Andrew Garland: American Portraits


Dominating the Amazon Opera Chart at Number One for two weeks,Baritone Andrew Garland, accompanied by Donna Loewy, sings songs by some of the most important contemporary composers in America, Stephen Paulus, Jake Heggie, Lori Laitman and Tom Cipullo. This album is a must for lovers of great singing and contemporary American Art Song.

Legendary singer Marilyn Horne exclaimed, “Andrew Garland is a star singer beginning to burst forth. I am his devoted fan and supporter. Don’t miss this new recording!!!”

 

 


Andrew Garland gave a marvelous rendering of my work A HEARTLAND PORTRAIT. His tone was sure and strong and he projected a wonderful air of confidence with fine attention to phrasing and shaping the work.  He captured both the plaintive simplicity as well as the everyday tragedy that comes from the words through the music.   – Stephen Paulus Andrew Garland is a wonderful young singer.  His beautiful voice and deep intelligence result in riveting performances. It’s been a pleasure to work with him.  – Lori Laitman

Andy Garland is the kind of musical champion song composers dream of finding: a true song stylist who is passionate, creative, quick, inquisitive and possesses a beautiful lyric baritone. – Jake Heggie

America 1968was composed especially for Andy Garland and Donna Loewy.  Their performance – so deeply committed, virtuosic, and, above all, true – is how I dreamed the piece would sound.  Andy and Donna are, quite simply, national treasures in the service of American song. – Tom Cipullo

 

5.0 out of 5 stars The Big Beautiful Dramatic Voice of Andrew Garland February 5, 2013

The inimitable Marilyn Horne has said `Andrew Garland is a star singer beginning to burst forth. I am his devoted fan and supporter. Don’t miss this new recording! High praise form one of the greatest opera stars in American history. Talented young handsome baritones keep appearing on the scene – a fact that is reassuring that the art of classical vocal recitals is not past. Andrew Garland has been praised by the New York Times as `distinctly American presence with a “big voice who is an able and comfortable performer, and a sincere one.’ He has appeared on the opera stages across the country, always being lauded as much for his magnetic stage presence as his immaculate singing technique.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Golden Age by Michael Colbruno, Merola Opera Board of Directors February 5, 2013

It’s only natural that baritone Andrew Garland should be singing the music of great American composers like Stephan Paulus, Jake Heggie, Lori Laitmen and Tom Cipullo. He has already sung the music of many of America’s greatest song and opera composers, including stage works by Mark Adamo, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, Lee Hoiby, Stephen Sondheim and Gian Carlo Menotti.Like Mario Lanza a generation ago, or more recently Marilyn Horne, Garland has an amazing ability to communicate clearly and expressively in the English language. Singing in an American dialect requires exquisite attention to tone, diction, form, and rhythm, which you can hear beautifully expressed in Garland’s rendition of these songs.Unlike British English, the language of these composers is more contemporary and points to traditions and innovations that look more to the future than the past. Garland’s mastery of these text make him sound distinctly American. Combined with his vocal artistry, these interpretations are sure to become instant classics of the genre.In this ‘Golden Age of Baritones,’ Andrew Garland is among the most gifted voices I’ve heard in lieder or opera.- Michael Colbruno, Merola Opera Board of Directors

On this recording he collaborates with Donna Loewy at the piano in a lieder recital – only this time the songs are all from American composers – and hence the album’s title AMERICAN PORTRAITS. Included here are four song cycles: `A Heartland Portrait’ by Stephen Paulus, `America1968 by Tom Cipullo) composed and dedicated to Garland and Loewy), `Men with Small Heads’ by Lori Laitmen and `The Moon is a Mirror’ by Jake Heggie. Each of the composers makes a statement about their admiration for Andrew Garland: for example, Jake Heggie states `Andy Garland is the kind of musical champion song composers dream of finding: a true song stylist who is passionate, creative, quick, inquisitive and possesses a beautiful lyric baritone.’

Garland’s vocal production is secure and gleaming throughout his range: his high notes have a particular luster that sets him apart form many other baritones. The songs are easily understood as Garland’s enunciation is clear and perfect. In all this is a beautiful recording of four short song cycles that deserves wide attention. Grady Harp, February 13

5.0 out of 5 stars Bello,bello,bello!, February 7, 2013
By
This review is from: Andrew Garland: American Portraits (MP3 Music)

L’album di Andrew Garland e’ bellissimo, complimenti e auguri– secondo me quest album entusiasma! La seguente osservazione non e’ mia ma vale la pena ripeterla quando si parla di questo album! “Credo che la cosa più importante per un musicista sia quella di trasmettere a chi lo ascolta un’immagine di tutte le cose meravigliose che sente e avverte nell’universo. Questo è ciò che la musica significa, semplicemente una possibilità, tra le molte altre, di dire che viviamo in un mondo immenso e meraviglioso, un mondo che ci è stato donato…”. Bravo, Andrew Garland, bravissimo!!

