Juliana Hall

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Juliana Hall (born 1958) is an American composer of art songs and vocal chamber music. She has been described by the NATS Journal of Singing as "one of our country’s most able and prolific art song composers for almost three decades" and, in discussing her 1989 song cycle Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush, the Journal went on to assert that "Even at this very early stage in her life and career, Hall knew something about crafting music whose beauty could enhance the text at hand without drawing attention away from that text. This is masterful writing in every respect."[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Juliana Hall was born in Huntington, West Virginia in 1958 and grew up across the river in Chesapeake, Ohio. Her mother was a pianist and began teaching Juliana piano when she was six years of age. She was active in the family church, where she played, sang, and wrote her first composition. Her grandparents provided inspiration too, exposing Juliana to folk music and poetry.

Hall began her professional studies at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as a piano major (studying with Jeanne Kirstein), but the work she did in a composition for performers class demonstrated her potential as a composer. After Kirstein died, Hall completed the final year of her bachelor's degree at the University of Louisville (where she studied with Lee Luvisi). Upon graduation, she moved to New York City to study piano (with Seymour Lipkin), sing in the choir of Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, and usher at Carnegie Hall.

After several years in New York, Hall went to graduate school at the Yale School of Music as a piano performance major (studying with Boris Berman), but also began formal composition lessons (with Martin Bresnick, Leon Kirchner, and Frederic Rzewski). At the urging of her composition teachers, she shifted her focus from piano to composition and in 1987 earned her master's degree. She then went to Minneapolis to finish her formal composition studies (with Dominick Argento).[3][4][5]

Professional life[edit]

While a student of Argento, Hall received her first commission in 1987 (from the Schubert Club of Saint Paul, Minnesota) for a song cycle – Night Dances – for soprano Dawn Upshaw, who with pianist Margo Garrett, premiered the work in December of that year.[6] After a performance of the cycle at the Library of Congress in 1988, Joseph McLellan of The Washington Post wrote that, "Juliana Hall used every trick in the book – melodic and half-spoken, tonal and nontonal. She did this to enliven the words by Emily Dickinson, Sylvia Plath, Emily Bronte , Edna St. Vincent Millay and Elizabeth Bishop, to deepen the impact of the texts dealing with night and sleep, to explore the implicit emotions in sounds that ranged from a whisper to a scream, with the piano supplying illustrations and comment and engaging in vivid dialogue."[7]

In 1989 Hall was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in Music Composition.[8] Since that time Hall has composed works for many singers, among them acclaimed countertenors Brian Asawa and Charles Humphries; mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe; and baritone David Malis. She has also composed several chamber works for the vocal duo of Korliss Uecker and Tammy Hensrud known as Feminine Musique.[9][10][11][12][13]

Hall was awarded the 2017 Sorel Commission from the American art song training program SongFest for a soprano song cycle, When the South Wind Sings.[14] She was later invited to be the 2018 Guest Composer at the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar at SUNY Potsdam,[15][16] and was also invited to be the 2018 Resident Composer at CollabFest at the University of North Texas.[17]

During her professional career, Hall's music has been performed in dozens of countries around the world. In addition to the Library of Congress, other performances have been presented at venues including the 92nd Street Y, Ambassador Auditorium, Corcoran Gallery of Art, the French Library, Herbst Theatre, Morgan Library & Museum, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, and Wigmore Hall. Festival appearances include the Buxton International Festival, London Festival of American Music, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Ojai Music Festival, Oxford Lieder Festival, Salisbury International Arts Festival, and Tanglewood Music Center.

