This past August before leaving for Washington State, I had the good fortune to spend a weekend with a former mentor and now colleague, Dr. Carl Schmidt, and his wife Betsey in their Baltimore home. Carl has always been a revered musicologist, and has published multiple volumes on both Francis Poulenc and Randall Thompson, including a thematic catalogue for each composers. He was also an esteemed professor of music (now emeritus) at Towson University just north of Baltimore, and helped outline the breadth and depth of inquiry that is required in sound music scholarship for so many that he taught. Not only that, but he placed a premium on what was required of a well written research paper or article, with a meticulous scrutiny on grammar and syntax, which would enhance and not undercut one's argument. I should also mention that I am the proud recipient of the MUSIC 302 Outstanding Term Paper Award in the Spring of 2005, as awarded by Carl for my paper "Bruckner's Sacred Music: The Reflection of a Man." It's still one of the best papers I've ever written, and these standards helped to fashion my recently completed dissertation.
During my visit, Carl & Betsey regaled me with stories from their fascinating life including their time at Harvard, his time studying with Nadia Boulanger at Fontainebleau, and his meeting at Poulenc's house. They also shared with me a number of rare scores and manuscripts including those for Thompson's Glory to God in the Highest and A Feast of Praise. These were written for Carl's father Harold, a noted professor and choral conductor at Stanford University. I was pleasantly surprised to be gifted a large collection of Harold's personal choral octavos as well as his score of the Florentine Intermedii 1589, after mentioning this work specifically in one of our late night conversations. I'm very grateful to be carrying a small part of that legacy with me as I embark on my career as a musician and conductor.
We've all had those conversations that just flow freely from one thing to another, right? I feel like this every time I get to catch up with my friend Lydia, host of the podcast "RECORD. TALK. LISTEN." We recently recorded our conversation for posterity and for public consumption. This is the second time I've joined Lydia at the desk, with the first occasion being in 2015. You can listen to our conversation here or using the link below:
I may be older, but I certainly don't feel any wiser! I did, however, have a blast musing about music, the Pacific Northwest, Aretha Franklin, and the power of empathy. Please Enjoy.
I'm proud to share that I have recently earned my Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Conducting (concentration in Choral Conducting) from the University of Washington in Seattle. Granted it did take me a year longer than most, which I suppose happens when one keeps a wall-to-wall schedule during the academic year, but 22nd grade is enough for me! My dissertation, "Translating 'Transition': A Case Study on Performing Seventeenth Century German Church Music through a comparison of Three Settings of Christ lag in Todesbanden," features a newly prepared edition of a work by Sebastian Knüpfer which I hope to perform in the years ahead. I'm very grateful to have had many wonderful opportunities during my four years in Seattle, highlights of which include my associations with Queen City Musicians and Pacific Musicworks, and serving as Conductor of the Campus Philharmonia Orchestra and Associate Conductor of the Chamber Singers at UW. I am immensely proud to be associated with the University of Washington, an institution that has kindled within me a fierce dedication to not only my art, but to those who profess it along with me. In particular, I'm indebted to my mentor, Dr. Geoffrey Boers (seen with me above) for his musicianship, guidance, and vision over the last 4 years.
In advance of our inaugural "Music in the Mountains" Summer Festival, Mountainside Baroque was featured in the May Issue of Early Music America's flagship publication "EMAg." The article highlights our organizations commitment to the budding arts scene in our area, providing world-class music to an underserved population. You can read article in its entirety here.
A little over a week ago, Mountainside Baroque kicked off its 6th season of presenting early music in both the Potomac Highlands and the Baltimore/Washington metro area. For those who aren't familiar, the organization was founded by myself and Dr. Lyle Nordstrom in 2010 as both an artistic outlet, and a service to the arts community in Western Maryland. We've had the good fortune to not only collaborate with world-class musicians on works like Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Telemann's Der Tod Jesu, Handel's Acis and Galatea, Purcell's Dido & Aeneas, and all 16 (well 15, really) of Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber's Rosary Sonatas, just to name a few. Since our humble beginnings, Mountainside Baroque has also taken on an extensive educational outreach campaign, highlighted by our annual Mountainside Baroque Academy for middle and high school age students, held each June in Cumberland, Maryland. It is our hope to continue this growth into the future and run our academy in tandem with an early music festival, held biennially and launching in 2018.
Our new season, Music of Princes and Pauper's Kicked off with an all Handel program featuring arias recalling the rival divas Faustina Bordoni and Francesca Cuzzoni, with the lovely Estelí Gomez and Fabiana Gonzalez in the title roles. The rest of the season features a staged production of John Gay's The Beggar's Opera, Music from Tudor England, and finally Bach's Brandenburg Concerto 4 and Coffee Cantata. If you haven't been to one of our performances, please consider joining us. more information is available at our website. If you please, it would be our delight.
seem truly genuine, something I think his singers appreciated in him. You never had to guess where you stood with Robert Page, and the same was true when we encountered each other for the first time. Maestro Page was an integral part of building the choral program at the Boyer College of Music and for that I owe him a great debt of gratitude. As a dear friend and colleague, who was the first Robert Page Scholarship recipient said, "Robert Page has been released into the universe from his corporeal form, and I bet the chorus angelorum never sounded better."
Welcome to the new internet home of conductor Ryan Mullaney. In the future, this blog will be where you can find the latest news about Ryan, including details on his upcoming projects and the occasional musical musing.
To learn more about Ryan, follow the link below to hear his 2015 interview with Lydia S, host of the podcast Record. Talk. Listen.