To celebrate International Women’s Day, Lucy Fitz-Gibbon (Cornell interim director of vocal studies) organized a master class and recital for students in the voice and piano studios that featured art song and solo piano repertoire by women composers ranging from Marianna Martines to Clara Schumann to Florence Price to Louise Talma – music spanning 252 years and two continents.
Returning to Barnes Hall after the long, COVID-induced absence, piano students in the studios of Ryan McCullough and Andrew Zhou working with the singers were able to explore this repertoire on the 1908 (New York) Steinway and 1823 Conrad Graf pianos, opening up new sound worlds in collaboration with the voices. The masterclass was led by guest artists Michael Brofman (pianist and founder of the Brooklyn Art Song Society) and Daniel McGrew (tenor and recent winner of the Young Concert Artists International competition).
For the recital, students were joined by Lucy and Ryan in the premiere of Katherine Balch’s estrangement, a response to Schumann’s Dichterliebe, with poetry by Katie Ford. Katherine’s participation included a composer residency during which she presented a mobile building workshop with found materials at Alice Cook House and a Composers’ Forum for the Music Department. The suite of concerts, workshops, and presentations was funded in part by the Central New York Humanities Corridor and the Cornell Council for the Arts.