Baritone John Brancy and pianist Peter Dugan have been redefining the art song recital since making their critically acclaimed debut of A Silent Night at the Kennedy Center in 2014. Hailed by The Washington Post as "so refreshingly, marvelously different," that program pays homage to the centennial of World War I through the music of composers who lived through, fought in, and died in the Great War.
Since then, Brancy and Dugan have been presented in recital by Carnegie Hall, the Joye in Aiken Festival, St. John's College, University of Chicago, Société d'art vocal de Montréal, among others. Both artists maintain lively and unique individual careers. Brancy has performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and on tour with Glyndebourne Opera. Dugan has performed as a soloist with Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony, and in duo collaborations with Itzhak Perlman and Joshua Bell.
Brancy and Dugan met as students at The Juilliard School. As collaborative partners, they are committed to reenergizing and reinventing the approach to art song. Their repertoire ranges from the classic song cycles of the 19th century to original arrangements of the American Songbook and modern popular tunes. Brancy and Dugan are co-creators of OPERAtion Superpower, a superhero opera that encourages children to use their talents – their real-life superpowers – to do good in the world.
As official commemorative partners of The United States World War I Centennial Commission and its French counterpart, Mission du Centenaire, Brancy and Dugan recently performed at an event for foreign and American dignitaries. Commemorating the centennial of the U.S. entry into WWI, In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace took place at the National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, MO. Ahead of the album’s wide release, event attendees were able to purchase advance copies of A Silent Night, with proceeds benefiting Arts in the Armed Forces, a non-profit organization founded by Brancy and Dugan's fellow Juilliard alumnus, actor Adam Driver. In hopes of bridging the gap between artist and soldier, AITAF performs contemporary American theater free of charge at military installations around the world, for active duty military servicemembers, veterans, military caretakers, and their families.
Full Track Listing
(*indicates composer who served in WWI)
Gerald Finzi: Channel Firing (1949)
George Butterworth*: Six Songs from a Shropshire Lad (1911)
Ivor Gurney*: In Flanders (1917); By a Bierside (1916)
Carl Orff*: Der Gute Mensch (1920); Zwiegespräch (1919); Mein Herz ist wie ein See so Weit (1919); Herr, Ich liebte (1919)
Maurice Ravel*: Prelude & Toccata from Le tombeau de Couperin (1917); Trois beaux oiseaux du paradis (1915)
Francis Poulenc*: Bleuet (1939); Priez pour paix (1938)
Claude Debussy: Noël des enfants qui n'ont plus de maisons (1915)
Charles Ives: The Things Our Fathers Loved (1917); In Flanders Fields & Tom Sails Away from Three Songs of War (1917)
POPULAR SONGS OF THE GREAT WAR
Ivor Novello* / Lena Gilbert Ford: Keep the Home Fires Burning (1914) | arranged by Dugan/Brancy
Walter Donaldson* / Gus Kahn: My Buddy (1922) | arranged by Dugan/Brancy
Wilfred Sanderson / Fred G. Bowles: God Be with Our Boys Tonight (1918)
Traditional / Frederic Weatherly: Danny Boy (1913) | arranged by Dugan/Brancy