About the Anthology
Sparks & Wiry Cries promotes the advancement and preservation of art song by providing opportunities to its creators and performers. Its activities include:
- Presentation of the songSLAM Festival in NYC
- Commission and premiere of new works
- Publication of the Art Song Magazine
- Creation and co-production of the songSLAM competition for emerging composers, poets and performers around the world
The Sparks & Wiry Cries NYC songSLAM is a unique competition for emerging composer/performer teams to premiere new art song. With an eye to the democratic process and equality of access, sign-up is first come, first served, and the registration fee is nominal. During the competition itself, carried out in the poetry-slam tradition, audience members vote on their favorite performances. Cash prizes are awarded.
First premiered in NYC in 2015, the songSLAM has now been or will be presented in four countries and 10 different cities around the globe: NYC, Toronto, Vancouver, London, Ljubljana, Ann Arbor, Cincinnati, Chicago, Minneapolis, and Buffalo, with even more growth on the horizon. The songbook is a selection of sixteen of the most promising songs premiered since its inception. Many of them were prize winners, though not all.
Songs in this volume
|Composer||Song Title||Author of Text||Year Composed|
|Daniel Castellanos||Nothing at all||Henry-Scott Holland||2019|
|Abigail de Niverville||Stars||Marjorie Pickthall||2018|
|Natalie Draper||O sea starved Hungry Sea||William Shakespeare||2017|
|Whitney George||In New York||Johnny Call||2017|
|Wally Gunn||One good life||Maria Zajkowski||2017|
|Meg Huskin||Tikka Masala||Meg Huskin||2019|
|Felix Jarrar||Walking past a window…||Bea Goodwin||2017|
|Laurence Jobidon||Al Claro de Luna||Delmira Agustini||2018|
|Isaac Lovedahl||Today there is a spring in me||Isaac Lovdahl||2018|
|Liam Moore||Crepuscule||E. E. Cummings||2017|
|Haley Olsen||at this time I could not breathe like the others||Haley Olsen||2017|
|Nathan Scalise||Big Sky||co-written by Jordan Bowman, Madelein Bowman, and Nathan Scalise||2018-2019|
|Tilen Slakan||Ko te ni (When you are not here)||Jakob Barbo||2019|
|Evan L. Snider||Invictus||William Ernest Henley||2017|
|Dennis Tobenski||Oh HELL No||Maggie Smith||2017|
|Jason Weisinger||I carry your heart||E.E. Cummings||2016|
Whitney George: "In New York"
Meg Huskin: "Tikka Masala"
Jason Weisinger: "I Carry Your Heart"
About the Curator
Soprano Martha Guth and pianist Erika Switzer have been leading figures in the world of art song for over 20 years, delivering recitals around the world in places such as South Africa, Germany, Spain, France, England, and across North America. Guth and Switzer share a deep connection to the works of living composers: they have premiered dozens of new compositions, including works by Andrew Staniland, Tom Cipullo, and Juliana Hall, who have written new works for the duo.
Switzer and Guth are both accomplished artists on their own; Switzer has performed at New York’s Weill Hall (Carnegie), the Kennedy Center, the Bard Music Festival, and the Spoleto Festival (Charleston, SC), among many other venues; while Guth has appeared regularly at London’s Wigmore Hall, St. John’s Smith Square, New York’s Lincoln Center, and the Leeds Lieder Festival. Both have won numerous prizes and awards, and are prolific teachers: Guth is on the faculty of Ithaca College and SongFest, while Switzer is on the music faculty at Bard College and the Graduate Vocal Arts Program of the Bard College-Conservatory of Music.
Together, Guth and Switzer founded Sparks & Wiry Cries, a global platform dedicated to art song, spanning the publication, live performance, and commissioning of new works, in 2009.