Summer 2014 Newsletter
September Concert Information
Program Spotlight
Scholarship Recipient: Sarah Wasserman
Ensemble in Residence (EIR) Program
Member Profile: Anna Warfield
Memorial Chair Recipients
Board Member Search
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See (and Hear) What the Fates Hold in September

Dear Friends,

We hope you're enjoying what has thus far been a beautiful summer! The sun is shining, the ocean waves are breaking on the shore, and the ice cream trucks are circling the city blocks. And though it means going inside on such lovely summer evenings, the members of Calliope are working hard to prepare for our next performance, "Images of Fate," which will be conducted by Jacques Dupuis. The program explores the concepts of fate and destiny and includes Brahms' Begräbnisgesang and Gesang der Parzen, Beethoven's Elegischer Gesang, Bruckner's Te Deum, and Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs.

"Images of Fate" will be performed on Saturday, September 6, at 7:30 p.m. at First Church of Boston, 66 Marlborough Street. Individual tickets may be purchased online at or by phone at 617-759-2057. Group tickets may be purchased by phone or via email ( Tickets are $25 general admission; $30 premium seating; and $15 for students and seniors (with valid ID). Tickets may also be purchased at the door, pending availability. We look forward to seeing you there! Keep reading for an inside look at one of the pieces on the program.

Painting of Ludwig van Beethoven by Hermann Junker.

Program Spotlight: Beethoven's Elegischer Gesang (Elegiac Song)

Calliope’s September concert program explores questions and interpretations of the circumstances surrounding death, ranging from the personal mourning of a loved one to the Christian story of Jesus’ Resurrection. Ludwig van Beethoven’s Elegischer Gesang (Elegiac Song) is a study in the intimacy of a familial relationship, disrupted when one has passed away and others are left living. Beethoven composed the piece in 1814, dedicating it to his close friend and landlord, Johann Frieherr von Pasqualati, whose wife Eleonore died in childbirth at the tender age of 24. The piece was first performed by a vocal quartet with string quartet accompaniment in Pasqualati’s home on August 5, 1814.
The scope of Elegischer Gesang is small, with the performing forces of only eight parts (four strings and four voice parts, respectively), while other pieces on our program will have upwards of 20 or more separate parts. The scoring is of particular interest to the thematic meaning of the piece as a whole. Many consider the string quartet to encapsulate a perfectly scored ensemble, balancing low and high instrumental voices, and the four voice parts perfectly mirror the four string parts to reinforce this balance. In light of this, Beethoven may have intended a phrase that appears several times in the piece, “hast du vollendet” (“your life ends fulfilled”) to be subtly reflected in the musical setting. Though the piece is not a well-known Beethoven work, our musicians nevertheless have been moved by its sadness and sincerity, and aim to convey this feeling to the audience. 

Our Scholarship Recipient: Sarah Wasserman, Alto
Sarah Wasserman (center) with her Calliope mentors, Nell Pepper and Jared White.

Each season, Calliope aims to support at least one scholarship student. These students work with the group as equal members, learning from other members and applying themselves to a new level of challenging music. We are excited to have Sarah Wasserman, alto, making music with us this season! Her mentors are Nell Pepper (alto) and Jared White (trumpet). Sarah has been singing since she was 3 years old, when she discovered Annie. “I would never stop singing those songs!” she says.
At Thurston Middle School in Westwood, where Sarah recently graduated from eighth grade, she sang in both the general and select choruses. The pieces she enjoyed performing most with these groups were “Inscription of Hope” (by Z. Randall Stroope), a Holocaust memorial song; and the gospel song “Up Above My Head.” One of the things Sarah enjoys about singing with Calliope is how much progress is made during each rehearsal. As she explains, “In my middle school chorus, it can take weeks to get a handle on things we [in Calliope] do in half a rehearsal. It’s so cool!” Sarah hopes to learn how to successfully sing and understand more complex pieces of music than she’s ever sung before.
Sarah will begin her freshman year at Westwood High School this fall. Her favorite school subjects are science and language arts. In her free time, she likes to dance, play piano, and “be ridiculous” with her little brother.

