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The Two Trees: A Yeats Song Cycle
Composer and pianist Wendy Durrwacther and tenor Adam Sippola will perform The Two Trees: A Yeats Song Cycle. Admission is free, with any donations supporting the production of their upcoming album, which the duo will record at Weber Music Hall in June.
More than 19 years ago Wendy Durrwachter studied the poetry of W.B. Yeats with Peter Firchow at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Yeats’ words left a spark in her soul while studying piano and music composition. She recalls being impressed by the musicality of his poetic devices and effective rhythms. Durrwachter has long believed that his poetry is perfect for an internationally appealing song cycle.
In October 2017 she began to compose three new classical art songs for piano and voice — musical settings of poems by William Butler Yeats. She reached out to friend, colleague, fellow Yeats enthusiast and tenor Adam Sippola. Durrwachter believed Sippola had the voice and artistry for the songs. The duo premiered The Wild Swans at Coole, The Cap and Bells, and The Lake Isle of Innisfree at Sacred Heart Music Center in January of 2018.
Durrwachter has now completed a song cycle of ten contemporary classical art songs, which she and Sippola will perform. In June they will be recording the song cycle with Don Schraufnagel at Weber Music Hall and producing an album of the song cycle titled The Two Trees: A Yeats Song Cycle.
Through the month of April, Durrwachter and Sippola launched a successful Kickstarter campaign, raised the funds needed for the recording project, and also connected with visual artist Opitchii Belanger, who will be creating a painting that will serve as the album art as well as the visual expression of The Two Trees: A Yeats Song Cycle for future concerts and performances.