Release Date: January 13, 2015
Catalog #: RR7902
Format: Digital
20th Century
21st Century

Vanguards 2

Alan Schmitz composer
Newton D. Strandberg composer
Kim Halliday composer
Mary Ann Joyce-Walter composer
Herbert Deutsch composer
Mark Vigil composer
Franz Schubert composer
Rachel Lee Guthrie composer
Walter Ross composer
Andrew May composer
Mel Mobley composer
Amos Elkana composer
Alex Lubet composer
Richard Cornell composer
Marga Richter composer
Bruce Mahin composer
Gregory Hall composer
Elaine Huckle mezzo-soprano

Ravello Records announces the second installment of its compilation series, VANGUARDS 2, presenting a deep cross-section of the label’s contemporary and eclectic catalog. The album features performances by the London Symphony Orchestra, pianist Gregory Hall, the McCormick Percussion Group, mezzo-soprano Elaine Huckle, the Kiev Philharmonic Orchestra, Boston Musica Viva, guitarist Alex Lubet, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, and many more in works by contemporary composers including Mary Ann Joyce-Walter, Herbert Deutsch, Walter Ross, Rachel Lee Guthrie, Mark Vigil, Kim Halliday, Andrew May, Mel Mobley, Marga Richter, and others.

Since its launch in 2008, the Ravello label has established a reputation as a strong advocate for new and innovative music and artists, being hailed for “shedding light on the wealth of great present day classical composers” (babysue). From traditional and folk-inspired works to electroacoustic, improvised, and atonal pieces, this collection covers a variety of styles, representing the diversity of contemporary music.


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Artist Information

Alan Schmitz


Alan Schmitz (b. 1950) is Emeritus Professor of Theory and Composition at the University of Northern Iowa’s School of Music. He earned bachelor and master of music degrees from the University of New Mexico and a Ph.D. in music theory/composition from Rutgers University. Schmitz has received awards, commissions, and grants for composition from several agencies including the Alaska Council of the Arts, the Iowa Arts Council, the University of Northern Iowa, and the Lila Wallace/Reader’s Digest Foundation. His music appears on numerous Ravello Records releases, including NINETIES TIMEFLOW (chamber pieces), LYRIC IMAGES (guitar works performed by Todd Seelye), and ACE COMPOSERS, 21st Century Music by Alan, Christopher, and Eric Schmitz. Schmitz retired from the University of Northern Iowa in June, 2017, after 23 years as Associate Director of the School of Music and now resides in the Houston TX area.

Newton D. Strandberg


Newton D. Strandberg (1921-2001) was born in River Falls, Wisconsin and raised in his youth in mid-America, Iowa. He first attended North Park College (now North Park University) in Chicago and later, in 1983, was awarded an honorary doctorate of Fine Arts from the school. He studied piano and composition with Anthony Donato at Northwestern University, receiving a Bachelor of Music Education in 1942, a Master of Music in Piano Performance in 1947, and a Doctorate of Music in Composition in 1956, the first music degree of its sort to be awarded at Northwestern.

Kim Halliday


Kim Halliday (b. 1961) is an accomplished composer with a wide experience of writing music for film, television, theatre, multimedia and concert stage. His work includes scores for feature films, short films, documentaries and television, as well as pieces for multi-media, Internet and live performance.

Mary Ann Joyce-Walter


Mary Ann Joyce was born in Champaign-Urbana IL, and received her B.A. from Fontbonne University, St. Louis, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in theory and composition from Washington University, St. Louis. After graduate school, she moved to the New York City area where she has remained. She is an active composer of instrumental, choral and vocal music, and a professor of music at Manhattanville College. Her works have been performed at international festivals and concerts through the United States, Europe, and Russia. Mary Ann's works are published by Pioneer Drama, World Library of Sacred Music, Ars Nova, Scribner & Sons, and Gold Branch; her pieces are available on CDs from Navona Records, Capstone and Pioneer Drama.

Herbert Deutsch


Herbert Deutsch was a composer, author, educator, and performer, and was Professor of Music at Hofstra University for 57 years. He is a composer of music in various media and his work has been widely performed, and commissioned works have been featured at national and regional conferences. In 1972, Deutsch co-founded the Long Island Composers Alliance. During his career at Hofstra, he founded Jazz Ensemble, Electronic Music Studios, New Music Ensemble, and created the B.S. Degree programs in Jazz, Composition/Theory and Music Business. He received the George Estabrook Distinguished Alumni Award in 1996 and the Hofstra Alumni Achievement Award in 2001. The Music Department has established the Herbert Deutsch Award for highest honors in Music Education.

Mark Vigil


Mark Vigil (b. 1954) was born in Spokane WA in October of 1954. In 1981, Vigil received a Bachelor of Music degree in composition and piano performance from the Cornish Institute of the Allied Arts. Cornish is located in Seattle Washington. At Cornish, Vigil studied composition with Janice Giteck and piano performance with Corri Celli. In 1996, Vigil received his Master of Music degree in composition from the University of Oregon School of Music. The University of Oregon School of Music is located in EugeneOR, a very cosmopolitan city. From 1991-1996 Vigil studied composition with Robert Kyr and Hal Owen. At present he studies composition with Tomas Svoboda. Vigil has been his student for ten years. He currently makes his home in Eugene Oregon.

Rachel Lee Guthrie


Rachel Lee Guthrie was born on November 3, 1979 in Des Moines IA. From an early age, she played the piano by ear and resisted formal lessons until the age of fourteen when she began studying with various college-level instructors. In 2004, Guthrie earned a degree in piano pedagogy from Drake University, graduating cum laude. Her passion has always been for Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Impressionist masters, and she has composed a number of new pieces in the classical tradition as well as works in a contemporary style.

