Composition, Performance

Sometimes Y Arrives At University of Montevallo’s LeBaron Recital Hall

January 14, 2019

LeBaron Trio - Promo shot from FB
The LeBaron Trio (Lori Ardovino, Melanie Williams, and Laurie Middaugh)

The LeBaron Trio performed Alan Goldspiel’s composition, Sometimes Y, to an excited audience at the University of Montevallo’s LeBaron Recital Hall.

Sometimes Y is comprised of six movements:

  1. A, First of All
  2. E, Silence is…
  3. I, Am
  4. O, The Story of
  5. U, The Ugly
  6. Sometimes Y

Sometimes Y is the result of an ongoing collaboration between a poet, Barry Marks, and a composer, Alan Goldspiel. Goldspiel stated:

“The title came first. I was amused by the notion of a proud parent boldly announcing to all that his child was to perform as the sometimes Y in a school play illustrating the vowels. My initial idea was to somehow musically exploit this situation and then explore some of the peculiarities of the English language as evidenced by the many bad/funny translations.

Further thought focused on the ambiguity of applying “sometimes” with both the vowel and its homonym why. Then, as I mentioned these ruminations to the poet, we began discussing the various associations we had with each vowel, the various roles that the vowels play in English, and then we even discussed at great length the actual appearance and shape of those six letters. It was from this beginning that Sometimes Y for soprano, clarinet, and piano was born. Texts were created and ultimately poems were realized. Each song musically represents the emotional qualities of the letters as expressed by the poetry and the aims of the poet. The forms and/or musical lines often abstractly and sometimes overtly represent the vowel shape. The tonal is also frequently juxtaposed against the less tonal in a manner not unlike the various effects and pronunciations of the vowels. Ultimately, this is about how the letters make us feel.”

Other pieces performed by The LeBaron Trio were Accuse Me Not by Joseph Landers, Seven Cinquains of Adelaide Crapsey by Ed Robertson, and Nonsense Songs by the Trio’s own Lori Ardovino.

This was an highly anticipated performance as all the composers, as well as the members of the Trio (Dr. Lori Ardovino, Dr. Laurie Middaugh, and Dr. Melanie Williams), are faculty at the University of Montevallo’s Department of Music. In addition to being a faculty member at the University, Goldspiel also serves as the Chair of the Department of Music.