Caitlin Edwards and Daniel Schlosberg

Caitlin Edwards, violin

Daniel Schlosberg, piano

June 30, 2021

Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts

David Schwan, host

Program:

J. Rosamond Johnson; arr. Dickson – Lift Every Voice and Sing for solo violin (2′)

Irene Britton Smith – Violin Sonata (14′)

I. Allegro Cantabile

II. Andante

III. Vivace

Jessie Montgomery – Peace (4′)

William Grant Still – Suite for Violin and Piano (15′)

I. African Dancer

II. Mother and Child

III. Gamin

Caitlin Edwards began studying the violin at the age of eight, through the Music Opportunity Program, a non-profit organization in her hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. She went on to be the recipient of the 2018 Rising Star Award from the Gateways Music Festival. In 2020, Caitlin was featured as a soloist in the “Dreams of Hope” documentary which premiered on PBS stations across the US and has received awards nationally and internationally. She has performed with the Chicago Sinfonietta, Sphinx Symphony Orchestra, Nairobi Philharmonic, Grant Park Music Festival Orchestra, the ReCollective Orchestra, the Matt Jones Orchestra, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Wordless Music Orchestra, and more.

She’s performed and recorded with artists such as Ms. Lauryn Hill, Common, PJ Morton,  Yolanda Adams, India Arie, and on John Legend’s “Bigger Love” album, for which she received a Grammy Certificate in 2021. She also recorded for the Disney movie score, “The Lion King”, at Sony Studios in 2019. Caitlin’s current projects include writing and arranging strings for upcoming projects, remote recording for albums, performing with her ensemble D-Composed,  teaching, and working on her EP set to debut summer of 2021. 

 

Pianist Daniel Schlosberg leads a kaleidoscopic musical life. 

He has appeared on numerous Chicago Symphony Orchestra chamber music and MusicNOW concerts. He was a featured soloist with the orchestra in subscription performances of Messiaen’s “Trois Petites Liturgies,” for which John von Rhein in The Chicago Tribune wrote: “Daniel Schlosberg played the daunting piano part splendidly”; and Lawrence A. Johnson of the Chicago Classical Review wrote of “a prominent, challenging piano part, played here with great fire and conviction by Daniel Schlosberg in a notable CSO debut.” He is also a frequent pre-concert lecturer at the CSO, and has adjudicated its young artist concerto competition.

He gives frequent recitals at Bargemusic, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Phillips Collection and National Gallery of Art in D.C. 

Schlosberg can be heard on a number of recordings including his two solo albums, “Child’s Play” (Schumann, Lachenmann, Paert and Debussy) and “Gaul Me Maybe: French Baroque Keyboard Works,” which have garnered critical acclaim. His most recent recordings are Lei Liang’s “Inkscape,” a quintet for piano and four percussionists, with Third Coast Percussion, and Julius Eastman’s “Gay Guerrilla,” with a quartet including Billy Childs.

Art Song is another passion, and he directs the Baltimore Lieder Weekend each October. He is on the faculty in the music department at the University of Notre Dame, where he is currently Director of Undergraduate Studies. In his various endeavors, he strives to spotlight marginalized voices while also bringing a sense of discovery to canonical works.

J. Rosamond Johnson (1873-1954); arr. Kyle Dickson

Lift Every Voice and Sing for solo violin (1905) (2′)

Lift Every Voice and Sing is a song that I was taught at a young age in my hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. Growing up in a city where Martin Luther King Jr., other civil rights leaders, and even our grandparents marched, were hosed, and jailed – this anthem was a part of our education. The words of this song speak of the power and impact that singular voices have when they are joined as one. Despite the “weary feet” and the trials that we as a people have endured and continue to experience every day, we are encouraged to be hopeful, to persevere, and to “march on till victory is won.” 

– Caitlin Edwards

 

Irene Britton Smith (1907-1999)

Violin Sonata (1947) 

A native of Chicago, Irene Britton Smith stands out amongst her (mostly) white, male peers as a Black, female composer in the mid-20th century. Smith composed this three-movement sonata while studying with Vittorio Giannini at The Juilliard School, and it reflects the range of her style and influences. The first movement plays with contrast in its two main melodies, one solemn and impressionistic and the other light and folk-inspired. Next is a ballad, with the melody being passed between the violin and piano throughout the movement. It features a sprightly middle section, but eventually returns to the same wistful mood with which it began. The third and final movement is playfully chromatic, featuring frequent dialogue between the instruments. A wandering, lyrical diversion brings the musicians back down to earth for a brief time before the first theme comes back, providing an energetic end to the piece.

 

 

Jessie Montgomery (b. 1981)

Peace (2020) (4′)

Written just a month after the Great Sadness of the first quarantine orders due to COVID-19, facing the shock felt by the whole globe as well as personal crisis, I find myself struggling to define what actually brings me joy. And I’m at a stage of making peace with sadness as it comes and goes like any other emotion. I’m learning to observe sadness for the first time not as a negative emotion, but as a necessary dynamic to the human experience. 

— Jessie Montgomery, May 12, 2020

 

 

William Grant Still (1895-1978)

Suite for Violin and Piano (1943) (15′) 

William Grant Still was a Black composer of the early 20th century and the Harlem Renaissance. He was the first Black composer to conduct a major American symphony orchestra, the first to have a symphony performed by a leading orchestra, and the first to have an opera performed by a major opera company and on national television. Each movement of Still’s Suite for Violin and Piano was inspired by a sculpture by an artist from the Harlem Renaissance. The first movement is characterized by dance-like rhythms and blues melodies. The second movement, “Mother and Child” features a sweet, song-like melody that could be Still’s interpretation of a lullaby. The third movement has a bluesy, ragtime feel to it and is highly driven by rhythmic motifs and jazzy melodies.

 

 

Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts are made possible through the generosity of the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council and the Union League Club of Chicago.
Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts are presented in partnership with the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and 98.7 WFMT

Don’t miss Rannveig Marta Sarc and Victor Asuncion

next week on the

Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts!

Wednesday July 7, 12:15pm

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