Friday, July 10, 2009

Programs I, II, III

Two days into our summer recital series, I can tell you we're all having a great time!

The performances are going well, and we love doing our new programs.

For the first two weeks (July 9-18) we have three different recital programs.
Program I (July 9 & 18) features some Purcell songs sung by Catherine followed by selections from Dichterliebe sung by Mark. Catherine has a beautiful set of mainly Irish folk songs, followed by some English art song hits done by Mark. We end with a Musical Theatre set based on a theme of "remembering".

The program we did today was Program II, which we repeat on Thursday, July 16. Mark begins the concert with the wonderful song cycle A Shropshire Lad by George Butterworth. Powerful stuff. Catherine then sings a beautifully selected set of songs in English by a variety of composers. It is such an amazing collection of wonderful poetry in stunning settings. The two singers then alternate to cover most of the Old American Songs of Aaron Copland. I find it so interesting to hear this set of songs shared between soprano and baritone. Catherine and Mark have chosen well songs that suit each of their personalities. A bit of Sondheim rounds out Program II.

Tomorrow's recital will feature more English art songs for baritone followed by several German Lieder sung by Catherine. She is performing music from two German composers: Clara Schumann and Franz Schubert. Exquisite and thrilling songs. In particular, I continue to be amazed at how Schubert creates a whole world in each of his songs. At the end of each one, I truly feel like I've been taken away somewhere. If there is time tomorrow, I may play a piano solo or two (TBA, I will likely choose something according to what the moment feels like). Then the program ends with some more Musical Theatre selections: this set's theme can be described as "tearjerkers". I plan to pass the Kleenex box around. This program which we call Program III will be repeated on Friday next week, July 17.

More info to come regarding the specifics of July 23, 24. We're really excited to be presenting a special guest artist/friend of "the Poet Sings", Rachel Mallon, soprano, who will be performing with me on our final concert on July 25. Again, more details on the program will come to this space soon.

Right now, some rest & focus before the next show...

So much fabulous music!


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