Amelia Seyssel - Concert Artist
Concert Artist
Lyric Coloratura
Photo of the Artist


Spain: the History & the Music

presented by Amelia Seyssel, M.F.A. and co-founder of the Cantatrice Art Song Ensemble

Nine hours of lecture and musical examples covering Spain's earliest history through to modern times

A broad overview of the unique musical experience of the Iberian peninsula explored in it's historical and cultural context ... in a slide show format with a rich array of musical examples ... and a final focus on Spanish Art Song and it's relationship to Zarzuela and Tonadilla.

An understanding of the cultural cross-currents in Iberian history is essential to a proper appreciation of Spanish musical forms and style. For this reason, the history of the Iberian peninsula emphasizes the many different cultural elements that have influenced the peninsula and it's music.
Maps are used extensively to explain historical events.

Historical periods include: 1) from Ancient times to the Visigoths and the dawn of the Middle Ages; 2) The Visigoths to 1492...and Muslim Spain (712-1492); 3) The Golden Age - Ferdinand & Isabella and post-Muslim Spain; and 4) The Modern Age

VOCAL music is the principle focus of the lecture, but other important areas of musical development are also briefly discussed, principally: the organ, the guitar and flamenco.

The Ring of Words

...a brief insightful lecture on the background of each poet...
...followed by a performance of the poem in its musical setting...

Some of the finest poets and the finest composers combine to create an unusual program of poetry and song.


  • Introduction:
    "Bright is the Ring of Words" from Songs of Travel ~ Poetry by R. L. Stevenson Music by Ralph Vaughan Williams
  • Poet: Robert Louis Stevenson
    "The Lamplighter" (from A Child's Garden of Verses) / Set to music by Roger Quilter
  • Poet: Fiona MacLeod (pseudonym for William Sharp)
    "Thy Dark Eyes to Mine" / Set to music by Charles T. Griffes
  • Poet: Sara Teasdale
    "February Twilight" / Set to music by John Duke
  • Poet: Alfred Lord Tennyson
    "Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal" / Set to music by Roger Quilter
  • Poet: William Shakespeare
    "Orpheus with His Lute" / Set to music by Ralph Vaughan Williams
  • Poet: Emily Dickenson
    "Have you got a Brook in your little heart" / Set to music by John Duke
  • Poet: Percy B. Shelley
    "Love's Philosophy" / Set to music by Roger Quilter
  • Poet: Theodore Roethke
    "The Wish for a Young Wife" / Set to Music by Samuel Barber
  • Poet: e. e. cummings
    "i carry your heart" / Set to music by John Duke
  • Conclusion:
    Poet/Composer: Stephen Foster: "Beautiful Dreamer"