The Beggar’s Opera

Beyond the Notes : Temple Library’s Noontime Concert Series

Wednesday, March 8th


12:00pm


Paley Library Lecture Hall

Boyer recital credit given. Light refreshments served.

On Wednesday, March 15, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes concert series will present a preview of The Beggar’s Opera. This work (1728) is the comic masterpiece of John Gay (1685-1732), an English poet and playwright with a flair for the farcical, and Johann Christoph Pepusch (1667-1752), a German-born composer who arranged familiar tunes of the day for the songs.

Hogarth painting

Painting by William Hogarth. Photo by Jean Louis Mazleres

The Beggar’s Opera functions as a satire on multiple levels. Musically and dramatically speaking, it pokes fun at the stilted conventions of Italian opera seria. This genre, which was in vogue in English theaters of the time, had in George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) a great exponent and a dominating musical influence. Despite England’s own native musical traditions, the German-born Handel’s continental style almost overwhelmed his adopted country. Opera seria, as a rule, was based on classical mythology or grand historical subjects. For this work, Gay created a tale set in his own time, populated by figures such as the womanizing highwayman Macheath and other social outcasts. As a ballad opera, a theatrical style based on brief songs interspersed with spoken dialogue, this work sidesteps both conventional recitative – speech-like singing accompanied only by harpsichord, meant to move dramatic action forward – and the virtuosic arias designed around creating opportunities for singers to display their technical skill that comprise so much of opera seria. In its place were tunes known to the public – hymns, street ballads, even tunes by famous composers.

Politically, the work takes aim at the career of Robert Walpole (1676-1745), considered the first Prime Minister of Great Britain. More than a little personal envy may be at play here. At the time, the South Sea Company had a reputation as a smart investment.  But the bubble burst and Gay lost everything, whereas Walpole made a massive profit by selling shares he owned.  An ensuing investigation into the company lead to his becoming First Lord of the Treasury in 1721, beginning his rise to power. In any case, the work made a notable impression on the public and the literati, with none missing the fact that it makes people in financial trades the target of its invective.

The Beggar’s Opera made its mark, and in the twentieth century numerous musicians and people of the theater tried their hands at reworking it. The most famous of these is surely The Threepenny Opera (1928) by playwright Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956) and composer Kurt Weill (1900-1950), featuring the famous song “Mack the Knife.” Others who have made their own adaptations include composer Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) in 1948, conductor Richard Bonynge (b. 1930) and composer Douglas Gamley (1924-1998) in 1981, and playwright Stephen Jeffreys (b. 1950) as recently as 2008. There is surely something in the work that speaks to so many people across time and throughout the world that is still fascinates after hundreds of years. We at the library hope you will enjoy this performance with us!

Beyond the Notes is supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Humanities and Arts Research fund.

 

Read more!

The Beggar’s Opera available online through the Library!

The beggar’s opera to which is prefixed the musick to each song / John Gay. [Hamburg, Germany] : Tredition, [2012?]  Paley Stacks ML50.7 .B43 2012

Works of John Gay at Project Gutenberg

Poems of John Gay, edited by John Underhill. London, New York, George Routledge & Sons, E.P. Dutton & Co., [n.d.]  Paley Stacks PR3473.A1 U5

Bevis, Richard W. English drama : restoration and the eighteenth century, 1660-1789. London ; New York : Longman, 1988.  Paley Stacks PR691.B48 1988

Ed. Catie Gill: Theatre and culture in early modern England, 1650-1737 : from Leviathan to Licensing Act. Farnham, England ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2010.  Paley Stacks  PR698.S46 T47 2010

Gollapudi, Aparna. Moral reform in comedy and culture, 1696-1747 [electronic resource]. Farnham, Surrey ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2011.  Web Access  PR708.C6 G65 2011eb

 

Robert Pegg is a PhD candidate in Music Composition. He is a student of Dr. Maurice Wright.

Posted in Uncategorized

The Beggar’s Opera

Beyond the Notes : Temple Library’s Noontime Concert Series

Wednesday, March 8th


12:00pm


Paley Library Lecture Hall

Boyer recital credit given. Light refreshments served.

On Wednesday, March 15, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes concert series will present a preview of The Beggar’s Opera. This work (1728) is the comic masterpiece of John Gay (1685-1732), an English poet and playwright with a flair for the farcical, and Johann Christoph Pepusch (1667-1752), a German-born composer who arranged familiar tunes of the day for the songs.