 

http://barihunks.blogspot.com/2011/05/andrew-garland.html

 

 

http://americanbaritone.blogspot.com/2014/01/review-in-nats-journal.html

 

TEXT FOR SONGS

A Hearltand Portait                poems by Ted Kooser

Premiered January 17, 2006, The Schubert Club, Minneapolis, MN, Thomas Hampson, baritone, Wolfram Reger, piano.

 

Flying at Night  

 

Above us, stars.
Beneath us, constellations.
Five billion miles away,
a galaxy dies like a snowflake falling on water.

Below us, some farmer snaps on his yardlight,
drawing his sheds and barn
back into the little system of his care.

All night, like shimmering novas,
tug with bright streets
at lonely lights like his.

 

At Midnight

 

Somewhere in the night,
somewhere in the night
a dog is barking.

Somewhere in the night
a dog is barking,
starlight like beads of dew
a long his tight chain.

No one is there
beyond the dark garden,
nothing to bark at,
nothing to bark at
except the thoughts
of some old man
sending his memories
out for a midnight walk,
a rich cape woven of many loves swept recklessly
about his shoulders.

Somewhere in the night,
Somewhere in the night,
Somewhere in the night
a dog is barking.

No one is there,
no one is there
except the thoughts and memories of many loves,
many loves, many loves, of many loves, many-

 

An August Night

 

High in the trees,
cicadas weave
a wickerwork of longing, longing.

In the shadows between two houses,
a man peers into a room through the hum of a window fan,
the fragrance of his hair oil
like distant music, far too faint
like distant music, far too faint to awaken,
to awaken the naked girl
on the clean linen of moonlight.

High in the trees cicadas weave
a wickerwork of longing, longing, longing.

 

Porch Swing In September

 

The porch swing hangs fixed in a morning sun
that bleaches its gray slats, its flowered cushion
whose flowers have faded, like those of summer,
and a small brown spider has hung out her web
on a line between porch post and chain
so that no one may swing without breaking it.
She is saying it’s time that the swinging were done with,
time that the creaking and pinging and popping
that sang through the ceiling were past,
time now for the soft vibrations of moths,
the wasp tapping each board for an entrance,

the cool dewdrops to brush from her work
every morning, one world at a time.

 

A Summer Night

At the end of the street
a porch light is burning,
showing the way.

How simple, how perfect it seems:
How simple. how perfect it seems:
the darkness the white house like a passage
through summer and into a snowfield.

Night after night,
the lamp comes on,
comes on at dusk,
the end of the street
stands open and white,
an old woman sits there
tending the lonely gate.

How simple, how perfect it seems.

 

Poems for A Heartland Portrait used by permission of Ted Kooser and the University of Pittsburgh Press from Flying at Night: Poems 1965-1985 (c) 2005 by Ted Kooser University of Pittsburgh Press.

 

Men With Small Heads                   poems by Thomas Lux

Premiered May 20, 2001, Strathmore Hall, N. Bethesda, MD, Randall Scarlata, baritone, Lori Laitman, piano

 

Men with Small Heads

and women with small heads

were everywhere

in my hometown when I was six.

Two men standing on the corner:  small heads.

Small head:  a woman leans to look in her mailbox.

Then there’d be some normal bodies, normal heads.

Not everyone,

in other words, in my hometown

had small heads

but many did, enough

that I’d say to my mother, father:  why

does that man have a small head?

I was glad my parents’

heads were normal-size.

They were glad I (mostly) didn’t ask

why a person with a small head

had a small head

within earshot of that person.  Apparently

these small heads

did not appear so small to them.

They had my eyes checked first.

They took some x-rays of my skull.

Did I have migraines?

Did I have pinhead fears, dreams?

Perhaps it was the angle through the windshield glass?

The local Dr. leaning over me

with his penlight probing

my retina — his head was huge

and the hairs on the back of his hand

were crossed like swords.  Nothing wrong

with my eyes or my brain

that he could tell

but the heads I swore were small

were not, they were just your average heads,

circa 1953,

just your average heads,

in America.

