Friday 22 May 2020

Jake Heggie and Jamie Barton present Unexpected Shadows



We are delighted to announce that award-winning mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton makes her PENTATONE debut, presenting a recital of songs by American composer Jake Heggie, with the composer at the piano.

 

A Celebration of Powerful, Exceptional Women

Jamie BartonJake HeggieMatt Haimovitz

UNEXPECTED SHADOWS is a celebration in words and music of powerful, exceptional women. The program contains four song cycles, a standalone art song, and an opera aria.
 
The Work at Hand, set to poetry of the late Laura Morefield, contemplates the brave fight against cancer that she, and millions like her, went through. Matt Haimovitz’ cello playing adds an extra layer to this profoundly moving song cycle. Iconic Legacies, with texts by Gene Scheer, offers four portraits of remarkable First Ladies. Scheer also wrote texts for Statuesque, inspired by five iconic sculptures of women and the deeply human stories within them. Of Gods & Cats, based on poetry by Gavin Dillard, offers playful parodies on religious allegories. Music, set to a text by Sister Helen Prejean, addresses the transformative, healing, and humanizing power of music, while the “Ice Cube Aria” from Heggie’s opera If I Were You, with a libretto by Gene Scheer, shows the female demon Brittomara reflecting on the delicious predictability of human nature.
 
Award-winning mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton, just named BBC Music Magazine’s 2020 Personality of the Year, makes her PENTATONE debut. Jake Heggie has a vast discography with the label, including the opera It’s a Wonderful Life (2017) and song recital albums by Melody Moore, Lisa Delan and Joyce DiDonato. The same applies to Matt Haimovitz, who has released several albums on PENTATONE, from contemporary classical and jazz and rock covers to Bach’s complete cello suites.
 

This album will be released as 1 CD and in digital formats for streaming and high-resolution downloads. (Article number: PTC 5186836)

ALBUM WORLDWIDE RELEASE DATE: 
18 September 2020
 
 
DIGITAL PRE-RELEASES

PTC 5186838
 
Release date: March 6, 2020

Released as digital EP for streaming and downloads. 

LISTEN NOW

 

PTC 5186847
 
Release date: May 22, 2020

Released as digital EP for streaming and downloads. 

LISTEN NOW

 

PTC 5186848
 
Release date: July 3, 2020

Released as digital EP for streaming and downloads. 

 

 

PTC 5186849
 
Release date: September 4, 2020

Released as digital EP for streaming and downloads. 

 

 

 

 

Video link: https://youtu.be/CHqrh1Dl4oA

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Jamie Barton

Critically acclaimed by virtually every major outlet covering classical music, American mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton is increasingly recognized for how she uses her powerful instrument offstage – lifting up women, queer people, and other marginalized communities. Her lively social media presence on Instagram and Twitter (@jbartonmezzo) serves as a hub for conversations about body positivity, diet culture, social justice issues, and LGBTQ+ rights. She is proud to volunteer with Turn The Spotlight, an organization working to identify, nurture, and empower leaders among women and people of color – and in turn, to illuminate the path to a more equitable future in the arts.

Winner of the Beverly Sills Artist Award and Richard Tucker Award, both Main and Song Prizes at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and a Grammy nominee, Ms. Barton has been described by The Guardian as “a great artist, no question, with an imperturbable steadiness of tone, and a nobility of utterance that invites comparison not so much with her contemporaries as with mid-20th century greats such as Kirsten Flagstad.” Ms. Barton’s iconic performance at the 2019 Last Night of the Proms, along with her advocacy for diversity and representation, earned her BBC Music Magazine’s 2020 Personality of the Year Award.

Ms. Barton’s operatic engagements have included appearances with many of the world’s most-loved opera houses. In addition to a title role debut as Orfeo in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice at the Metropolitan Opera, she has recently performed as Léonor (La favorite) at Teatro Real Madrid and Houston Grand Opera; Adalgisa (Norma) with the Metropolitan Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Los Angeles Opera, and San Francisco Opera; Fricka and Waltraute (Wagner’s Ring cycle) at Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, and Washington National Opera; Azucena (Il trovatore) at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Bayerische Staatsoper, and Cincinnati Opera; Princess Eboli (Don Carlo) at Washington National Opera and Deutsche Oper Berlin; Giovanna Seymour (Anna Bolena) at Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Met; Sara (Roberto Devereux) at San Francisco Opera; Cornelia (Giulio Cesare) at Oper Frankfurt; Jezibaba (Rusalka) at San Francisco Opera and the Met; Fenena at Seattle Opera and Royal Opera House Covent Garden; and Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking) at her hometown opera company, Atlanta Opera. Future seasons include a debut at Festival d'Aix-en-Provence and returns to Dallas Opera, San Francisco Opera, Atlanta Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Bayerische Staatsoper, Teatro Real Madrid, and the Metropolitan Opera.

The winner of a 2014 International Opera Award and 2014 Marian Anderson Award, Ms. Barton has appeared in concert with the New York Philharmonic (Das Rheingold), Philadelphia Orchestra (Handel Messiah), London Symphony Orchestra (Bernstein Jeremiah Symphony), Toronto Symphony Orchestra (Verdi Requiem, Mahler 3rd Symphony), Oulu Symphony Orchestra (Mahler Rückert-Lieder), Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (Elgar Sea Pictures, Verdi Requiem), Baltimore Symphony (Mahler 3rd Symphony), Iceland Symphony Orchestra (Brahms Alto Rhapsody, Mahler 3rd Symphony), Royal Opera House Covent Garden (Verdi Requiem), and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra for the world premiere of Jake Heggie’s The Work at Hand.

