Summer 2020–our closing chapter

Gerald Seminatore and Taro Wayama, 2017

 

Hello! Thanks for stopping by. This is a valedictory post, shared with some regret.

The Spacious Vision Song Project began in 2013 with a gala concert at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA. The occasion was the centenary of the birth of composer Benjamin Britten. That program subsequently evolved and landed in Los Angeles. Soon thereafter, Spacious Vision became a musical collective bringing together artists on both coasts.  From 2014 through 2018, some twenty different singers and instrumentalists collaborated with me on fifteen different programs. Our repertoire included Elizabethan ayres, German Lieder, French cabaret chanson, American song, 20th-century musical theater, concert repertoire for World AIDS Day, unknown repertoire for the Christmas season, Japanese concert song settings, and even Creole and Haitian folk song.

In 2019, we went on an extended hiatus, as our core group members transitioned into new adventures. These included artist residencies, job re-locations, and the arrival of new family members.

Our hope was to resume collaborations during the summer of 2020 and beyond. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has closed our network of presentation venues on both coasts, and made travel logistics for regional and cross-country collaborations unworkable. It appears these obstacles will persist until a vaccine is widely available. Many small performing arts groups are striving to re-invent themselves and bring their work to online presentation platforms. I have chosen not to attempt this. Regrettably, the five-year endeavor that was the Spacious Vision Song Project has come to an end.

These shared artistic explorations were some of the most satisfying experiences of my creative life. I will always treasure the memories of those performances, and the colleagues and friends who were part of them.

This website will now serve as an archive of our work. Information about Spacious Vision artists and past programs may be accessed via the drop-down menu. Perhaps something here will inspire you in your own efforts at artistic collaboration.

Whatever our circumstances in the coming months and years–may we continue to create opportunities for imagining and enacting a “spacious vision” of our chosen art form, musical or otherwise.

Gerald Seminatore, DMA

 

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FROM BERLIN TO BROADWAY Oct. 17 at the University of Southern California

German pianist MICHAEL SCHÜTZE will be joined by soprano ARIEL PISTURINO and tenor GERALD SEMINATORE for the program “From Berlin to Broadway,” with vocal selections by Ludwig van Beethoven, Robert Schumann, Franz Lehár, Richard Strauss, Kurt Weill, Hugo Wolf, and others.

Weds. Oct. 17, 2018

7:oo pm 
Talk with Prof. Schütze “From the DDR to Los Angeles–An Improbable Journey”

7:30 – 8:45 (approx.)
“From Berlin to Broadway” Concert program

University of Southern California
Max Kade Institute for Austrian-Swiss-German Studies
2714 S. Hoover St.
Los Angeles, CA  90007

This is a free concert; no tickets needed.
However, an RSVP is requested; e-mail kade@usc.edu

Click here to visit the website of USC’s Max Kade Institute.

 

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ARTIST PROFILES

German pianist MICHAEL SCHÜTZE serves as Professor for Vocal Collaboration and role preparation at the Karl Maria von Weber Conservatory in Dresden. He is often engaged for international vocal competitions such as the Robert Schumann Competition and “La Voce” for Bavarian Radio. As a prize-winning solo pianist, Michael learned much about collaborating with singers during master classes with the late Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, and with his professors at the Dresden Conservatory. Today, Michael is regularly invited to serve as an accompanist for master courses and concerts by acclaimed singers such as Olaf Bär, Andreas Scholl, Peter Bruns, Andreas Schmidt, and Henriette Göde. Michael has played concerts with singers from the Dresden Semperoper and other theaters, toured to several European capitals, and made a number of commercial recordings. He also works as a pianist and organist with regional choirs such as the Dresden Chamber Choir.

In the United States, Michael was a Boston Symphony Orchestra Tanglewood Fellow for two seasons. He has been invited for artist residencies and recitals at several schools in the USA, including Brigham Young University, the University of Delaware, the University of New Mexico, and the California State University.

The Los Angeles Times hailed American soprano ARIEL PISTURINO as “an impressive young discovery” following her debut performance as Nancy T’ang in Long Beach Opera’s production of Nixon in China. An advocate of contemporary works and collaborations with composers, Ariel performed the role of the Lover in The Industry’s nationally acclaimed production of HOPSCOTCH, and created the role of Laurie in Mark Abel’s opera Home is a Harbor, released on Delos Records. She also collaborated with Abel on his song cycle Five Rilke Songs for the album Terrain of the Heart, also on Delos. Recently, Ariel created the role of Rosina Brandram in a newly written Gilbert and Sullivan review Hail Poetry with Opera a la Carte. She also premiered a new song cycle, Dewdrops, by Alex Miller. Ariel co-curates the unSung! concert seriesin Los Angeles.

