Suzi More and friends - DJ Abbamont, Victoria Griswold, Kendell Kardt, Angela Manso, Andre Lamar Smith and Glenn Tiedemann
A New Jersey native, Miss More has performed extensively throughout the United States and abroad. She has been soloist and has appeared in numerous operatic roles performing with the Festival Chorus of New Jersey, the Masterwork Chorus and Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Singers, the Plainfield Symphony, Ars Musica Antiqua, the Garden State Chorale, the State Repertory Opera, Jersey Lyric Opera, Choral Baccarelli (Sao Paulo, Brazil), the Academy of Vocal Arts Opera Theatre (Philadelphia, PA), Montclair Chamber Orchestra, and numerous others. In 1989, she was the award-winning collaborator along with composer Loretta Jankowski, of a song cycle entitled Phoenix, published internationally by Boosey & Hawkes, in December 1993. The work, featuring Ms. More, was presented at both the Los Angeles, California (1989), and Little Rock, Arkansas, national Association of Teacher's of singing (NATS) conventions. She is a recipient of several Lila Wallace/Reader's Digest Incentive Grants, for performance and research. She is a member of the NATS, NJ, NYC and National chapters. Also, a composer of jazz, folk and children's songs. Her voice teachers and coaches include Franco Rossi-Roudett, Terrence Shook, Helen Fenstermacher, Chloe Owens, Daniel Ferro, Marlena Malas, Dorothea Discala, Frank Valentino, Deborah Taylor, and Dolores Cassinelli. She has appeared in master classes with Elly Amelling, Jerome Hines, Judith Raskin, and Daltin Baldwin. Ms. Morehead holds a B.A. degree from Rutgers University, M.A. degree from Jersey City State College, and pursued studies at the Academy of Vocal Arts, in Philadelphia, and New York University. She worked as voice teacher, chorus director and Orff specialist at the Newark School of the Arts for over 30 years. As well as has taught over 20 years in the New Jersey Public Schools as music specialist.
DJ Abbamont, Soprano: A New Jersey performer, originally from Whippany. Studies at Westminster Choir College and Montclair State were under Hye Young Choi, Susan Robinson, Alice Parker, David York, Charles Schisler, Augusta Borrois, Lois Laverty, David Randolph, Ting Ho and Martin Bate. Worked not only in the field of Oratorio (Masterwork Chorus under David Randolph) and with Contemporary Christian Music but performed in popular music venues such as “The Entertainers” a Dixieland Band. As well as being a piano and voice instructor, Abbamont’s great joy is in serving a music ministry involved in "The Jesus Story" produced by Bible Baptist Passion Play Ministries. In her own words “If by my singing these love songs, then the persecution which Max Kowalski suffered can hopefully begin to heal. “
Elma Adams holds the BA in Music Education from Kean University and completed the MA, Diploma, and postgraduate studies in piano at the Juilliard School of Music. She studied piano with Irwin Freundlich, Alton Jones and Robert Goldsand, and has performed as soloist with the New Jersey Symphony. She toured under the sponsorship of the State Department including venues in the Caribbean, Africa and South America. Prof. Adams has given school concerts throughout NJ and is a frequent judge of competitions in New Jersey. She is also currently organist/choir director at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Newark. Prior to her appointment at Kean, Prof. Adams taught at Newark School of the Arts and Westminster Conservatory of Music in Princeton. She joined the faculty of Kean University in 2001 where she teaches Music Fundamentals.
Victoria Griswold is a classical pianist who has concertized in Europe, Brazil and throughout the New York metropolitan area. At her debut recital in NYC, one reviewer characterized her as "an elegant pianist." She received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from Manhattan School of Music. In Europe she recorded new works of William Thomas McKinley with such orchestras as the Warsaw Philharmonic, the London Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. She is currently working on a recording of piano music by women composers.
Her musical background also includes appearances as pianist and Music Director for professional musical theatre productions, Music Director and harpsichordist for Ars Musica Antiqua, and early music ensemble and as church organist. She also served as staff accompanist at New Jersey City University for six years.
Ms. Griswold taught piano for 30 years in her private studio and has adjudicated many young people's competitions and auditions sponsored by such organizations as the New Jersey Symphony, the Livingston Symphony, the Music Educators of New Jersey, the Andrew DeGrado Foundation and the New Jersey Music Teachers Association. Victoria Griswold is also the owner of the Plainfield Music Store, a retail establishment specializing in printed music.
Kendell Kardt, is an American song writer, composer, lyricist, vocalist, guitarist, pianist and performer.
He pursued his active solo performing career between 1967-1983. Kardt has worked as a pianist for classical dance companies from Nashville to New York and New Jersey. He is also a teacher, arranger and organist
Pianist Angela Manso has served as musical/director/pianist for over forty operas and musical theater productions, including twenty for New York City's Bel Canto Opera Company. She served as assistant conductor for the Carnegie Hall performance of Mrs. H.H.A. Beach's Grand Mass in E-Flat Major, a work that was subsequently recorded in the Newport Classics label. Ms. Manso was the official accompanist for the first World Harmonica Championship on the Isle of Jersey, U.K., during which she performed in recital with harmonica virtuoso, Cham-Ber Huang, and accompanied internationally renowned artist Larry Adler and Mr. Huang performing the Bach Double Violin Concerto arranged for two harmonicas. As a composer, her Prayer for Mankind was performed by the Central City Chorus with Director Mr. Charles Pilling and organist Harry Huff. Women Singing, a women's choir directed by Ms. Phyllis Clark, performed Manso's "O Son of Spirit!" (originally written for eight-part mixed choir and arranged for four-part women's voices by Ms. Clark for the concert). The Celestial Tree was performed by Monica Jalili, soprano, and Angela Manso, pianist, at the Festival of the Arts presented by Global Music in New York City in 2002. Ms. Manso's chamber piece, Dawn, written for women's voices, harp, Native American flute, and Tibetan bells and ting-shas, was presented at the New York Baha'i convention in 2001.