Praised by Gramophone as having “the sort of instrument you could listen to all day, in any sort of repertoire,” Ms. Barton has appeared with Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax at Tanglewood, and in recital across the U.S. and U.K., including tours with pianists Kathleen Kelly, Bradley Moore, and James Baillieu, with appearances at Ann Arbor’s University Musical Society, Baylor Distinguished Artist Series, Carnegie Hall, Celebrity Series of Boston, Kennedy Center, Princeton University Concerts, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Royal Welsh College, San Francisco Performances, Toronto Summer Music Festival, Vocal Arts DC, and Wigmore Hall.

Winner of the 2018 BBC Music Magazine Vocal Award, Ms. Barton's debut solo album, All Who Wander, featuring songs by Mahler, Dvorak, and Sibelius, was also shortlisted by the International Classical Music Awards and Gramophone Classical Music Awards.

 

https://www.jamiebartonmezzo.com/

https://www.facebook.com/jbartonmezzo

https://twitter.com/jbartonmezzo

https://www.instagram.com/jbartonmezzo/

 

About Jake Heggie

Jake Heggie is the American composer of the operas Dead Man Walking (libretto by Terrence McNally), Moby-Dick (libretto by Gene Scheer), It’s A Wonderful Life (Scheer), If I Were You (Scheer), Great Scott (McNally), Three Decembers (Scheer), For a Look or a Touch (Scheer) and Two Remain (Scheer), among others. In addition to eight full-length operas and several one-acts, Heggie has composed nearly 300 art songs, as well as concerti, chamber music, choral and orchestral works. He recently completed INTONATIONS: Songs from the Violins of Hope (texts by Gene Scheer), a dramatic song cycle featuring mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke and violinist Daniel Hope, recorded live for PENTATONE. The label will release a new all-Heggie recording titled Unexpected Shadows, featuring mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton and cellist Matt Haimovitz. Upcoming is Songs for Murdered Sisters, a song cycle to new poems by Margaret Atwood, composed for baritone Joshua Hopkins. Heggie is also at work with Gene Scheer on Intelligence, a new opera commissioned by the Houston Grand Opera for the 2021/22 Season.

Heggie’s operas – most created with Terrence McNally or Gene Scheer – have been produced on five continents. Last year, Dead Man Walking received its 70th international production at the Israeli Opera in Tel Aviv, the first American opera to be produced by that company. New York’s Metropolitan Opera has announced Dead Man Walking as part of its 2020/21 season in a bold new production by director Ivo van Hove, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin. The thrilling Met cast stars mezzos Joyce DiDonato and Susan Graham, soprano Latonia Moore and baritone Etienne Dupuis. Since its San Francisco Opera premiere in 2000, Dead Man Walking has been performed more than 300 times and recorded live twice. In addition to major productions throughout the USA, Dead Man Walking has been seen in Dresden, Vienna, London, Madrid, Sydney, Adelaide, Calgary, Montreal, Cape Town, Dublin, Copenhagen, and Malmö. Moby-Dick has received 12 international productions since its 2010 premiere at The Dallas Opera; San Francisco Opera’s production was telecast as part of Great Performances’ 40th anniversary season and released on DVD (EuroArts). It is also the subject of a book by Robert Wallace, titled Heggie & Scheer’s Moby-Dick – A Grand opera for the 21st Century (UNT Press). Three Decembers, Heggie & Scheer’s three-character chamber opera, has received 30 international productions. Great Scott was a 2019 Grammy Award nominee for Best New Composition, Classical.

Jake Heggie has collaborated as composer and pianist with some of the world’s most loved singers, including sopranos Kiri Te Kanawa, Renée Fleming, Ailyn Pérez, Heidi Stober, Karen Slack, Talise Trevigne, Kristin Clayton, Ann Moss, Caitlin Lynch and Lisa Delan; mezzo-sopranos Joyce DiDonato, Susan Graham, Frederica von Stade, Jamie Barton, Suzanne Mentzer, Joyce Castle, Elise Quagliata, Maria Zifchak, Catherine Cook and Sasha Cooke; Broadway stars Patti LuPone and Audra McDonald; tenors Ben Heppner, William Burden, Stephen Costello, Jay Hunter Morris, Paul Groves, Nick Phan and Jonathan Blalock; baritones Keith Phares, Joshua Hopkins, Morgan Smith, Rod Gilfry, Bryn Terfel and Michael Mayes. He has also worked closely with extraordinary instrumentalists such as flutists Carol Wincenc and Lorna McGhee; violinists Leila Josefowicz, Aloysia Friedmann and Dawn Harms; cellists Matt Haimowitz, Emil Miland and Anne Martindale-Williams; pianists Jon Kimura Parker and Gustavo Romero; as well as the Miró Quartet, Brentano String Quartet and the Alexander String Quartet. Directors who have championed his work include Leonard Foglia, Joe Mantello, Francesca Zambello and Jack O’Brien. All of Heggie’s major opera premieres have been led by Patrick Summers; he has also worked closely with conductors John DeMain, Joseph Mechavich and Nicole Paiement.

Jake Heggie lives in San Francisco with his husband, Curt Branom.

https://jakeheggie.com/

 

Photo by James Niebuhr