New York Festival of Song’s Next Festival Presents ‘In Her Own Words’

By Afton Wooten

The New York Festival of Song continues the Next Festival on Nov. 19 at Rubin Museum of Art with a mini concert entitled “In Her Own Words.”

The program curated by curated by Nathaniel LaNasa shines a spotlight on singer-songwriters who have emerged from the classical tradition. The featured composer-performer Molly Joyce is a musician whose limited mobility in her left hand has led her to creative and idiosyncratic performance techniques, and made her a powerful advocate for people with disabilities. She performs original works incuding “I was a figure” andAugust 9, 1999.” She is joined by mezzo-soprano Lucy Dhegrae who performs the world premiere of a new piece for voice and electronics, that fuses her deep background in experimental music with a new relationship to the language and materials of electronic dance music.

Dicky Dutton joins them to explore ritual and queer identity in a playfully improvisatory spirit.

The first concert in the Next series featured the world premiere performance of “We Two,” a song cycle by Iain Bell with text by Walt Whitman performed by baritone Gregory Feldmann with LaNasa at the keyboard. In addition, soprano Robin Steitz appeared in Reena Esmail’s “Rosa de Sal.” Soprano Paulina Swierczek performed Andrew Cheung’s 2017 “All thorn, but cousin to your rose” with text by Vladimir Nabakov and others.