Performance Monday, April 22, 2013 | 7:30 PM

Nathan Gunn
Julie Gunn
Pacifica Quartet

Zankel Hall
Whether singing The Magic Flute or premiering a new American opera, Nathan Gunn is always compelling. As The New York Times puts it, “He brings all kinds of excellence to his work: musical intelligence, crisp rhythmic delivery and sensitivity to the text, impressive acting skills, and daring physicality.” For this recital, he’s joined by his wife, pianist Julie Gunn, and the Pacifica Quartet for a newly commissioned work.

The contemporary work on this program is part of My Time, My Music.

This performance was originally scheduled for Tuesday, February 19 and has been rescheduled for Monday, April 22.

Ticketholders should retain their original tickets for this performance as they will be honored for the new date. For additional information, the general public may contact CarnegieCharge at (212) 247-7800.


  • Nathan Gunn, Baritone
  • Julie Gunn, Piano
  • Pacifica Quartet
    ·· Simin Ganatra, Violin
    ·· Sibbi Bernhardsson, Violin
    ·· Masumi Per Rostad, Viola
    ·· Brandon Vamos, Cello


  • BEN MOORE "When You Are Old" (arr. J. Gunn)
  • BEN MOORE "Lake Isle of Innisfree" (arr. J. Gunn)
  • QUILTER "In the Highlands," Op. 26 (arr. J. Gunn)
  • QUILTER "Over the Land is April" (arr. J. Gunn)
  • BUTTERWORTH Six Songs from A Shropshire Lad
  • BARBER Dover Beach
  • IVES "Down East"
  • IVES "Tom Sails Away"
  • IVES "An Old Flame"
  • IVES "General William Booth Enters into Heaven"
  • IVES "The Things Our Fathers Loved"
  • IVES "The Circus Band"
  • BOWLES Blue Mountain Ballads
    ·· Heavenly Grass
    ·· Lonesome Man
    ·· Cabin
    ·· Sugar in the Cane
  • JENNIFER HIGDON Dooryard Bloom (World Premiere of chamber version)

  • Encore:
  • TRAD. "The Parting Glass"


  • Nathan Gunn

    Nathan Gunn has made a reputation as one of the most exciting and in-demand baritones of the day. He has appeared in internationally renowned opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, Opéra national de Paris, Bavarian State Opera, Glyndebourne Festival, Theater an der Wien, Teatro Real in Madrid, and Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels. His many roles include the title roles in Billy Budd, Eugene Onegin, Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Hamlet; Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, the Count in Le nozze di Figaro, Tarquinius in The Rape of Lucretia, Malatesta in Don Pasquale, Belcore in L'elisir d'amore, and Ottone in L'incoronazione di Poppea.

    A noted supporter of new works, Mr. Gunn recently created the role of Paul in the world premiere of Daron Hagen's Amelia at Seattle Opera. He also created the roles of Alec Harvey in André Previn's Brief Encounter at Houston Grand Opera, Father Delura in Peter Eötvös's Love and Other Demons at the Glyndebourne Festival, and Clyde Griffiths in Tobias Picker's An American Tragedy at the Metropolitan Opera. He was recently named director of the American Repertoire Council at the Opera Company of Philadelphia, a steering council focused on advancing the company's American Repertoire Program that is committed to producing a new American work in 10 consecutive seasons.

    Also a distinguished concert performer, Mr. Gunn has appeared with the New York and Rotterdam philharmonic orchestras; the Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Minnesota, and London symphony orchestras; and the Münchner Rundfunkorchester. He has worked with conductors Andrew Davis, Colin Davis, Christoph von Dohnányi, Christoph Eschenbach, Alan Gilbert, Daniel Harding, James Levine, Kurt Masur, Kent Nagano, Antonio Pappano, David Robertson, Donald Runnicles, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, Michael Tilson Thomas, and Mark Wigglesworth.

    Mr. Gunn's solo album Just Before Sunrise was released on Sony / BMG Masterworks. Other recordings include    the title role in Billy Budd with Daniel Harding and the London Symphony Orchestra (Virgin Classics), which won the 2010 Grammy Award; the first complete recording of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Allegro (Masterworks Broadway); and Peter Grimes with Colin Davis and the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO Live!), which was nominated for a 2005 Grammy Award.

    Mr. Gunn was the recipient of the first annual Beverly Sills Artist Award, and was awarded the Pittsburgh Opera Renaissance Award. He is an alumnus of the Metropolitan Opera Lindemann Young Artists Development Program and was the winner of the 1994 Metropolitan Opera National Council Competition. Mr. Gunn is also an alumnus of the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, where he is currently a professor of voice.