Hogarth painting

Painting by William Hogarth. Photo by Jean Louis Mazleres

The Beggar’s Opera functions as a satire on multiple levels. Musically and dramatically speaking, it pokes fun at the stilted conventions of Italian opera seria. This genre, which was in vogue in English theaters of the time, had in George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) a great exponent and a dominating musical influence. Despite England’s own native musical traditions, the German-born Handel’s continental style almost overwhelmed his adopted country. Opera seria, as a rule, was based on classical mythology or grand historical subjects. For this work, Gay created a tale set in his own time, populated by figures such as the womanizing highwayman Macheath and other social outcasts. As a ballad opera, a theatrical style based on brief songs interspersed with spoken dialogue, this work sidesteps both conventional recitative – speech-like singing accompanied only by harpsichord, meant to move dramatic action forward – and the virtuosic arias designed around creating opportunities for singers to display their technical skill that comprise so much of opera seria. In its place were tunes known to the public – hymns, street ballads, even tunes by famous composers.

Politically, the work takes aim at the career of Robert Walpole (1676-1745), considered the first Prime Minister of Great Britain. More than a little personal envy may be at play here. At the time, the South Sea Company had a reputation as a smart investment.  But the bubble burst and Gay lost everything, whereas Walpole made a massive profit by selling shares he owned.  An ensuing investigation into the company lead to his becoming First Lord of the Treasury in 1721, beginning his rise to power. In any case, the work made a notable impression on the public and the literati, with none missing the fact that it makes people in financial trades the target of its invective.

The Beggar’s Opera made its mark, and in the twentieth century numerous musicians and people of the theater tried their hands at reworking it. The most famous of these is surely The Threepenny Opera (1928) by playwright Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956) and composer Kurt Weill (1900-1950), featuring the famous song “Mack the Knife.” Others who have made their own adaptations include composer Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) in 1948, conductor Richard Bonynge (b. 1930) and composer Douglas Gamley (1924-1998) in 1981, and playwright Stephen Jeffreys (b. 1950) as recently as 2008. There is surely something in the work that speaks to so many people across time and throughout the world that is still fascinates after hundreds of years. We at the library hope you will enjoy this performance with us!

Beyond the Notes is supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Humanities and Arts Research fund.

 

Read more!

The Beggar’s Opera available online through the Library!

The beggar’s opera to which is prefixed the musick to each song / John Gay. [Hamburg, Germany] : Tredition, [2012?]  Paley Stacks ML50.7 .B43 2012

Works of John Gay at Project Gutenberg

Poems of John Gay, edited by John Underhill. London, New York, George Routledge & Sons, E.P. Dutton & Co., [n.d.]  Paley Stacks PR3473.A1 U5

Bevis, Richard W. English drama : restoration and the eighteenth century, 1660-1789. London ; New York : Longman, 1988.  Paley Stacks PR691.B48 1988

Ed. Catie Gill: Theatre and culture in early modern England, 1650-1737 : from Leviathan to Licensing Act. Farnham, England ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2010.  Paley Stacks  PR698.S46 T47 2010

Gollapudi, Aparna. Moral reform in comedy and culture, 1696-1747 [electronic resource]. Farnham, Surrey ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2011.  Web Access  PR708.C6 G65 2011eb

 

Robert Pegg is a PhD candidate in Music Composition. He is a student of Dr. Maurice Wright.

Posted in Uncategorized

Ring in the New Year!

handbells

photo Scott Adams

Ring in the New Year!

Wednesday, January 25th
12:00pm – 12:45pm
Paley Library Lecture Hall

Begin the New Year with a festive musical celebration!
On Wednesday, January 25, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes concert series will be proud to present professors of piano Clipper Erickson, Charles Abramovic and Joyce Lindorff, joined by Risë Kagan-Erickson on bells, and flutist Martha Alford in performance of music for bells and piano music inspired by the sounds of bells. This concert features music by composers whose names may be unfamiliar, even among those who are otherwise familiar with classical music, including some contemporary composers; accordingly, introductions to a series of multi-talented individuals are in order.

Featured Composers

Nathaniel Dett (1882-1943), or Robert Nathaniel Dett, was born in Ontario but by activity can rightly be called an African American composer. He was the first graduate of African heritage to receive a degree from Oberlin College, where he studied both piano and composition; he continued his studies at the Eastman School of Music. Possessing a literary side in addition to a musical one, he wrote in favor of the use of African American folk music as a basis for serious artistic composition. His legacy primarily rests in his music for the piano and in the field of choral music.

Cyril Scott (1879-1970) was born in England but first studied in Frankfurt, Germany. It was here he not only honed his musical skills but also absorbed the whole artistic culture of the time; he met the poet Stefan George (1868-1933), whose writings stirred in him a poetic impulse of his own. In addition to music and poetry, Scott also left behind paintings. The work we will hear, Carillon, is an evocation on the piano of that instrument. The carillon is a large collection of bells, typically in a church or specifically made for independent use, connected to a keyboard-like mechanism to be played by the closed fists.

