James DePreist (b. 1936), who also has his own website, http://www.JamesDePreist.com.]
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, http://www.CasaMusicaledeLerma.com, tells AfriClassical of this vacancy:
“James Madison University is accepting applications for Director of the School of Music.”
James Madison University
800 S. Main Street
Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807
Myron Moss: "Hailstork's program note for 'Out of the Depths' explains that the piece traces a life cycle"
[ABOVE: Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers; Spiritual for brass octet (9:36); Out of the Depths for concert band (13:16); Keystone Wind Ensemble; Jack Stamp, Conductor; Citadel 88143 (2002) BELOW: Adolphus C. Hailstork]
As we have noted previously, Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers is available from only a few retailers. FoothillRecords.com offers it for $8.99 plus shipping:
Yesterday we quoted from the liner notes, written by Dr. Myron Moss. Today we continue: “Not long after Jim Europe's war, bands began to assemble a concert-music repertoire, emulating the serious music played by symphony orchestras. This recording surveys black composers' contributions to that literature. The pieces range from Clarence Cameron White's Triumphal March, written in 1927, to Gary Nash's 1997 Fraternal Prelude. Many of these performances are premiere recordings, for this music is still little-known.
“Appropriately, the program begins with Adolphus Hailstork's Spiritual, whose genre and thematic material reflect the historical origin of African-American music. Hailstork (b. 1941) has enjoyed recognition for his choral, orchestral, and instrumental music.” “He has been an award winner since the beginning of his career. Mourn Not the Dead won the 1971 Ernest Bloch Award for choral composition. Celebration was among the 1976 J. C. Penney Bicentennial Commissions and was recorded by the Detroit Symphony. Out of the Depths won the 1977 Belwin Mills Max Winkler Award, presented by the College Band Directors National Association.
“Hailstork's Spiritual was written for the four trumpets and four trombones of the Edward Tarr Brass Ensemble. As with several of Hailstork's pieces, Spiritual fuses two apparently disparate styles. The plaintive opening trumpet solo evokes the spiritual at its most fundamental, vocal music unadorned with harmony or accompaniment. The following development is in neo-classic style, with insistent rhythmic energy, sharp, dissonant chords, and fugal passages, all based on melodic material that is related to the opening. Hailstork has stated that spirituals are the source from which black American music emerges, and here he has crafted a fully modern piece that directly traces its roots to that source. In the brass repertoire, Spiritual's antecedent is Infolf Dahl's great Music for Brass, whose treatment of a Bach chorale uses similar compositional devices to respectfully project devotional music of an earlier time into the polystylistic present.
“Hailstork's program note for Out of the Depths explains that the piece traces a life cycle, from its spark of inception through a long ascent to a powerful climax and then a decline into peaceful resolution and silence. The actual sound of the music suggests (as does the title) something rather darker. The opening dwells on barely audible sounds, including slowly built-up clusters of sustained pitches and brief flashes of percussion. The piece gains momentum gradually in a series of slow rises and falls, culminating in music of considerable ferocity. Compositionally, Out of the Depths is largely based on just two melodic ideas. The first, played by the piccolo at the beginning of the piece, consists of an ascending motif of three notes. This rising figure is reprised powerfully at the music's climax. The second idea appears about 3:20 into the piece, when low woodwinds introduce a longer, downward-contoured melody, repeated in the bass and then played by clarinets and saxophones. This melody reappears several times, often as the bass line within a progression of dark chords. The richly dissonant harmonies and the massive effects created by overlapping blocks of instruments create a sense of glacially slow but inexorable movement.” [Adolphus C. Hailstork (b. 1941) is featured at AfriClassical.com]
Bibliography on Caribbean Art Music; Video of 'Sonata for Flute and Piano' (4:46) of Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges
[Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges]
AfriClassical is pleased to post news of the first volume of a Bibliography on Caribbean Art Music, which has been published in The International Journal of Bahamian Studies, Vol 17, No 1 (2011). It includes music from the Bahamas, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Jamaica and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For the second volume, readers are invited to suggest materials from Barbados, Trinidad, Grenada, BVI, Curacao, Dominica, St. Kitts, Antigua and Barbuda.
