In celebration of the chorus’s 55th anniversary, GNHCC has
commissioned CT-based composer Dr. Jessica Rudman to write a piece to
commemorate the milestone. The Beauty You Have Begotten seeks to
reflect “pillars of the human experience,” as described by GNHCC
director Noah Blocker-Glynn, GNHCC’s Artistic Director. Dr. Rudman visited rehearsal on February 21 to both discuss her composing process with the chorus and listen to our progress in preparing it.
“For me, the text always comes first,” she explained, in describing
the choice of poems that forms the lyrics to the 6-piece movement: “I
try to take the emotions and images of the text and try to find ways
to evoke them in the music.” Furthermore, “sometimes the sounds of the
words suggests instrumental sounds to accompany them.” Together, the
poems, all written by poets born in the 1800s, may portray some
“moments of doubt and conflict,” but paint “a largely celebratory
mood, to appreciate life” and our shared connections.
Dr. Rudman stayed to listen to the rehearsal of her work, and also to
answer questions from the singers, who were very interested to learn
more about particular details in the composition, like the choice of
voice parts used in the solos, and her own inspirations and musical
influences. The choice of the saxophone quartet, however, came from
Noah, who was recently stopped in his tracks by the sounds of a
rehearsal at The Hartt School. It turned out to be a saxophone
quartet, and inspired his choice: “the marrying between high, middle,
middle-low, and low voicing just seemed to pair itself very well with
a chorus,” he explained.
GNHCC will present the premiere performance of The Beauty You Have
Begotten, for SATB chorus and Saxophone Quartet, on Saturday June 8,
at Battell Chapel in New Haven. Both the GNHCC singers and Artistic
Director Noah Blocker-Glynn are excited to present it to our audience:
“It’s ours; we will be giving it its first flight.” We hope you will
be there to join us as we perform this marvelous composition!
Stay tuned to this space for further details on concert ticket availability.