Music by George Crumb and Charles Ives
Featuring an opening performance by Fred Sherry
With a diverse repertoire ranging from Gluck to Kaija Saariaho, soprano Dawn Upshaw has an unwavering commitment to expanding the boundaries of vocal recitals. For her BAM recital debut, she performs music by iconoclastic American composers—George Crumb and Charles Ives—with Gilbert Kalish on the piano. The evening’s program features Crumb’s Ancient Voices of Children, a cycle of songs on texts by García Lorca, composed for soprano, boy soprano, oboe, mandolin, harp, amplified piano, and percussion, which Upshaw first performed in a 1997 staging by Bill T. Jones that was praised as “riveting” and “gripping” by The New York Times. The program, which also features songs by Charles Ives and opens with Elliott Carter’s Sonata for Flute, Oboe, Cello and Harpsichord (performed by Tara Helen O’Connor, Stephen Taylor, Jeffrey Grossman, and longtime Nonesuch artist Fred Sherry), reaffirms her unwavering commitment to expanding the boundaries of vocal recitals.
With a commitment to the transformative power of music, Dawn Upshaw has achieved worldwide celebrity as a singer of opera and concert repertoire ranging form the sacred works of Bach to contemporary pieces. She created the role of Daisy Buchanan in John Harbison's The Great Gatsby in its world premiere at the Metropolitan Opera, and the title role in Kaija Saariaho's Clemence at the Salzburg Festival. In her work as a recitalist, and particularly in her work with living composers, Dawn Upshaw has become a generative force in concert music, having premiered more than 25 works throughout her career. In 2007, she was named a fellow of the MacArthur Foundation, the first vocal artist to receive the award. A four-time Grammy Award winner, Upshaw is featured on more than 50 recordings, including Nonesuch’s million-selling Symphony No. 3 by Henryk Górecki. She previously performed at BAM as a soloist in Osvaldo Golijov’s La Pasión Según San Marcos (2002 Next Wave Festival).
Gilbert Kalish leads a musical life of unusual variety and breadth. He was the pianist of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players for 30 years and was a founding member of the Contemporary Chamber Ensemble, a group devoted to new music that flourished during the 1960s and 70s. Gilbert Kalish’s discography encompasses classical repertory, 20th-century masterworks, and new compositions. Of special note are his solo recordings, many on the Nonesuch label, of Charles Ives’s Concord Sonata and the sonatas of Joseph Haydn, as well as an immense discography of vocal music with Jan DeGaetani and landmarks of the 20th century by such composers as Carter, Crumb, Shapey, and Schoenberg.
Ancient Voices of Children (1970)
By George Crumb
Performed by Dawn Upshaw with Gilbert Kalish and musicians
Dawn Upshaw, soprano
Gilbert Kalish, piano and toy piano
Stephen Hammer, oboe and harmonica
Bridget Kibbey, harp
James Moore, mandolin and saw
Benjamin P. Wenzelberg, boy soprano
Dawn Upshaw, Gilbert Kalish, and Fred Sherry in conversation with Bob Hurwitz
Thu, Sep 11
This artist talk takes place in the performance venue and is free for same-day ticket holders.