Refrigerator, 1957

 

More like a vault — you pull the handle out

and on the shelves:  not a lot,

and what there is (a boiled potato

in a bag, a chicken carcass

under foil) looking dispirited,

drained, mugged.  This is not

a place to go in hope or hunger.

But, just to the right of the middle

of the middle door shelf, on fire, a lit-from-within red,

heart red, sexual red, wet neon red,

shining red in their liquid, exotic,

aloof, slumming

in such company:  a jar

of maraschino cherries.  Three-quarters

full, fiery globes, like strippers

at a church social.  Maraschino cherries, maraschino,

the only foreign word I knew.  Not once

did I see these cherries employed:  not

in a drink, nor on top

of a glob of ice cream,

or just pop one in your mouth.  Not once.

The same jar there through an entire

childhood of dull dinners — bald meat,

pocked peas and see above,

boiled potatoes.  Maybe

they came over from the old country,

family heirlooms, or were status symbols

bought with a piece of the first paycheck

from a sweatshop,

which beat the pig farm in Bohemia,

handed down from my grandparents

to my parents

to be someday mine,

then my child’s?

They were beautiful

and, if I never ate one,

it was because I knew it might be missed

or because I knew it would not be replaced

and because you do not eat

that which rips your heart with joy.

A Small Tin Parrot Pin

Next to the tiny bladeless windmill

of a salt shaker

on the black tablecloth

is my small tin parrot pin,

bought from a bin,

75 cents, cheap, not pure tin — an alloy,

some plastic toy tin?

The actual pin, the pin that pins the pin,

will fall off soon

and thus the parrot,

if I wear it, which I will,

on my lapel.  I’ll look down

and it’ll be gone.

Let it be found by a child,

or someone sad, eyes

on the sidewalk, or what a prize

it would be for a pack rat’s nest.

My parrot’s paint

is vivid:  his head’s red, bright yellow of breast

and belly, a strip of green,

then purple, a soft

creamy purple, then bright — you know

the color — parrot green

wing feathers.  Tomorrow I think

I’ll wear it on my blue coat.

Tonight, someone whom I love

sleeps in the next room,

the room next to the room with the black tablecloth,

the salt shaker, the parrot pin.

She was very sleepy

and less impressed than I

with my parrot

with whom, with which I

am very pleased.

 

Snake Lake

My friends, I hope you will not swim here:

this lake isn’t named for what it lacks.

This is not just another vacant scare.

They’re in there — knotted, cruel, and thick
with poison, some of them.  Others bite

you just for fun — they love that curve

along the white soft side of your foot,

or your lower calf, or to pierce the nerves
with their needles behind your knees.

Just born, the babies bite you all the same.

They don’t care how big you are — please

do not swim here.  There is no shame

in avoiding what will kill you:  cool pleasure

of this water.  Do not even dip your toes

in because they’ll hurt you, or worse,

carry you away on their backs — no,

not in homage, but to bite you as you sink.

Do not, my friends, swim here:  I like you

living:  this is what I believe, what I think.

Do not swim here — lest the many turn to few.

 

Poems for Men with Small Heads used by permission of Thomas Lux and Houghton Mifflin Company from NEW & SELECTED POEMS, 1975-1995 by Thomas Lux.  ©1997 by Thomas Lux.  All rights reserved.


 

 

Monet’s Water Lilies

 

Today as the news from Selma and Saigon
poisons the air like fallout,
I come again to see
the serene, great picture that I love.

Here space and time exist in light
the eye like the eye of faith believes.
The seen, the known
dissolve in iridescence, become
illusive flesh of light
that was not, was, forever is.

O light beheld as through refracting tears.
Here is the aura of that world
each of us has lost.
Here is the shadow of its joy

 

Hey Nonny No

 

Lord Riot

naked

in flaming clothes

cannibal ruler

of anger’s

carousals

sing hey nonny no

terror

his tribute

shriek of bloody class

his praise

sing wrathful sing vengeful

sing hey nonny no

gigantic

and laughing sniper on tower

I hate

I destroy

I am I am

sing hey nonny no

sing burn baby burn

 


 

 

The Point

(Stonington, Connecticut)

 

Land’s end.  And sound and river come

together, flowing to the sea.

Wild swans, the first I’ve ever seen,

cross the Point in translucent flight.

On lowtide rocks terns gather;

sunbathers gather on the lambent shore.

