Bryan, MacKenzie perform online recital for art song festival

Assistant Professor of Music Erin Bryan, soprano, and Visiting Instructor of Music Deb MacKenzie, piano, were invited to present a recital as part of the Sam Houston State University Art Song Festival this month.

The performance, which was offered virtually, highlights American composer Lauren Spavelko’s Baby Book, a song cycle the composer describes as “truly a women’s work.” With poetry by Chloe Yelena Miller, the songs illustrate miscarriage, pregnancy and motherhood.

The pair performed the cycle in a Dec. 10 recital at Ripon College. A taping of that performance can be viewed here.

“Lauren Spavelko, the composer, was a colleague of mine during our respective master of music studies at the University of Louisville,” Bryan says. “She was a great resource for us as we prepared the work this past fall, willing to answer questions about specifics in her award-winning score. Along with being a finalist for the American Prize in composition, the piece won the Spoleto Festival’s Gian Carlo Menotti Young Composer’s Competition in 2017.

“It is an absolute joy to advocate for the music of innovative living composers.”


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