Dr. Christine Gangelhoff, Assistant Professor of Music at The College of The Bahamas, outlines the project on Caribbean Art Music:
“Dear Mr. Zick,
I hope this email finds you well. My name is Dr. Christine Gangelhoff, and I am a professor of music at The College of The Bahamas. I wanted to let you know about the first volume of a bibliography on Caribbean art music that may be of interest to your website. You can view the publication on this site:
“There are also videos that accompany the material. If you would like to see the videos separately, you can view them here on the accompanying youtube channel:
“We are now preparing to gather materials for the next volume, which will include Barbados, Trinidad, Grenada, BVI, Curacao, Dominica, St. Kitts, Antigua and Barbuda. Would it be possible to send a request to readers who may have information on relevant composers? I look forward to hearing from you.
Dr. Christine Gangelhoff
Assistant Professor of Music
The College of The Bahamas
YouTube: Cariclassical's Channel
C Force: Tchaka Mizik
Joseph Bologne, the Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799)
Sonata for Flute and Piano
II. Menuetto (4:46)
II. Menuetto (excerpt) (0:52)
Christine Gangelhoff, flute
Christy Lee, piano
Compass Point Studios
Compass Point Studios
On Oct. 27, 2011 AfriClassical posted: “Jade Media: 'The Making of Jade's CD: Insider Access' via 'StalkingSuperwoman.com' Oct. 29-30.” One of our subscribers, also a recent correspondent, is Izola Collins. She writes:
“Thanks once more for these. Jade is a personal friend of mine, is multitalented to the Nth degree. I am waiting to see her go up in vast media because she has done so much for others while rising, herself. Izola Collins”
Friday, October 28, 2011
Darrold Hunt has led D.C. Urban Philharmonic in 'creative and original musical experiences' since 1970
[Maestro Darrold V. Hunt]
AfriClassical.com and UrbanPhilharmonic.org have exchanged links for nearly as long as our respective websites have been around. Darrold Hunt is Founder and President of The Urban Philharmonic Society of Washington, D.C. Its Facebook page is DC-Urban-Philharmonic.
Today Darrold Hunt signed our Guest Book, saying “Thanks for all the work.” Jeffrey James Arts Consulting introduces The Urban Philharmonic Society:
The Urban Philharmonic Society is a nonprofit organization that provides classical music to Washington DC communities whose access has been restricted by the racial or economic realities of American culture. The Society presents music of many cultures in the belief that enjoyment of music crosses the boundaries of culture and helps to reduce ethnic and racial fragmentation.
For more than thirty years, the Urban Philharmonic Society has provided creative and original musical experiences for a wide cross section of the people of Greater Washington, regardless of ethnic roots, economic status or educational achievement. The Society is a working model of musical and social harmony, offering musical performances at the highest levels of excellence.
DARROLD V. HUNT, Conductor and Music Director
Darrold Hunt, of whom Leonard Bernstein wrote, "His natural talent is considerable", is the Conductor and Music Director of the Urban Philharmonic Orchestra. This orchestra of professional musicians, which includes the Urban Philharmonic Virtuosi, presents concert series throughout the greater Washington area featuring the music of ethnic minorities as well as music from traditional symphonic literature. Of this ensemble, Mark Carrington of the Washington Post has written, "The truth is, conductor Darrold Hunt has hit a seam of gold with the Urban Philharmonic Orchestra. He has an ensemble that plays splendidly together, that ekes beauty out of the familiar..."
Darrold Hunt also serves as Artistic director for the Urban Philharmonic Society, which he founded in 1970 to bring classical music to minority and other underserved parts of the community. The goal of the Society has been to address the problem of classical music being restricted to people because of racial or economic factors. The Society has presented programs in churches, playgrounds, and other inner city locations as well as the Kennedy Center. In his capacity as Artistic Director Mr. Hunt directs the Society's orchestral programs as well as the Urban Philharmonic Recital Series and the Paul Robeson Vocal Competition.
From a family of musicians, Darrold Hunt grew up singing with them in churches and community centers throughout the Northeast. In 1963 Mr. Hunt won a fellowship to study at Tanglewood. This event marked the adult phase of his professional career, which included a national tour with The Norman Luboff Choir as well as concerts and recordings with such luminaries as Greg Smith and Roger Wagner.
