Church of the Transfiguration Presents MUSIC BY WOMEN TODAY Tonight, 11/13
The Church of the Transfiguration ("The Little Church Around the Corner") presents "Music by Women Today" tonight, November 13, 2012 at 7:30pm. The program consists of classical and jazz compositions written and performed by women.
The program features Martha Sullivan's O Antiphons and Julie Dolphin's Stone Soup, both performed by the Transfiguration Vocal Ensemble, Claudia Dumschat, director; Of Shadows Numberless by Miriam Gideon, performed by Margaret Mills; Soundscape for Organ and Electronics by Melissa Grey; NOW by Michele Goritz; Fedora by Jessica Rudman, with Brandon Tesh, saxophone; and compositions by Joyce DiCamillo: Song Cycle for Voice and Piano, featuring soprano Lesley Zlabinger accompanied by the composer, and Freelancin', performed by the Joyce DiCamillo Trio.
This is an Arnold Schwartz Memorial Concert. For a full schedule, visit: www.littlechurch.org/ - /music.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012 7:30pm
The Church of the Transfiguration "The Little Church Around the Corner"
One East 29th Street (between Fifth and Madison Avenues) New York, NY
Tickets: $25; $15 for students
Reservations & info: (212) 684-4174
Subways: 1, N, R or 6 to 28th Street; B, D, F or M to 34th Street Herald Square
By bus: M1, M2, M3, M5, M6 or M7
Claudia Dumschat (Conductor) is the Organist and Choirmaster at Church of the Transfiguration. She received her Doctor of Musical Arts from the Manhattan School of Music and studied conducting with Dennis Keene and Giampolo Bracali. Her repertoire includes orchestral and choral music, chamber music, oratorios, and operas by major composers in the Western tradition up to the present day. Theatre/dance collaborations with neXus Arts and/or the Church of the Transfiguration include Britten's Curlew River, Noye's Fludde, Company of Heaven; Menotti's The Unicorn, the Gorgon, and the Manticore; Händel's Saul and Athalia. World premiere performances include Victor Kioulaphides' The Gilded Cage and The Vision of Perpetua, Brian Schober's Dance of the Stones, and the NY premiere of Stephen Hartke's Tituli. Dr. Dumschat was Music Director of The Play of Daniel last December and The Prodigal Son in March here at Transfiguration.
Composer Martha Sullivan's music has been praised as "vibrant" and "a singer's favorite". She has earned commissions from such leading voices in American choral music as the Dale Warland Singers and the Gregg Smith Singers (with whom she was a resident composer, 2002–2008), as well as the Esoterics (Seattle, WA), Bella Voce (Reno, NV), Chicago A Cappella, the New York Treble Singers, the Manhattan Choral Ensemble, and Vocativ (Zürich, Switzerland). Numerous ensembles have performed her work, including such New York fixtures as Voices of Ascension, Cerddorion, and Equal Voices, as well as ensembles countrywide, such as San Francisco's Volti, Minneapolis' The Singers, and the Southern Oregon Repertory Singers. Her work has been championed by Stephen Tharp, the international organ recitalist, and recorded by The Esoterics, Chicago A Cappella, and mezzo-soprano Virginia Dupuy. Her work appears in the book Singing for Dummies. She has received several Meet the Composer grants for her work with Gregg Smith, as well as recognition from the National Endowment for the Arts for her work with the Esoterics; she was the 2009 Bronze Medalist in the Sorel Medallion competition for women composers, and she won the Dale Warland Singers' Choral Ventures competition in its final year (2003).
Composer Julie Dolphin holds an advanced degree in Ethnomusicology from Columbia University, and her unique style makes use of her knowledge of classical Western forms and world musics, drawing on the rhythms of both jazz and Bartok. Her choral commissions have been premiered at Carnegie Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, The Cathedral of Saint Patrick, and other venues in the tristate area. She has provided music for private weddings and for the Westchester County Department of Parks in its Year 2000 celebration. Her three-part piece, "One Life," featured Jon Humphrey as the tenor soloist in an evening of music commemorating the events of September 11. As a soprano, Ms. Dolphin has toured nationally and internationally with the Waverly Consort, Voices of Ascension, Musica Viva and the Collegiate Chorale. "Stone Soup" has long been a favorite childhood tale, and a serendipitous encounter with the beloved book for sale in a local Brooklyn branch library was the impetus for a commission by Kristina Boerger and Cerddorion Vocal Ensemble, funded by the Argosy Foundation. "Stone Soup: a Mini-Oratorio Containing a Denial, and a Seduction in the Form of a Tango" endeavors to live up to its title. It was premiered in 2009 at the Church of Saint Ignatius of Antioch in New York City.
Composer Miriam Gideon (1906–1996) was born in Greeley, Colorado, where her father was a Reform rabbi. Her interest in composition -begun in childhood as an ancillary, experimental, and almost private activity-soon became the primary focus of her creative energies. At Boston University, where she earned her bachelor's degree with a major in French literature and a minor in mathematics, Gideon continued to study music, and she returned to New York after graduation with a view toward a career in public school teaching. But the urge to compose absorbed her more and more.