 

 

American tenor GERALD SEMINATORE began his professional musical career with ensembles including the Handel and Haydn Society, the Boston Early Music Festival, and Emmanuel Music. After completing his formal training at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, he went on to operatic engagements with the Chautauqua, Dayton, Glimmerglass, Santa Fe, and West Bay opera companies. Gerald made his European debut at England’s Aldeburgh Festival, and went on to become a member of the solo ensemble at the Dortmund Opera in Germany. He was also a frequent guest artist at the Frankfurt am Main Opera, the Rheinland Pfalz Theater, and the Bremen Opera. Concert performances have included appearances with orchestras and chamber groups in both the USA and Europe. His performances have been critically praised in publications such as The London Times, Opera News, and San Francisco Classical Voice. With pianist Michael Schütze, Gerald has appeared in recitals in Dresden, Paris, and other European venues.

THE STRANGENESS YOU FEEL–Information and Artist Bios


A musical investigation of desire. You may hear an operetta duet, a familiar or unknown musical theater selection, an Italian popular song, or even a country and western trio.

 

Friday, June 29, 7:30 pm
Parish Hall, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church
1020 N. Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA

General admission, no tickets needed. Donations requested, $20 suggested
(Cash or check payable to St. Mark’s preferred)

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RON BARNETT is Director of Music and Sacred Arts at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church, Glendale. In addition to his work as an organist, choir director, and keyboard artist, Ron is active as a composer. His full-length musicals as composer include: Manson’s Girls with book by Scott Guy, lyrics by Mitch Glaser, which won a “Pick of the Fringe” award and the ALNM Award for Outstanding Songwriting during the Hollywood Fringe Festival 2018; A Christmas Carol with book by Barry Kornhauser, published in 2013 by Dramatic Publishing Company, and; When Butter Churns to Gold, which premiered in 2015 at Northern Sky Theatre in Door County, WI. His choral music is published by MorningStar, GIA, and Lorenz. Ron is currently a member of New Musicals Inc. in North Hollywood. Along with lyricist Greg Edwards, he was a finalist for the 2010 and 2012 Fred Ebb Prize.

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BernardoHeadshot3

Venezuelan-American singer BERNARDO BERMUDEZ has recently begun to essay roles and repertoire for the tenor voice. He is a long-time crossover performer with a wide repertoire of songs in English and Spanish. As a lyric baritone, his roles have included Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire, Diego Rivera in Frida, Silvio in Pagliacci, Escamillo in Carmen, Valentin in Faust, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, the title role in Don Giovanni, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Vidal Hernando in Luisa Fernanda, and Schaunard in La Boheme. He participated as a voice fellow in summer festivals at The Music Academy of the West, Opera North, and Opera NEO. Bernardo was a finalist in the Burbank Philharmonic Hennings-Fischer Opera Competition, an Opera Buffs Grant recipient, a semifinalist in the Loren L. Zachary National Vocal Competition, a recipient of the Doug Acker Memorial Vocal Scholarship, and a winner in the Virginia Hawk Vocal Competition. (www.bernardobermudez.com)

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Ariel_pisturino_headshot_web

The Los Angeles Times hailed soprano ARIEL PISTURINO as “an impressive young discovery” following her debut performance as Nancy T’ang in Long Beach Opera’s production of Nixon in China. An advocate of contemporary works and collaborations with composers, Ariel performed the role of the Lover in The Industry’s nationally acclaimed production of HOPSCOTCH, and created the role of Laurie in Mark Abel’s opera Home is a Harbor, released on Delos Records. She also collaborated with Abel on his song cycle Five Rilke Songs for the album Terrain of the Heart, also on Delos. Recently, Ariel created the role of Rosina Brandram in a newly written Gilbert and Sullivan review Hail Poetry with Opera a la Carte. She also premiered a new song cycle, Dewdrops, by Alex Miller.

Ariel co-founded the performance troupe Chamber Opera Players of Los Angeles (COPLA) and the summer concert series unSUNg, focusing on new and unknown vocal music. Highlights of her work with COPLA include the commission and premiere of The Last Silent Voice by George N. Gianopoulos, and performances of Ned Rorem’s Three Sisters who are not Sisters. Other credits include her performances with Long Beach Opera in Ernest Bloch’s Macbeth, the premiere of the electronic opera The Master and Margarita by Russian composer Gamma Skupinsky, and the premiere of the oratorio Circular 14: The Apotheosis of Aristides by Neely Bruce.

