Premiere of chamber opera by composition student Hannah Lash

Hannah Lash, a first-year Artist Diploma student in composition at the Yale School of music, saw the premiere of her 40-minute chamber opera Blood Rose this past weekend at the at the Park Avenue Christian Church in New York.

Lash describes her opera as “a chilling interpretation of the legend ‘Beauty and the Beast'” that “explores concepts of violation, loss, revenge, and identity.

Blood Rose is written for alto (Kirsten Sollek), countertenor (Eric Brenner), and string quartet (the JACK Quartet).

Lash’s website describes the opera’s take on the Beauty and the Best legend:

“Blood Rose” renders the character of Beast as the victim of defilement, evidenced by his ravaged garden. It is dawn; he has just discovered the devastation in his garden. Beauty enters: a mysteriously pure woman who sings seductively. Beast is eager to make her suffer to alleviate his own sense of rage. her blood will water his broken flowers to make them bloom again.

She bleeds, but the only flowers that are revived are those with ugly meanings: rage, revenge, mistrust. Their terror builds; Beauty’s life is draining and Beast’s fevered anger has not abated. They grow closer in their mutual suffering, desperate for hope. But the flower of hope cannot be revived. Not with Blood. Beauty and Beast become increasingly enmeshed in one another’s identities as the opera draws to its heartbreaking conclusion.

Read the New York Times preview piece.

Published September 28, 2010
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Applications open for alumniVentures

In June 2008, Dean Robert Blocker of the Yale School of Music announced alumniVentures, a bold and innovative program that provides grants to the School’s alumni for projects that best follow one simple but transcendent criterion: to advance the cause of music.

Schools providing grants to its own alumni are rare in the world of higher education. In explaining the inspiration for alumniVentures, Dean Blocker said, “Since coming to Yale in 1995 I have been inspired by the many ways our alumni advance the cause of music. Knowing how many musicians sacrifice financial security because of their passion for music, I wanted to assist and acknowledge some of these extraordinary contributions to our art. The program I envisioned was one where we could reconnect alumni to the School through their work as musicians and assist them by using part of the annual fund for these awards.”

The deadline to apply for a 2010-11 alumniVentures grant is fast approaching. Applications are due by 12:00 pm EST on Monday, October 4.

Apply online

More from the news blog about alumniVentures

Update: deadline extended to Monday, October 4.

Published September 28, 2010
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Frederick Teardo gives a DMA recital of Franck, Elgar, and more on Woolsey Hall’s incomparable Newberry Organ

The Yale School of Music presents a Doctor of Musical Arts recital by organist Frederick Teardo on Thursday, October 14 at 8 pm in Woolsey Hall (500 College Street, corner of Grove Street, New Haven). The concert will feature music from Schumann to Elgar to the present day.

Teardo will open the program with the first movement of Elgar’s Sonata for Organ, Op. 28, and will continue with excerpts from Schumann’s Studies for the Pedal Organ, Op. 56. Complete works will include César Franck’s deeply expressive Prière (Prayer), Op. 20, and Marcel Dupré’s Prelude and Fugue in B Major, Op. 7, No. 1, written “for a triumphal solemnity.” The newest work on the program is Aaron Travers’s Three Pieces for Organ, written in 2000. Max Reger’s virtuosic Fantasy on the Chorale “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme,” Op. 52, No. 2, will conclude the program.

The Newberry Memorial Organ is one of the most renowned Romantic organs in the world. Originally built in 1902, it was rebuilt in both 1915 and 1928 and boasts 12,617 pipes, comprising 197 ranks and 166 stops. It offers a wealth of expressive possibilities to the performer. MORE

Published September 28, 2010
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