Organist and composer Michael Helman currently serves as Director of Music at Faith Presbyterian Church in Cape Coral, FL. In addition to his performances on his instrument, he is a composer for organ choir, and handbells. He is a graduate of Lebanon Valley College and West Chester University.

Kevin McChesney is a graduate of University of Colorado at Boulder. He has significant experience as a church music director and in the world of handbells, as editor for the Jeffers Handbell Supply and RingingWord catalog and directing handbell ensembles.

Arnold Sherman is a resident of Tyler, TX. He founded and directs the East Texas Handbell Ensemble and has led workshops and festivals in both the handbell and choral fields. He has numerous works for handbells, choir, piano, and instrumental ensembles.

Rounding off the concert is a series of more familiar names. Franz Liszt (1811-1886), perhaps the most celebrated pianist of the nineteenth century, composed Les cloches de Genève (The Bells of Geneva) as part of the first, “Swiss” year of his Years of Pilgrimage, explicitly designating it a nocturne, a piece meant to evoke the night. Maurice Ravel (1875 – 1937) composed the suite Miroirs in honor of some of the members of a group of musicians and artists known as Les Apaches, each individual piece dedicated to one member. The final piece, “La Vallée des Cloches,” (“The Valley of the Bells”) uses the entire range of the piano to imitate the effect of countless bells sounding. “The Great Gate of Kiev,” the final piece from Modest Mussorgsky’s (1839 – 1881) Pictures at an Exhibition, depicts a design for a gate modeled after old Slavic helmets (Ravel’s celebrated orchestration of the whole set of pieces calls for bells in its conclusion).

Our Performers!

Charles AbramowicCharles Abramovic has won acclaim for his international performances as a soloist, chamber musician and collaborator with leading instrumentalists and singers, including Sarah Chang, Robert McDuffie, Viktoria Mullova, Kim Kashkashian, Mimi Stillman and Jeffrey Khaner. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Pittsburgh Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Colorado Philharmonic, Florida Philharmonic and Nebraska Chamber Orchestra, and at major festivals in Berlin, Salzburg, Bermuda, Dubrovnik, Aspen and Vancouver. His recordings include piano music of Delius for DTR, chamber music on EMI and Avie, and contemporary works on Albany, CRI, Bridge and Naxos. Dr. Abramovic is a member of the Dolce Suono Ensemble and performs often with Network for New Music and Orchestra 2001. Since 1988 he has taught at the Boyer College, where he is now Professor of Keyboard Studies. Dr. Abramovic is a graduate of Curtis and Peabody, and received his doctorate from Temple. His teachers included Natalie Phillips, Eleanor Sokoloff, Leon Fleisher and Harvey Wedeen.

Martha AlfordMartha Alford holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Houghton College and a Master of Flute Performance from the U. of Idaho. An adjunct faculty member at Eastern U., Martha taught music history, Basic Experiences in Music and flute at Lancaster Bible College, directed the concert bands at Delaware County Christian School, and the orchestra at The Baldwin School. She taught general and instrumental music at Westminster Academy of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church (Fort Lauderdale). and in the South Colonie School District  (Albany). Martha played principal flute with the Washington Idaho Symphony, the Gold Coast Opera,  Florida Symphonic Pops, Florida Wind Symphony and the New York State Band Director’s Association Intercollegiate Band. After winning a collegiate orchestral competition, she soloed with the Spokane Symphony. She studied with Gary Schocker, David Cramer, Kimberly Reighley, Christine Nield, John Oberbrunner, Richard Hahn and Joanna Bassett, and has performed in masterclass with Bonita Boyd and James Galway. Ms. Alford is the founder and conductor of Philadelphia Bronze, an advanced auditioned community handbell ensemble. She travels the country as handbell clinician and especially enjoys mentoring new directors.

Clipper Erickson

Clipper Erickson made his debut as a soloist with the Young Musicians Foundation Orchestra at age nineteen in Los Angeles. After studies at Juilliard, Yale and Indiana University with the renowned British pianist John Ogdon, his interpretations began earning prizes at international competitions including the Busoni, William Kapell, and the American Pianists Association. He has performed as a soloist with orchestra and as a recitalist in venues such as the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.  His powerful performances of the great classical repertoire have been described as “colorful,” “powerful” and “exciting.” In January 2016, Gramophone UK honored Clipper’s disc of the complete piano music of African descent composer Nathaniel Dett, as an editor’s choice, writing: “this historically and musically important release not only fills a crucial catalogue gap but sets reference standards.”  American Record Guide agreed: “Erickson is simply a fabulous pianist, the perfect guide to Dett.” He teaches at Westminster Conservatory in Princeton and Temple University.

rise-clipper-bell-photoRisë Kagan-Erickson first learned of bell-ringing from her mother, a member of the Cornell University Chimes. She received a BA in Music Therapy from Montclair State University in New Jersey and first rang handbells at the church at which she sang in the late ’70’s. In the mid ’90’s she was a singer, handbell soloist and handbell choir director in Germany. In 2006 she settled in Bucks County, PA and is involved various church ministries and is a founding member of Philadelphia’s Main Line Ringers.  Several sets of bells will be used in this concert. Primarily these will be a ten-year-old set of Schulmerich Bells, manufactured since 1935 in Bucks County. A set by Dutch manufacturer Pettit & Fritsen operating only from 1950-1990 will briefly appear. Finally, we will also hear Belleplates from the UK.