One of the most important imprints on Gideon's future was her private study, for several years during her late twenties, with the now fabled émigré Jewish composer from Russia, Lazare Saminsky. Saminsky was then the music director and organist at New York's Temple Emanu-El. After a few years of private lessons, he suggested that Gideon study with the esteemed American composer and composition teacher Roger Sessions, who had been a pupil of Ernest Bloch's. Gideon worked with Sessions for eight years, gradually developing her distinctive and deeply expressive combination of extratonal and pantonal idioms that would define her music thereafter.
In 1946 she earned her master's degree in musicology from Columbia University, but even before matriculation she began teaching at Brooklyn College. The eminent composer and intellect Hugo Weisgall, the chairman of the faculty at the Jewish Theological Seminary's Cantors Institute and Seminary College of Jewish Music (now the H. L. Miller Cantorial School), invited her to teach there, and thus began a fruitful, rewarding, and mutually beneficial affiliation for some forty years. Weisgall became a fervent champion of her music, and in 1970 she earned her doctorate (Doctor of Sacred Music) from the Seminary under his guidance. Like Weisgall, Gideon had a particular affinity for literature and its expression as vocal music, saying that she was "moved by great poetry and great prose almost as much as by music." She was especially prone to set literature in the context of vocal chamber music-voice with small instrumental ensembles-in which the vocal line often functions as one of the instruments. Even more remarkable was her fondness for dual-language and even multilingual settings.
Her first Jewish work was her English setting of Psalm 84-known liturgically in its original Hebrew as Ma tovu but composed and published by her as How Goodly Are Thy Tents. Written for women's voices, it won the Ernest Bloch Choral Award in 1947. Then came her first Hebrew setting -Adon olam-in 1954, commissioned and premiered by Hugo Weisgall at the Chizuk Amuno Congregation in Baltimore. Three Masques for organ followed in 1958, commissioned by composer and virtuoso organist Herman Berlinski. Gideon based that work on cantillation motifs for the annual Purim rendition of the Book of Esther. Gideon's two Jewish magna opera, however, are unquestionably her two artistically sophisticated Sabbath services. The first, for Sabbath morning, Sacred Service (for the Sabbath), was commissioned in 1971 by The Temple in suburban Cleveland. This work was scored for baritone and tenor soloists, with mixed chorus and an ensemble of six wind and string instruments together with organ. Her second service, comprising principal elements of the liturgies for kabbalat shabbat and Sabbath eve (ma'ariv), is titled Shirat Miriam L'shabbat. Commissioned and premiered by Cantor David Putterman for the annual Friday evening service of new music at New York's Park Avenue Synagogue in 1974, it is scored more conventionally for tenor cantor, mixed choir, and organ. In fashioning this service, Gideon accepted some of Cantor Putterman's well-meant advice to consider tradition a bit more than she had done in her first service so that the work would stand a better chance of a life afterward. Taken together, these two services demonstrate her refined craft, her ability to express emotional depth and strength with subtlety, and the power of her exquisite economy.
Gideon was fond of relating how, upon hearing her Seasons of Time, a critic once remarked to her that he had "never heard so many right notes." Gideon felt that defined considerations of sonorities and technical devices wrongly mask the more important matters of emotional impulses-with which she believed there was insufficient concern in postwar 20th-century music. She cautioned that many composers were so eager to demonstrate facility that they didn't allow themselves to become personally involved in their own music.
"As far as I am concerned," she said, "I must see whether what I am writing comes from a musical impulse, and whether I am responding to it. What I write has to mean something to me.... It has to seem new. I have to be surprised by it, and it must register as feeling." "I didn't know I was a woman composer until 'the movement' in the 1960s," she reminisced in the mid-1980s. "I knew I was a young composer, and then, suddenly, an older composer. But never a woman composer."
Pianist Margaret Mills has performed throughout the United States, Europe and China. She has degrees from Vassar College, and the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. Ms. Mills has given solo recitals in Alice Tully Hall and Merkin Concert Hall in New York City and at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. She made her London debut in Wigmore Hall in 1981, the first of several European performances in the following decades. Ms. Mills has appeared as soloist with the Boston Pops, Fort Myers Symphony, Schenectady (NY) Symphony and the Fairfield Orchestra. She has been a featured pianist with the Fine Arts, Manhattan, Cassatt and Laurentian String Quartets. Her recordings include the Newport Classic, Cambria Master Recordings and Capstone labels.
Composer and interdisciplinary artist Melissa Grey. Works premiered and exhibited at Judson Memorial Church, 14th Bi-Annual International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival (CUNY); Streaming Festival 3rd ed., Pantheon International Xperimental Film & Animation Festival 7.0, Chicago City Arts Gallery, Artradio at Cornerhouse, Studio 27, Macon Georgia Film and Video Festival, Reno Interdisciplinary Festival of New Media, Tilt Gallery Project Space, among others. Grants/Awards: American Music Center, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and two ASCAPlus Special Awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for Concert Music.