Andre Lamar Smith
Andre Lamar Smith, is a 2007 graduate of Newark School of the Arts (NSA), a 2011 graduate of George Washington University (GWU) and a 2013 graduate of Relay Graduate School of Education (RGSE), and hails from Fanwood, NJ. At NSA, Andre focused on vocal performance under the instruction of Susan Morehead. At RGSE, he received a Masters in Teaching with a focus on Childhood Education K-6. At GW, Andre received a Bachelor of Arts in Music with a concentration in Vocal Performance and a minor in Psychology. Andre was introduced to the art of teaching via Teach for America in 2011 and placed in New York where he taught for three years at Success Academy Bed Stuy 1. On top of being an educator, Andre is also an aspiring and talented opera singer. He has performed on MSNBC, the Embassy of Ethiopia, Carnegie Hall (NYC), the Papermill Playhouse (Millburn, NJ), the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) in Newark, NJ, and Riverside Church in NYC. Andre has also worked with Trilogy: An Opera Company, Regina Opera Company (NYC), and Stony Hill Players Inc.(NJ) During the Summer of 2014, he travelled to Italy with the Assisi Performing Arts to perform the role of Figaro in the opera, the Marriage of Figaro.
Glenn Tiedemann, Organist, Composer, Arranger, A native of New Jersey, his musical studies included Richard Paige Eckstein (Theory), Ralph Kneeream, David Randolph (Choral Music, German Diction) and Ting Ho (Theory and Composition) Has served as Organist Choir Director for the Belleville Reformed Church, Belleville, New Jersey, Central Brick Presbyterian Church in East Orange, and Brookdale Reformed Church, Bloomfield, New Jersey. In addition to his organist/director duties, Mr Tiedemann has been a very active church member and has worked as a member of the Advisory Board for a new hymnal for use in both the Christian Reformed Church and Reformed Church in America with denominations throughout the USA and Canada. Publication date is set for 2013.
In his own words “I am a lover of the human voice; from the effortlessly floating melodies and open harmonies of Gregorian Chant thru the nearly acrobatic melodies of the Mozart Aria. I also love the rich sounds and expansive harmonies of the Romantic Symphony and Piano Concerti; such as Rachmaninoff & Mahler. Max Kowalski's Music contains elements of all of the above - a brilliant composer who is truly worthy of being remembered.”
Max Kowalski (1882-1956) - Holocaust Composer of Lieder
Max Kowalski(1882-1956) was born in Kowal, Poland. His family moved the next year to Frankfort, Germany, where he grew up, studied and earned Doctorates in both Music and Law (his specialty was Copyrights). His teacher of compostition was Bernhard Sekles and voice, Alexander Heineman. In Germany from 1913 till 1931, Max Kowalski was a prolific composer of beautiful lieder in the Romantic style. Although he was Jewish, Max Kowalski wrote music of all styles and genres, from Japanese, Chinese, Danish, Arabic, French and that of many great German authors, he even wrote a Marienlieder in his Opus 12. He was friend to many other composers, artists and performers and every song cycle he wrote was quickly published until Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich took over the country. In the late 30's Kowalski was very involved with the "Kulterbund" in Frankfort, Germany and his music continued to have popularity in their orchestral concerts. He is mentioned and highlighted by his presence at the last Kulturbund concert(1938) in Martin Goldsmith's book entitled "The Inextinguishable Symphony". By the end of 1938, Kowalski was arrested and spent time in Buchenwald but within a month he was released and he fled to England where he spent the rest of his life teaching voice, singing in a Synagogue and making a humble living. Although no music of his was ever published again, he kept writing new works, 18 new song cycles in manuscripts which singers performed in concerts and on radio. Opus 1 is his first composition dated 1913 and first published by Leukart in Germany. It had been out-of-print many years until Dr. Walter Foster of Recital Publications in Huntsville, Texas took up the committment to bring as many of Max Kowalski's song cycles to the public as possible. So far, 13 of his 17 previously published cycles have been reprinted.
John Jacob Niles (1892-1980) - American Singer-Song Writer
John Jacob Niles
John Jacob Niles (1892-1980) was an American Singer-Song Writer who was well known for collecting traditional folk ballads which greatly influenced the folk musicians of the 50s and 60s
In one publication of his songs for voice and piano, he sadly commented that he had transcribed so many ballads people didn’t really see him as a composer and that people assumed everything with his name on it were just folk tunes that he had collected throughout the nation. He is best known for his Christmas carol, “I wonder as I Wander” and for one of the first songs that he ever wrote entitled “Go ‘Way from My Window.” In addition, there were many art songs that Niles wrote with the poetry of Thomas Merton as well as arrangements of his music for chorus. He toured many years performing on the dulcimer or lute and singing with a high tenor voice.
Known for his great ability to write with the heart of the Kentucky mountain people in mind, John Jacob Niles could bring the life and soul of this culture to us through his use of flowing melodies and piano accompaniments that paint so many beautiful tonal pictures
Max Caselnova (Clearcut Recording) - Recording Engineer for the Kowalski Project
Max Caselnova of Clearcut Recording Studio, Garfield, New Jersey has been involved with the Kowalski Project, to record all of the formerly lost and originally published works of Max Kowalski (1882-1956) Holocaust Composer .