Joyce LindorffJoyce Lindorff is Professor of Keyboard Studies at the Boyer College, where she has taught for 19 years. She has concertized in the US, Europe, Russia, Japan and China, receiving solo recitalist awards from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Pro Musicis Foundation.  The NY Times wrote of a solo recital, “brilliant music, brilliantly played.” Ensemble performances include Hesperus, Tempesta di Mare, Newberry Consort and Waverly Consort.  In New York she performed as keyboardist with  the NY Philharmonic and Orchestra of St. Luke’s. Dr. Lindorff earned degrees at Sarah Lawrence (BA), U. of Southern California (MM), and Juilliard (DMA). She began her teaching career at Cornell, later holding Fulbright Professorships in Taiwan and China, where she is honorary professor at the Shanghai and China Conservatories. She has recorded for Titanic, Centaur, CRI, Serenus, Digitech, BCM&D, and Paladino. Her teachers included Albert Fuller and Igor Kipnis (harpsichord); and Brooks Smith, Edith Oppens, Aube Tzerko and Johana Harris (piano).

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Special thank you to Joyce Lindorff for arranging this concert!

Beyond the Notes is supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Humanities and Arts Research fund.

Robert Pegg is a doctoral candidate in the music composition program at the Boyer College. His advisor is Dr. Maurice Wright.

Anne Harlow is research librarian for music, dance and theater at Temple University, and curator of the Beyond the Notes concert series.

Posted in Uncategorized

Johann Sebastian Bach’s Coffee Cantata

Johann Sebastian Bach’s  Coffee Cantata

Anais Naharro-Murphy, soprano
Matthew Lulofs, baritone
Brandon McShaffrey, director

Wednesday, December 14th
12:00pm – 12:45pm
Paley Library Lecture Hall

Come for the fun! Come for the coffee!  (…and pastries!)

Boyer recital credit given.

1

On Wednesday, December 14, 2016, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes concert series is happy to present Johann Sebastian Bach’s (1685-1750) Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht, BWV 211, better known as the Coffee Cantata, in a performance featuring Anais Naharro-Murphy and faculty and graduate students of the Boyer College of Music and Dance.

The term “cantata” came about to describe a “sung” piece of music, in contrast to a “played” (instrumental) piece which came to be called a sonata. It is most associated with multi-movement works for vocal and instrumental ensembles and soloists used for church services, and no more famous examples of the genre exist than those of Bach. Throughout his career, Bach composed over two hundred cantatas, overwhelmingly for church use but also numerous secular cantatas. Many of these were in honor of particular members of the nobility; the Coffee Cantata has somewhat humbler origins. The Leipzig coffeehouse of Gottfried Zimmermann frequently hosted one of many amateur, middle-class musical associations in German-speaking Europe known as a Collegium Musicum. Their concerts were so popular that Zimmermann needed to charge neither for the use of his property nor for attendance, coffee purchases being sufficient to recoup his expenses.

The plot of the Coffee Cantata centers on an overbearing father reproaching his daughter for what he perceives as a coffee addiction. His threats – he won’t let her leave the house, he won’t buy her fashionable new clothing or pretty ribbons for her hat – amount to nothing; she would accept them all for her three glasses of coffee a day. Only when she is threatened with difficulty finding a husband does she relent – on condition that her husband will be contractually obligated to let her have her fill of the drink. Nor was this imagined father alone in his concern; no less a figure than Frederick the Great felt the need to offer his opinion on the popular new beverage: “It is disgusting to notice the increase in the quantity of coffee used by my subjects, and the like amount of money that goes out of the country in consequence. My people must drink beer” (Mark Pendergast, Uncommon Grounds, 2010, p. 11).

Beyond the Notes is supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Humanities and Arts Research fund.