Composer Michele Goritz, multifaceted musician. As a composer, pianist, flautist and educator, Michele creates in a variety of styles and genres, offering an unique experience in music today. Graduate of the Manhattan School of Music with a degree in Piano Performance. Founder of the ETUDES MUSIC STUDIO: Teacher of piano, flute, theory, and performance techniques from 1993 to present. Even before completing her studies in Classical Music at the Manhattan School of Music, Michele Goritz was performing both piano and flute, as a soloist and in ensembles. She has since pursued studies in New Music (both as a composer and a pianist). Michele sought out and was selected by jazz legend Kenny Werner to be one of the privileged students he teaches, while he continues his own performing, composing, touring and recording career. Michele's ability to accompany dancers in a variety of musical genres is highly regarded and has brought her work from members and directors of American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, Classics Dance Theatre of Stamford and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Her riveting performance of the European premiere of electro-acoustical "Tracer" by composer David Taddie in July 2005 was performed with dance accompaniment, and was the only piece selected by the concert's promoter for publicity on Italian television.
Composer Jessica Rudman's music has been presented across the USA and abroad. She has participated in festivals including the Seasons Festival, the Cortona Sessions, EAMA, Music07, and NEON. Honors include winning the 2012 NewMusic@ECU Orchestra Composition Competition, IAWM's Libby Larsen Prize (2011), Honorable Mention for the Brian M. Israel Award (2011), and first prize in the Con/un/drum Percussion Competition (2009). Ms. Rudman has taught at Central Connecticut State University, The Hartt School, and Baruch College. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at the City University of New York as a student of Tania León. For more information, please visit: http://www.jessicarudman.com.
Composer Joyce DiCamillo, a Syracuse University School of Music graduate, has led her own jazz trio for over thirty years, recording 5 trio CDs - A Touch of Jazz, Freelancin' featuring tenor saxophonist Houston Person, Moment to Moment, Love Letters, and Sunrise Lady. Included on the prestigious International Roster of Steinway Artists, she has performed at the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival at the Kennedy Center as well as the Kennedy Center Jazz Club, Southport (UK) Jazz Festival, Guinness Jazz Festival (Cork, Ireland), Andria (Italy) Jazz Festival, Syracuse Jazzfest, The Jazz Cruise, and Litchfield Jazz Festival, to name but a few. She was featured on NPR's Piano Jazz hosted by Marian McPartland, and has also toured as pianist for internationally known pop vocalist Donna Summer. A consultant in music education, Joyce has appeared as a clinician or artist in residence at over 100 high schools and colleges around the country, has a full teaching practice and is Executive Director of the Stamford Young Artists Philharmonic as well as founder of SoNYC Media, a Tribeca-based digital music business.
Soprano Lesley Zlabinger is quickly becoming known as a Baroque specialist. She has performed as a soloist in several Bach cantatas at the Church of the Transfiguration in Manhattan and at Queens College. She has also performed the soprano roles in Handel's Messiah with orchestra at Queens College and York College, Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri at the Church of the Transfiguration, and Vivaldi's Gloria in Mineola.
Equally at home in opera, Ms. Zlabinger has performed roles from the Baroque era through the 21st century. Highlights include Virtù in Monteverdi's L'Incoronazione di Poppea, Belinda in Purcell's Dido & Aeneas, the Countess in Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro, Sophie in Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier and Blanche in Poulenc's Dialogues of the Carmelites. Ms. Zlabinger has also originated roles in three new operas: Cupid in Cupid & Psyche and Parisatis in Alexander the Great, or the Rival Queens, both by Matthew Pittsinger; and Soprano Soloist in Brian Schober's Dance of the Stones, produced by neXus Arts.
A seasoned chorister, Ms. Zlabinger has sung with a variety of touring, recording, and professional choirs. She is a member of the professional choir at Corpus Christi Church in Manhattan, the choir-in-residence of the Music Before 1800 concert series. She also sang with the Queens College Vocal Ensemble on its recording Selected Partsongs of Hamish MacCunn (2010), some of which had never previously been recorded. Additional choral credits include the Bel Canto Voices, Minneapolis, MN; Grinnell Singers, Grinnell, IA; and the Studentenkantorei, Freiburg, Germany.
Ms. Zlabinger is also an accomplished recitalist. Past recital repertoire includes Debussy's Quatre chansons du jeunesse, Argento's Six Elizabethan Songs, selections from Wolf's Italienisches Liederbuch, and Schubert's Der Hirt auf dem Felsen. She also presented a variety of sacred and secular Baroque duets at the Church of the Transfiguration in New York City on its mid-day concert series.
Ms. Zlabinger holds an M.A. in Vocal Performance from Queens College / CUNY and a B.A. in German from Grinnell College. She teaches voice privately and through the Great Neck Arts Center. Please visit www.LesleyZlabinger.com for performance listings, audio clips, and more.
Pictured: Claudia Dumschat