Hall's works have been broadcast over the BBC and NPR radio networks, classical stations including WQXR (New York) and WGBH (Boston), and overseas stations including Radio France (Paris), Radio Monalisa (Amsterdam), and Radio Horizon (Johannesburg). Commercial recordings have been issued on the Albany, MSR Classical, Navona, Stone Records, and Vienna Modern Masters labels.[18]

Juliana Hall's art song catalogue was signed by publisher E. C. Schirmer in 2017. One earlier song cycle, Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush, was published by Boosey & Hawkes in 1995.[19]

Vocal works[edit]

  • And It Came To Pass (2018) – canticle for countertenor and piano on the Nativity Story from the Biblical Gospel of Luke
  • A Northeast Storm (2015) – song for soprano and piano on a letter of Emily Dickinson
  • A World Turned Upside Down (2016) – 7 songs for soprano and piano on excerpts from The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
  • Bells and Grass (1989) – 5 songs for soprano and oboe on poems by Walter de la Mare
  • Cameos (2017) – 6 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Molly Fillmore
  • Christina's World (2016) – 5 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Christina Rossetti
  • Christmas Eve (2013) – song for soprano and organ on the poem by Christina Rossetti
  • Death's Echo (1992) – 5 songs for baritone and piano on poems by W. H. Auden
  • Dreams in War Time (2003) – 7 songs for mezzo-soprano and piano on poems by Amy Lowell
  • Fables for a Prince (1990) – 6 songs for soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, baritone, and piano on fables of Jean de La Fontaine
  • Great Camelot (2016) – 3 songs for tenor and piano on poems by Sameer Dahar
  • How Do I Love Thee? (2015) – 5 songs for soprano and piano by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  • I Can No Other Answer Make (2016) – song for tenor and piano on excerpts from Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare
  • I Know a River Wide and Deep (2017) – song for soprano and piano on a poem by Amelia Forrester Petersen
  • In Closer Bonds of Love to Thee (2017) – song for soprano and piano on a hymn text by Fanny J. Crosby
  • In Reverence (1985) – 5 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Emily Dickinson
  • In Spring (2016) – 3 songs for unaccompanied solo soprano on poems by E. E. Cummings
  • Julie–Jane (2007) – 5 songs for baritone and piano on poems by Thomas Hardy
  • Letters from Edna (1993) – 8 songs for mezzo-soprano and piano on letters of Edna St. Vincent Millay
  • Love's Pilgrimage (2000) – 5 songs for baritone and piano on sonnets by William Shakespeare
  • Lovestars (1989) – 5 songs for soprano, cello, and piano on poems by E. E. Cummings
  • Music Like a Curve of Gold (2015) – 2 songs for soprano, mezzo-soprano, and piano on poems by Sara Teasdale
  • Night Dances (1987) – 6 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Elizabeth Bishop, Emily Brontë, Emily Dickinson, and Edna St. Vincent Millay
  • Of That So Sweet Imprisonment (2017) – 7 songs for contralto and piano on poems by James Joyce
  • O Mistress Mine (2015) – 12 songs for countertenor and piano on texts from plays of William Shakespeare
  • One Art (2003) – 4 songs for mezzo-soprano and cello on poems by Elizabeth Bishop
  • Peacock Pie (1992) – 20 songs for tenor and piano on poems by Walter de la Mare
  • Propriety (1992) – 5 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Marianne Moore
  • Roosters (2016) – setting for soprano, mezzo-soprano, and piano of the poem by Elizabeth Bishop
  • Seeker of Truth (2006) – 14 songs for soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, alto and baritone saxophones (one player), cello, and child pianist on poems by E. E. Cummings
  • Sentiment (2017) – monodrama for unaccompanied solo soprano on texts by Caitlin Vincent
  • Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush (1989) – 7 songs for soprano and piano on letters of Emily Dickinson
  • The Bells (2014) – setting for soprano and piano of the poem by Edgar Allan Poe
  • Theme in Yellow (1990) – 6 songs for mezzo-soprano and piano on poems by Amy Lowell, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Carl Sandburg
  • The Holy Sonnets of John Donne (2013) – 9 songs for tenor and piano on sonnets of John Donne
  • The New Colossus (2018) – setting for baritone and piano of the poem by Emma Lazarus
  • The Poets (2015) – 5 songs for bass and piano on poems by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • The Poet's Calendar (1999) – 12 songs for tenor and piano on poems by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • The Walrus and the Carpenter (1992) – setting for soprano, oboe, clarinet, and bassoon of the poem by Lewis Carroll
  • Through the Guarded Gate (2018) – 5 songs for mezzo-soprano and piano on poems by Margaret Widdemer
  • To Meet A Flower (2009) – 3 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Emily Dickinson
  • Upon This Summer's Day (2009) – 3 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Emily Dickinson
  • When the South Wind Sings (2017) – 7 songs for soprano and piano on poems by Carl Sandburg
  • Winter Windows (1989) – 7 songs for baritone and piano on poems by Walter de la Mare, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Percy Byssche Shelley