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Spanish-American soprano Anaïs Naharro-Murphy enjoys performing a diverse repertoire ranging from the Renaissance to contemporary works in opera, song, and ensemble pieces. Performances in 2016-2017 include Naked in the Garden at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, Vocalissimus with Temple University’s New Music Ensemble, and Schumann’s Dichterliebe with pianist Timur Mustakimov.  As an avid recitalist and concert soloist, Anaïs has recently premiered and pioneered many contemporary compositions. Opera roles include: Lucio Cinna with Temple Opera, Despina with Concert Opera of Philadelphia, 1st Lady/Papagena with Annex Theatre, La Fée and Mercure with Bel Cantanti, Adina and Suor Genovieffa with La Musica Lirica, Emmie with Hexacollective, Countess Ceprano/Page with Baltimore Lyric Opera, and Gretel with Little Patuxtent Opera Institute. More information at www.anaisnaharromurphy.com.

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Baritone Matthew Lulofs has been praised for his “aptly lush and unctuous tone” by Steven Winn of San Francisco Classical Voice. In the 2015–2016 season, he performed Nardo in Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera with Temple University Opera and Belcore in L’elisir d’amore with Opera Libera. This fall, Matthew looks forward to singing with the Philadelphia Opera Chorus in Puccini’s Turandot.

Matthew earned his B.M. from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2014, and recently completed his M.M. at Temple University’s Boyer College of Music and Dance where he studied under Dr. Marcus C. DeLoach.

Photo of director Brandon McShaffreyBrandon McShaffrey is a Philadelphia freelance Director/Choreographer. He serves as the Producing Director at Mauckingbird Theatre Company. Locally, he has also worked at Drexel University, Villanova University and The Boyer College of Music as well as Hedgerow Theater, Act II Playhouse, and BCKSEET Productions. He holds a BFA in Musical Theater Performance from Roosevelt University’s Chicago Conservatory of Performing Arts, and an MFA in Directing from Temple University.

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Benjamin Katz has performed as a harpsichordist since 2001, playing early and contemporary music. He studied harpsichord with Arthur Haas in NYC, with Lisa Crawford and Webb Wiggins at Oberlin Conservatory, and with Peter Sykes at Longy School of Music of Bard College. He has performed with A Far Cry chamber orchestra, Musical Offering baroque ensemble, and the Harvard Baroque Orchestra. He has commissioned new works for harpsichord from composer Steven Long, with pieces premiered at ISSUE Project Room (NYC) in 2005 and 2009. Katz was a recipient of the Frank Huntington Beebe Fund award in 2013-14. He spent the year in London as an Early Career Research Associate at the Institute of Musical Research, University of London, studying partimento manuscripts in the British Library. Recent projects include a solo harpsichord recital at Fenton House (London, UK) and a French baroque concert at the Queens College Baroque Opera Workshop (NYC) in collaboration with soprano Julianne Baird, violinists Dongmyung Ahn and Kaitlyn Goddard, lutenist Deborah Fox, harpist Christa Patton, viola da gambist Lisa Terry, and commedia dell’arte practitioner Antonio Fava. He has been based in Philadelphia since 2015.erformer and a teacher– believes that Hans Christian Anderson had it right in saying,  “When words fail music speaks.”

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A native of Baltimore, Maryland, cellist Elliot Mallard enjoys an active career as a chamber musician, soloist, and diverse recording artist. A graduate of the Juilliard School, he trained under David Soyer, Timothy Eddy, and Darrett Adkins as a Bidù Sayão scholar. Concert appearances include performances as soloist with the UMBC orchestra, Peabody Sinfonietta, The National Music Festival Orchestra, and Ensemble Du Monde. In addition to his classical activities, he is in demand as a recording artist and performer of popular music, touring with world renowned artists such as Emmy-Award winning violinist, Damian Escobar and his quartet. Currently, Elliot Mallard resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he is pursuing his graduate studies under Jeffrey Solow at the Boyer College of Music, Temple University.

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Eleanor Heisey, violingraduated from the Blair School of Music, Vanderbilt University with a BM in performance and is pursuing a master’s in music education at Temple University.  She has taught privately, as a faculty assistant with Elizabeth Faidley of the Manhattan School of Music, and as leader of the strings program at the Sistema Nacional de Educación Musical in Liberia, Costa Rica. In 2015, she taught strings and assisted in the preparation and planning for SiNEM’s National Children’s Orchestra. Eleanor is fluent in Spanish and enjoys Mexican folkloric dance.

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Beyond the Notes is graciously supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Arts and Humanities Research Center of Temple University.


Read & hear more!

Bach

Bach, Johann Sebastian. Secular cantatas [electronic resource] : BWV 210-211 / composed by Johann Sebastian Bach ; conducted by Helmuth Rilling ; Bach-Collegium Stuttgart. [S.l.] : Hänssler, 1998.

Bach, Johann Sebastian.  Kaffee-Kantate. Vocal score. Kantate Nr. 211 : Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht : (Kaffeekantate) : BWV 211 / Bach ; [Klavierauszug von Siegfried Petrenz]. Wiesbaden : Breitkopf & Härtel, c2005. Paley Stacks, M1529.B22 K3 2005

Bach Cantatas Website. 2000-2016. Accessed Sept. 14, 2016.

