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Brooklyn Art Song Society to Conclude Britannica Series with Benjamin Britten Program

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Brooklyn Art Song Society concludes its ambitious six-concert survey of British song with a program featuring the works of Benjamin Britten.

The first half features two of the composer's most profound masterpieces, The Holy Sonnets of John Donne, Op. 35 (composed for Peter Pears) and Songs and Proverbs of William Blake Op. 74 (composed for Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau).

The second half focuses on Britten's lighter style with On This Island Op. 11 and the slyly subversive Cabaret Songs on texts of William Auden.

Pianist Michael Brofman joins baritone Matthew Patrick Morris for the Blake songs and mezzo-soprano Samantha Malk for the Cabaret Songs while acclaimed pianist Spencer Myer joins tenor Joseph Gaines for The Holy Sonnets of John Donne and soprano Laura Strickling for On This Island.

This concert will be held on Thursday March, 17, 2016 7:00PM at the Brooklyn Historical Society in downtown Brooklyn (128 Pierrepont St, Brooklyn, NY 11201). Tickets: $25/$15.

PROGRAM:

Benjamin Britten: On This Island Op. 11, The Holy Sonnets of John Donne, Op. 35,

Songs and Proverbs of William Blake Op. 74, Cabaret Songs

Laura Strickling, soprano; Samantha Malk, mezzo-soprano; Joseph Gaines, tenor;

Matthew Patrick Morris, baritone; Michael Brofman, Spencer Myer, piano

Brooklyn Art Song Society embarks on an all-encompassing survey of British song: six concerts, 100+ songs, 17 composers, and works spanning over 400 years. Britannica captures the vast English cultural heritage, from Dowland to Birtwistle, Shakespeare to Auden.

The Brooklyn Art Song Society (BASS) will enter its sixth season of first-rate music making in the Fall of 2015, having earned a reputation as one of the preeminent organizations dedicated to the vast repertoire of poetry set to music. The New York Times called BASS "a company well worth watching" and Voce di Meche hailed, "as long as BASS is around we do not need to worry about the future of art song in the USA." BASS's innovative programming is epic in scope yet presented in intimate settings. Past highlights have included performances of the complete songs of Charles Ives and Henri Duparc, a festival of works from Franz Schubert's last year, a five-concert survey of the songs of Les Six, and an ongoing project to present the complete lieder of Hugo Wolf. Committed to keeping art song relevant in our time BASS has collaborated closely with important living composers such as Tom Cipullo, Herschel Garfein, Daron Hagen, Libby Larsen, Lowell Liebermann, James Matheson, Scott Wheeler and Yehudi Wyner, and has commissioned works from up-an-coming composers Michael Djupstrom, Marie Incontrera and Michael Rose. In May 2015 BASS released its first album, New Voices, on Roven Records, which debuted at number one for new releases in Opera and Vocal on Amazon.com and in the top 10 on the Billboard Traditional Classical chart. The 2015-16 season includes Britannica, a six-concert celebration of British song from Dowland to Birtwistle, the conclusion of The Hugo Wolf Project, and the world-premiere of Andrew Staniland's Canadian Songbook (BASS/Casement Fund Sonh Series co-commission). On top of monthly concerts in Brooklyn, BASS will travel to Kansas City, MO and Portland, ME. In the summer BASS is the Fonzaley Resident Ensemble at the Sembrich in Bolton Landing, New York and the ensemble in residence at the Lake George Music Festival. This season features over 30 of the finest young interpreters of art song. For more information visit www.brooklynartsongsociety.org.


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