Walter Ross


Walter Ross (b. 1936), whose works have been performed in over 40 countries, is perhaps best known for his compositions featuring brass and woodwinds. Raised in Nebraska, he became a professional orchestral French horn player by the age of seventeen and went on to gain more performance experience in college as member of the University of Nebraska symphonic band, as a string bass player in a polka band, and as a flute player with a baroque ensemble. Currently he plays bass in the Blue Ridge Chamber Orchestra in Charlottesville VA.

Andrew May


Composer Andrew May is best known for chamber music that combines classical instruments with interactive computer systems. During his childhood in Chicago he studied violin, wrote chamber music for his friends, manhandled tape recorders to make odd sounds, and wrote computer software - but these were all separate activities. Then he learned about interactive computer music, and it turned out they could all work together. These days, May teaches composition and computer music at the University of North Texas, where he directs the Center for Experimental Music and Intermedia. He still plays violin, writes chamber music for his friends, and writes computer software - but now, sometimes some of the friends are the software.

Mel Mobley


A native of Texas, Mel Mobley (b. 1966) currently resides and teaches in Monroe, Louisiana. He holds degrees from the University of Texas, University of South Florida, and University of Illinois. Active as a performer, composer, and advocate of new music, Mel has been involved in new music festivals and performances all around the country. Performed here and abroad, his works include orchestral, band, chamber, choral, and electronic music. His largest work to date, a chamber opera titled Sylvan Beach, premiered in the spring of 2010. His percussion trio with piano titled [pleez], (plez), /pliz/ was released on the 2013 Revello Records compact disc, Piano Concerti with Percussion Orchestra.

Amos Elkana


Amos Elkana was born in Boston, but grew up in Jerusalem. At the age of 15, he picked up the electric guitar and began to study music, which soon became his primary occupation in life. In 1987, aged 20, he returned to Boston to study jazz guitar at the Berklee College of Music and composition at The New England Conservatory of Music. In 1990, he moved to Paris where he studied composition with Michele Reverdy. He also took composition classes with Erik Norby in Copenhagen, and with Paul-Heinz Dittrich and Edison Denisov in Berlin. Two years later he returned to Israel where he has been living since. In 2007 Elkana received his M.F.A. in music/sound from Bard College, New York. While at Bard, he focused on electronic music and took lessons with Pauline Oliveros, David Behrman, Richard Teitelbaum, George Lewis, Maryanne Amacher and Larry Polansky, among others.

Alex Lubet

Composer, Guitarist

While Lubet was written works in many media, his creative output in this millennium has focused almost exclusively on his own performance, mostly on a variety of plucked string instruments associated with American folk traditions. These include acoustic guitar, mountain dulcimer, National steel guitar, ukulele, and electric and acoustic bass. He performs solo and with groups including the Japanese-inspired ensemble-Ma, Deep State, with pianist Guerino Mazzola, One World, with Kurdish-Canadian kamanche (spike fiddle) player, Shahriyar Jamshidi, and a jazz duo (name tbd) with saxophonist Christopher Rochest. In addition to his own works, many composers have written works for Lubet, in particular composers from China, where he was lectured, taught, and concertized live and on television. Of late, he has become particularly well-known for his unique approach to mountain dulcimer.

Richard Cornell


The music of Boston-based composer Richard Cornell deftly explores the nature of art and collaboration, highlighting the latent opportunities for artistic license and interpretation within music. His cross-disciplinary efforts combining visual elements with his works have led to installations, art works in virtual reality, and audio/video projects, one of which is included on his latest album TRACER on Ravello Records.

Marga Richter


Midwest-native composer Marga Richter grew up in Wisconsin and Minnesota prior to moving to New York, where she earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in composition from The Juilliard School. Her compositional output consists of over 150 works encompassing virtually every genre of classical music. Her orchestral music has been played by more than 50 orchestras including the Atlanta and Milwaukee Symphonies and the Minnesota Orchestra, and recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra, the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, and the Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Bruce Mahin


Bruce P. Mahin is a Professor of Music, and Director of the Radford University Center for Music Technology. Mahin received the 2007 Radford University Distinguished Scholar Award. He is a former president of the Southeastern Composers League, a former co-chair of Society of Composers Region 3, a former research fellow at the University of Glasgow (Scotland) and former resident composer at Le Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, the recipient of awards from the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Meet the Composer, Annapolis Fine Arts Foundation, Res Musica, Southeastern Composers League and others. His works are available on Capstone Records (CPS-8747, CPS-8624 and CPS-8611) and as digital reissues on the Ravello Records label.

Gregory Hall


Gregory Hall (b. 1959) was born in San Francisco, CA. He holds a B.A. degree in Music from the University of California, Santa Barbara (1982), completing studies with Emma Lou Diemer and Peter Racine Fricker, and a Diploma degree in Composition from the Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia, PA (1986), where he studied with Ned Rorem. In 2000 he was elected to the membership of the American Composers Alliance (ACA). His works are published by the ACA. He is a Fellow of the Ucross Foundation, a member of the American Composers Forum, and the American Music Center. He is the recipient of numerous commissions.

Elaine Huckle


Elaine Huckle's (b. 1947) first singing efforts took place at her local church when she was 7 years of age, where she sang "O Come all ye faithful" as a solo. Her parents walked home in disbelief, newly aware that their daughter could sing rather well.