Stearns Matthews Releases First Male Recording of Maury Yeston's DECEMBER SONGS
MAC and Bistro Award-winning vocalist Stearns Matthews performs the newest recording of Tony Award-winning composer-lyricist Maury Yeston's (Nine, Grand Hotel, Titanic) song cycle, December Songs. This marks the first time the song cycle has been recorded by a man.
December Songs was commissioned by Carnegie Hall for its centenary season in 1991 for celebrated cabaret singer Andrea Marcovicci. Yeston set out to create a "modern equivalent" to the quintessential nineteenth-century song cycle Die Winterreise by Franz Schubert, which chronicles a young man wandering the Austrian forest, lamenting the end of a love affair. In December Songs, it was a young woman walking through present-day Central Park.
Since its premiere in 1991, December Songs has seen many recordings, in several different languages, all with female singers. On being the first man to record the cycle, Matthews said, "The emotions the singer goes through over the course of these ten songs are universal. A man experiences loss, emptiness, yearning, and the struggle to move on in the same way a woman does. These feelings are as genderless as they are timeless."
The album was produced by Randy Crafton and features Markus Grae-Hauck on piano, Amy Crafton on woodwinds, and Dave Richards on contrabass. The new woodwind orchestration was written by Matthews himself. The CD also features liner notes written by NYC playwright- songwriter-director Barry Kleinbort.
Matthews will celebrate the release of December Songs with two performances in December: one on Saturday, December 2 at 7pm in Montclair, New Jersey, and another on Wednesday, December 20 at 9pm at Urban Stages (259 West 30th Street, NYC) as part of their Winter Rhythms series. For more information on both performances, visit www.stearnsmatthews.com.
Stearns Matthews is a New York City-based vocalist whose recent appearances include The Town Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Feinstein's/54 Below, and The Metropolitan Room. His critically acclaimed debut album Spark won the 2015 Bistro Award for Outstanding Recording as well as the LaMott/Friedman Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs Award for Outstanding Recording. He also won the 2015 MAC Award for Best Male Vocalist. Stearns is an alumnus of Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey.
For more information on Tony Award-winning composer and lyricist Maury Yeston, visit www.mauryyeston.com. And be sure to follow Stearns Matthews on Facebook: www.facebook.com/StearnsMatthews, Twitter: twitter.com/stearnsmatthews, and iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/artist/stearns-matthews/id937093515.