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30

Mar

Working Hard With Our New Pennyworth Players!

For  our April 17th show, we  are performing with Tiffany Bizup in our sassy mezzo role, and John Hager as our tenacious tenor.  It’s always refreshing and surprising to have new perspectives on previously performed material, in this case our program, Songs From Shakespeare: True Love Never Did Run Smooth.  I’m looking forward to being under the direction of Katherine Harte-DeCoux again next week, to prepare for our next performance!

Please join us at~

The Hastings-on-Hudson Public Library
7 Maple Ave. Hastings-on-Hudson, New York
On April 17, 2011 at 3:30pm

Visit GoodPennyworths.com for more information.

26

Mar

Songs From Shakespeare, Upcoming Performances

Erika Lloyd, Soprano
Tiffany Bizup, Alto
John Hager, Tenor
Garald Farnham, Baritone & Lute

I hope you can make it to one of our upcoming performances!

27

Jun

We have finally reached the Emerald City of LUTE! The Lute Society of America Seminar, to be exact.  I am currently writing from a dorm room at Case Western University, in Cleveland, where performers of the concert series are being housed.

Lets see… where had I left off before?  Oh yes, we were on our way to the Ann Arbor Downtown Library for a 7pm concert, which went swimmingly.  They have a great performance space and community to support it.  We also had time to tour the University of Michigan campus and were lucky enough to be there during Ann Arbor’s Restaurant Week.  Yum!

Friday night we performed at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Toledo.  That was the rowdiest crowd yet!  We brought the audience into fits of giggles and down right guffaws.  The Sanctuary was breathtaking, huge, and a pleasure to sing in.

On Saturday, before our concert in Port Clinton Ohio, we had time to check out the Lakeside Marblehead Lighthouse, on Lake Eerie.  We’ve really lucked out with weather on this tour and it was a great way to relax before another show.  That night we performed at Firelands Presbyterian Church, who host a concert series and were very interested in our unique program. 

Today, we performed the first concert at the Lute Seminar and I am so happy with our performance and the great turn out.  We had a large audience, of people who are either experts on early music or just big fans.  There were many familiar faces and everyone was delighted with the addition of all of the theatrics to our set.  (We had performed two years prior at this seminar, a different concert without dialogue.)  The entire tour was created leading up to this final show and we nailed it!

Well folks, we did it~ 9 concerts in 9 days.  I have a strong feeling that at around 5pm tomorrow I’ll grab my costume bag and head to the practice room to warm up, get there and realize, “Ha!  I don’t have to perform tonight.”  Instead, I can just enjoy the seminar, including a master class by soprano, Ellen Hargis and a concert by lutenist, Robert Barto.

I’ll be flying back to Brooklyn Tuesday morning, back to the routine of the modern city.  It was so nice to step out of that for a while.  Though, I’m sure I’ll be stepping back into my costume again soon.  There are many more performances of this program on the horizon! 

Fare thee well,
Erika Lloyd

24

Jun

Columbus is a great city.  Garald’s family members were such gracious hosts, turning a tour into a vacation.  Monday night we performed at Redeemer Lutheran Church and Tuesday, a private concert at a retirement community.

 

To give you an idea of audience feedback and interaction, I am going to devote the next part of this blog to funny comments made by audience members:
 

“If you were my daughter, I would kill you.” 
–Referencing the string of sassy characters Alane plays throughout the sets.
 
“Do you always talk like that?”
-All dialogue is Shakespearean text.
 
“You are going to be in a painting this summer.”
-An audience member makes a hobby of painting performers she likes.
 
“He’s only acting like that because he has a crush on you.”
-Christopher’s 6-year-old cousin was quite smitten with me after seeing the show.

 


Driving from Columbus to Grand Rapids was our next lengthy trip (and last, phew.)  This time we listened to Ma Guiterre jet e chante; Jocelyn Nelson & Amy Bartram and Sylvius Leopold Weiss; Robert Barto & Karl-Ernst Schröder. 

 

Last night we performed for the MAJIC Concert Series at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, just an amazing space.  What used to be a parking garage for postal vehicles has been transformed into a modern sanctuary, performance space, and art gallery.  It was my favorite performance space so far.  We were also lucky enough to get the show professionally recorded, by Tony Dipiazza, who runs sound at the local club MixTape, which of course I think is pretty cool.

 

Again, I am blown away by the fantastic hospitality extended to us.  Here, we stayed with John and Sharon Schuster-Craig, Carmen Maret and Andrew Bergnon of Folias Music, and Teri and Jay Schrimpt:  all involved in music in different ways, very interesting people and artists.  I am especially grateful for the attention paid to the fact that both Christopher and I are vegetarians.  We have been so well fed at every stop!
 
Onwards to Ann Arbor!
 
We shall make the welkin dance indeed,
Erika Lloyd

   

21

Jun

It was a lovely June Saturday: I will never tire of seeing New York’s green and rolling landscapes.  We drove from Manhattan to Buffalo in six hours exactly, listening to My Lord Chamberlain’s Concort and Palladian Ensemble, napping here and there.  Except for Garald, because he was behind the wheel.  That would have been quite a story otherwise!

