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Carlisle Floyd is most known as an opera composer yet his songs have not been recorded. He is in his late 80's and can supervise.
Carlisle Floyd is most known as an opera composer yet his songs have not been recorded. He is in his late 80's and can supervise.
248 backers pledged $20,430 to help bring this project to life.

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Premiere recording: Susanne Mentzer- songs of Carlisle Floyd project video thumbnail
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Carlisle Floyd, composer
Carlisle Floyd, composer

Pultizer prize and National Medal of Arts winner Carlisle Floyd is most known as an opera composer yet he has also written songs for voice and piano and voice and orchestra. One such cycle, a mono-drama called Citizen of Paradise based on letters and poems by Emily Dickinson, was premiered by mezzo-soprano Susanne Mentzer.

Scroll below for audio samples.

Mr. Floyd is in his late 80's and it is a good time for him to supervise a recording of his songs as none, as such, exists. Historically it will be a good record of what the composer intends.

Susanne Mentzer has been singing internationally for over thirty years, twenty of them in leading roles at the Metropolitan Opera. She appears on many DVDs and CDs and has also appeared on Live from Lincoln Center and A&E network. More info about Susanne at susannementzer.com     

Susanne Mentzer's performance of my musical profile of Emily Dickinson, CITIZEN OF PARADISE, is definitive in every regard:  she sings it with a superb range of color and feeling and, as the performing artist, quickly disappears into a vivid and totally convincing evocation of the poet herself.  I frankly can't imagine the cycle of songs (with its very broad span of moods) being more artfully or more movingly performed.”   -Carlisle Floyd

The two cycles planned (both published by Boosey and Hawkes) with piano accompaniment are:

Citizen of Paradise (1983) approx. 35 minutes long

Soul of Heaven (1995) approx. 15 minutes long, with texts by Herrick, Case, Lanier, Aesop, Emerson, Nitzsche, Collier, Castiglione, Spinoza and Shakespeare.

The goal is to get a high quality recording at a good studio with an excellent producer and either market independently or opt for bids from an established label.

Budget: $20,000

Fees for pianist, producer and technician. Ms Mentzer is waving her fee.

Studio rental

Publisher fees

Post production editing

Travel and lodging for Mr. Floyd, Ms Mentzer, pianist and producer

Digital production- onto CD or downloadable

Here are three excerpts from a live performance

Audio link below: A conversation with Carlisle Floyd from the NEA Honors

http://www.prx.org/pieces/65912-a-conversation-with-nea-opera-honoree-carlisle-flo

Risks and challenges

Potential obstacles:
1. cost over run- will solicit other private funding
2. unforeseen illness causing postponement of recording sessions- postponing for a later date

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $7 or more About $7

    personally autographed photo of Susanne Mentzer

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    Digital Download of recording

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    will receive a finished copy of the CD

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    copy of finished product, signed by Susanne Mentzer and Carlisle Floyd

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    2 copies of finished product, signed by Susanne Mentzer and Carlisle Floyd PLUS signed copy of
    "Water Music: 66 Renowned Musicians celebrate water in words and music", Photographs by Marjorie Ryerson. Susanne Mentzer essay included.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    copy of finished product, signed by Susanne Mentzer and Carlisle Floyd
    PLUS
    A copy of the newly released biography, "Falling Up: The Days and Nights of Carlisle Floyd", signed by the author and Carlisle

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    5 free downloads or CDs PLUS
    Susanne Mentzer singing Happy Birthday/Anniversary etc. to someone special to you via telephone or live if she is in your town.
    PLUS A copy of the
    newly released biography, "Falling Up: The Days and Nights of Carlisle Floyd", signed by the author and Carlisle Floyd

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    5 free downloads or CDs PLUS
    Susanne Mentzer singing Happy Birthday/Anniversary etc. to someone special to you via telephone or live if she is in your town.
    PLUS A copy of the
    newly released biography, "Falling Up: The Days and Nights of Carlisle Floyd", signed by the author and Carlisle Floyd
    PLUS a score of one of the works recorded autographed by Carlisle Floyd and Susanne Mentzer

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    Pledge $6,000 or more About $6,000

    Susanne and pianist will give a live performance for you. You need only provide a piano and an audience. We provide travel, lodging.

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Funding period

- (60 days)