Last week, nine of my private students came and sang a recital in Pickman Hall at the Longy School of Music, where I have taught for 26 years. It was a bittersweet event, but more sweet than bitter. The students sang beautifully, we had duets and improvisations in addition to classical solos. I invited two alumnae of the Longy Continuing Education program to sing, and both singers have blossomed into a master teachers and performers.
I made a flyer from my favorite picture of Georges Longy, seen here, in his retirement from the Boston Symphony Orchestra (he was principal oboe for many years). Of course the bunnies theme has predominated a lot of my attention since Fran Trester wrote her wonderful opera for us. I keep spotting bunnies at dusk, and on the grounds of the Longy school as well.
Our audience included several former students in my classes and private studio, including one woman who was visiting from Cairo! We all sang the Beatles’ “In My Life” together after Louise Grasmere and I had put our marks on it, as well as some improv and “Bye Bye Love”. It was a love fest, and it was a terrific way for me to honor the spirit of the school that I enjoyed so much all these years.
COZZOLANI! This magnificent composer–a 17th century nun–has been a labor of love and delight for my colleagues on the West Coast for many years–stretching back for me to 1999. I just received my copy of the final CD in the set of her complete works, performed as she heard them, with women’s voices. I must admit I forgot about some of the chamber works I recorded in 2002 and even some in 2010, shortly before my mom died. But hearing these again brings me such joy, and I am giving a small sample here. I’m not on every track, but the funniest part is sometimes I do not recognize myself! My wife does, though. “Honey, that’s you.” Oh yeah. I was just grooving on the music.
I am also happy to read Warren Stewart’s dedication to Judith Nelson, who died last year. It was Judy who brought Chiara Margarita Cozzolani to Warren’s attention, and I sang my first concert of her works with Judy; she on top soprano and me on the very bottom of the 8-woman ensemble. Judy had me over to tea in 1985, before I went to study in Europe, and said to me “Don’t let anybody tell you can’t use your vibrato. You can quote me.” A wonderful artist who pioneered early music singing style.
NEW STUDIO! I have a new teaching studio in Arlington Center, starting in September. Lessons will be offered on Mondays all day and Thursday evenings. Of course the Jamaica Plain studio is going strong (Tuesdays and Fridays), as is the New England Conservatory (Wednesdays). I’m offering an adult education class on Handel this fall at NEC on Wednesday nights. http://necmusic.edu/ce/voice-opera
If you want to discuss lessons or classes with me for the fall, press the contact button!
Fruits of many seasons continue to ripen. May yours do the same.