PODCASTs & INTERVIEWS
Composer Garrett Hope started this podcast to help composers achieve their goals and thrive in their art form. Interviews with composers, performers, and creatives serve as masterclasses on building a career in composition and achieving success as a composer. In Episode 55, Soprano and CMASH Artistic Director Ann Moss discusses the importance of meeting deadlines and providing value through partnerships.
In the inaugural episode of exCHANGE, the official podcast of CMASH, John Grimmett speaks with Ann Moss and Isaac Allen (Hausmann Quartet) about Moss' debut album, Currents.
CURRENT works in progress
Finite Differences (2016)
FINITE DIFFERENCES is a long-form narrative song cycle for soprano & string quartet based on the life and work of Ada Lovelace, the world’s first computer programmer.
Composed by Kenneth D. Froelich with a libretto by John Grimmett for soprano Ann Moss and the Hausmann Quartet, FINITE DIFFERENCES received its world premiere performance on October 29, 2016 at California State University Fresno. Additional performances are being scheduled for the 2017-18 season, and plans for a professional recording are in the works.
OUR VISION is to use this work as a platform to raise awareness of the need for greater gender inclusivity in STEM subjects, and to support civic activism that advocates empowerment of women and girls through access to science education.
Widely regarded as the world’s first computer programmer, Ada Lovelace, daughter of the poet Lord Byron, was a brilliant and pioneering mathematician. When young Ada displayed intellectual giftedness at an early age, Lady Byron insisted her daughter receive intensive tutoring in math and science, an education to which few women of her day would have been granted access. Working closely with great thinkers such as Charles Babbage, Ada Lovelace’s writings contain what many consider to be the first computer program—that is, an algorithm designed to be carried out by a machine. Today, a computer programming language is named for her (Ada) and her accomplishments are honored around the world on Ada Lovelace Day, an international day celebrating the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). Ada Lovelace was never afforded a relationship with her father, as he spent the nine years between Ada’s birth and his death living abroad to escape financial debts. Additionally, Ada’s mother kept her from any direct contact with Lord Byron as she feared Ada might take on her father’s “moral weaknesses.” Ada was ill for much of her childhood and died at age thirty-six of uterine cancer, but her life was by no means a tragedy. In FINITE DIFFERENCES, composer Kenneth Froelich and Librettist John Grimmett highlight some of the most poignant moments in Lovelace’s life and career through a series of eight musical vignettes for voice and string quartet. Froelich’s music, much like Lovelace herself, is intimate and fragile at moments, and at others soaring and dramatic. His composition, in union with Grimmett’s libretto, displays the rich and complex range of expression made possible by the musical symbiosis of soprano and string quartet. In constructing the libretto for FINITE DIFFERENCES, Grimmett employed a combination of poetry, mathematical verbiage, and personal-voice prose to explore Ada’s relationship with her father’s poetry, her communications with Babbage, her investigation of algorithms, and her life-long dedication to the concept of “poetical science.”
Regrets Only (2016)
a song cycle for soprano and cello by composer/librettist John Grimmett in collaboration with cellist Emil Miland
REGRETS ONLY was premiered in February 2016 at Mission Blue in Brisbane, CA. Additional performances have been sceduled during the 2016-17 concert season. Plans for a professional recording are in the works.
"One morning over breakfast, Ann and I found ourselves mulling on the myriad forms of written exchanges we circulate, preserve, or perhaps will ourselves to forget, over the course of a lifetime. How do we ever expect to capture human sentiment? REGRETS ONLY is a collection of ten vignettes that coalesce into a larger experience in an attempt to answer that question. One notable aspect of this composition is that both Ann and Emil are treated as singers: the expressive qualities of the cello qualify it far beyond an instrument of pure accompaniment. A true master of her craft, Ann’s innate sense of bringing music and text to life is on full display. Coupled with Emil’s brilliant and sensitive playing, their duet breathes life into the sequence of vignettes I have penned. I hope this approach allows you, the listener, to laugh, to cry, to think, to stand in wonder at what it means to be human." —John Grimmett
Jacob and Rachel (2016-17)
a full-scale oratorio for solo vocal quartet, chorus and orchestra by composer Miriam Miller with original Hebrew text from the Tanakh.
Miriam has completed work on the composition. A demo recording was made of select movements in November 2016. The next stage involves securing grant funding and other resources to launch a full-scale professional performance.
Lament: Verse III (2017)
a song cycle for soprano and string quartet by Bay Area composer Garrett Shatzer (bespoke poetry by Sandra Alcosser) in collaboration with the Hausmann Quartet.
Dickinson Songs (2017-18)
a song cycle on texts of Emily Dickinson by Boston-based composer Vartan Aghababian, in collaboration with pianist Hillary Nordwell.