Gardiner, John Eliot. Bach : music in the castle of heaven / by John Eliot Gardiner. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2013. Paley Stacks, ML410.B1 G34 2013

Whitaker, W. G. The cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach, sacred and secular. London, New York, Oxford University Press, 1959. Paley Stacks, ML410.B13W5

Coffee

Pendergrast, Mark. Uncommon grounds : the history of coffee and how it transformed our world / Mark Pendergrast. New York, NY : Basic Books, c1999. Paley Stacks, HD9199.A2 P464x 1999

The thinking space [electronic resource] : the café as a cultural institution in Paris, Italy and Vienna / edited by Leona Rittner, W. Scott Haine, Jeffrey H, Jackson. Farnham, Surrey ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate Publishing Company, 2013.

Weinberg, Bennett Alan. The world of caffeine : the science and culture of the world’s most popular drug / Bennett Alan Weinberg, Bonnie K. Bealer. New York : Routledge, 2001. Paley Stacks, QP801.C24 W45 2001

 

Robert Pegg is a doctoral candidate in the music composition program at the Boyer College. His advisor is Dr. Maurice Wright.

Posted in Uncategorized

Classical Guitar at Paley Library!

Classical Guitar Students of Allen Krantz
Wednesday, November 9th
12:00pm – 12:50pm
Paley Library Lecture Hall
Bring your lunch. Bring your friends. 
Light refreshments served. Boyer recital credit given.
Relax. Refresh. Renew. Enjoy.

At noon on Wednesday, November 9, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes concert series is proud to present Prof. Allen Krantz and his students.

guitargrove

While the guitar’s role in Western art music is relatively new, similar instruments which may be called its ancestors have had great significance throughout history. The Greek seven-stringed lyre, a harp-like instrument, has been elevated to a universal symbol of music; the lute, thought to be of ancient near Eastern origin, enjoyed popularity as late as the time of Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) and resurfaced with the twentieth century’s newfound interest in music from the Renaissance and earlier periods. Distinct instruments called similar names to “guitar” existed since the 13th century in Spain. Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737), the legendary maker of bowed string instruments, also applied his craft to the guitar, with five of his guitars surviving to the modern day, only one of which is playable.

Johann Sebastian Bach

Portrait of Bach by E.G. Haussman

vivaldi

Portrait of Antonio Vivaldi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two composers of the Baroque period are prominent in this concert’s program: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) and Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741). While Bach never wrote for the guitar, he did write for the lute, producing two suites (collections of relatively brief pieces, primarily dance styles) among other pieces for the instrument; in this respect, he can be considered the last great lute composer. In addition to this, we will be treated to guitar renditions of excerpts from his celebrated suites for unaccompanied cello. Vivaldi is certainly most well-known for his Four Seasons, a cycle of four concertos for solo violin and string ensemble, but his output includes operas and sacred music in addition to music for virtually every string and wind instrument of the day, including lute and mandolin.

Ferdinando Carulli

Portrait of Ferdinando Carulli by Julien Léopold Boilly.

The name of Ferdinando Carulli (1770-1841) may be a new one, even for those versed in classical music, if they are not familiar with the guitar. Born in the Kingdom of Naples, he switched from cello to guitar at the rather late age of twenty, and out of necessity was an autodidact on the instrument. He earned enough fame to concertize throughout the continent; in the early 19th century he settled in Paris – for most of the century, the best place for a musician to make their name – and established himself as a teacher. Among his many works for the instrument, his Méthode complète pour guitare ou lyre, op. 27, of 1810 stands as a pedagogical monument for classical guitar.


krantz_a_002_230x230Allen Krantz is a composer, solo guitarist, and chamber musician. He performs extensively throughout the United States and appeared at Carnegie Hall, Saratoga Performing Arts Center and the Phillips Collection in Washington, with diverse programs often featuring original compositions. Recent premieres included “Three Pieces for Chamber Orchestra”; “Passacaglia” for trombone, guitar and piano, premiered by Joseph Alessi of the New York Philharmonic; and “American Document” commissioned by the Martha Graham Dance Company and premiered at the Joyce Theater in NY. Other recent pieces are “Sacred Places” for solo guitar; “A Musical Walk”, a children’s piece commissioned by the Philadelphia Orchestra; a symphony entitled “In the Air”, and “Under One Roof”, a trio for trumpet violin and piano in celebration of the 125th anniversary of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. “An American Town” for string orchestra, commissioned by the Village Bach Festival in Michigan was also presented at the Moscow Autumn festival and in Australia. Krantz’s arrangement of Copland’s Appalachian Spring sketches were presented at the Library of Congress with the Martha Graham Company. 
Allen Krantz is composer in residence for the Philadelphia based chamber ensemble, 1807 & Friends. Allen Krantz has received support from the American Composers Forum, Meet the Composer, Chamber Music America, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the Philadelphia Cultural Alliance among others.


