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Programming Vocal Music

An attempt to communicate lyrical character through the trumpet

Recently I've had the pleasure of programming a recital. While looking for something more upbeat (I'm a sucker for slow, beautiful pieces), I kept being attracted to An Sylvia by Schubert. This vocal piece is fun, short, and has lots of character. The challenging aspect is that it is 3 stanzas repeated, with very slight melodic changes. The lyrics and character were the only aspect that changed each time.

As a trumpet player, we don't have the ability to change lyrics. I really wanted to program this piece. I'm enjoying the challenge to communicate character by deeply studying the lyrics. I've had fun translating the phrases from German, and looking at other's translations. I'm trying to memorize the lyrics, and the German pronunciation. I am thoroughly enjoying this exploration into a realm that we don't often get as trumpet players.

Time to keep exploring,

Adam C White

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