December 6, 2009
Grace Episcopal Church
13 Court St.
Holiday music for brass and chamber choir, with The Spring Tree Quartet (Ralph Dudgeon, Director) and the Arts at Grace Chamber Choir (Marion Giambattista, Director).
Special guest soloist Laura Enslin.
The Arts at Grace concert series will offer its sixth Christmas program on Sunday, December 6 at 3:00 p.m. at Grace Episcopal Church, 13 Court Street in Cortland. On the program will be stirring, seasonal music for brass and chamber choir with a guest appearance by Syracuse soprano Laura Enslin. Ralph Dudgeon will direct the Spring Tree Brass Quartet and Marion Giambattista will lead the Arts at Grace Chamber Choir. Cortland flutist Maria Mucaria also will perform. After the concert, audience members will be invited to meet the musicians at a reception. There is no charge for the event.
The program will include music for brass and choir by Praetorius, Vittoria, and Gabrieli, and other composers of the Renaissance and Baroque periods. Laura Enslin will sing "Jesu Bambino," "I Wonder As I Wander," and Handel's "Let the Bright Seraphim." The audience will be invited to participate in a sing-along of “O Come, All Ye Faithful" and "In Dulci Jubilo" accompanied by the brass quartet.
Described by The Buffalo News as a “perfect vessel of beautiful singing”, Laura Enslin maintains a career as a regional performer and teacher. In September 2009, she performed Cristina Khalo in Robert Xavier Rodriguez’s opera Frida, presented by the Society for New Music in Syracuse. Other recent performances include Mozart’s Exsultate, jubilate with the Onondaga Civic Symphony Orchestra and the world premiere of In Praise of Science, written for her and the Syracuse University Brass Ensemble by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Robert Ward. One of their performances of the work is slated for broadcast on American Public Media’s “Performance Today.” She often sings in operas and is an active oratorio and orchestral soloist who often has performed the music of Vivaldi, Bach, Handel, Haydn, and Mozart, and Mahler. A former faculty member of Nazareth College in Rochester, Laura has taught voice at Syracuse University since 2005. She earned a master’s degree from the Eastman School of Music and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Ralph Dudgeon is a versatile musician/scholar who is known for historically informed performance on period instruments as well as his performances of contemporary repertoire. Dudgeon received his Ph.D. in musicology from the University of California, San Diego. He earned a Master of Arts degree in trumpet performance and a Bachelor of Arts in music education from San Diego State University. Dudgeon has appeared throughout the United States, Europe, Canada, and Mexico as a trumpet soloist and conductor. His debut solo album, Music for Keyed Bugle, was the first full-length recording devoted to that instrument. He has recorded for Musical Heritage Society, Music Masters, Newport Classic, Nimbus, Hyperion, Innova, and Spring Tree labels. For two months a year, he is a research consultant for Instrumentenmuseum, Schloß Kremsegg in Kremsmünster, Upper Austria. He performs annually in Europe. Locally, Dudgeon teaches trumpet at Colgate University. He is Professor of Music at SUNY Cortland where he teaches music history and trumpet. In 2006, Dudgeon received the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities from the State University of New York.
Marion Giambattista received a masters degree in vocal performance at Syracuse University where she studied with Helen Boatwright. While a teaching adjunct at Ithaca College and at Cornell University, Ms. Giambattista gave regular voice and chamber music recitals. She sang solo roles in oratorios with the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra and other area orchestras before moving to Cortland High School where she taught vocal and choral music for ten years. Presently she teaches in the SUNY Cortland Performing Arts department and at Cornell University
The Arts at Grace is a community outreach effort of Grace Episcopal Church assisted by many contributors from the greater Cortland community. The series has been supported by the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York, the New York State Council of the Arts Decentralization Grants, as well as the New York State Music Fund, established by New York Attorney General at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. Admission to all Arts at Grace events is free, but voluntary donations can be made at the door. For further information, call the church at (607) 753-3073.