Standing in the St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Hanover, Pennsylvania, it is not difficult to see how the beauty of religious devotion can inspire someone like Lloyd Larson to create such splendid choral pieces. Indeed, Larson considers himself a product of the church his family attended while growing up in Illinois.
No discussion of sacred and church choral music is complete without including the works of composer Joel Raney. Raney’s contribution to sacred music is widely celebrated by choir members and directors. His career has ranged from national tours of Broadway productions, to sacred cantatas, to TV and radio commercial jingles.
Wynn-Anne Rossi is known to the music world as a talented pianist, dynamic composer, and dedicated music educator. Throughout her life, she has combined her inquisitive nature with a strong work ethic to build an impressive musical career and body of work. Sharing her talents with the world is very important to Ms. Rossi, and we in the music world are very happy she has.
Known to be one of the most versatile composers and arrangers of our time, Mark Hayes is popular with both worship and secular choirs. He bridges the gap between style and content, making his music accessible to anyone who loves to sing. No doubt, his ability to write songs that appeal to the identities of many different choirs is what has made him one of the most widely performed contemporary composers.
As part of our ongoing series of interviews, Pepper had the opportunity to sit down with arranger and composer Heather Sorenson. A church pianist since the age of 7, Heather has lived in the midst of sacred music for her entire life.
2,000 music teachers, students, and music industry personnel will meet in Chicago from March 22-26, 2014 for the Music Teachers National Association’s annual conference. Prominent on the schedule is the premiere of two trios by American composers Wynn-Anne Rossi and Phillip Keveren.
Pianists, think back to your first experience playing the piano alongside another. For me, it was at home at age eight, sitting on the bench of our just-delivered Kawai upright with my mother. At that moment, I knew nothing about playing the piano. But like so many, the one and only thing my mother could plunk out was Heart and Soul.
Heather Sorenson was born in Illinois and lived in a number of places throughout her childhood, finally settling in the beautiful city of Dallas, Texas.
Crystal Desch and I had the honor of interviewing Wynn-Anne Rossi, and we think you’ll find her as we did, an inspirational composer, pianist and teacher. Among her many musical roles, Wynn-Anne is a highly creative composer of student-level piano music and instructional books on composing. We hope you enjoy getting to know her as much as we did.
Last month, we presented Part 1 of our interview with Robert D. Vandall. This is Part 2. Robert Vandall is one of this country’s most prolific and popular composers of educational piano music. He and his wife, Karen, operate a thriving independent piano studio in New Philadelphia, Ohio.