Ariel also performs more traditional operatic roles such as Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Fiordiligi (Cosi fan tutte), Micaëla (Carmen), and Second Lady (The Magic Flute). She has also been heard as the soprano soloist in the Brahms Requiem, Fauré Requiem, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Requiem, and Rutter Gloria. (www.arielpisturino.com)

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gerald_seminatore

 

 

The American tenor GERALD SEMINATORE’s first public appearances were in musical theater roles, and as a cover band singer. He began his professional musical career with ensembles including the Handel and Haydn Society, the Boston Early Music Festival, and Emmanuel Music. After completing his formal training, he went on to operatic engagements with the Chautauqua, Dayton, Glimmerglass, Oakland, Santa Fe, and West Bay opera companies. Gerald made his European debut at England’s Aldeburgh Festival, and then went on to become a member of the solo ensemble at the Dortmund Opera in Germany. He was also a frequent guest artist at the Frankfurt am Main Opera, the Rheinland Pfalz Theater in Kaiserslautern, and the Bremen Opera. His operatic repertoire has embraced a wide range of roles in works by Handel, Mozart, Donizetti, Chausson, Janáček, Britten, Stravinsky, Strauss, and others. His concert performances have included appearances with many orchestras and choral ensembles. Gerald’s singing has been recognized with numerous awards, and praised in publications such as the London Times, Opera News, and San Francisco Classical Voice. Recent collaborations include recital appearances with pianist Brian Moll in Boston, and with guitarist Taro Wayama in Los Angeles. Gerald is a teacher of vocal and performance techniques for college age and pre-professional singers and is currently a member of the Vocal Arts faculty at Georgia Southern University.

 

New program for June 29 “The Strangeness You Feel”

After a long hiatus, this is a re-union for Ron, Ariel, Bernardo, and Gerald! They will team up for an offbeat program of songs, duets, and ensembles. You might hear an operetta duet, a musical theater standard, an Italian popular song, or an unexpected surprise. It is more or less guaranteed you won’t be bored.

For more information about the program, click here to view our event listing on Performing Arts Live.

 

 

 

Bernardo Bermudez and Ron Barnett perform “The Girl from Impanema”

Though we are currently on hiatus, we will continue to share audio and video files from our 2016 programs. For “The Not Quite Paris Cabaret,” Bernardo Bermudez and Ron Barnett performed Antonio Carlos Jobim’s classic “The Girl from Impanema,” in both Portuguese and English. (Translation in the video).

Ariel Pisturino and Ron Barnett perform “Bewitched” (Rodgers and Hart)

Though we are currently on hiatus, we will continue to share selected audio and video files from our 2016 programs. From “The Not Quite Paris Cabaret” in Los Angeles, here are Ariel Pisturino and Ron Barnett performing Rodgers and Hart’s classic “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered.”

 

Gerald Seminatore and Ron Barnett perform “September Song” (Kurt Weill)

Though currently on hiatus, we will continue to share some of the audio and video from our 2016 programs. For “The Not Quite Paris Cabaret” in Los Angeles, Gerald Seminatore and Ron Barnett performed Kurt Weill’s “September Song.” Click on the play button below to hear the live audio recording.

 

 

 

 

 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

At this time, Spacious Vision is on hiatus; our members have a lot of other work and projects going on. Our aspiration is to announce some new programs early in 2017; please continue to follow/subscribe to this page for updates.

For our visitors, here are two songs from past holiday concerts. Barbara Kilduff sings Donald Hope’s”Lullay thou little tiny child,” a rarely heard setting of the traditional Coventry Carol. Gerald Seminatore sings “The Oxen” by Ralph Vaughn Williams (poem by Thomas Hardy).

You should not need the SoundCloud app to hear these (though you may see a prompt suggesting this).

We are certainly grateful for all of the interest and support of our audience and page visitors over the past year, and sincerely wish our visitors a joyful and musical holiday season.

 

THE NOT QUITE PARIS CABARET (Los Angeles)

Our June 24 performance of “The Not Quite Paris Cabaret” in Glendale was enthusiastically received by our audience. That put some wind at our backs for our June 29 show for the Music@MiMoDa concert series in Los Angeles.

Tecopa_windmill_mimoda

We are nowhere near the windmills of the Moulin Rouge in Paris. However, we will sing a song about them, and also offer many other classic European and American selections during the “Not Quite Paris Cabaret.”

