Tenor and Mississippi State music faculty member Adam Webb gives a campus recital Sunday [Jan. 26] featuring music by Benjamin Britten, Francis Poulenc and Tom Cipullo.
Free and open to all, the 3 p.m. performance takes place in the Giles Architecture Building's Harrison Auditorium.
Webb is assistant voice professor in the university's music department, which is sponsoring the program. Departmental colleague Karen Murphy will provide piano accompaniment.
The recital also is made possible through a generous grant from the James W. Criss Foundation of Mobile, Ala.
The program begins with "Canticle IV: Journey of the Magi" by British composer Benjamin Britten and based on T. S. Eliot's poem of the same name. Webb will be joined by counter-tenor Gary Packwood and baritone Peter Infanger.
Packwood is director of MSU choral activities; Infanger, music ministries director at Starkville's First United Methodist Church and a music department instructor.
Nancy Hargrove, MSU Giles Distinguished Professor Emerita of English, will provide a commentary on Britten, Eliot and the musical composition.
The second set will be "The Heart of the Matter," a chamber cantata featuring music by Britten and poetry by Edith Sitwell. In addition to the piano, the composition includes horn accompaniment by Linda Glover, an adjunct professor in the department.
Hargrove, a nearly 40-year MSU teaching veteran, will give a brief commentary on the complex piece and read passages of Sitwell's poetry that alternate with the musical portions.
In the third set, Webb will perform nine songs from the song cycle "Telle Jour, telle nuit" by the French composer Francis Poulenc. The songs--among his most famous--are based on the poetry of Paul Éluard.
Titled "Why I Don't Keep a Gun in the House," the final set is a song cycle based on the work of contemporary poet Billy Collins and composer Tom Cipullo, both Americans. Tones of the pieces range from conversational to witty to profound.
Webb a University of Iowa doctoral graduate, was director for last spring's MSU production of "All Shook Up " and will serve this spring as musical director for "The Pirates of Penzance." He also is choir director at Trinity Presbyterian Church.
In addition to her role as the department's collaborative pianist, Murphy is organist and choir director at the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection.
For more on the recital, contact the music department at 662-325-3070.
Information on MSU is available at www.msstate.edu.