Monday, July 9, 2012

Alice Parker's "Singing at Dawn" Première July 20 and 21

Singing at Dawn, a collaboration between Colrain poet Carol Purington and noted composer Alice Parker, will be premiered by the Mohawk Trail Concerts on their July 20 and 21 programs. Alice conducted a vocal workshop with Mohawk students last March. Carol is a Mohawk alumna.
Mohawk Trail Concerts logo
Alice selected ten poems from Carol's book The Trees Bleed Sweetness, poems describing the life of a Native American woman from childhood to old age, and transformed them into a song cycle. The idea began with a suggestion from Mohawk Trail Concerts Director Ruth Black, and immediately inspired Alice. She knew of Carol's work and admired it, but they had never met. When Carol got a letter from Alice asking for permission to use the poems she said she was honored that a woman of Alice's reputation wanted to use them.
Carol's book
Alice set the poems for voice, flute, and percussion. She said the percussionist will play lots of different instruments, rattles and drums, and "clicking things." The idea was to suggest the noises of the forest. Carol said she appreciates that Alice's music sounds like birdsong.

The result of this rare collaboration will be a highlight of the Mohawk Trail Concerts season.

This article first appeared in the June/July 2012 issue of the Heath Herald, and is used here with the permission of the author, Pat Leuchtman.
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A free pair of tickets for each concert in the Mohawk Trail Concerts Summer Festival are available at the Griswold Memorial Library in Colrain and at the Arms Library in Shelburne Falls, courtesy of the Mohawk Trail Concerts. Please check with the libraries to see if tickets to the Singing at Dawn performances are still available. Otherwise, see the Mohawk Trail Concerts website for ticket information.

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Program listing on http://www.mohawktrailconcerts.org/season/summer-festival/