Paulus: A Gifted Song Writer

Stephen Paulus at the piano (photo  Sharolyn Hagen Photography)

Stephen Paulus; photo: Sharolyn Hagen Photography


Stephen Paulus loved writing for the voice as all his operas and choral music prove, but he was also a gifted song writer.” So notes Music Director Paul Sperry on the eve of Joy in Singing’s April 6thComposer’s Concert” — a celebration of Stephen Paulus’ art songs.

Paulus was a prolific and gifted contemporary American composer, who wrote in many large and small genres, including 12 operas and over 400 choral Paulus Joy in Singing logo 2works. Joy in Singing’s memorial tribute is a vocal music retrospective, and features sopranos Kristina Bachrach and Katharine Dain, baritone Michael Kelly, and pianists Liza Stepanova and Brent Funderburk.

Paul Sperry (who himself commissioned and premiered Paulus’ Artsongs in 1983) continues. “I first met Stephen when he was an eager young composer in his twenties. He showed me his first song cycle, Mad Book, Shadow Book and I was very impressed. I am very proud to have co-commissioned Artsongs with the Schubert Club of St. Paul and performed them at the Club’s centennial. I loved Steve’s choice of title because I think songs about art are only place that title should be used. I hope that Joy In Singing is honoring his memory in a way that he would approve.”

Paulus Heartland Portrait  cover convJoy in Singing’s Composer’s Concert includes the following Paulus works: All My Pretty Ones, A Heartland Portrait, and Artsongs. The program takes place at the Bruno Walter Auditorium at the New York Performing Arts Library, Lincoln Center. For more information about the program, visit Joy in Singing here.