 

All for a moment seems inscribed

on brightness, as on sunlit

bronze and stone, here at land’s end,

praise for dead patriots of Stonington;

we are for an instant held in shining

like memories in the mind of God.

 

The Whipping

 

The old woman across the way
is whipping the boy again
and shouting to the neighborhood
her goodness and his wrongs.

Wildly he crashes through elephant ears,
pleads in dusty zinnias,
while she in spite of crippling fat
pursues and corners him.

She strikes and strikes the shrilly circling
boy till the stick breaks
in her hand. His tears are rainy weather
to woundlike memories:

My head gripped in bony vise
of knees, the writhing struggle
to wrench free, the blows, the fear
worse than blows that hateful

Words could bring, the face that I
no longer knew or loved . . .
Well, it is over now, it is over,
and the boy sobs in his room,

And the woman leans muttering against
a tree, exhausted, purged–
avenged in part for lifelong hidings
she has had to bear.

 


Those Winter Sundays

 

Sundays too my father got up early
And put his clothes on in the blueback cold,
then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather made
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.

I’d wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking.
When the rooms were warm, he’d call,
and slowly I would rise and dress,
fearing the chronic angers of that house,

Speaking indifferently to him,
who had driven out the cold
and polished my good shoes as well.
What did I know, what did I know
of love’s austere and lonely offices?

 

Frederick Douglass

 

When it is finally ours, this freedom, this liberty, this beautiful
and terrible thing, needful to man as air,
usable as earth; when it belongs at last to all,
when it is truly instinct, brain matter, diastole, systole,
reflex action; when it is finally won; when it is more
than the gaudy mumbo jumbo of politicians:
this man, this Douglass, this former slave, this Negro
beaten to his knees, exiled, visioning a world
where none is lonely, none hunted, alien,
this man, superb in love and logic, this man
shall be remembered. Oh, not with statues’ rhetoric,
not with legends and poems and wreaths of bronze alone,
but with the lives grown out of his life, the lives
fleshing his dream of the beautiful, needful thing.

 

 

 

“Monet’s Waterlilies,” IV from Words in the Mourning Time,” “The Point,” “The Whipping,” “Those Winter Sundays,” and “Frederick Douglass” from COLLECTED POEMS OF ROBERT HAYDEN by Robert Hayden, edited by Frederick Glaysher.  Copyright 1962, 1966, 70.  Copyright c 1985 by Emma Hayden.  Used by permission of Liveright Publishing Corporation.


The Moon is a Mirror                music by Jake Heggie        poems by Vachel Lindsay

 

1. The Strength of the Lonely (What the Mendicant Said)

 

The moon’s a monk unmated

Who walks his cell the sky

His strength is that of  Heaven-vowed men

Who all life’s flames defy.

 

They turn to stars and shadows,

They go like snow or dew

Leaving behind no sorrow

Only the arching blue.

 

2. What the Miner in the Desert Said

 

The Moon’s a brass-hooped water keg

A wondrous water feast.

If I could climb the ridge and drink

And give drink to my beast

 

If I could drain that keg the flies

Would not be biting so

My burning feet be spry again.

My mule no longer slow

 

And I could rise and dig for ore

And reach my father land

And not be food for ants and hawks

And perish in the sand.

 

3. The Old Horse and the City

 

The moon’s a peck of corn it lies

Heaped up for me to eat.

I wish that I might climb the path

And taste that supper sweet.

Men feed me straw and scanty grain

And beat me till I’m sore.

Someday I’ll break the halter rope

And smash the stable door.

Run down the street and mount the hill

Just as the corn appears.

I’ve seen it rise at certain times

For years and years and years.

 

4. What the Forrester Said

 

The moon is but a candle glow

That flickers through the gloom

The starry space, a castle hall

And earth the children’s room

 

Where all night long the old trees stand

To watch the streams asleep:

Grandmothers guarding trundle beds

Good shepherds guarding sheep.

 

5. What the Snowman Said

 

The moon’s a snowball see the drifts

Of white that cross the sphere.

The moon’s a snowball melted down

A dozen times a year.

Yet rolled again in hot July

When all my days are done

And cool to greet the weary eye

After the scorching sun.

 

The moon’s a piece of Winter fair

Renewed the year around.

Behold it deathless and unstained

Above the grimy ground!

It rolls on high so brave and white

Where the cold air rivers flow,

Proclaiming Christmas all the time

And the glory of the snow!

 

 

 

 

 

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