October E-News

Greetings from the east coast (I’m on the road!) Excited to share several updates with you:

album art for Canon in D Harp Trio single release

I released a new single! Stream or purchase my Pachelbel’s Canon in D Harp Trio via AmazonMusic, Spotify, AppleMusic, iHeartRadio, Pandora, YouTubeMusic, and many more platforms… (*If you cannot find the track on your platform at your storefront of choice, please check back again soon! Often it takes several days or weeks for new releases to publish across all sites.)

For those seeking copies of my earlier albums (songwriting EPs Ophelia’s Song and Puzzle Pieces plus film-scoring and concert music EP Overture to an Adventure), visit the same platforms listed above for streaming and digital downloads, or order physical copies of CDs here.

Girondines production photos by Julie Smith

On Friday October 21st, Girondines began its premiere weekend run with Wilmington Concert Opera (WCO). Girondines, based on historical fact, is a new opera in English which focuses on the story of French Revolutionaries who presumably knew one another, met in secret before the Reign of Terror, and supported one another during the political upheaval. All six of the revolutionaries are women, and of these, three are guillotined and three live. I composed the opera’s score and crafted electronic soundscapes to intertwine with the music; for this concert opera premiere production, I am the pianist, music director, and technical director. Our stellar cast includes Girondines librettist and WCO Artistic Director and co-founder, Kirsten C. Kunkle as well as WCO Executive Director and Co-founder Marisa Robinson. Kirsten and Marisa originated the roles of Charlotte Corday and Marie Anne Pierrette Paulze Lavoisier, respectively; a full Cast list is included below.

To get a preview of the music itself, you can watch short clips from rehearsals on Instagram in the music section of my channel highlights or on my Facebook page. I expect you will particularly enjoy this video from when our librettist (and amazing soprano!) Kirsten rehearsed one of her arias in the role of Charlotte Corday with piano, violin, and cello earlier this week. Finally, Kirsten and I are so grateful that OperaWire interviewed us earlier this week about writing a feminist opera – hope you enjoy reading the interview! For any folks involved with voice, opera, theater, musical theater, or other performing arts venues, companies, festivals, or university programs, please let me know if you are interested in exploring opportunities to have your own reading, concert, or staging of Girondines.

Our final performance is TODAY at 2pm EST (11am PST)! If you will be attending in person, I look forward to seeing you at Presbyterian Church of the Covenant located at 503 Duncan Road, Wilmington, DE 19809. The performance is free and open to the public (no tickets required). Due to historical content, we recommend the opera for ages 13 and up. If you are unable to see attend this opera concert in person today, our production team will have a live stream option for today’s performance which you can watch via YouTube. Shortly before the show begins, you can tune in to watch from any laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Please be advised that livestream disruptions are possible, but it is our team’s hope and expectation that today’s digital presentation will run smoothly.

*Who’s Who in our WCO Premiere Cast*

Evening Cast: On Friday, October 21st + Saturday, October 22nd at 8pm:

  • Charlotte Corday……………………………….Kirsten C. Kunkle : instagram * web
  • Olympe de Gouges…………………………………Ashley Becker : instagram * web
  • Marie Anne Pierrette Paulze LavoisierMarisa Robinson : instagram * web
  • Madame Manon Roland………………Alyssa Maria Lehman : website
  • Madame Germaine de Staël……………Raffaella Lo Castro : instagram * web
  • Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun……………….Tracy Sturgis : instagram * web

Matinee Cast: On Sunday, October 23rd at 2pm:

  • Charlotte Corday………………………Suzannah Waddington : instagram * web
  • Olympe de Gouges………………..Laurice Simmons Kennel : instagram * web
  • Marie Anne Pierrette Paulze Lavoisier………Alyssa Brode : instagram * web
  • Madame Manon Roland…………………………..Allison Deady : instagram * web
  • Madame Germaine de Staël…………..Kaitlyn Beth Tierney : instagram * web
  • Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun…………………….. Annie Gill : instagram * web
*WCO Premiere Also Features*
  • Pianist/Music Director/TD……………………Sarah Van Sciver : instagram * web
  • Piano understudy……………………………………..Tom Fosnocht : instagram
  • Cellist………………………………………………………..Melissa Brun : instagram * web
  • Cello understudy………………………………..César Colmenares : instagram
  • Violinist…………………………………………………….Thuy Nguyen : instagram
  • Violin understudy……………………………Caroline Stephenson
  • Stage Manager……………………………….Johanna Lynn Jones
  • Photographer……………………………………………….Julie Smith

Wilmington Concert Opera, an exclusively woman- and minority-run company, was founded on principles of diversity, inclusivity, and accessibility.

For anyone seeking a creative collaborator for music, audio, video, web/graphic design, sound, songs, jingles, film, theatre, piano, harp, ukulele, voice, a cappella, mentorship, lessons, etc., I look forward to connecting with you to learn more about how I can help!

September E-News

Greetings from sunny Southern California! Excited to share several updates with you:

October 21-23, 2022, Girondines, a new opera about six women from the French Revolution, will be premiered in Delaware with Wilmington Concert Opera (WCO). WCO Artistic Director and co-founder, Kirsten C. Kunkle, wrote the libretto, and I composed the music (and will be the pianist and music director for this premiere production) and have programmed electronics for soundscapes to intertwine with the music. Our stellar cast includes WCO Executive Director and Co-founder Marisa Robinson originating the role of Marie Anne Pierrette Paulze Lavoisier and Kirsten in the role of Charlotte Corday. I hope you RSVP, follow the project, and learn more via Eventbrite or Facebook. You can RSVP to let us know to look forward to seeing you there *or* you can RSVP that you are Unable to Attend if you want to be kept posted about the project (for instance, if a live-streaming option becomes available for any of the performances, we will be sure to email pertinent information to anyone who has selected the ‘keep me informed’ option.) Kirsten and I were recently interviewed about Girondines for those wondering what to expect at the premiere.

Girondines production photos by Julie Smith

Earlier this month, I began working in a new role at the California Institute of the Arts as a Life and Work Advisor for the Patty Disney Center for Life and Work (a.k.a. CalArts Career Services) within the Institute’s Office of Student Experience. As an artist, educator, and CalArts alumna (MFA Music, Performer-Composer ’16), I am proud to empower fellow CalArtians to bolster and balance creative careers making art, making a living, and making a difference in my new role.

Meanwhile, I continue to write, arrange, record, and produce scores, songs, sound, video, and visuals for film/TV, theatre, dance, concert, opera, studio album, and commercial productions. I perform as a vocalist, pianist, harpist, ukulele player, and conductor/music director and mentor aspiring, emerging, and established artists. It is exciting to build momentum more and more on these fronts in the aftermath of the early days of the ongoing pandemic. For any of you seeking a creative collaborator for music, audio, video, visual/graphic design, sound, songs, jingles, lessons, mentorship, etc., I look forward to connecting with you to learn more about how I can help!

Wishing you and yours an awesome autumn ahead!

Cheers,

Sarah