Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Artist Spotlight: Jessica Abel

Today's feature will cover information on American Soprano Jessica Abel, who will be making her north Texas debut this November as she performs the taxing Sprechstimme (speaking-voice) of Arnold Schönberg's Pierrot Lunaire with our very own Ars Nova Dallas. Help to greet Jessica with a warm Texas welcome this November at the Dallas Festival of Modern Music.

Jessica is an avid promoter of contemporary vocal music and is a 2008 recipient of the Phyllis Bryn-Julson Prize for Commitment To and Performance of 20th and 21st Century Vocal Literature. Jessica recently performed the title role in a contemporary American opera Dora with the Peabody Chamber Opera, and gave a recital “Early Works of Contemporary Masters” at the Peabody Conservatory. Also, she recently commissioned and premiered the song cycle Six Significant Landscapes, by emerging American composer Evan Rogers and performed Libby Larsen's song cycle Try Me, Good King: Last Words of the Wives of Henry VIII on the Peabody Thursday Noon Recital Series.

Ms. Abel is equally at home performing the beloved standard operatic and art song repertoire. Jessica was recently in residence in Graz, Austria as a member of the Opera Studio at the American Institute of Musical Studies where she performed under the baton of Edoardo Müller and participated in a masterclass with soprano Patricia Craig. In the summer of 2008, Jessica performed the role of Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro) under the direction of Matthais Kuntzsch with the Bay Area Summer Opera Theatre. She also recently appeared as Papagena in the Peabody Opera production of Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute). Past recitals have included works by Schubert, Schumann, Wolf, Fauré, Debussy, Poulenc, among others

As a musician who gained inspiration, motivation, and support from her pre-collegiate studies, Jessica believes strongly in music education as a foundation for cultivating the creativity and productivity of youths, as well as a means to foster appreciation for the arts. In 2007, she toured to local grade schools in the Baltimore area, performing the role of Pamina in the Peabody Opera Outreach production of an abridged version of the classic opera Die Zauberflote. Jessica has specialized graduate-level training as a vocal pedagogue. She runs a private studio in Baltimore, MD, and is on the faculty at the International School of Music in Bethesda, MD. She is committed to encouraging the talents of every youth to help create confident, well-rounded individuals.

Jessica holds a Master of Music in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy from the Peabody Conservatory of Music, and a Bachelor of Music from the Florida State University College of Music. She currently studies with Marianna Busching and Phyllis Bryn-Julson.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


The Festival now has an InstantEncore™ web presence. Please stop by and join in the conversation!

For those of you who don't know, InstantEncore is a wonderful place to connect with fellow musicians, alert them to your upcoming concerts, and share ideas with the best and brightest in the business. Check it out!

The Beginning of a New Era

Welcome to the Ars Nova Dallas Blog. Here, you will find information regarding the Dallas Festival of Modern Music, performing ensemble Ars Nova Dallas, festival founders Ryan Ross and Jordan Smith, as well as information about various artists and organizations affiliated with the festival.