CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Sept. 27, 2001
Baritone Muriello will sing 'beautiful works' for UI faculty recital
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Baritone John Muriello and pianist Shari Rhoads will present
a free University of Iowa faculty recital at 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 11, in
Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.
They will perform the song cycles "Before and After Summer" by
Gerald Finzi and "Calligrammes" by Francis Poulenc, as well as selections
from "Des Knaben Wunderhorn" (The boy's magic horn) by Gustav Mahler.
Shy and retiring by nature, the early 20th-century English composer Gerald
Finzi spent most of his life living in relative seclusion in the country.
He was influenced by his older contemporaries, notably Edward Elgar and Ralph
Vaughan-Williams. In is own music, he developed an intimate style and concentrated
on songs and choral works, with a particular fondness for texts by Thomas
In assessing Finzi's s vocal works, Diana MacVeagh praised "the finesse
of his response to the English language and imagery, (and) his vision of a
world unsullied by sophistication or nostalgia." Writing in the New Grove
Dictionary, she also noted that "Finzi unerringly found the live centre
of his vocal texts, fusing vital declamation with a lyrical impulse in supple,
poised lines. He was little concerned with word-painting, and his songs are
The French composer Francis Poulenc was associated with a group of modernist
composers in Paris in the early years of the 20th century, although he personally
favored a neo-classical style and avoided the more radical forms of musical
experimentation. Consequently his music has always been considered highly
accessible. He wrote songs, piano pieces and several sacred choral works.
One of the most important German poetic texts of the 19th century, "Des
Knaben Wunderhorn" was a collection of folk poetry edited by Ludwig Archim
von Arnem and Clemens Brentano and published 1805 to 1808. The magical evocation
off Romanticism and the German national spirit attracted many composers, including
Robert Schumann, Felix Mendelssohn, Johannes Brahms and Richard Strauss .
Mahler was the composer who turned to the collection most often. Between
1887 and 1901 he wrote more than 20 songs on texts from "Des Knaben Wunderhorn"
in settings for voice and piano or orchestra, and he also used texts from
the collection in his second, third and fourth symphonies, written during
roughly the same years.
A singer whose work ranges from opera and operetta to concert and musical
theater, Muriello joined the UI School of Music faculty in the fall of 1997.
His most recent engagements include performances in the title role of the
UI Martha-Ellen Tye Opera Theater production of Tartuffe in 2001, and the
Riverside theatre's production of "Sweet and Hot." In the fall of
1998 he made his directing debut with the UI School of Music production of
the musical comedy "The Fantasticks," and he directed the School
of Music production of "She Loves Me" in 1999.
Muriello has performed operatic and musical theater roles with Opera Carolina,
the Banff Centre in Canada, L'Opera Francais of New York, Skylight Opera Theater,
Ohio Light Opera and the Southeastern Savoyards of Atlanta. He performed Captain
Corcoran with Skylight Opera Theatre and Marcello in "La Boheme"
for Lyric Opera Cleveland. Other roles have ranged from Guglielmo in Mozart's
"Cosi fan tutte" to Voltaire in Bernstein's "Candide."
He has also performed in concert and recital throughout the lower 48 states,
singing in performances of Vaughan Williams' "Five Mystical Songs"
and "Hodie," Mendelssohn's "Elijah," Carl Orff's "Carmina
Burana" and the Bach Mass in B minor.
He was a winner in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions in North Carolina, in
the Washington International Competition and the Louise D. McMahon International
Song Competition in Oklahoma, and toured two seasons with the Mantovani Orchestra.
Rhoads joined the UI School of Music faculty in the fall of 2000. She earned
her degree in accompanying and has completed post-graduate studies in opera
coaching/conducting at the University of Southern California. Before arriving
at the UI she taught music history at the Musikhochschule (Music conservatory)
in Lucerne and the Conservatory of Lausanne in Switzerland. Rhoads has also
been Kapellmeister at the Lucerne Theater and conductor/coach at the opera
theater in Darmstadt, Germany. She was coach at the Barcelona and Madrid opera
Her accompanying credentials include recitals with Jose Carreras, Luis Lima
and Montserrat Caballe with whom she worked exclusively as coach/accompanist
and orchestrator. She has accompanied master classes with a number of renowned
artists including singer Gerard Souzay, cellist Lynn Harrell and violist William
Primrose, and served as staff accompanist for the Francesco Vinas (Barcelona,
Spain) and Munich International competitions.
The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/.
To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <email@example.com>.