Morgan Earle on 'For You There Is No Song': 'This wonderful work by Mr. Adams is a gem among art song literature'
[H. Leslie Adams (b. 1932)]
Earlier today, October 28, 2011, AfriClassical posted: “Morgan Earle Sings 'For You There Is No Song' of H. Leslie Adams on SoundCloud.com.” H. Leslie Adams (b. 1932) is profiled at AfriClassical.com, which features his complete Works as compiled by Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, http://www.CasaMusicaledeLerma.com. Mezzo-soprano Morgan Earle was accompanied by pianist Ken Passmore. Morgan has graciously responded to the blog post:
“Dear Mr. Zick,
Thank you so much for your wonderful article and link to my performance of 'For You There Is No Song.' This wonderful work by Mr. Adams is a gem among art song literature and I am so very pleased that I had the opportunity to sing it.
[Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers; Keystone Wind Ensemble; Jack Stamp, Conductor; Citadel 88143 (2002)]
Dr. Myron D. Moss wrote the liner notes for a recording we have discussed frequently in recent days, Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers:
“American band history includes some remarkable African-American contributions. In the middle nineteenth century, for instance, composer and band leader Frank Johnson was the first American to program 'promenade concerts' in the European manner, attracting audiences in the thousands. Johnson led Philadelphia's premiere social orchestra and was the first African-American to publish music.
“W.C. Handy, famous as the 'father of the blues,' was also a band composer. His band works included both military marches such as 'Hail to the Spirit of Freedom' and jazzier items such as his setting of 'Loveless Love.' James Reese Europe led arguably the finest military band in U.S. Service during W.W. I. His 'Hellfighters' band drew enormous crowds in France at war's end, where the group's fabled 'ragging' style may have been France's introduction to the jazz that would soon win over the nation.” [Francis Johnson (1792-1844) is profiled at AfriClassical.com, which features a comprehensive Works List by Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, http://www.CasaMusicaledeLerma.com]
[H. Leslie Adams (b. 1932)]
On October 27, 2011 the work For You There Is No Song (2:32), composed by H. Leslie Adams, was uploaded to SoundCloud.com. The performer is Morgan Juliette Earle, a mezzo-soprano who was giving her Senior Recital at Callaway Auditorium, LaGrange College, in April 2011. The recording was engineered by Paul Hammock of The Moog Studios.”
The performance is also on YouTube.com:
On Oct. 25 AfriClassical posted: “Pianist Benjamin Bradham Performs 'Sonata No. 2' of George Walker at Lincoln Center Library Nov. 27, 2:30 PM.” Lauren Keiser Music Publishing (LKMP) mentions the performance in its Newsletter:
“George Walker's Sonata No. 2 for Piano (1956) will be performed by Benjamin Bradham. Bradham will also be performing works by Beethoven, Brahms, Ravel, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff on the November 27th concert at the Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, NYC.”
Thursday, October 27, 2011
NOLA here we come.
Jade's taking you behind the scenes for the entire process of the making of her next CD with Entertainment One (eOne). It's all happening now on StalkingSuperwoman.com. See candid video showing rehearsals, practice sessions, road trips, photo shoot site scouting and more. Look at great pictures highlighting the eclectic city of New Orleans.
Then tune in this weekend (Oct.29-30) to watch LIVE footage from the recording sessions and the CD cover photo shoot.
Follow Jade on Twitter @jadesimmons and get tweets from the session and throughout the process. Keep your eyes peeled for the #PaganiniProject hash tag to know when new uploads are available on Stalking Superwoman.
Dr. William Chapman Nyaho (b. 1958) is a pianist of Ghanaian Heritage who is featured at AfriClassical.com and has a website of his own, http://www.NyahoPianoStudio.com. William Chapman Nyaho has recorded 2 CDs of music of the African diaspora. The Oxford University Press has published his 5-volume sheet music series Piano Music of Africa and the African Diaspora.
The Chicago Area Music Teachers' Association
Dr. William Chapman Nyaho
in a workshop
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Friday, October 28, 2011
Oak Park / River Forest Room
Koehneke Community Center
River Forest, IL
Fee $50.00 workshop (Early Bird)
Contact: Heidi Mayer, Chair
The Afro-British composer and conductor Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912) is featured at AfriClassical.com. AfriClassical posts an excerpt from an article by Hilary Burrage of the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Foundation, http://www.sctf.org.uk/, on the LinkedIn Group “Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912): Britain's Greatest Black Composer”:
These articles will be from historians, scholars and other commentators about the impact of SCT’s life and work in the United States, from the time of his visits until the present. We are aware that this is an area of increasing interest, as more information has emerged about the direct and indirect ways in which Samuel Coleridge-Taylor has helped to shape developments in the USA, both in New York (especially Harlem) and Boston, and elsewhere.
