Lyrics by Shakespeare

The New York Festival of Song opened its doors for business 32 years ago. Bolstered by a great passion for song, the generous good will of our friends, and a thousand-dollar gift from our first benefactor Joe Machlis, Michael Barrett and I mounted our first season in...
García Lorca: Muse & Magician

García Lorca: Muse & Magician

Everyone involved with classical song eventually falls under the spell of Federico García Lorca (1898-1936), simply because so many composers have set his poetry to music. His writing is a fascinating combination of opposites: elusive and open, austere and emotional,...

Love at the Crossroads

This program takes its inspiration from an opera — Mozart’s Cosí fan tutte — and a movie, Max Ophuls’ La ronde, which was based on the hugely controversial play by Arthur Schnitzler, Reigen. Both works are about the disruptive interplay of love and lust, fidelity and...

Hyphenated-Americans

In late 2017, Michael and I were busy trying to finalize the 2018–2019 NYFOS season. We had settled on the W. C. Handy project, and we were thinking about celebrating a famous poet on a later evening. (That poet turned out to be García Lorca, featured in our April 24...

Kurt Weill’s Berlin

Choosing a program for NYFOS’s annual residency at Juilliard is usually one of the year’s sweetest dilemmas. No dilemma this time, though. I knew more than a year ago that I would want to revive Kurt Weill’s Berlin as the 2019 project. My singers have strong feelings...