TCU Announces Jake Heggie Will Join For Fifth Annual Festival Of American Song

TCU Announces Jake Heggie Will Join For Fifth Annual Festival Of American Song

Texas Christian University's School of Music presents the fifth annual Festival of American Song Sept. 30 - Oct. 2, 2018 at The PepsiCo Recital Hall.

This year's acclaimed guest artist is Jake Heggie, who's works have been regarded worldwide and produced on five continents. Heggie's presence at the festival will act as a mini-residency, encompassing three days of events that spotlight his influence as an American composer and orchestral icon. The featured artists are chosen with the interest of the vocal music student community in mind, strategically curated with an emphasis on a contemporary approach to classical composition. The festival was made possible by TCU's Vision in Action: Lead On -- a initiative that invests in the future generation of artists.

The festival begins Sunday, Sept. 30 with a concert featuring one of Heggie's most highly-regarded works, Farewell, Auschwitz, performed by the TCU Artist Diploma's postgraduate students who are also members of the esteemed Fort Worth Opera Young Artists program. Day two will feature a Master Class with Jake Heggie and a performance from TCU students and faculty of Recital of Selected Songs with the composer himself as an honored audience member. The festival is capped off with a conversation-style Q&A Session with Heggie, who will answer students questions related to issues of career, process, collaboration, and inspiration. Audiences from around the world can tune-in to the Q&A session and submit questions via livestream broadcast on The School of Music's official website.

Best known for his prolific contributions to the American operatic repertoire, Heggie's work include operas Dead Man Walking, Moby Dick, It's a Wonderful Life, and the choral opera The Radio Hour, among others. Guest artists from past TCU Festivals include Grammy award winner John Corigliano and American composer Ricky Ian Gordon. Self-described as a theatre composer who is concerned with "serving the drama" and "exploring character," Heggie will undoubtedly create a relatable impact on the aspiring student musicians and performers.

The festival celebrating American song was based on the vision of founding director and associate professor Angela Turner Wilson, who spearheaded the launch of the festival in 2014. Wilson was able to produce the event with the support of TCU's Vision in Action: Lead On - a dedicated strategy and planning process that awards grants that brings visions like these to reality. The festival's leadership team and voice faculty determined that space needed to be created in the university setting for contemporary American repertoire from a composer who relates to the interest of the students -- someone whose work is relevant to the 21st century. The Festival Of American Song's programming was selected based on the School Of Music's vision for providing students an opportunity to gain exposure and work with a living, working American composer.

When asked about this year's programming, Wilson said, "The TCU Festival of American Song is honored to host composer Jake Heggie as the guest artist for 2018. Mr. Heggie's highly acclaimed compositions help to define American Music. With a catalogue of over 300 songs, Mr. Heggie's prolific work is accessible to all levels of vocal artists and all audience members. The TCU School of Music community looks forward to exploring the vocal repertoire of this important American composer."

The festival opens Sept. 30 at 7 p.m. with a performance of Farewell, Auschwitz from TCU Artist Diploma (Fort Worth Opera Young Artists) and commentary from the composer. Admission to that event and Monday evening's Recital of Selected Songs by Jake Heggie at 7 p.m. is $25 GA, free with a TCU student ID and $5 for students from all other schools. The Q&A session with Heggie is a free event beginning at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 2.

For more information on the festival or to purchase tickets, please visit the official event page.

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