We will be delighted to publish all appropriate submissions in this category on this website (www.sctf.org.uk) and we are hopeful also that a selection of what are deemed to be the most illuminating of these will also be distributed on one or more American websites.
Articles may be of any (website readable) length and should be written in an accessible style; references are welcome, but only when they illuminate the text substantively. Illustrations and photographs are also welcome, with the proviso that in submitting them the author confirms that there is no copyright bar to their publication on the SCTF website. Potential authors are invited to make contact with us via email on the website, to submit possible (ideas for) articles or to discuss their intended submission.
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
[Aaron P. Dworkin]
“The National Council on the Arts, the advisory body for the National Endowment for the Arts, convenes in public session on Friday, October 28, 2011 from 9:00 - 11:00 a.m. in room M-09 of The Nancy Hanks Center, 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC.
“The session will open with the swearing in to the National Council on the Arts of President Obama's first nominee, violinist and arts educator, Aaron Dworkin. A recipient of a 2005 MacArthur Genius Award, Dworkin is the founder and president of the Sphinx Organization, a leading national arts organization focusing on youth development and diversity in classical music.
“The meeting features three presentations in addition to the business of the council. The event is free and open to the public to attend in person or to watch live via webcast at arts.gov.” [Aaron Dworkin (b. 1970) is profiled at AfriClassical.com and has a personal website, http://www.AaronDworkin.com]
Dr. Marian L. Harrison: 1st African American with D.M. in Music Composition from Indiana U. Jacobs School
[Marian L. Harrison]
On Oct. 3 AfriClassical posted: “John Malveaux: Southeast Symphony Opens '64th season on a high and promising note with guest conductor.'” Here is a quote from the review by John Malveaux of MusicUNTOLD.com:
“The second half started with Out of Kilter: Scenes from Black America preceded by an explanatory talk from composer Dr. Marian L. Harrison (b. 1974). She characterized the piece “modern art music”. “Out of Kilter explores the subject of racial disparity in the African-American race, as it ‘scores’ five paintings by Atlanta-area artist, Chase Campbell". (from program notes)
This was the first event to bring the composer and Professor Marian L. Harrison to our attention, so we decided to take a look at her Faculty Biography at the website of Spelman College. Here is an excerpt:
Spelman College Department of Music
Marian L. Harrison is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. She is a composer, arranger, music copyist, teacher, playwright, and photographer. In August of 2007, she became the first African American to receive the Doctorate of Music degree in Music Composition from Indiana University's prestigious Jacobs School of Music in Bloomington, Indiana. While attending Indiana University, she studied composition with David Baker, Sven-Davis Sandstrom, David Dzubay, and P.Q. Phan.
Harrison’s other previous institutions of study include the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia, where she received the Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education (1997), and Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia, where she received the Masters of Music degree in Music Composition (2001). In addition, Harrison studied music composition at the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm, Sweden and received the Certificate of Visiting Student during the 2004-2005 academic year.
Various ensembles including Indiana University’s Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, the Spelman College Glee Club, and the Thamyris New Music Ensemble have performed Harrison’s works. In February 2007, Marian commissioned Atlanta-based artist, Wilhelmina Fowlkes, to create Lift Every Voice, an acrylic painting based on the Negro National Anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing”, which was interpreted by members of the Indiana University African American Dance Company and performed her arrangement of the anthem. From 2005 to 2007, she produced the Extensions of the Tradition Concert Series. This annual event, held on the campus of Indiana University, features the music of African American classical composers.
[Nokuthula Ngwenyama (Darla Furlani)]
Nokuthula Ngwenyama (b. 1976), http://www.ngwenyama.com/, is President of the American Viola Society and has long been featured at AfriClassical.com.
Conductor Jason Weinberger of Iowa's Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony, http://www.wcfsymphony.org/, announces:
"Nokuthula Ngwenyama, viola
Saturday, November 5, 2011 - 7:30 p.m.
Great Hall, Gallagher-Bluedorn
Hector Berlioz: Harold in Italy (Concerto for Viola)
Hector Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique
"Spend an evening with the bad boy of 19th century music, Hector Berlioz, and two epic works based on his own life experiences. Head-turning violist Nokuthula Ngwenyama leads us through Harold in Italy, a unique tone poem-concerto inspired by its composer's stay in Rome. Our own viruoso musicians will be featured in Symphonie Fantastique, a piece whose title tells you everything you need to know about it.