Instrumental Works[edit]

  • A Certain Tune (2009) – 5 songs for English horn solo, based on poems by Sara Teasdale
  • Crucifixus (2010) – piece for cello and piano, based on the story of the Passion from the Gospels of Luke, Mark and Matthew
  • Ding Dong Bell (2007) – 8 epitaphs for cello solo, based on epitaphs by Walter de la Mare
  • Dream of the Rood (2012) – piece for cello and piano, based on an anonymous 7th-century Anglo-Saxon poem
  • Evening Sun (2015) – short piece for piano solo
  • Orpheus Singing (2010) – 5 songs for alto saxophone and piano, based on sonnets by Rainer Maria Rilke
  • Rilke Song (2013) – song for English horn and piano, based on a sonnet by Rainer Maria Rilke
  • The Ballad of Barnaby (2010) – ballad for cello solo, based on the poem by W. H. Auden
  • Two-Bit Variations (2010) – variations for piano solo on the theme “Shave and a Haircut, Two Bits!”

Bibliography[edit]

  • Alexandre, Ivan A. "Hommage à Brian Asawa, 1966–2016" Remembrance in Diapason Magazine (April 20, 2016; updated on March 9, 2017).
  • Berg, Gregory. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall." Review in Journal of Singing Volume 74, No. 2, (2017): 256–258.
  • Brezna, Lenena. "An Analysis of Juliana Hall’s NIGHT DANCES (1987)" DMA Dissertation (2016) The University of Memphis (Memphis, TN).
  • Buckland, Monica. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" Review in Journal of the IAWM Volume 24, No. 1, (2018): 24–25.
  • Clarke, Colin. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" Review in Fanfare Magazine (May/June 2017).
  • Cummings, Robert. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" Review on ClassicalNet (2017).
  • Douglas, Jenna. "Talking with Composers: Juliana Hall" Interview in Schmopera Magazine (July 3, 2017).
  • Eberle, Katherine. "From Words to Music: Three Song Cycles of Juliana Hall" Article in Journal of Singing Volume 71, No. 5, (2013): 573–585.
  • _____. "Juliana Hall: A Remarkable Art Song Composer" Article in Journal of the IAWM Volume 19, No. 1, (2013): 21–23.
  • _____. "Juliana Hall’s Three Song Cycles for Mezzo Soprano" Presentation (2013) at the Women Composers Festival of Hartford (Hartford, CT).
  • _____. "Juliana Hall’s Voice: Song Cycles of Broken Barriers" Presentation (2013) at the Athena Festival: Murray State University (Murray, KY).
  • Faires, Robert. "One Ounce Opera’s Second Fresh Squeezed Ounce of Art Song" Review in The Austin Chronicle (November 10, 2017).
  • Gelfand, Janelle. "Two musical startups take root in Cincinnati" Review on Cincinnati.com (April 27, 2017).
  • Hinkle, Ellen. "Juliana Hall, American Art Song Composer" Interview in Modern Singer Magazine (August 7, 2017).
  • Hogan, Hallie Coppedge. "Women of Letters: a Presentation of Art Songs inspired by the Personal Correspondence of Women" DMA Dissertation (2002) The University of Illinois (Urbana, IL).
  • _____. "Historical Storytelling Through the Musical Interpretation of Personal Letters" Poster Session (2016) at the College Music Society Mid-Atlantic Chapter 2016 Conference: Winthrop University (Rock Hill, SC).
  • Johnson, Sharon. "Veriditas: Enlivened Creativity in selected works of Judith Zaimont, Libby Larsen and Juliana Hall" DMA Dissertation (2009) University of Minnesota (Minneapolis, MN).
  • McLellan, Joseph. "Dawn Upshaw at the Library of Congress" Review in Washington Post (December 12, 1988).
  • Newsome, Joseph. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" Review on Voix de Arts (April 24, 2017).
  • Panizza, Nicole. "Reading in The Dark: A Performer’s Encounter With Emily Dickinson and her American Musical Interpreters" DMA Dissertation (2012) Royal College of Music (London, UK).
  • _____. "Reading in The Dark: A Performer’s Encounter With Emily Dickinson and her American Musical Interpreters" Lecture-Recital (2015) at PERFORMA – Conference in Music Performance Studies: University of Aveiro (Aveiro, PT).
  • Parrott, Mackenzie Powell. "Juliana Hall's UPON THIS SUMMER'S DAY" Master's Degree Dissertation (2016) The University of Texas at San Antonio (San Antonio, TX).
  • Reinthaler, Joan. "Contemporary Music Forum at the Corcoran Gallery" Review in Washington Post (March 20, 1995).
  • Roland-Silverstein, Kathleen. "Making Sweet Music Together: Ensemble Singing for Duets, Trios, and Quartets. Fables for a Prince, by Juliana Hall" Review in Journal of Singing Volume 74, No. 1, (2017): 124.
  • _____. "Night Dances and O Mistress Mine, by Juliana Hall" Review in Journal of Singing Volume 73, No. 3, (2017): 349–350.
  • Rosenberg, Donald. "Love’s Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" Review in Gramophone Magazine (May, 2017).
  • Ruhe, Pierre. "Contemporary Music Forum: American Music at the Corcoran Gallery" Review in Washington Post (December 18, 1999).
  • Twining, Todd. "Discovering Hidden Figures: A unique history project challenges seventh grade music class students to discover the “hidden figures” of the classical music world." Article in The Kapralova Society Journal Volume 16, Issue 2 (Fall 2018): 17.
  • Woolfe, Zachary. "A Brand-New Tradition: Bard College Singers and Composers at the Morgan Library" Review in New York Times (February 22, 2013).

