Program notes for Songs for Adam are now up on the Chicago Symphony website.
I had a fine talk on Friday with Brian Mulligan, soloist for Songs for Adam. He likes the piece, which is no small matter; a professional will always do his best, but enjoying what you are doing makes giving your best easier. Brian had smart questions about the poetry for the cycle, and after I talked with him about the issues he raised, I encouraged him to contact the poet herself, Susan Stewart. (You can read the poetry for Songs for Adam in her newest book, Red Rover.) Susan later sent a note to both Brian and me, with a link to the image seen at left of the Expulsion from Eden by Masaccio. You can hear my setting of Susan’s poem about the Expulsion at the audio samples page of jamesprimosch.com.
So the word from Donald Nally – chorus master at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, and director of the superb choir The Crossing – is that Brian Mulligan (pictured at left), the soloist for my new cycle “Songs for Adam” later this month, has a “TRULY BEAUTIFUL” voice. As Susan Stewart, poet for the cycle, remarked on hearing this, “It is hard to beat ‘truly beautiful’ in all caps.” There are plenty of good quotes about Brian at his IMG page, but hearing this description from a colleague means more.