"Join us before the concert at 6:30 p.m. for Concert Conversations in Jebe Hall. Stay after and enjoy drinks, desserts, and live music in the lobby during our Fíne celebration." This concert will be broadcast on Iowa Public Radio March 4 and 5, 2012.
[From Top: Charlotte Wesley Holloman, Louise Toppin, Marquita Lister (Glamour) and Duane Moody]
Patrick D. McCoy, The African American Voice in Classical Music
encourages you to support the Hines-Lee Opera Gala on Sunday, November 6, 2011 at 4:00 p.m.
Honoring legendary Howard University Professor of Voice, Charlotte Wesley Holloman.
Featured Artists are renowned singers soprano Marquita Lister, tenor Duane Moody and soprano Louise Toppin.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, http://www.CasaMusicaledeLerma.com, tells AfriClassical of this vacancy:
“Bucknell University (Lewisburg PA) is seeking to fill a music departmental professorship. Details on request.”
Lewisburg, PA 17837
Pianist Benjamin Bradham Performs 'Sonata No. 2' of George Walker at Lincoln Center Library Nov. 27, 2:30 PM
AfriClassical has received this message from pianist Benjamin Bradham about his free recital on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2011:
“I am writing to let you know that I will be playing a recital at the Bruno Walter Auditorium of the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts on Sunday, November 27, 2011 at 2:30 pm (please see attached e-flyer for details). This year I will indeed play the Sonata No. 2 of George Walker. As you may recall, I originally planned to play it last year but then opted to program it at a later date. This November 27th turns out to be that later date, and it is definite this time. The program will also include works by Beethoven, Brahms, Ravel, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff. Information can also be found in the events calendar on the Library's web site: www.nypl.org. I hope you will be able to attend.
Monday, October 24, 2011
[Michael O'Daniel identifies the people in the above photo from Jet Magazine as, from left: Jessye Norman, Everett Lee, Max Roach and Martina Arroyo]
Bob Shingleton of On An Overgrown Path tells AfriClassical:
"There is another valuable addition to the Everett Lee path today
Monday, October 24, 2011
We're just not ready yet for a black conductor
Contribution of Michael O'Daniel:
It is October 19 and I have just now seen your July 25 post re Everett Lee. I represented Everett for a couple of years while I was in the artist management business in New York and I ran into the same attitude as Arthur Judson's when I presented him for open music director positions with major symphony orchestras (including Oakland!!): "We're just not ready yet for a black conductor." Ironic because one of the catchwords of African American life, from the white perspective, was "You people just aren't ready yet..."
Anyway, I did manage to get Everett a couple of opera conducting gigs, and 2-3 guest engagements with major orchestras, but then I moved away from NYC and away from the artist management business. I believe he later went on to run an opera company in Philadelphia and perhaps also formed or at least led another orchestra in New York (possibly that is the St. Luke's Orchestra you refer to). Before I met Everett, I had actually met the late Sylvia Olden Lee first because she was my wife's vocal coach at Cincinnati Conservatory of Music and thereafter. (She was a pianist and vocal coach, BTW, not a singer.) I got to know their son Everett III and their daughter Eve as well. Quite an extraordinary family.
The common thread in the saga of Everett and Sylvia Olden Lee is Max Rudolf, who had (a) previously conducted in Goteborg Sweden, (b) was first a conductor and then artistic administrator at the Met from 1942-58 and (c) became music director of the Cincinnati Symphony in 1958 and was probably responsible for getting Sylvia her position at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. (When he left the Cincinnati in 1970 to head the opera department at Curtis, he took Sylvia with him.) I was assistant manager of the Cincinnati Symphony in 1965-66 and stayed in touch with Rudolf thereafter. He was very supportive of my and my wife's career undertakings as well. Rudolf was one of the few arts administrators in the USA who dared to advocate for and engage black performers, composers and conductors.
I was unaware for many years that the Louisville Orchestra had provided Everett with his first guest conducting engagement (shameful since Louisville is my home town and I grew up on young people's concerts by the Louisville Orchestra). I do know that Rudolf brought Everett in to conduct the Cincinnati Orchestra on at least 2 occasions, as he had previously done with Dean Dixon.
