The choral piece commissioned by Counterpoint last spring, “Music,” on the poem by Emerson, was performed three times this summer in the Vermont / New Hampshire region: at the Episcopal Church of St Thomas in Hanover, NH Aug. 2; the United Church of Christ in Waitsfield, VT Aug. 3; and the Cathedral Church of Saint Paul in Burlington, VT Aug. 6.*****The ensemble New Brew (Opera on Tap) performed “A Cuban in Vermont,” Kayleigh Butcher, soprano and Chris Berg on piano, August 2 at Barbès, 376 9th St, Brooklyn, New York*****The Walden Chamber Players presented the World Premiere of my SERENATA for violin and piano, a suite based on old Cuban musical styles at the Andover Newton Theological School Wilson Chapel in Newton Centre, MA, on Sunday, May 5, 2013. The featured violin soloist was Irina Muresanu.
The choral group Counterpoint commissioned a new a cappella work, “Music,” based on a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson, which they premiered April 5, 6, and 7, 2013 in Vermont, at the McCarthy Arts Center in Saint Michael’s College, Colchester; the Unitarian Church in Montpelier; and in the First Congregational Church in Manchester.
Soprano Courtney Ross sang the New York premiere of a song I wrote for her, on Tuesday December 18 in the National Opera Center. Her collaborator at the piano was Alden Gatt. The poem is by Christina Rossetti, and the song is called “When I am Gone Away.”
The Five Boroughs Music Festival songbook, 20 composers writing songs celebrating New York City, after its fabulous opening at the Galapagos Art Space in Brooklyn on October 6, including my song based on Whitman’s “City of orgies, walks and joys!” moved on to Manhattan on Thursday January 12 at 7:30 p.m. at the Baruch Performing Arts Center (East 25th Street between Lexington and 3rd Avenue).
The CD of the Five Boroughs Songbook will also be released officially at the January 12 concert!
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The CINTAS Foundation has awarded me my second Fellowship in Music Composition, (now the Brandon Fradd Fellowship), in a ceremony last December 9th in Miami at the beautiful and historic Freedom Tower. There is a lifetime limit of two awards from the foundation, which was set up by industrialist Oscar B. Cintas to encourage creative artists of Cuban descent who reside outside of Cuba.
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Eleva Chamber Players performed the world premiere of Concertino for string ensemble as part of the year-long celebration of 2011 Year of the Vermont Composer last November 5, 2011, at the Waterbury United Church of Christ and November 6 at the First Church Universalist of Barre, Vermont. You can listen to the Concertino and watch on YouTube with me making my unscheduled conducting debut!
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OUT! The CD “Jorge Martín Cello Music” is now available on Amazon and other web stores. The recording features Yehuda Hanani on cello, Walter Ponce on piano, William Schimmel on accordion and Artie Dixson on percussion. The five works are Three Nocturnes, Hollywood Variations, Recuerda, Ropa vieja, and Four Noble Truths.
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ON THE RADIO! On Vermont Public Radio (VPR) on Saturday August 20, Peter Fox Smith devoted the entire program, “A Passion for Opera,” to Before Night Falls, with Peter asking Jorge questions and playing excerpts from the opera. You can listen to the archived program on VPR’s website.
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Jorge Martín was named “Composer in Residence” by Close Encounters With Music for their 2010-11 season and programmed two works: a revival of their commissioned suite “Ropa vieja” for cello, accordion and percussion, and the world premiere of the cello sonata “Four Noble Truths” on Saturday March 12, 2011 at the Mahaiwe Theater in Great Barrington, Mass. with Yehuda Hanani on cello and Walter Ponce at the piano. And on June 4, 2011 “Ropa vieja” was performed at Tanglewood’s Ozawa Hall in Lenox, Mass.
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On Radio France, Saturday July 23, Marcel Quillévéré devoted his program to music from the Caribbean; Before Night Falls will be featured towards the end of the program. You can podcast the program here.
