Lolly Willowes: Opera in Two Acts

Poster and promotional videos for Lolly Willowes (Opera in Two Acts):

Lolly Willowes (Opera in Two Acts, 2017-18) by Michael Alec Rose, is based on the 1926 novel by Sylvia Townsend Warner. The opera was funded by the maximum Artist Development Grant ($15,000) from the Houston Arts Alliance, together with an online fundraising campaign (which reached a stretch goal of $8,500), with a professional company of singers, players, theatrical director, choreography for two dancers, costume designer, set designer, etc.). Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston (MATCH), April 18 and 20, 2019:
https://matchouston.org/events/2019/lolly-willowes

Lolly Willowes Poster 12x18.jpg

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2019

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John Marin, Sun, Sea, Land – Maine, 1921

String Quartet No. 3 (1986), Puck Quartet, The Baltimore Station Shelter for Veterans, March 29, 2019; Maryland Correctional Institution for Women, March 30, 2019:
https://ourjoyfulnoisebaltimore.org/2018-2019-season

Lolly Willowes (Opera in Two Acts, 2017-18), funded by the maximum Artist Development Grant ($15,000) from the Houston Arts Alliance, together with an online fundraising campaign (which reached a stretch goal of $8,500), with a professional company of singers, players, theatrical director, choreography for two dancers, costume designer, set designer, etc.). Based on the novel by Sylvia Townsend Warner. Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston (MATCH), April 18 and 20, 2019:
https://matchouston.org/events/2019/lolly-willowes

Message of Puissant Baal (for mixed chorus and piano), Inversion Ensemble, conducted by Trevor Shaw, on its Summer Concerts (“Heroes/Monsters”), June 1 & 2, 2019, Austin, Texas.

A Tree of Life, ALIAS Ensemble, Nashville, Tennessee, June 4, 2019.

Composer-in-Residence with the Cassatt String Quartet, Seal Bay Festival, Vinalhaven Island, Maine, with premiere performances throughout the region of Maine Title (String Quartet No. 7, 2018) July 11-18, 2019:
http://www.sealbayfestival.org/main.html

Myotonic (Caprice No. 4 for Solo Viola, 2018), Diana Mathews, viola, Concert Series, Wimbledon, London, October 25, 2019.

(photo credit: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts)

In memoriam: Mary Oliver (1935-2019)

Michael Alec Rose has set three of Mary Oliver’s poems, now accessible via Soundcloud:

1) “In Blackwater Woods,” Mezzo-soprano Sharon Mabry and pianist Lynn Rice-See.
(The second song of Rose’s song cycle titled “The Way In” (1986).)

2) “First Snow,” Mezzo-soprano Sharon Mabry and pianist Lynn Rice-See.
(The fourth and final song of Rose’s song cycle titled “The Way In” (1986).)

3) “Sleeping in the Forest,”  Tenor Tony Boutté and pianist Margaret Kampmeir.
This song comes from my 1985 song cycle News of the Universe. This performance was part of the 2015 retrospective of music by Michael Alec Rose at Opera America/National Opera Center in New York City. Reflections by the composer:

Especially moving for me is Tony and Peggy’s interpretation of this song, performed here 30 years after the two of them premiered the song cycle at the Eastman School. Back then, I was the first composer to ask and receive Ms. Oliver’s permission to set her work to music. I’m thinking of putting what she said to me (when I finally met her a few years ago) on my tombstone: “You still doing that? Composing? You know, you’re the only one I ever liked.” I was so flabbergasted I didn’t know what to say. I won’t tell you what foolish and inarticulate thing I said. To be painfully evenhanded, it too should go on my tombstone.

Michael Alec Rose: Three Interventions

—Premiere of THREE INTERVENTIONS at the Blanton Museum, Austin, Texas, May 19, 2018:

—Interview with Michael Alec Rose on KMFA 89.5 Austin Classical Radio:

http://www.kmfa.org/programs/6-classical-austin/episodes/3004-austin-camerata-s-music-festival

2018

Recent Completed Works, Premieres:

-Musica senza rumore (2017), suite for solo piano, composed for Prince Jonathan Doria and the Doria Pamphilj Gallery in Rome, Italy, premiere (TBA) in collaboration with the Rome Chamber Music Festival.

– Lolly Willowes, music drama in two acts, performances in April 2019 at MATCH Midtown Arts & Theater Center in Houston, Texas.

February 11, 2018
Ching-Yi Lin, violin
Andrew Braddock, viola
Cole Concert Hall
Stephen F. Austin State University
Nacodoches, Texas

—performances of Caprices #1 and #3 for solo viola, and Mornington Caprice (#2) for violin and viola

February 25, 2018
Melissa Treinkman, mezzo-soprano (doctoral recital)
Jasper Jimenez, piano
USC Thornton School of Music
Rilke Songs: Music set to poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke
—performances of “October Day” and “The Way In” from the song cycle The Way In

This recital will be live-streamed at: https://youtu.be/uVz-9TmSQfs

Wednesday, April 18, 2018, 8:00 PM
Violins of Hope: Music of the Holocaust for Strings and Winds
Musicians of the Blair School of Music and the Nashville Symphony

The program includes the following:
Michael Alec Rose, The Entire World: Jewish Songs from Eastern Europe (flute, violin, and cello)
https://events.vanderbilt.edu/index.php?eID=120120

Friday, May 4, 2018
“Pastorals”: a program celebrating the links between music and craft
Peter Sheppard Skaerved, violin
London premiere of Il Ritorno: Perambulation for Solo Violin (composed for Peter, 2014-2016)
Performance at The Forge, Craft Central, Isle of Dogs, London

May 17, 2018
Three Interventions for string quartet, commissioned by Austin Camerata for its premiere at the Blanton Museum of Art, in front of the three artworks which inspired the music.

June 5, 2018
Featured guest artist, joining photographer Brian Peterson for a special event at the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. The event will focus on the elusive subject of Beauty, honoring the release of Mr. Peterson’s new book I Give My Eyes…

September 15, 2018
One Day University lecture, New York City (registration required)
“Beethoven and the Beatles: Hearing the Connection”

September 21, 2018
Il Ritorno: Perambulation for Unaccompanied Violin (2013-2015), Peter Sheppard Skaerved, violin.  Music, Technology and Innovation Research Centre, De Montfort University (Leicester, UK): “Bringing New Music to New Audiences” (International Conference).

October 3, 2018
Hopeful Monsters (for string orchestra, 2011), Ramakrishnan Kumaran, conductor, Faculty Composers Concert, Blair School of Music, Nashville, Tennessee.

 

2016

• Mornington Caprice (2015), Peter Sheppard Skaerved, violin; Diana Mathews, viola.  Frank Auerbach Retrospective, Tate Britain, March 10, 2016.

• Carrara Blocks (inspired by William Wylie photographs, 2016), performed by an ensemble of Blair School students. Vanderbilt Fine Arts Gallery, March 29, 2016.

• Diaphany
(2016), Peter Sheppard Skaerved, violin. The British Museum, London, England, June 17, 2016.

• Il Ritorno: Perambulation for Unaccompanied Violin (2013-2015).  Premiere by Peter Sheppard Skaerved,  June 18, 2016, at St. Andrew’s Parish Church, Moretonhampstead, Devon, England.

• Sedentary Dances: Concerto for Cello and Orchestra (2012), Felix Wang, cello; Nashville Concerto Orchestra, Joe Lee, conductor (premiere of the orchestral version). West End Methodist Church, Nashville, Tennessee, October 19, 2016.