Anastasia Gamble views her art work. (Theresa Murphy/TKS)
Junior Mara Lane knew what would be required for a recital at a major music school: a set of songs in English, a set in Italian, a set in French and a set in German. Luckily, she enjoys listening to and performing classical and opera music, so putting together a program for her recital was not too difficult.
“I’m only doing three arias from operas but I definitely love performing them,” Lane said. “And I love thinking about the different characters and even when I’m just singing art songs, you can still put different characters behind it and make it more operatic.”
However, Lane had some difficulty coming back from studying abroad in Vienna during Fall Term. Her vocal instructor realized Lane’s voice had changed and that some of the pieces chosen last Spring Term would no longer work.
Despite the music major not requiring a recital, Lane knew she wanted to have one, even with it being her junior year.
“I want a really good music education and I think part of being a music performer and setting myself up to become a music performer [is that] you have to practice performing. And I figured I might as well give a big recital now when I have so much support from the Knox faculty and I have all the resources to do it,” Lane said.
Choosing their own programs lets the performers include more of their preferred music. Senior Madeline Pape prefers early 20th century composers like Claude Debussy and included him in her program. She also sang pieces by Brahms and Roger Quilter.
Senior Hansini Krishna likes to listen to hip-hop music but is singing classical music in a studio recital this week. Rather than doing a set in Italian like Lane did, Krishna plans to do three pieces, one in English, French and German. She also hopes to use her performances as a chance to encourage others.
“Another big thing I do feel is just encouraging other individuals, like, younger individuals, to pursue music. Not as a career, or a major or minor even, but just implementing art in your life is, honestly, I think so helpful,” Krishna said.
Like the musical performers, the visual artists also drew from history. In her talk, senior Emma Lister referenced monuments and the ‘grand gesture’ of the outstretched hand as part of her inspiration for her sculptures. However, she also noted she did not really think about the history as she worked, only noting similarities between projects.
Senior Anastasia Gamble has had a different experience with her artistic predecessors.
“I didn’t really start looking at artists until this term, which is kind of weird,” Gamble said. “I guess I got inspiration from personal experiences.”
Most of Gamble’s works are portraits of friends, family and pets. Over the past year, she has used oil paints over an acrylic base, something also done by artist Doron Langberg. Gamble tries to connect the base color with the emotion of the painting.
“What I’m just trying to do is embody their personalities and who they are in these paintings, to the best of my ability,” Gamble said.
The events are built on the students’ entire time at Knox. Lister included sculptures she made before senior year in her presentation to go along with her talk. Krishna did only pieces familiar to her, but had to relearn them for the recital.
“I don’t know how to explain this, but there’s definitely a point where you feel like you really know your music and I don’t know how to explain that feeling but you internally know you’re ready,” Krishna said.
During their time here, the students have also worked closely with the faculty, often one-on-one in music lessons or critiques, to achieve work of a college caliber or even beyond.
“When you get to the college level it’s a lot more intense and it’s the kind of thing where you get out of it what you put into it. So I think that I’ve grown a lot as a singer being at Knox because I’ve put a lot of time into it and since I’ve developed a relationship with Laura Lane — the choir director and head of the music department — and my voice teacher Allison,” Pape said.