Remembering Albany - A Song Cycle


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Loux Music Publishing

Composer: Mageau - Mary

Instrumentation: Contralto Voice - Treble - Tenor + Piano

Period/Genre: Contemporary


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The Composer: Mary Mageau was born 4th September 1934 in Milwauke, Wisconsin: she has been resident in Australia since 1974. During her early years, Mary began her music study with her mother, Helen Roestel, a well known pianist and teacher. In addition to performing frequently as solo pianists, Mary and her mother also enjoyed playing four hand music and works from the duo piano repertoire. 

Mary received a Master's degree in composition from the University of Michigan. Mary chose composition as her professional focus. 

Her large catalogue includes music for orchestra, chorus, chamber music, ensembles and solo instrumental works including the piano and harpsichord. 

The Poet: Clara (Claire) Finkle was born in the copper mining town of Anaconda, Montana, 13 January 1919. 

It was during one of her summer visits to Finkle relatives in Columbia Country near Austerlitz, NY that young Clara met for the first time poet Edna St Vincent Millay. That and subsequent meetings focused Clara's thoughts opn literature and launched her own career as a poet and song writer. 

Program Notes by Mary Mageau:

Several years ago Dr Joseph Loux sent me a collection of beautiful oems, written by his late mother Claire Finkle Loux. As I was immediately attracted to her lyrical and expressive style of writing, the idea of composing a song cycle was suggested. My first setting of four poems, Seasonal Reflections, was scored for soprano voice, alto recorder and piano in 2003. A second song cycle, Remembering Albany, for contralto voice, alto and tenor recorders and piano was completed in July 2005. The poems all refer to well known places and buildings located in and around Albany, New York. 

The opening song, Night in Thatcher Park, sets a nocturnal mood and depicts an actual park near the city, named after John Boyd Thatcher, one of Albany's greatest mayors. The State Office Building follows, set in a grandiose style and commemorating the Governor Alfred E Smith State Office Building, located in the west of the New York Capitol Building. Deep in Memory is steeped in nostalgia and recalls images of Washington park's well remembered 'lover's lane' visited by so many young couples during the 1930's and 1940's. In conclusions, Our City Albany pays tribute to the vibrant civic and cultural life of New York State's highly esteemed capitol city. 

Score: 23 pages. 3 parts. 2 parts @ 5 pages ea. 1 part @ 23 pages. 

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