Beyond the Notes is supported by the Boyer College, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Humanities and Arts Research fund.


Read more!

Website of Prof. Allen Krantz

Bach, Johann Sebastian. Lute music. Milano : Edizioni Suvini Zerboni, c1980. Paley Stacks, M140.B118C5x 1980

Carulli, Ferdinando.  Metodo completo per lo studio della chitarra : volume unico / Ferdinando Carulli ; [ed.] Lenzi Mozzani.  Ancona, Italy : Bèrben, [1983], c1965. Paley Stacks, MT582.C385 M4 1965

Page, Christopher.  The guitar in Tudor England : a social and musical history. Cambridge, United Kingdom : Cambridge University Press, 2015. Paley Stacks, ML1015.G9 P34 2015

Spring, Matthew. The lute in Britain: a history of the instrument and its music. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2001. Paley Stacks,  ML1010 .S77 2001

Wade, Graham. The guitarist’s guide to Bach. Gortnacloona, Bantry, Co. Cork : Wise Owl Music, 1985. Paley Stacks, ML410.B13 W28 1985.

Walker, Luise, ed.: Old masters of the 17th century: guitar – Bach et al. New York : Heinrichshofen Edition : sole selling agents, C.F. Peters Corp., 1981. Bib Services, Segal Gift Box 17.

Robert Pegg is a doctoral candidate in the music composition program at the Boyer College. His advisor is Dr. Maurice Wright.

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Platero and I

photo of Erdely-Sayo and Peña.

Sandrine Erdely-Sayo and Elizabeth Peña.

On Wednesday, April 6, Paley Library’s noontime concert series, Beyond the Notes, will feature Duo MusicAleph, consisting of Temple graduate Sandrine Erdely-Sayo, composer and pianist, and Elizabeth Peña, narrator. They will perform Ms. Erdely-Sayo’s work for piano Platero y Yo, inspired by the novel by Juan Ramón Jiménez (1881-1958).

Painting of Jimenez.

Juan Ramón Jiménez, winner of the 1956 Nobel Prize in Literature, was born in the Andalusia region of Spain and made his first literary efforts at a young age. His novel Platero and I (1914) depicts life in the provinces in which the writer lived in his youth. The title character Platero is a faithful donkey, evocative of the innocence of country life. At first glance, Platero y Yo may be regarded as a children’s text. But the simple beauty of the imagery, the emotional honesty of the story, and the endearing little donkey, Platero,  add a level of poignancy and wisdom that is ageless. Jiménez and his wife Zenobia, herself a figure of literary inclinations, lived variously in their native country, Cuba, and America, ultimately settling in Puerto Rico, where both of them died.

head shot of Erdely-SayoSandrine Erdely-Sayo, a native of France, began her piano studies at the age of four and made her compositional debut at age fourteen. She has performed as both soloist and collaborative artist and has made recordings of works by Liszt, Thalberg, Scriabin, and others. Platero y Yo was born from a commission by Arabesque Records in New York and was performed in Carnegie Hall in 2014. The music carries the audience through a series of vignettes, each based on a chapter of the book and including narrative from the text.

Elizabeth Peña, narrator, studied sciences in Colombia before coming to the United States in 1991. Her interest in languages led her to expertise in teaching Spanish; she is director of Philadelphia’s Spanish Language School. She has collaborated with Ms. Erdely-Sayo in New York City, Texas, and other locations.

Joining Elizabeth Peña will be advanced students from Temple University’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese. Many thanks to Dr. Hiram Aldarondo, Chair of the Department, for his help and support of this exciting program.

Photo of Platero

Platero. Photo by Anvica.
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Devotees of the piano, the Spanish language, and Spanish culture will be especially delighted by this performance, but all are welcome to come and enjoy!

See also Ms. Erdely-Sayo’s website!

Duo MusicAleph

Nobel Prize website on Jiménez

All About Spain – Andalusia

 

This post was written by Anne Harlow and Robert Pegg.

Anne Harlow is research librarian for music, dance, and theater at Temple University Libraries.

Robert Pegg is a Ph. D. candidate in the field of music composition. He is a student of Dr. Maurice Wright.


Many thanks to Temple’s Center for Performing and Cinematic Arts, Temple University Libraries, and the Presidential Arts and Humanities Research Fund for supporting Beyond the Notes, the Library’s Noontime Concert Series.

