Jay Wilcox asked me last June to give a recital at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Burke, Virginia. Jay is the music director at St. Andrew’s, and he and I go back at least 12 or so years playing music together. I said “Yes!,” of course, and that I wanted to present a whole recital of soprano and trumpet music, with Tia Wortham, as soprano. But I also told Jay that I wanted this to become the springboard for recording project. A serious one.
So, for the past five months, I have been sifting through repertoire that has hardly been (or not at all) recorded. Since it is my recital, at least some of the music should be on historic, or “period,” instruments (of course!). Also, to keep scheduling and budget headaches down, I wanted to limit the performers to myself (modern trumpet, baroque trumpet, flugelhorn, and cornetto), Tia (soprano), Jay (keyboard), and Doug Poplin (cello).
In addition, I wanted to write some original arias for Tia and me . The first attempt was last summer with a fairly short aria based upon text from T. S. Eliot’s “Little Gidding.” I later found out that the Eliot Estate does not wish to have his poetry set to music (and I wonder about Cats, the broadway musical!). So, I include here in this post a video of one of the two performances of this piece with Eliot’s poetry, with apologies to the Eliot Estate. John Healey is the pianist.