    More Info

  • Julie Gunn

    Julie Jordan Gunn is a pianist and arranger of music, from classical song recitals to cabaret evenings and Broadway-style concerts. She has appeared on many prestigious series over the last several years, including Lincoln Center Great Performers, as well as at Manhattan's legendary Café Carlyle. She has had the honor of sharing the recital stage with William Burden, Richard Croft, Michelle DeYoung, Elizabeth Futral, Yvonne Gonzales Redman, Mandy Patinkin, and her husband Nathan Gunn. Her arrangements of American songs have been programmed by orchestras throughout the US and abroad.

    Dr. Gunn also is on the faculty of the University of Illinois, where she teaches singers, pianists, and chamber musicians. She has served on the music staff at the Metropolitan Opera's Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, Wolf Trap Opera Company, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Southern Methodist University, Opera North, Theatreworks USA, Chicago Opera Theater, and Cincinnati Opera. Dr. Gunn has also given master classes at universities and as part of young artist programs all over the US, including the Houston Grand Opera Studio, Steans Music Institute at Ravinia, Aspen Music Festival and School, and Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.

    Dr. Gunn lives in Champaign, Illinois, with her husband and five children.

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  • Pacifica Quartet

    Recognized for its virtuosity, exuberant performance style, and daring repertory choices, the Pacifica Quartet has gained international stature over the past two decades as one of the finest chamber ensembles performing today. Pacifica tours extensively throughout the US, Europe, Asia, and Australia, and performs regularly in the world's major concert halls. Named the quartet-in-residence at Indiana University's Jacob School of Music in March 2012, the Pacifica was also the quartet-in-residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2009-2012), a position previously held by the Guarneri Quartet. In 2009, the quartet received a Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance.

    Formed in 1994, the Pacifica Quartet quickly won chamber music's top competitions, including the 1998 Naumburg Chamber Music Award. In 2002, the ensemble was honored with Chamber Music America's Cleveland Quartet Award and was appointed to Lincoln Center's CMS Two. It was awarded the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2006, becoming only the second chamber ensemble so honored in the grant's long history. In 2009, the quartet was named Ensemble of the Year by Musical America.

    An ardent advocate of contemporary music, the Pacifica Quartet commissions and performs many new works, including new compositions by Keeril Makan and Shulamit Ran to be premiered during the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 seasons. In 2012, Cedille Records released the second of three CDs that comprise the entire Shostakovich cycle, along with other contemporary Soviet works, to critical acclaim.

    The members of the Pacifica Quartet live in Bloomington, Indiana, where they serve as quartet-in-residence and full-time faculty members at the Jacobs School of Music. Prior to their appointment, the quartet was on the faculty of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from 2003 to 2012. The Pacifica Quartet also serves as resident performing artist at the University of Chicago. Visit for more information.

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Ives's  "General William Booth Enters into Heaven"
Nathan Gunn, Baritone | Kevin Murphy, Piano
EMI Classics

At a Glance

Nathan Gunn has chosen a program devoted entirely to songs in English, including pieces by British composers Roger Quilter and George Butterworth, and American composers Ben Moore, Samuel Barber, Charles Ives, Paul Bowles, and Jennifer Higdon. Though this music ranges in time from the turn of the 20th century to 2005, many of the songs share a pastoral quality and a strong vein of nostalgia. While Quilter and Moore yearn for a pastoral idyll in unspoiled Scotland and Ireland, Ives returns in his imagination to small-town Danbury, Connecticut, as it was when he was growing up there in the late-19th century. With the words of poet Tennessee Williams, Paul Bowles—a talented composer known today more for his novels and short stories—yearns for lost innocence and even Heaven itself in his Blue Mountain Ballads. But for Barber (and librettist Matthew Arnold) in Dover Beach, even the memory of a beautiful night on the southern coast of England brings no comfort.

The program closes with a major new work by Pulitzer Prize-winner Jennifer Higdon, Dooryard Bloom. It sets one of the greatest of all American poems, Walt Whitman's "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd," written as an elegy for Abraham Lincoln after his assassination in 1865. Higdon originally created this as a work for baritone and large orchestra for the 50th anniversary of the Brooklyn Philharmonic, but this evening we hear it in her most recent arrangement for baritone, string quartet, and piano.
Program Notes
This concert and the Pure Voice series are sponsored by the Jean & Jula Goldwurm Memorial Foundation in memory of Jula Goldwurm.