Friday afternoon recital will focus on life experiences of women

“A Woman’s Love and Life,” a faculty recital with Assistant Professor of Music Erin Bryan, soprano, and Visiting Instructor of Music Deb MacKenzie, piano, will be held at 4:15 p.m. Friday, Dec. 10, in Demmer Recital Hall, C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts, at Ripon College.

The program will feature Robert Schumann’s “Frauenliebe und Leben (A Woman’s Love and Life),” op. 42; “Baby Book,” by Lauren Spavelko; “Emily’s Aria” from “Our Town,” by Ned Rorem; and “Whatever You Say He Sings,” by Chris DeBlasio. The other works were selected to relate to the story presented by Schumann’s song cycle and address the topics of marriage, motherhood, miscarriage and experiences of both profound joy and deep loss.

Bryan has been praised for her “deft” operatic characterizations and a voice that is “a lyric soprano of exceptional beauty.” Recent engagements include Rosalinda in “Die Fledermaus,” Anne Sexton/#2 in “Transformations” and the Governess in “The Turn of the Screw.” She is featured as Young Anne/#1 on the recently released world-premiere recording of Conrad Susa’s “Transformations.”

An advocate for new music, she enjoys frequent collaboration with living composers, including the Midwest premiere of Laura Schwendinger’s “Kay Ryan Songs” and the world premiere of “Dangerous New Avenues,” a chamber duet for soprano and percussion by Justin Giarrusso. She has just completed her second season with the innovative Fresco Opera of Wisconsin, where she performed works by Mozart, Verdi, Floyd and Bellini.

MacKenzie teaches studio piano lessons, class piano and music theory at Ripon. She also accompanies the Ripon College Chamber Singers and the Ripon Choral Union. Outside of Ripon College, she works frequently as a collaborative pianist, working with vocalists, instrumentalists, choirs, and high school and college theatrical productions.

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