Victoria Vargas and Alex Lubet win Grant-in-Aid for Upcoming Album Project

Victoria Vargas and Alex Lubet.

Congratulations to professors Victoria Vargas (voice) and Alex Lubet (composition) for receiving a significant Grant-in-Aid award from the University of Minnesota. The award will support the development of their upcoming album project, Amy Levy: Songs of Love and Life

Amy Levy will be a recording of a new musical composition for mezzo-soprano and mountain (or Appalachian) dulcimer.” Vargas explained. “Levy (1861-89) was a Victorian era Anglo-Jewish poet, novelist, essayist, and critic, well-known in her time, and admired/memorialized by Oscar Wilde.  Following her tragic death by suicide, Levy faded into obscurity until the 1990’s, when there was a resurgence of interest in her work that continues today, principally owing to feminist scholars, most notably Linda Hunt Beckman.” 

Lubet and Vargas were inspired to collaborate on the project in the spirit of working across generations. Vargas is a recent addition to the faculty and Lubet is the current longest tenured professor. They feel the concept is emblematic of the culture of collegiality and support that contributes to the excellence of the School of Music.

Vargas will be accompanied by mountain (or Appalachian) dulcimer, performed by Lubet (who is also the composer). Nearly the entire Western classical repertoire for this American folk stringed instrument (other than a single ensemble work by Julia Wolfe) was composed or commissioned by Lubet, who features it on four albums and has performed widely in North America, Europe, and Asia. 

The duo will begin recording in August of 2024 with the five time Grammy award winning duo of Steve Barnett and Preston Smith.

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