PIANO AS A PARTNER IN TWENTIETH CENTURY ART SONG REPERTOIRE: A RECORDING PROJECT
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The piano's role in art song repertoire has evolved from a modest one during its formative years to the versatility, complexity and creativity found in the twentieth-century. The art song repertoire of the twentieth century is vast and has secured the reputation for being the most diverse, innovative, illustrative, atmospheric and colorful in all of art song literature. Within this time period, there are compositions that reach back to the romantic works of nineteenth century, others which combine old and new traditions, and finally those which adopt new means and new ends. In choosing the material for this project, I have focused on compositions with uniquely challenging and unusual piano accompaniments in order to achieve a balance between well- known and rarely performed works, as well as those pieces that combine various languages and styles. Selections range from Claude Debussy, Richard Strauss, Sergey Rachmaninoff, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Roger Quilter, Francis Poulenc, Fernando Obradors, and Joaquin Rodrigo to composers such as Samuel Barber, Marc Blitzstein, Dominick Argento, William Bolcom, and John Duke, including arrangements of traditional spirituals by Harry T. Burleigh and Florence B. Price, all of which helped to establish the American Art Song. My objective is to trace the development of the twentieth-century art song from the late Romantic Period through nationalistitrends to works which show the influences of jazz and folk elements. The two CD's for this dissertation recording project are available on compact discs which can be found in the Digital Repository at the University of Maryland (DRUM). The performers were Daniel Armstrong, baritone, Giles Herman, baritone, Thomas Glenn, tenor, Valerie Yinzant, soprano, Aaron Odom, tenor, Jennifer Royal, soprano, Kenneth Harmon, tenor, Karen Sorenson, soprano and Maxim Ivanov, baritone.