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Review of "Love's Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall."". 74 (2). 2017: 256–258. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  2. ^ "Review of "Love's Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" (PDF). NATS Article re-posted at Juliana Hall, American Art Song Composer.
  3. ^ "Juliana Hall Composer Profile". Sparks & Wiry Cries.
  4. ^ "Review of "Love's Signature: Songs for Countertenor and Soprano by Juliana Hall" (PDF). NATS Article re-posted at Juliana Hall, American Art Song Composer.
  5. ^ "Beauty, Truth, and Insight through Song: Interview with Juliana Hall". "In Tune" ECS Publishing Group Blog and News.
  6. ^ "Commissions". Schubert Club of Saint Paul, MN.
  7. ^ "Music Review: Dawn Upshaw at the Library of Congress". The Washington Post.
  8. ^ "Juliana Hall, Fellowship in Music Composition". John Simon Guggenheim Foundation.
  9. ^ "Hommage à Brian Asawa, 1966-2016". Diapason.
  10. ^ "A contemporary Christmas from Britten - December 12th 2018 7pm". "Ware is the Music Concert Series".
  11. ^ "Of That So Sweet Imprisonment". Juliana Hall, American Art Song Composer.
  12. ^ "Winter Windows". Juliana Hall, American Art Song Composer.
  13. ^ "World Premiere of Juliana Hall's "The Roosters"". Feminine Musique.
  14. ^ "SongFest awards 2017 Sorel Commission to art-song champion & composer Juliana Hall!". SongFest.
  15. ^ "Past Seasons, 2018 Guest Composer". Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar.
  16. ^ "Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar Features Juliana Hall". "In Tune" ECS Publishing Group Blog and News.
  17. ^ "2018 CollabFest Faculty". Collaborative Piano, College of Music, University of North Texas.
  18. ^ "Juliana Hall". Song of America, Hampsong Foundation.
  19. ^ "E. C. Schirmer signs Juliana Hall Art Song Catalog". ECS Publishing Group.