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Conductor Lou Kosma led “Toccata for Orchestra, City Lights, Country Sun” on February 13, 2011 as part of the Northern New Jersey Youth Orchestra concert.
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Soprano Elizabeth Caballero, with Elaine Rinaldi at the piano, performed the Florida premiere of my song cycle “A Cuban in Vermont” on June 12, 2010 at the First Presbyterian Church of Miami. Read a review in English and another in Spanish.
The Yale Alumni Association, in association with Yale GALA and the Yale Latino Alumni Association, hosted a mini-tour of Yale School of Music students (Vince Vincent, baritone, Chrystal Williams, mezzo, and Eric Barry, tenor) singing arias from Before Night Falls with me at the piano, with discussion, in events in New York City (March 9 at the NYU Tisch Theater), Los Angeles (March 10 in a rehearsal room hosted by the LA Opera) and San Francisco (March 11 at the University Club).
Conductor Lou Kosma, the double-bass player in the Met Opera orchestra who leads the Vermont Philharmonic Orchestra, led the Central New Jersey Youth Orchestra in the Watchung Hills High School auditorium in a program that included “Toccata for Orchestra, City Lights, Country Sun” on January 30, 2010. There were 86 strings, and a total of 135 players!
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Baritone Jonathan Hays and pianist Craig Ketter performed The Glass Hammer again in Harrisburg, PA on Friday November 6, 2009 at Rubendall Recital Hall in Dickinson College. Read the smashing review they got from their performance last year.
Continuum reprised “Conjuration” for piano, violin, cello and clarinet on Sunday October 25 at the Howland Chamber Music Circle in Beacon NY.
The Vermont Philharmonic too celebrated an anniversary, its 50th, by commissioning a new work to celebrate next season in 2008-09. The festive “Toccata for Orchestra, City Lights, Country Sun,” was performed at each of the concerts this season. The World Premiere was on Oct. 18, 2008 in Barre at the Opera House, then on Oct. 19 at the Hardwick Town Hall. Two more concerts featuring the Toccata were on February 7, 2009 (at the Dibden Center in Johnson) and Feb. 8 (at the Barre Opera House). The final two performances were on May 30 at the Elley-Long Music Center, Colchester and on May 31 in the St. Johnsbury School Auditorium.
Mezzo-soprano Desirée Halac will perform my song cycle “A Cuban in Vermont” as part of her recital at the Nicholas Roerich Museum in New York City on Sunday March 29 at 5 p.m. The museum is at 319 West 107th Street.
Cantori NY gave the world premiere performance of “Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking,” a setting of Walt Whitman’s great poem, for chorus, soprano soloist, clarinet, string quartet, piano and percussion on Saturday March 7, 2009 at Holy Trinity Episcopal on East 88th Street in Manhattan. This major work was written to celebrate the group’s 25th anniversary.
Tobermory was produced by the Oberlin Opera Theater in Oberlin, Ohio. The performance took place on January 30 at Warner Concert Hall, Conservatory of Music, Oberlin, OH on a double-bill with Robert Ward’s “Roman Fever.”
The Vermont Symphony Orchestra, celebrating its 75th anniversary brought back the score it commissioned, “Romance,” in a program titled — “Romance” (!) — on their Masterworks Series January 24, 2009 at the Flynn in Burlington and January 25, 2009 at the Paramount in Rutland. For the occasion the VSO asked me to expand the orchestration, and I complied. The work was originally performed ten times around the state as part of the “Made in Vermont” tour, and featured a Mozart-size orchestra. This time Prokofiev’s “Romeo and Juliet” is on the program (“Romance,” get it?!) and although I didn’t use all the instruments Sergei did, I did avail myself of several of them, beefing up the work for a larger hall, and even adding a few measures…. Visit the VSOwebsite, and read the review in the Times-Argus.
Baritone Marcus DeLoach made a demo recording with Warren Jones of the song Marcus commissioned, “Spoken With the Hands,” (poem by Dan Bellm) as a first step towards making the recording of all ten or so songs he commissioned for a performance project. Let’s keep our fingers crossed!
