Delea Shand

classical singer, music educator, writer, comedian, actor

This page has a selection of live recordings. I hope it shows a wide range of the music I like to sing. There's chamber music by Berio, Boulez, and Crumb; music for voice and piano by the American composers Libby Larsen and Chris Berg; and even some musical theatre, by Romberg and Fields.

Recorded live with Tactus at the Manhattan School of Music. Mike Perdue, Jude Traxler percussion. Katie Andrews, harp.  

Written in 1960 for voice, harp and two percussion, Circles is a setting of three poems by e e cummings. An early proponent of experimental music, the Italian composer’s work incorporates graphic notation (the use of visual symbols outside the realm of traditional music notation) and extended technique (the use of unconventional singing or playing techniques, in order to explore unusual timbres and sounds).  

Recorded live with the Manhattan School of Music Percussion Ensemble. Jeffrey Milarsky conducting.

The French composer and conductor Pierre Boulez is probably best known for his contributions to 12-tone and serial music. Improvisation sur Mallarme is based on the poem, Le vierge, le vivace et le bel aujourd'hui, by Stephane Mallarme. Written in 1957, this short piece for soprano and percussion would go on to be part of Pli selon Pli, a much larger work for soprano and orchestra. 

Recorded live at Mass MoCa, Bang on a Can summer festival. Owen Weaver, percussion. Molly McLaughlin, flute

Not unlike Berio, Crumb also incorporates elements of graphic notation and extended technique in his compositions. An American composer, often associated with the Avant Garde, he is noted for his exploration of unusual timbres. He wrote four books of Madrigals, between 1965-69, which are settings of poetry by Federico Garcia Lorca. 

Recorded live at Eva Clare Hall, University of Manitoba. Rachel Hinton, piano.

A co-founder of the American Composers’ Forum, Libby Larsen has contributed not only to the breadth of song repertoire in America, but perseveres in creating a community for composers. Calamity Jane was a notorious figure in America’s Wild West. By the time she died in 1902, she’d worked as a scout, gambler, barmaid, nursemaid, stagecoach driver and prostitute. Songs from Letters, written in 1989, is based on a stack of un-sent letters to the daughter Calamity Jane sent away.

Recorded live with Opera on Tap, at Barbes, with Christopher Berg, piano

A Literary Dinner, from Four Songs on Poems of Vladimir Nabokov, is described by the composer as, “A rather Gogolian poem, wherein the speaker’s misapprehension of the word ‘meet’ as ‘eat’ sets off a cheerful account of literary cannibalism.” Chris Berg plays regularly for Opera on Tap. 

Recorded live with Opera on Tap, Christopher Berg, piano

With words by Dorothy Fields, one of the first successful female Tin Pan Alley songwriters, and music by Sigmund Romberg, Carousel in the Park comes from the 1945 Broadway show, Up in Central Park.