The composition students of Albert Glinsky, Ph.D, are showcasing their works for the very first time in a world premier concert.
“It is the culmination of an entire year’s worth of work by all of our composition students.
“These concerts include mostly world premiers,” Glinsky said.
The concert will take place Saturday, May 1, at 2 p.m.
The students who are presenting their compositions are Christian Goulione, freshman Composition major; Nicholas Nasibyan, sophomore Composition major; Tara Rae, senior Music Therapy major with a concentration in piano; Jeanette Marie Fournier, sophomore voice performance major and Mariana Mathewson, sophomore Music Education major with a concentration in cello and composition.
There is a wide variety of music style and media.
The performers are a combination of Mercyhurst University student musicians, music faculty and guest artists.
Goulione has two pieces he is showcasing.
The first is a Theme and Variations for solo piano and a piano quintet piece.
Theme and Variation is something that the composition students begin with in order to learn how to write a theme, and then write different variations of the theme without straying too far from it.
The theme has been used before in a concert band piece that he wrote. One of the variations is a waltz.
The piano quintet is written for piano and a string quartet. The first movement is in sonata form and the third is in scherzo trio. Nathan Hess, D.M.A., is playing the piano and Joseph Kneer, D.M.A., is the first violin for the quartet.
Nasibyan is also showcasing two pieces.
The first is a sonata for trumpet and piano. The pianist being Hess, of course.
“The entire piece is based off of a person who is stuck and wants to break free from their wanderlust so the first movement ‘Wanderlust’ is very angsty.
The second movement takes an individual on a journey.
Each theme is based on a journey,” Nasibyan said.
This piece was inspired from his frustration of being stuck in Erie for his entire life, expressed through music.
The second movement, “Journey” was inspired from his trip to Sweden and finally experiencing the world.
The three themes within the second movement express each point in the journey.
The second piece is a string quartet piece which is based off of Armenian folk music and is in sonata form. The first movement is a brisk folk dance.
“The second theme is a sweeping melody that was inspired by a piece that my great uncle composed, which is the national anthem for an unrecognized country of Armenian lands,” Nasibyan said.
Rae is a guest composer for this concert because she is taking composition lessons with Glinsky.
She has two pieces that she is premiering.
The first piece is “Love Tells Time” for trumpet and piano. Sierra DeCola, junior Music Education major, will be playing the trumpet.
“I wanted to put time in the title because we have a different perspective on time so it is a philosophical perspective,” Rae said.
The second piece is a Music Therapy project that she has been working on. It is a Programmatic Audiobiography titled “Harmony of Neuroception.”
This is based on a case study created by Craig Stevens, the Music Therapy professor, for his students.
In this biography, there are eight movements that detail the various stages of life.
They represent the psychological mindset that people have in that stage of life.
The stages of life are based on the Erik Erikson “Stages of Development.”
“These are based on my life and what I felt during that time, and it is represented through music,” said Rae. “I made a theme for myself and put that theme into each of the movements.”
She has chosen to showcase the first, second and fourth movements only.
The first movement is titled “Angel Primitivo” (Primitive Angel in Spanish).
“It is in Spanish because the first two years of my life, which is this entire movement, I had a Mexican babysitter which is a huge influence on me. She used to call me her angel,” Rae said.
The second is “The Gymnast.” At that time in her life she was a gymnast.
The fourth movement is “An Rinceoir” which is Gaelic for “The Dancer.”
“I am Irish and I used to take Irish dance during that time so it is written as a jig,” Rae said.
The piece is written for violin and piano. The violinist is Meghan Mooney-Ryan, senior Neurobiology major.
Fournier will be presenting two art songs.
“I had opera workshop and those people were like my family, and four of them are leaving this year, so I am really going to miss them. I wanted to write the art songs for them,” Fournier said.
The first is “Had I the Heavens’ Embroidered Cloths…” a poem written by W.B. Yeats.
She wrote music to the poem for tenor Brandon Miller, senior Performance Voice major.
“There is a B-flat in there just for Brandon because I wrote it for him. It is his favorite note and he usually does not get to sing it,” Fournier said.
The second song is “Mother, I Cannot Mind My Wheel” written by Sappho. She translated it into English.
“When I read it, I just heard the music for it,” Fournier said.
Fournier wrote the music to this poem for soprano Elizabeth Klucher, senior Performance voice major.
“She has an edge to her voice so I wanted to write something dramatic for her,” Fournier said.
Mathewson will be premiering two pieces and a song.
One of the pieces is a solo piano piece titled “Zodiac Variations” which will be performed by Hess.
“All of my life, I have been fascinated by astrology and the stars and the signs of the Western Zodiac,” said Mathewson.
Since it is in a Theme and Variations form, the theme that is presented is varied 12 times, each one representing a different zodiac sign.
“I based them off of people that I know for the signs,” Mathewson said.
The second piece is a piece for cello and piano in which she will be playing the cello and Goulione will play the piano.
It is an atonal, 12–tone piece titled “Pensive.”
“It is a short, evocative piece meant to portray my thoughts when I am in a pensive mood,” Mathewson said.
“It is based on a side of me that I do not show the world,” Mathewson said.
Since there is no tonal center, she relied on intervals, dynamic changes and articulation to vary the piece.
The song cycle will be performed by soprano Shelby Mayberry, Voice major, and Hess on piano.
The song cycle titled “Songs from Chautauqua” is a collection of her original poetry set to music that she wrote after she moved to the state of New York.
“A Summer’s Rain’ was written the summer that my grandfather was dying of cancer,” Mathewson said.
The second song in the cycle, “Daisies,” was inspired by her love for picking daisies and other wildflowers that bloom in June, and the uncertainty of life and love.
“Frozen Pond in Spring” was inspired by feelings of longing, distance and the frigidness of an uncertain love interest.
The final song in the cycle is “Pastel Sunset.”
Do not miss out on being one of the very first to hear these compositions performed for free.