Friday 6 October: American Voices: A Journey Through Song

Katherine Nicholson (mezzo soprano) and Anyssa Neumann (piano)

This journey through the American song repertoire features the distinctive voices of Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, Theodore Chanler, Charles Ives, and Ned Rorem, composers who created melodic, emotive works that mirrored the melting pot of America’s vibrant 20th-century culture.

“American Song, like Topsy in Uncle Tom’s Cabin, ‘just growed’”, as Carol Kimball observes – and this growth resulted in an eclectic output mirroring the melting pot of America’s vibrant 20th-century culture. The composers in our programme forged distinctive voices that formed the backbone of the American sound, creating melodic, emotive works that captured hearts and imaginations and inspired modern generations, both at home and abroad. Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, Theodore Chanler, Charles Ives, and Ned Rorem looked to the European Art Song tradition to inspire their writing, putting text at the heart of their settings. This collection of songs traverses the Atlantic to feature words uttered by 8th-century Irish monks, the writings of Englishman Walter de la Mare, the poetry of Paul Goodman and Robert Frost, and the quintessentially American sound of spirituals, hymns, and folk songs.

Anyssa Neumann’s web page is available at http://www.anyssaneumann.com

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