Calliope Music Ensembles For Hire!

One year ago, Calliope introduced our Ensembles in Residence (EIR) program with a premiere concert at the Bristol Lounge of the Four Seasons Hotel in Boston. Calliope members are eligible and are encouraged to audition each spring. EIR musicians are available for private parties, weddings, corporate events, and so much more. In the past year, EIR musicians have performed at various events in the Boston area and are currently booked for an upcoming wedding at the Boston Public Library!

To request more information about EIR or about hiring an ensemble for your event, please see our website:

Member Profile: Anna Warfield, Violin

Anna Warfield has been a member of Calliope since 2011. She heard about Calliope during a friend's birthday celebration at a Mexican restaurant. Hungry to get back to playing violin after a hiatus during college and post-graduate life, she auditioned and has been an active member of the string section ever since!

On summer vacation from her job as a fourth-grade teacher, Anna likes to bake --- and eat --- delicious treats, and cookies are her specialty. She also sings as a first soprano. 
Anna was eager to join an ensemble, and finds that Calliope's collection of talented musicians with a genuine love of music keeps her coming back, season after season.  She especially enjoys hearing the pieces come together for the first time, and the engaging rehearsals. The collaborative nature of the ensemble allows all members to give input and, as Anna says, "being in Calliope makes us all better musicians."

Anna's most memorable concert with Calliope was "A Mass in Pieces" (September 2012). She recalls that it was an unseasonably warm September evening, so much that the men were permitted to perform without their jackets, and to spite the heat, the group was hyper-focused on the music. This attention to the music blocked out the warmth of the performance space, giving rise to a performance that was better than any of the rehearsals!

2014 - 2015 Memorial Chairs Established

Calliope is pleased to announce the establishment of two Memorial Chairs for the 2014-2015 season. The Norman R. Benson Memorial Chair is named in honor of Calliope trombonist Steve Benson's father. The recipient of this Memorial Chair is Jared White, trumpet. Jared was the obvious choice, as Steve notes: "I've long wished that [Jared] would have had a chance to meet my dad, since they shared a love of music, an outgoing personality, an intellectual curiosity, and a volunteer spirit for groups in which they were involved."

The Mildred (Millie) Klein Memorial Chair is named in honor of Calliope alto Rebecca Lieberman's grandmother. Carol Louik, oboe, is the recipient of this Memorial Chair, given that she shares with Millie a
 love of the arts, especially music; a deep love of learning; a no-nonsense personality and the bravery to always speak her mind; a belief in service to community; and a multi-talented self-sufficiency.

More information about Norman, Millie, Jared, and Carol will appear in the September concert program.

Calling All Potential Calliope Board Members!

Calliope is looking for professionals with business and personal connections in the Boston-area business and arts community to partner with us as members of our board. We welcome those with expertise in the areas of development, marketing, or finance. Board Members are responsible for purchasing 10 tickets to each performance, and the standard term of board membership is 3 years. If you are interested in this opportunity to support and shape Calliope, or know someone else who may be interested, please email We'd love to hear from you!

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Calliope's Mission Statement
Calliope shares the joy of music through passionate collaboration between singers and instrumentalists. It is our mission that audiences benefit from collaboration between instrumentalists and singers, resulting in deeper understanding and performance of the music. We pursue this goal by:
  • Providing excellent music to the community of Greater Boston via a new, more inclusive method of rehearsal and performance
  • Capitalizing on the power of music to contribute toward social improvement via one benefit concert each season for an organization whose mission is reflected in our programming for that performance
  • Cultivating artists and their supporters for the future through our mentoring scholarship program.
 Julia O'Toole, Artistic Director
Copyright © 2013 Calliope, Inc., all rights reserved.

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