In answer to your question re: the photo ID from Jet Magazine [see above] – Jessye Norman, Max Roach (who I also once represented) and Martina Arroyo - I believe that is indeed Everett Lee second from left. I had never before seen him with glasses but the facial structure looks the same. Quite a spiffy getup, too.
Ironically, my wife Sylvia and I now live in El Cerrito CA, just north of Oakland, whose Symphony for many years has had a black music director named Michael Morgan, and prior to that had engaged the late Calvin Simmons as its music director. Also, I believe the first black music director of a major US orchestra was James DePreist in Portland, and Thomas Wilkins is now in Omaha as well as principal conductor at the Hollywood Bowl. By all means please update Everett's biographical information and submit it to Wikipedia as well.
That valuable addition to the Everett Lee path arrived a few days ago. Thankfully attitudes have changed since the days when Everett Lee, Philippa Schuyler, Rudolph Dunbar, Dean Dixon and other musicians of colour were struggling to build their careers. But echoes of that headline do still linger on.
* October is Black History Month in the UK.
[Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers; Keystone Wind Ensemble; Jack Stamp, Conductor; Citadel 88143 (2002).]
We wrote about the above recording on Oct. 23, 2011. Today we list the complete program of the CD, and include an enthusiastic comment from Fanfare Magazine, along with a comment submitted by email by Michael S. Wright:
One for me to order up! I am also glad that Roger Dickerson’s ‘Essay for Band’ is also featured along with Gary Nash’s work.
Jack Stamp is listed as Conductor of the CD, but two tracks have a Guest Conductor, Dr. Myron D. Moss. They are Solemn Prelude by Ulysses Kay (5:49) and Essay for Band by Roger Dickerson (9:51). The website of Foothill Records quotes Fanfare Magazine: "Performances are winning, sound and recording outstanding, and copious, in-depth notes... What more could one ask for? This CD is not specialist fare; it is urgently recommended for everyone."
Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers is available from only a few retailers. The best price we found was $8.99 at FoothillRecords.com:
1. Spiritual – Adolphus Hailstork 9:36
2. Out of the Depths – Adolphus Hailstork 13:16
3. Solemn Prelude* - Ulysses Kay 5:49
4. Fraternal Prelude – Gary Powell Nash 5:45
5. Essay for Band* - Roger Dickerson 9:51
6. Triumphal March – Clarence Cameron White 3:31
7. Take a Chance – Hale Smith 10:54
8. Fugue 3:41 and
9. Bossa – Oliver Nelson 4:03
Keith Young, saxophone and Robert Maglocci, trumpet
Total Time 67:36
*Guest Conductor, Myron Moss
“I will never forget sitting next to Adolphus Hailstork during what I believe was the debut of 'Done Made My Vow'”
[Adolphus C. Hailstork]
On Oct. 23, 2011 AfriClassical posted a comment from Dr. Myron D. Moss of Drexel University: “The discography for Adolphus Hailstork at AfriClassical.com does not include a recording we actually NAMED for his music.”
Violinist Phyllis Fleming recalls the experience of sitting next to Adolphus Hailstork for what she believes was the first performance of his choral work Done Made My Vow:
As always, I am grateful to you and your dedication to AfriClassical for documenting the accomplishments of these composers. I had the pleasure of working with Adolphus Hailstork and Hale Smith in the 1980s when I was Education Coordinator for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Their works were featured on the annual 'Classical Roots' performances. It is wonderful to finally see these compositions appear on orchestral repertoire listings throughout the year, from season to season, around the globe.
“I will never forget sitting next to Adolphus Hailstork during what I believe was the debut of 'Done Made My Vow', featuring the Brazeal Dennard Chorale and the DSO. Although composers are the first to 'hear' their works as they create them, they actually experience the 'birth' of these masterpieces during the first public performance. Phyllis” [Adolphus C. Hailstork (b. 1941) and Classical Roots are featured at AfriClassical.com, which features the complete Works List for Hale Smith, compiled by Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma, http://www.CasaMusicaledeLerma.com]
Sunday, October 23, 2011
'The discography for Adolphus Hailstork at AfriClassical.com does not include a recording we actually NAMED for his music'
[Adolphus C. Hailstork; Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers; Spiritual for brass octet (9:36); Out of the Depths for Concert Band (13:16); Keystone Wind Ensemble; Jack Stamp, Conductor; Citadel 88143 (2002).]
