College Tuesday: ‘Odysseys from Nicaragua to New Hampshire’


Up to date music cycles by Gabriela Lena Frank and Herschel Garfein can be carried out Dec. 7

By Izzy Fincher Dec. 3 at 1:55 p.m.

The style of music cycles, popularized by Schubert within the early nineteenth century, is historically related to tenor and piano. Nonetheless, there may be additionally a wealthy historical past of baritone music cycles by classical and up to date composers, together with Beethoven, Verdi, Ravel, Ralph Vaughn Williams and Benjamin Britten. 

Baritone Andrew Garland

At 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 7, baritone Andrew Garland will carry out two up to date music cycles for “Odysseys from Nicaragua to New Hampshire,” a live performance for CU’s “College Tuesdays” sequence. This system options Gabriela Lena Frank’s Cantos de Cifar y el Mar Dulce (Songs of Cifar and the candy sea) with pianist Jeremy Reger and the baritone premiere of Herschel Garfein’s Mortality Mansions with pianist David Korevaar. 

Frank, a Grammy Award-winning pianist and composer, is thought for her multicultural influences, combining Latin American musical kinds with Western classical music. This displays her various background, rising up in California with mother and father of combined Peruvian/Chinese language and Lithuanian/Jewish ancestry, as nicely her inventive travels all through Latin America. 

Her music cycle Cantos de Cifar y el Mar Dulce is an odyssey from Nicaragua, the most important nation in Central America. Set to poems by Nicaraguan poet Pablo Antonio Cuadra, it tells the story of the harp-playing sailor Cifar, who travels round Lake Nicaragua.

Gabriela Lena Frank

“The poetry could be very easy and direct, but deep and significant,” Garland says. “There’s positively magic realism in there.”

The eight-song cycle lasting half-hour is a piece in progress, which Frank plans to develop to 70 minutes with soprano after which orchestrate with guitars and marimbas. In 2007, Garland premiered the final two songs within the cycle, “Eufemia” and “En la Vela del Angelito”(Within the little angel’s candle). Fourteen years later for his College Tuesday efficiency, he needed to carry out the remainder of the cycle, which he describes as cohesive and compelling even in its incomplete kind.

“Inside the arc of those eight songs, you get an awesome number of magic, solemnity, comedy, thriller, depth and darkness,” Garland says. “They’re very highly effective and memorable.” 

This can be adopted by the baritone premiere of Mortality Mansions by Garfein, a Grammy-Award profitable composer, librettist and stage director. Mortality Mansions, initially written for tenor, is about to chose poems that span former U.S. poet laureate Donald Corridor’s 60-year profession. Drawing from his private experiences with the dying of his spouse, the poet Jane Kenyon, Corridor depicts a shifting portrait of affection, sexuality and loss in later life.

Herschel Garfein

“Once I first learn Corridor’s poetry, I used to be amazed,” Garfein remembers. “I used to be instantly attracted to those very vivid poems about life and particularly about sexuality over the age of 60, which is one thing nobody talks about. He’s each very frank and really shifting about it.”

“These poems are so insightful and illuminating, however he doesn’t exhibit or lecture the reader,” Garfein continues. “That’s extraordinarily essential in nice artwork.”

To enrich Corridor’s writing fashion, Garfein selected to maintain the vocal strains melodic and principally tonal. That is accompanied by dissonant harmonies and virtuosity of the piano half, a distinction impressed by Schubert’s lieder fashion. 

Garfein chosen the title, Mortality Mansions, from the second poem, “Once I Was Younger,” a contemplation of how youthful lust has advanced with growing old. The poem ends with the road, “Allow us to pull again the blanket, slide off our bluejeans,// assume acquainted positions,// and rejoice lust in mortality mansions.” 

Given the very long time span of the gathering, every poem seems like a vignette of affection and life, cohesive but impartial. The work opens with “When the Younger Husband,” depicting an ill-fated affair between the younger husband and his spouse’s good friend, accompanied by an brisk motif. 

“Within the first music, what wants to come back throughout is the recklessness and brazen disregard or the will for chaos and downfall, that Don Giovanni-esque, bring-it-on angle,” Garland says. 

Then the main target shifts to bittersweet recollections from Corridor’s relationship with Kenyon, starting with “Once I Was Younger.” This circulate is briefly interrupted by “Woolworth’s,” an ode to the enduring American five-and-dime enterprise that closed in 1997, and “The Inexperienced Shelf,” by which a neighbor is killed in a lawnmower accident, a disturbing scene accompanied by an agitated piano half in an ominously low register. 

Over the following six poems, Corridor shares completely satisfied reminiscences of creating love and cooking along with Kenyon, earlier than shifting to painful reflections on endings and dying. The cycle ends with “In any other case” by Kenyon, a poem about having fun with the great thing about small moments in every day life, whereas acknowledging the ephemeral nature of existence.  

Mortality Mansions evokes each the grandeur and the fatality (of human existence),” Garfein says. “It’s a name to take pleasure in life whilst you can as a result of it’s not going to final eternally. Love and sexuality are a hedge in opposition to mortality, in opposition to dying.”

“Odysseys from Nicaragua to New Hampshire”
Andrew Garland, tenor

  • Gabriela Lena Frank: Cantos de Cifar y el Mar Dulce
    with Jeremy Reger, piano
  • Herschel Garfein: Mortality Mansions
    with David Korevaar, piano

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 7
Grusin Recital Corridor, CU Imig Music Constructing
Admission free 
Livestream accessible from CU Presents

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