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St. Patrick’s Day Celebration – Words and Music from Ireland

Porcelain Shamrock piano
On Wednesday, March 16, Paley Library will present music from and inspired by Ireland at its noon concert series, presented by students and faculty of the Boyer College of Music and Dance. This concert is the brainchild of Dr. Charles Abramovic, professor and chair of the keyboard department of the Boyer College. After receiving degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, he returned to Philadelphia and received the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts from Temple University, where he has taught since 1988. He has performed as both soloist and collaborative artist across North America and Europe.  Joining Dr. Abramovic to perform Beethoven’s settings of Irish folk songs will be Marcus DeLoach, Boyer professor of voice and opera. Professor DeLoach has extensive international performing experience, and degrees from Juilliard (B.M. and M.M.) and his D.M.A. from Rice University. Students from Dr. Abramovic’s studio and participants from the Theater Department will complete the festivities!

Charles AbramowicIris Songs ManuscriptMarcus

In addition to readings from Irish poetry and literature, the audience will be treated to settings of Irish folk songs by Beethoven, the “Irlandais” from the Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio by French jazz pianist and composer Claude Bolling, and Nocturnes of Irish composer John Field. Field (1782-1837) achieved early popularity in his native Dublin before moving to London, and later making great impressions in Paris, Vienna, and finally St. Petersburg and Moscow, where he found employment from the court as performer and teacher. The works on which his fame rests today, his Nocturnes, first appeared in print in 1814. This new type of piece was meant to be a lyrical, relatively brief (though not necessarily lightweight in content and conception) evocation of the night. This genre was brought to its greatest heights by Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849), but these achievements could not have been made without the pioneering of his predecessor (Harold C. Schonberg, The Great Pianists).

Fans of the written word, music, or simply the culture of Ireland will find something to intrigue them in this event. All are welcome to enjoy the offerings!

Learn more:

Musicologist Robin Langley on Field manuscripts

Harold C. Schonberg, The Great Pianists. 1987, Simon & Schuster, Inc. (available in Paley Library)

Writer Basil Walsh on famous Irish musicians in the 19th century (check his bibliographies too!)

Robert Pegg is a Ph. D. candidate in music composition. His adviser is Dr. Maurice Wright.

 

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Dance with Projection – Postcards From the Woods by Merián Soto

Dance with projectionMerian Soto danceBranch Dances

At noon on Wednesday, February 24, Paley Library’s Beyond the Notes series will present the work of professor of dance Merián Soto and students of the Boyer College of Music and Dance in a performance with projected visuals. A native of Puerto Rico, Prof. Soto has received the BESSIE, the New York Dance and Performance Award, and the Greater Philadelphia Dance and Physical Theater ROCKY Award, among other acknowledgements for her skill in dance and choreography. One of her creations is what she calls Branch Dance, a slow-moving performance style about which she writes the following on her web site:

TMerian Sotohe dancer practices observing relational connections between breath, nerves, bones, viscera, heart, sound, memory, the present, ideas; the focusing of the mind; how light, temperature, sound, and vision affect experience-how the sensory organs can pull the body into action…how thought leaves pathways in the body…Maintaining energetic balance and flow in the body as it responds to weight, place, temperature, sound light, etc., allows the performer (and the viewer) to sense, imagine, and experience, conceptual and poetic relationships, meanings, and potentialities.

Critics have praised these performances as “reorganiz[ing] whole landscapes” of dance, a visceral, holistic experience for both dancer and audience. This is not a performance to be missed!

Learn more:

Prof. Soto’s website: http://www.meriansoto.com/

Branch Dances blog: http://www.branchdances.blogspot.com

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“Shhh…” – An Interview

MWSJ

Dr. Maurice Wright and Ms. Sandra James were kind enough to share some of their thoughts on their new piece Shhh…, which will be presented at Paley Library on Wednesday, February 3. This duo are no strangers to collaboration – their past projects have included Galatea Reset, a retelling of the myth of Acis and Galatea featuring both human and robot performers.

The secret word for the piece, according to Dr. Wright, is “resonance.” Rather than a concert work, which assumes a listener’s attention from beginning to end, Shhh is an installation that takes advantage of the acoustics of the space where it is presented. To that end, he and Ms. James, who has a background in not only technology and music but also visual arts, customized speakers by attaching various resonant materials such as cardboard and plastic tubes.

No two people will hear the work the same way – the electronic piece is partially randomized and will cycle every hour. Additionally, microphones will receive input from the environment to affect what sounds emerge, making any presentation of the piece truly unique.

I would like to thank Dr. Maurice Wright and Ms. Sandra James for their insights about the piece. Don’t miss Shhh… appearing at Paley Library!

 

Robert Pegg is a graduate assistant and doctoral candidate in the Boyer College of Music and Dance, studying with Dr. Maurice Wright.

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