PRACTICAL DETAILS

Wednesday, June 29, 8:00 pm

Entry through the Paper or Plastik Cafe, 5774 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles.

Open seating, no presale of tickets. You set your donation amount at the door.

Cafe refreshments for purchase, you may bring them into the show with you.

The program is family friendly, but not intended for young audiences.

Scroll down to learn more about the artists.

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BernardoHeadshot3

American born lyric baritone BERNARDO BERMUDEZ started his musical education at The Conservatory of Music Juan Manuel Olivares in Caracas, Venezuela. His many operatic credits include Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Silvio in Pagliacci,  Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Vidal in Luisa Fernanda, Schicchi in Gianni Schicchi, and Morald in the North America stage premiere of Richard Wagner’s Die Feen, as part of Los Angeles Opera’s Ring Festival. Bernardo was a voice fellow at both The Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara California and Opera North in New Hampshire. His singing has been recognized with awards from the the Burbank Philharmonic Hennings-Fischer Competition, the Opera Buffs, and the Zachary Vocal Competition.

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Ariel_pisturino_headshot_webSoprano ARIEL PISTURINO completed her graduate studies at the University of Southern California, where she performed with the Thornton Opera. She has appeared with the Long Beach Opera and other Southern California companies in roles from CarmenDon Giovanni, Nixon in China, and The Magic Flute. Most recently, Ariel appeared in the nationally acclaimed operatic event Hopscotch with the Los Angeles-based company The Industry, and as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with the Redlands Opera Theater. She was a featured soloist on the recent Delos Records releases of “Terrain of the Heart” and the opera “Home is a Harbor” by composer Mark Abel.

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gerald_seminatore

Tenor GERALD SEMINATORE is the founding Director of the Spacious Vision Song Project. He began his musical career with professional ensembles including the Handel and Haydn Society, the Boston Early Music Festival, and Emmanuel Music. Operatic engagements in the USA have included roles with the Chautauqua, Dayton, Glimmerglass, Oakland, Santa Fe, and West Bay opera companies. He made his European debut at England’s Aldeburgh Festival, and went on to become a member of the solo ensemble at the Dortmund Opera in Germany. Gerald was also a frequent guest artist at the Frankfurt am Main Opera, the Rheinland/Pfalz Theater in Kaiserslautern, and the Bremen Opera. His concert performances have included appearances with many orchestras and choral ensembles. Gerald’s singing has been recognized with numerous awards, and praised in publications such as the London Times, Opera News, and San Francisco Classical Voice.

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Taro_portrait_cropped_web

TARO WAYAMA is a Japanese born guitarist and composer. He was the First Prize winner in the 2003 Aron Green/American String Teachers Association Guitar Competition, and the Second Prize winner in the Thailand International Guitar Competition. As a composer, Taro received the award for “Best Original Score” at the Los Angeles Movie Awards for the independent film Anne Jennings. He is an active soloist and chamber musician, and has performed in Japan, Thailand, Canada, and the USA. Taro frequently collaborates with instrumentalists and singers in presenting Classical music from the Renaissance through 20th Century, as well as venturing into Folk and World music. Taro earned both his Masters and Bachelor of Music degrees at the University of Southern California, where he studied an array of master teachers including Pepe Romero and Scott Tennant.

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RON BARNETT is the Director of Music and Sacred Arts at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Glendale, CA. In addition to his work as an organist, choir director, and keyboard artist, Ron is active as a composer and music educator. His choral works have been published by GIA Publications and Morning Star Music Publishers. His score for A Christmas Carol (book by Barry Kornhauser) premiered at the Fulton Theatre (Lancaster, PA) in 2001. Since its recent commercial publication, the show has enjoyed several productions across the United States. A second show, Around the World in 80 Days (book and lyrics by Julianne Homokay) premiered at the Fulton Theatre in 2007. Ron’s new show When Butter Churns to Gold (book by Peter Welkin, lyrics by Randi Wolfe) had its 2015 premiere at the Northern Sky Theatre (Fish Creek, WI). Ron’s orchestrations include the productions of Bojangles (music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Sammy Cahn), Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus (music and lyrics by David Kirshenbaum) and Treasure Island (music and lyrics by Marc Robin and Curt Dale Clark). Sound Design credits include the Off-Broadway production of All Under Heaven starring Valerie Harper as Pearl S. Buck, and Zelda and The Last Flapper, which played in Romania and Hungary as part of the ACTIV-5 International Theatre Festival.