This is the second informative note we have received from Myron D. Moss, Ph.D., Music Program Director at Drexel University:
“The discography for Adolphus Hailstork at AfriClassical.com does not include a recording we actually NAMED for his music: Out of the Depths, performed by the Keystone Winds, Citadel CD # CTD 88143. The recording includes Hailstork's Out of the Depths for Concert Band, and Spiritual, for brass octet.”
We are very pleased to learn of this recording, which features works by three composers who are featured at AfriClassical.com: Adolphus C. Hailstork, Ulysses S. Kay and Hale Smith. The Adolphus Hailstork page has just been modified. The site's pages on Ulysses Kay and Hale Smith will also be modified as a result of information related to Out of the Depths: Music by African-American Composers. This CD is available from only a small number of retailers. The best price we found was $8.99 at FoothillRecords.com:
Myron Moss heard 'Pictures' on Schuyler LP; 'found the interpretation imaginative and individual, well worth hearing.'
[Philippa Duke Schuyler]
Yesterday John McLaughlin Williams provided the program of the one LP record made by Philippa Duke Schuyler:
“Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition
Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsody No.6
Turina: Sevilla Op.2
Infante: Sevillian Variations
Copland: The Cat and the Mouse
Gershwin: An American in Paris (arr. Schuyler)
Ernest Middleton: Andante Satirico - 'Cold Moon'
Antonio Casanova: Voyage Around Cape Horn”
We subsequently heard from Myron D. Moss, Ph.D., Music Program Director, Department of Performing Arts, Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, Drexel University. Dr. Moss tells AfriClassical:
“The Indiana University music library holds the Philippa Schuyler LP recording you've discussed on your blog. I was able to listen to 'Pictures' while doing research there and found the interpretation imaginative and individual, well worth hearing.”
T.J. Anderson, orchestrator of 'Treemonisha,' says 'Joplin takes the high road of transcendental values.'
[T.J. Anderson, Composer]
Scott Joplin (c. 1867-1917) is featured as a Composer of African Descent at AfriClassical.com. On Oct. 12, 2011 AfriClassical posted: “AfriClassical.com Updates Page on Scott Joplin, Opera Composer & King of Ragtime (c. 1867-1917).” The revised page is based on the book Dancing to a Black Man's Tune: A Life of Scott Joplin. It was written by Prof. Susan Curtis of Purdue University and published by the University of Missouri Press (2004). On page 3 of the biography, Prof. Curtis credits the composer and Professor T.J. Anderson with writing the orchestration for the first production of Joplin's opera Treemonisha. AfriClassical invited Prof. Anderson to write about the opera for the blog. He graciously agreed, and his essay follows:
We stand on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the Scott Joplin opera, Treemonisha (1911). What meaning does this work have for the current generation and what is its importance in the history of American opera? In our epistemological concerns, what questions arise? Does the work promulgate enduring values? Does it promote pride in heritage? Does it serve as a reminder, lest we forget the experience of slavery? I would say the answer to these these questions is a resounding, yes.
Opera is a generic form that reflects a particular culture. It may show the influences of other nationalities but the dominant thrust is the composer’s life experiences. The opera, Carmen by the French composer, Georges Bizet is influenced by Spanish music. Giacomo Puccini’s Madama Butterfly shows the influence of music of Japan, yet, it is an Italian opera. The Ice Break by the British composer, Michael Tippett is reflective of American music. An American opera, it seems to me, should be written in the dominant language of the country, by a citizen or immigrant and should be reflective of a national social experience. It must also reflect the sounds of the culture and must make use of the melodic, harmonic, rhythmic and formal structure of our popular culture. Treemonisha and Porgy and Bess possess those elements.
In 1794, James Hewitt wrote the United States’ first grand opera, Tammany. That work along with others that followed can only be described as a continuation of European opera. In 1911, Scott Joplin wrote Treemonisha and paid to have it published. Its polarity of thought, assimilated black identity and the influence of classic European opera of the Eighteenth century are distinctive. The overture, arias, recitatives and small orchestra are all there. The story and the libretto are products of his imagination. This opera was an aesthetic calculation of the American musical experience and the cultural adaptation of his personal expression.
The opera takes place just after the Civil War in the south. Monisha and Ned find a baby under a tree. They decide to name her Treemonisha. The child is sent away for an education and later returns to a community riddled with superstition and witchcraft, Treemonisha tries to teach her people the value of education and after a struggle with these forces of witchcraft she becomes their leader. All the villains of superstition are forgiven.