Our first concert was housed in Ascension Episcopal Church, only blocks from the very famous Anchor Bar.  Have you ever wondered where the term “Buffalo Wings” came from?  Well I have, and it comes from that very bar, where tiny spicy chicken wings were first served.

The concert went well, impressing Christopher’s parents and sister and my significant other’s parents.  It was great to have family at our tour’s first show.  We had a moderately sized audience, including a handful of early music lovers, appreciative of our unique versions of some well-known text and music.

I have to say, performing in full costume on a summer tour gives me an even better understanding of the women I play.  We’ll be performing in many old churches, lacking air conditioning.  Working without modern comforts will add another level of good performance-practice right?  I can only imagine what it would be like with all of the old undergarments underneath. 

Roland Hayes and David Abbott, a lute and viola da gamba player respectively, provided housing and helped us put on the concert.  Waking up to Roland’s playing the next morning was so nice.  Buffalo has a small early music community, who often travel to Toronto for larger collaborations.

Yesterday we performed at Hurlbut Memorial Community Church on the campus of The Chautauqua Institute.  What a vibrant community!  I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many theaters, amphitheaters, and concert halls all in one place, not to mention lecture halls, art galleries, and houses of worship.  The church had especially nice acoustics, clear and easy to hear on stage as well as from the pews.  Our patrons were already planning our return!

My fun fact from Chautauqua is that because winters in that region are so rough, old family homes have custom-made canvas wraps!  The entire houses are wrapped and zipped to protect them from weather damage.  These are glorious Victorian houses by the way.

This morning we’re in Columbus, staying with Garald’s family.  We have a day of relaxing by his sister’s pool, and then a concert at 7:30pm.  Not too shabby!

Anon,

Erika Lloyd 

13

Jun

  With our beautiful new costumes and handsome new tenor, we are ready to tour!
Songs From Shakespeare: True Love Never Did Run Smooth has been in the works for about three months now.  With the help of director, Katherine Harte DeCoux, Garald and Alane put together a beautifully scripted set of “Plays within a Play.”  The performance is a group of thematic sets of music, actually used in Shakespearean plays at the time, tied together with dialogue from those plays.  They pulled material from The Tempest, Romeo & Juliet, The Winter’s Tale, The Merchant of Venice, Hamlet, and more.  The themes run from “young love” to “grieving the death of a family member.”  The show is made up of sweet airs, heart breaking laments, and hilarious ditties.
  In preparing for this tour we have had many a rehearsal, costume fitting, and coaching.  We first worked with Katherine on staging and interpreting the text, along with bringing the music alive and tightening up our ensemble singing.  We performed the concert twice in Manhattan at the end of March, both times to very happy audience members.  The consensus was, that adding staging and dialogue to our performance made more sense of the Elizabethan music and added a whole new level of entertainment!
  After taking a short break (Garald and his family took an exciting trip to China!) we resumed with coachings by soprano, Marcia Young, and actor, Ian Gould.  We have really developed as a group, and the attention paid to detail in both the singing and acting has made for a stunning effect!  I am very excited about taking this show on the road!
  If you are reading this blog and have not seen us perform, or do not know any of us personally yet, you can learn all about us on our website, www.goodpennyworths.com , where you can also find the upcoming tour’s schedule.
  I will be blogging along the way on our June 2010 Midwestern tour.  Don’t worry, there will be plenty of embarrassing photos of us at highway landmarks or passed out from exhaustion at odd locations.
  Until we meet again,                     Erika Lloyd

  With our beautiful new costumes and handsome new tenor, we are ready to tour!

Songs From Shakespeare: True Love Never Did Run Smooth has been in the works for about three months now.  With the help of director, Katherine Harte DeCoux, Garald and Alane put together a beautifully scripted set of “Plays within a Play.”  The performance is a group of thematic sets of music, actually used in Shakespearean plays at the time, tied together with dialogue from those plays.  They pulled material from The Tempest, Romeo & Juliet, The Winter’s Tale, The Merchant of Venice, Hamlet, and more.  The themes run from “young love” to “grieving the death of a family member.”  The show is made up of sweet airs, heart breaking laments, and hilarious ditties.

  In preparing for this tour we have had many a rehearsal, costume fitting, and coaching.  We first worked with Katherine on staging and interpreting the text, along with bringing the music alive and tightening up our ensemble singing.  We performed the concert twice in Manhattan at the end of March, both times to very happy audience members.  The consensus was, that adding staging and dialogue to our performance made more sense of the Elizabethan music and added a whole new level of entertainment!

  After taking a short break (Garald and his family took an exciting trip to China!) we resumed with coachings by soprano, Marcia Young, and actor, Ian Gould.  We have really developed as a group, and the attention paid to detail in both the singing and acting has made for a stunning effect!  I am very excited about taking this show on the road!

  If you are reading this blog and have not seen us perform, or do not know any of us personally yet, you can learn all about us on our website, www.goodpennyworths.com , where you can also find the upcoming tour’s schedule.

  I will be blogging along the way on our June 2010 Midwestern tour.  Don’t worry, there will be plenty of embarrassing photos of us at highway landmarks or passed out from exhaustion at odd locations.

  Until we meet again,
                     Erika Lloyd