9th ANNUAL ART SONG RECITAL
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2019 - Travis Ranch MPR
Singers may begin practicing with accompanist starting at 6:00p.
Concert begins at 7:00p.
Please join us for refreshments after the performance, courtesy of the Travis Ranch Vocal Music Boosters.
Who is performing?
Our art song recital is comprised entirely of volunteer students. All of our singers learn three art songs in their choir class, and then choose their favorite to perform as a solo in class for a graded project. Our evening recital is not mandatory, it is an "extra" so that our brave singers can have another chance to perform for parents and friends who may not be in their choir class.
What should I wear?
We like to treat our recital as a special event. Singers should dress nicely - slacks and a button-up shirt for boys; dress/skirt or nice pants/top for girls. We do not recommend high-heeled shoes for performers, as they can make balancing difficult!
What exactly is an art song?
An art song is a piece of music that is usually written for one voice (as opposed to choral music, which is written for many voices). An art song is usually accompanied by instruments, most commonly the piano. Art songs can be in any language, but the most common are English, French, Italian and German.
But more than this simple definition denotes, an art song strives to be the perfect combination of music and literature, based on four elements: poet, composer, singer and accompanist. In a well-written art song, the composer creates a duet between the accompanist and the vocalist, and the purpose of the art song is to paint a picture of what the poet might have envisioned. The music is written in order to bring out the beauty of the poetry chosen by the composer.
Many people wonder about the difference between an art song and an aria. An aria comes from an opera or other large-scale work, and while it is also usually written for solo voice and accompaniment, the text of an aria is meant to be part of the story of the opera. In contrast, an art song is usually a setting of poetry, and is a stand-alone piece – it is not part of a larger work. In its original incarnation, an art song was intended for performance as part of a recital or other relatively formal social occasion. In the 19th century especially, it was common for people to have parties in their homes where they would play music and perform for each other. An art song would have fit beautifully into this situation.
Why teach art song literature?
Besides the obvious fact that art song is a beautiful form of music to listen to and perform, the foreign-language art song is considered a standard of vocal repertoire. Any student auditioning for vocal scholarships or contests will be expected to sing music in several different languages and styles, with art songs being the most common way to fulfill this requirement. Many high school and college choral groups, as well as audition-only honor choirs, require the singer to perform a memorized art song as part of the audition.
An art song is music that has stood the test of time, and the art song genre upholds itself as one of the most challenging and beautiful modes of vocal performance in Western music. Learning music in a foreign language is challenging, to be sure, but the study of art song provides wonderful benefit to singers working in both a solo and choral setting.
ART SONG PRACTICE TRACKS FOR 2019
This year's repertoire and practice accompaniment videos:
Early One Morning
Homeward Bound (sheet music)
Tu Lo Sai (sheet music)
Cielito Lindo (sheet music)