Joplin tried to stage the opera without success during his lifetime. His inability to find financial backing may have been based on the determination not to recognize his opera as an American opera; an unwillingness to give it proper status.
The first performance of Treemonisha took place in Atlanta and was the culminating event of a week long celebration by the African American Workshop, directed by Wendell Whalum, Richard Long and myself. During that week, there were several lectures. One lecture was devoted to Paul Robeson. A paper was presented by the distinguished educator, Dr. Benjamin Mays. A concert by a female gospel choir was presented in the Morehouse College Chapel and a workshop included Eubie Blake and Max Morath as participants.
The premiere of Treemonisha took place in Symphony Hall in Atlanta, Georgia on January 28, 1972. The work was sponsored by a grant by Norman Lloyd from the Rockefeller Foundation. The work, a piano-vocal score, was called to my attention by William Bolcom. It was edited by this distinguished composer with slight assistance from me. Later, I orchestrated the opera. The performance featured the conductor, Robert Shaw, stage director and choreographer, Katherine Dunham, Singers; Alpha Floyd, Seth McCoy, Simon Estes, Laura English, Louise Parker, Joseph Bias, Uzee Brown, musicians from the Atlanta Symphony and singers from the Atlanta University complex.
To further understand the importance of this event, we must review America’s operatic history. I believe an opera written in this country must have an indigenous, perceptive and emotional response to the American experience. It must also be rooted in the culture. There are two early examples of American opera; Scott Joplin’s Treemonisha (1911) and George Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess (1935). Both works take place in the south and both have African American life style as the focus. While they have much in common, both works suffered at their inception from the paradoxes of understanding, Joplin’s unsuccessful ability to find financial backing and Gershwin’s negative reviews of the premiere. Neither work is esoteric. Joplin takes the high road of transcendental values. His emphasis on education is reflected by African Americans in the establishment of several universities (not colleges) after the Civil War. Lincoln, Shaw, Johnson C. Smith, Howard and Langston University are examples.
The Gershwin opera is an extension of 19th century grand opera and takes the low road in telling its tragic story. The Du Bose Hayward libretto leads us, with the influence of street cries, to witness a life of killing, whiskey, gambling and narcotics; the low life. Ira Gershwin wrote the libretto. Both Joplin's and Gershwin’s works are poetical, emotive, and represent the perpetuation of relative truths.
In Scott Joplin’s opera, one finds the influence of cultural language in the form of congregational singing. Ragtime, marches, male quartet, stylized dance steps, and songs form the coexistence of generative powers. The use of unspecified pitches in the score, a probable extension of church moaning rituals, is seen with stem rotation. No note heads but contour rhythmic lines.
It is interesting to observe that Arnold Schoenberg created Sprechstimme in his composition, Pierre Lunaire (1912). Both composers were trying to expand with gliding vocal lines the dramatic possibilities of music. I doubt if they ever met.
Porgy and Bess has as its domestic motivational influence the use of Jazz, Tin Pan Alley, Blues, Gospel and the 19th Century European grand operatic tradition. In comparing the two works, one is infused with ragtime (1890-1920) and the other with Jazz (1920 to present). Ragtime was predominately a piano art form which was notated. Jazz has had an extended life because of improvisation. This unique form of freedom was indeed important. Invented by African Americans, both styles became international. It is interesting to note that our greatest singers, Roland Hayes, Marian Anderson and Paul Robeson never participated in this opera.
All life moves on a time continuum towards identity. Nationalism in music is the result of the interrelationship of social and political exchange. Secular and sacred music have a common identity in the lives of their musicians. As this nation moves into the 21st Century with its complexity of problems, development of new technologies, and the opportunity for global solutions, we must always be mindful of the importance and understanding of history and its significance to future generations.
Borroff, Edith. Music in Europe and the United States. New York: Ardesley House, 1990.
Classic Rags and Ragtime Songs. Conducted by T.J. Anderson (The Smithsonian Collection, N001) 1975, CBS, Inc., Dargan, William.
Lining Out the Word. Berkeley: University of California, 2006
Harvard Dictionary of Music. Edited by Don Randel. Cambridge: Harvard University, Belknap Press, 1986.
Slonimsky, Nicolas. The Concise Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians. New York: Schirmer Books, 1988.