My one-act chamber opera Tobermory was revived at the Boston University Opera Institute last fall on their Fringe Festival. There were four performances at the Studio in the Huntington Theater. This was the second time BUOI has presented Tobermory!
On August 29 at 8 p.m. the Seagle Music Colony presented one performance of a staged workshop production of Before Night Falls with their young artists. The colony is on Schroon Lake in the Adirondacks in upstate New York. To purchase tickets, call 518-532-7875.
Read the SMASHING REVIEW of The Glass Hammer at the Long Leaf Festival in Chapel Hill, North Carolina last June!
Continuum performed “Conjuration” at the Americas Society in New York City (680 Park Avenue, at 68th St.) On May 7, 2008 at 7 p.m. on a program called “The Latin Legacy” celebrating the younger generation of Latin-American born composers in the U.S.
Mssrs. Jonathan Hays and Craig Ketter reprised their tour-de-force performance of the hour-long song cycle “The Glass Hammer” as part of theLong Leaf Opera Festival in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, on June 28, 2008. This is a very exciting young festival that is devoted to new American work in English. Read the rave review!
Close Encounters With Music presented “Recuerda” (for solo cello, world premiere) Saturday March 15, 2008 at 6 p.m. at the Mahaiwe Theater in Great Barrington, MA; and also in Scottsdale AZ on Saturday April 12 at 8 p.m. atTheater 4301. Yehuda Hanani performed the 10-minute work.
“The Glass Hammer” was performed by baritone Jonathan Hays on March 6, 2008 at Brooklyn College, with pianist Craig Ketter.
On November 2: mezzo-soprano Jessica Grigg sang “Frutas” and “Before Words” with Jennifer Matthews accompanying at 46 Barrow Street, the Greenwich House Music School in NYC, on a program of new American art songs, “8 singers, 13 composers, 15 poets and 25 songs.”
Clarinetist Eric Mandat and pianist Jeanne Golan went on a southern tour with “Three Nocturnes” — Sept. 30 at Columbus State University in Georgia, Oct. 3 at the University of Florida at Tallahassee and Oct. 5 at the University of North Florida at Jacksonville.
Close Encounters With Music performed the work they commissioned from Jorge, called “Ropa Vieja,” for cello, accordion and percussion in Great Barrington MA on Saturday March 17 and in Scottsdale AZ on Saturday March 24. The commission stipulated that the music should have a cross-over feel between classical and Latin music.
The Monmouth Civic Chorus performed the world premiere of “Stronger Than Darkness,” a cantata of music from Jorge’s opera Before Night Falls, on Sunday March 18 in Red Bank NJ at the Count Basie Theatre. Barbara Dever, a Met Opera singer, and Angela Meade, who went on to win the Met Auditions, were among the soloists.
Pianist Jeanne Golan has been quite busy with Jorge’s music, accompanying mezzosoprano Mary Nessinger as part of their “Cycles and Sequels” project, for which Jorge wrote the song “La Soga,” and accompanying clarinettist Eric Mandat in “Three Nocturnes,” which they performed in Victoria last October. Jeanne and Eric performed the Nocturnes on Sunday March 4 in Summit NJ at the Unitarian Church. Please visit Jeanne’s website for upcoming concerts including these works, and for updates on the release of the recording with Mary on the Albany label.
Award-winning soprano Elizabeth Caballero sang the West Coast premiere of the song cycle “A Cuban in Vermont” on May 20 in Berkeley, CA at St. John’s Presbyterian Church. Elizabeth has been singing leading roles with the Met and New York City Opera, and will be starring with Florida Grand Opera and Seattle Opera as well. Keep an eye out for this Cuban-American soprano!
The Sequitur concert on January 8 featuring the music of composers awarded a Cintas fellowship included Jorge’s work, “Conjuration” for piano, clarinet, violin and cello. The New York Times published a review on January 10 with a big photo from the performance. The musicians of Sequitur were hugely impressive.