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ASPS November Newsletter!

From: Blair
Sent on: Thursday, November 7, 2013 9:33 PM

The Mary Trueman Art Song Vocal Competition Finalists - 2013
The Art Song Preservation Society would like to congratulate the following finalists on a superb audition! The final round is open to the public and will take place on Saturday, March 29th, starting at 1pm in the Opera America Auditorium (330 Seventh Avenue, 7th Fl). We encourage all participants to come and enjoy the finals. It will be open to the public and performed in a recital format. Judging this exciting event will be world-renowned American soprano, Benita Valente, the author of Singing in French: A Manual of French Diction & French Vocal RepertoireThomas Grubb and internationally accomplished piano collaborator, Thomas Muraco.

The finalists are: Fleur Barron - mezzo, Benjamin Bloomfield - baritone, Jacquelin Bolier - mezzo, Robert Brandt - baritone, Kara Cornell - mezzo, Amanda Crider - soprano, Elliott Hines - baritone, La Toya Lewis - soprano, Meredith Mecum - soprano, Winnie Nieh – soprano, Tami Petty - soprano, Sahoko Sato - mezzo, Kelsey Stark - soprano, Leela Subramaniam - soprano, Virginie Verrez - soprano

About Mary Trueman, the motivating force behind ASPS, was born in 1915 in Penwortham, Lancashire County, England, where she grew up in a financially impoverished but musically rich family.  Mary was an accomplished piano collaborator  and, even before receiving significant formal training,  she played for many singers at regional recitals and music festivals.  She was a remarkable woman who constructed a supremely well-rounded education perfect for instructing singers in the areas of art song and the operatic repertoire. Mary attained degrees with Honors in French & German Language & Literature from the University of Birmingham in Birmingham, England.  She was also a Licentiate of The London Royal Academy of Music in England in Piano Accompaniment.  Later, she earned the equivalent of a Master's degree in Vocal Pedagogy from the Birmingham School of Music. Following a rich musical performance and teaching career in the UK and a residency in Nancy, France during World War II, Mary moved to Houston, Texas, in the early 1980s to be closer to her daughter and son-in-law.  While in Houston, she became a full member of NATS and developed her own private voice studio.  In addition to teaching French, German, and Spanish language classes at St. Pius, a Catholic College Preparatory High School, she also began teaching voice lessons at Texas Southern University.  It wasn't long before she was invited to teach Diction and Vocal Repertoire classes in French and German at  Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, considered by many to be the Ivy League institution of the South. Students from her classes have gone on to grace the stages of the Metropolitan Opera, Houston Grand Opera, and San Francisco Opera stages and perform in recitals internationally.  She believed in singers putting forth tireless effort towards technical advancement as the only true path to vocal freedom and discovering the exuberance of singing.  As it relates to the art song she was a firm believer in the close examination of poetry, speaking the poem aloud to note the rhythm of the words, and that excellence in a singer's interpretation is enhanced and validated by a deep understanding and appreciation of the successive literary movements which influenced the poets' approach to life and art.

Click here to learn learn more about her philosophy and even hear her recite some of French song's most beloved poems:

Also, Joy In Singing Auditions are just around the corner. The deadline is Nov 15th so be sure to check out the website at



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