Cantata News

Special 50th Anniversary Commission Dedication in memory of Lou Sand

For every decade in which the Cantata Singers have celebrated their anniversary, the commissioning of new music has been their cornerstone. To mark 50 years, this milestone needed to reflect and capture the very soul of this long-lived organization. The choice to hire current director Will Wickham, whose history with the organization dates to the '70's, was easy. As characteristic of Will, he not only put his own heart and soul into the commission, but also brought a deeper and more personal side to the music as well.  Choosing to work with long-time singer and poet Martha Horton of the Elmira based poetry group Articulation, poetry that perfectly captured the nature and spirit of music, was masterfully woven throughout the score. Adding more warmth and meaning to the commission, this work was dedicated in memory of Lou Sand, long time singer and supporter of the Cantata Singers and friend to everyone she ever met. Lou's family generously offered a matching donation to help with the commission, of which the Cantata Singers were immensely grateful. According to Will "For Lou life was truly a journey to be savored and enjoyed and her time with the singers was a big part of that journey. Therefore, it is with honor and great pleasure that the Cantata Singers, along with Lou's family and friends, dedicate Each Song is a Journey to her memory. Sing on, Lou! ... Each Song is a Journey is just that, a musical journey that allowed for wide ranging styles of writing that both sum up the first 50 years of the group's history and, perhaps, offer a glance forward to the future." As you can see in the beautifully written text below, it is indeed, just that. A huge note of thanks and appreciation go to Will, Martha, the family of Lou Sand and all others who brought this gorgeous 50th Anniversary Commission to fruition! For each song truly is a journey ...

Each Song is a Journey

Text Martha Horton (1934- ) and ARTiculation

Each song is a journey, a road to explore:
some voices leading, others receding,
wandering...
turning from stately to playful
to tender and yearning,
winding a melody,
finding a theme.

Then, a surprise
like a bend in the road
or a hill to climb.
Voices rise to meet
a new tempo, new key,
basses swelling, tenors climbing,
sopranos soaring...then falling,
altos calling them back
to the way,
together agreeing
on chords to conclude.

Each song is a journey,
a story told new,
alive and changing
each time we sing.