Summer is Odyssey's off-season, but we are very busy preparing for our next season amidst so much uncertainty during this global pandemic. Our goal is to make a formal announcement of our Season 17, while keeping the safety of our audiences and musicians in mind.
In the meantime, enjoy a live stream concert on July 19, Sunday 2:30pm featuring tenor Kyle Stegall and violinist Holly Piccoli with Odyssey director, pianist Ayako Tsuruta. This is a fundraiser concert for Room at the Inn (RATI) in Columbia, which First Baptist Church of Columbia also assists in the winter. While we have our own fundraiser we would love for you to consider, if you are able, please consider donating to RATI.
Please stay safe.
June 5, 2020
Dear Odyssey Families and Friends,
Thank you for joining us in Season 16. I hope you enjoyed Vox Nova’s performances on video, posted on our website last weekend. As we officially wrap up this season, we look forward to hopefully seeing you in the fall.
As many of you are aware, the recent health crisis has placed racial and socioeconomic inequity in the spotlight. The COVID-19 pandemic has been decimating Native Americans, as well as countless Americans of all colors – but notably African Americans.
To add to this stress, Ahmaud Arbery was killed while he was jogging in February. In March, Breonna Taylor was shot, and 10 days ago, George Floyd was murdered. That same Memorial weekend, Chris Cooper was threatened by a white woman. Unfortunately, we also know these racially based events were not isolated, yet again prompting a cry for help, #BlackLivesMatter.
Odyssey acknowledges the great anguish felt by many, but especially those within the black community.
We are thankful for the amazing collaborations Odyssey enjoyed in recent years with Marques Jerrell Ruff and his friends, and with Wontanara. Tears and laughter were shared first at the Second Missionary Baptist Church, and a year later at the First Baptist Church. Everyone, adults and children alike, was inspired by these exchanges of culture and music.
As the topic of racism takes center stage, I believe music has an important role to play in healing our society. We recognize the systems that exclude people of color from classical music training and opportunities. Odyssey is committed to doing the work to improve for all of its constituents. To start, we will present more diverse and inclusive programming of underrepresented composers beginning next season. Odyssey remains dedicated to being a multi-cultural, multi-racial organization of performers, audience and programming.
In these difficult times, please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns at info@OdysseyMissouri.org.
Ayako Tsuruta, Odyssey Executive and Artistic Director
and the Odyssey Board
This Sunday would have been Vox Nova's 3rd and final concert as Odyssey's Ensemble-in-Residence. We are working to reschedule this postponed concert - in hopes that we will be able to get together in May 2021.
Here is Vox Nova's performance at Odyssey's Season 12. The video begins with more excited Lieberman's last "Elizabethan Songs." For Vox Nova's signature performance, go to 1:15 for Tallis' "O Nata Lux."
Visit odysseymissouri.org/programs.html to revisit Vox Nova performances from Season 12 and 15. Then, consider donating to Odyssey so that we can continue to celebrate these great music and dedicated musicians with you!
Dear Odyssey Friends-
What an extraordinary times we are living in. COVID-19 pandemic has rattled everyone and everything around the world.
For free-lancing musicians, this pandemic has been devastating. I thought well established organizations like the Metropolitan Opera or Los Angeles Philharmonic would remain invincible, and did not imagine that its (temporary) closure would be caused by an illness.
I am also painfully aware that all this talk is privileged, compared to the poorest communities, here in Columbia and in other countries around the world, where keeping a distance of 6 feet is not even possible.
But music truly matters. In a time of dire need, we console ourselves with our favorite songs or songs that bring some solace. In a time of greatest joy, we celebrate the occasion or our lives with music to express our utmost feelings, indescribable in words. We use music to communicate our complicated emotions and feelings, where words fail.
Therefore, the well being of our musicians must be observed carefully. Financial support has never been more critical, especially at a time grant opportunities are severely compromised.
May I ask you to consider to donate to Odyssey to support its musicians? While "Women Composers" had to be cancelled, we have some of their music to share with you, performed exclusively by the Odyssey performers. You can see them at: https://conta.cc/3biZ6Y1
Thank you for your consideration.
Executive and Artistic Director
Season 14 wrapped up with Vox Nova as our featured Season Finale ensemble on June 3 - and just realizing only now that I had neglected posting 'Blogs' at all this past season, however sporadically I have in the past.
Thank you for sharing with us another spectacular season! We had a great turn out of audiences and musicians alike, and certainly a wonderful variety of world class chamber music.
Please plan to join us for Season 15! We kick off the season with a special presentation and production of the musical segment beginning with field/work songs all the way to the arranged spirituals of H. T. Burleigh, Margaret Bonds, and Moses Hogan to name a few. Co-curated by Dr. Maya C. Gibson and Dr. Stephanie Shonekan, this concert features former Chanticleer member Marques Jarrell Ruff and special guest soloist, international Opera, Jazz and Gospel artist Jolie Rocke Brown, with MU's new Assistant Director of Choral Activities, Dr. Brandon A. Boyd on the piano.
Then reserve the dates for other Season 15 gems - including the 9th Plowman Chamber Music Competition!
More exciting news will follow. Stay tuned!
Until Oct 12, every Thursday at 6pm, Classical 90.5 FM will air past Odyssey performances. Then come hear AKOPORLIS REED QUINTET on Oct 13 here in Columbia!
We are so lucky to be able to perform Crumb's "Makrokosmos III" for the THIRD time in our series, this time finally in the Summer! While the work is such a masterpiece, it doesn't really matter when you perform it - but I have to admit I am quite excited about this coincidence.
"Solar Eclipse: A Celestial Celebration" on Aug 18, Fri at 7pm First Baptist Church in Columbia - is a unique program comprised of sun-inspired works of all mediums: There will be images by local artists featured before and after the concert on TV monitors, and Jina Yoo's Asian Bistro will provide a sun-inspired presentation (confession: one of my favorite sushi is her Sun West rolls).
Thanks to the generosity of Mizzou Advantage and the Office of Cultural Affairs, this massive production is ADMISSION FREE, which is probably as rare as the Total Eclipse itself! Bring your families and friends; you will enjoy this live concert, featuring chamber music of voice, flute, clarinet, strings, percussion saxophone and 5 pianos in different combinations!
Due to Winter Storm, we are postponing Kids@Heart event to January 21, Saturday at 2:30pm Pre-concert & 3pm Concert
Please be safe this weekend!
With a title like "HOT WINTER SLEIGH," it is hard not to imagine what that concert must have been like... and certainly, it was one of a kind! Enjoy viewing the festive photos from December 2.