Soundings: New Music at the Nasher

Some Favored Nook

January 4, 2019
7:30 p.m.

Based on the long-running correspondence between poet Emily Dickinson and abolitionist Thomas Wentworth Higginson, this dramatic cycle runs 45 minutes and features a minimal trio of soprano Tony Arnold, currently of International Contemporary Ensemble; baritone William Sharp, currently of the Bach Choir of Bethlehem; and accompanied by pianist Gilbert Kalish, currently of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

Higginson led the first black regiment during the Civil War and played a significant role in mentoring Dickinson before publishing her first book of poems in what would be the start of a career as a giant of the form. Dickinson and Higginson wrote one another over 24 long years, and librettist Mark Campbell adapted their distinct and respective writing styles in a collaboration with composer Eric Nathan in 2017. The collaboration unfolded at Yellow Barn during a residency during a week-long session that included significant student feedback.

As early champions of human rights, women’s rights, and racial equality, Higginson and Dickinson’s collective message is one that still resonates. The Soundings audience will hear their words in an entirely new way.

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Soundings: New Music at the Nasher is supported by Charles and Jessie Price, Kay and Elliot Cattarulla, Laura and Walter Elcock, John Dayton, the Friends of Soundings, and TACA. Additional support is provided by Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger. Media Partner: WRR 101.1 FM