In the Memory Palace: Games of Love, beginning at 8 PM, kicks off the NYFOS series Oct. 25 and 27. Performers include Michelle Areyzaga, Rebecca Jo Loeb, Paul Appleby and Andrew Garland, who will be accompanied on piano by Blier and Michael Barrett. The opening-night program centers around the premiere of Gabriel Kahane’s song cycle, The Memory Palace, which evokes scenes of East Coast solitude with his haunting music and mordant lyrics.
Manning the Canon: Songs of Gay Life will return Nov. 17 at 8 PM and will feature Scott Murphee, Jesse Blumberg, Timothy McDevitt, Matt Boehler and Blier on piano. Manning the Canon is, according to press notes, the "touching celebration of the lives and art of gay men in works that reflect the heritage of gay composers in art song, as well as contemporary songs about the gay experience."
Lauren Worsham, Mary Testa, Josh Breitzer, John Brancy and Joshua Jeremiah will be featured vocalists in A Goyishe Christmas to You! Yuletide Classics by Jewish Songwriters. The concert will be held Nov. 29 and Dec. 1 at 8 PM and features Alan Kay on clarinet and Blier on piano. A Goyishe Christmas to You! is NYFOS' first-ever Christmas show and features classic and comic holiday songs entirely written by Jewish composers.
A Modern Person's Guide to Hooking Up and Breaking Up will be offered Feb. 14 and 16, 2012, at 8 PM and features Anne-Carolyn Bird, Liza Forrester, Alex Mansoori and Jesse Blumberg, with Blier on piano. The show is described as a “quirky survey of the awkwardness, pain, lust and perversity of contemporary relationships."
Concluding the series is New York to Paris, Paris to Paradise, held March 11 at 4 PM in the Music Room at Rosen House in Katonah, NY; and March 13 at 8 PM in the Merkin Concert Hall. The concerts featuremembers of Caramoor’s 2012 Vocal Rising Stars program. Also offered at NYFOS is NYFOS Next, hosted by Joseph Thalken (Nov. 8) and Russell Platt (April 24), held at the Mary Flagler Cary Hall at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music; NYFOS@ Juilliard, which includes Invitation to the Dance Jan. 18 at 8 PM and features students from The Juilliard School Vocal Department; the NYFOS spring gala, Over the Rainbow: Sounds of Harold Arlen, held April 2 at 7 PM; and the No Song is Safe From Us radio series, featuring Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Stephanie Blythe, Joseph Kaiser, Judy Kaye, Dina Kuznetsova and William Burden.
The New York Festival of Song, now in its 24th season, creates intimate concerts that breathe new life into an art form that is rich and emotionally resonant, yet is too often treated as genteel, intellectual, and predictable.
For more information, visit www.nyfos.org.