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Concert to honor professor for pioneering scholarship on British music

Nicholas Temperley
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L. Brian Stauffer

Nicholas Temperley, professor emeritus of musicology, will be honored at a concert July 28 by the North American British Music Studies Association during its biennial conference at the University of Illinois.

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7/17/2012 | Dusty Rhodes, Arts and Humanities Editor | 217-333-0568; rhodes8@illinois.edu

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The North American British Music Studies Association will honor Nicholas Temperley, professor emeritus of musicology at the University of Illinois, with a concert on July 28 celebrating his 80th birthday. Temperley forged the field of scholarly research in 19th-century British music; the concert, “Anglo-American Musical Connections,” will feature works by British and American composers.

Presented in conjunction with the School of Music, the concert coincides with the association’s biennial conference, which takes place at Illinois July 26-28 (Thursday through Saturday). Christina Bashford, a professor of musicology at the U. of I., said the organization purposely planned to hold its conference in Illinois to honor Temperley, who was the founding president of the association.

“The association very much wanted to come this year so that (the members) could pay tribute to his extraordinary career and impact,” she said. “The thing you have to remember is that when Nicholas began his career, the idea that there would be 100 people or more in the United States who have this special research interest in British music was probably unthinkable. He was very much the pioneer.”

Temperley was born in Great Britain but spent his career in the U.S. He is the author of numerous books (the best known is “The Music of the English Parish Church”) and is the founder and director of the Hymn Tune Index project, published in four volumes by the Oxford University Press and now a searchable online database. In June, his contributions to musicology were recognized at the 17th Biennial International Conference on 19th-Century Music, at the University of Edinburgh, where he was presented with a festschrift, “Music and Performance Culture in Nineteenth-Century Britain: Essays in Honour of Nicholas Temperley,” edited by Bennett Zon.

The concert at Illinois will feature the Baroque Artists of Champaign Urbana, conducted by Chester Alwes; The Prairie Ensemble, conducted by Kevin Kelly; and Prairie Voices, conducted by Laurie Matheson. The program will open with Handel’s coronation anthem for George II, “The King Shall Rejoice,” and end with Ralph Vaughan Williams’ “Serenade to Music.” Choruses from “Alice in Wonderland,” by Irving Fine, and Charles Ives’ Symphony No. 3 also are on the program.

The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Foellinger Great Hall at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets are $15 ($5 for students), and available at the Krannert Center box office.

British music also will be featured at 5 p.m. on July 26 (Thursday) at Krannert Uncorked, the weekly winetasting event at Krannert Center’s lobby Stage 5. Sopranos Ingrid Kammin and Karen Loda, tenor Dane Suarez and baritone Samuel James Dewese, accompanied by Andrei Strizek, will perform tunes by Noel Coward, Gilbert and Sullivan, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Cole Porter. Corkscrew Wine Emporium will serve samples of Anglo-American wines and ales.

The public is invited to attend the NABMSA conference keynote address, “John Philip Sousa, British Copyright, and the Making of Popular Taste,” by Patrick Warfield, on July 27 (Friday) at 1:30 p.m. in the Krannert Art Museum (seating is limited). Warfield, a professor of musicology at the University of Maryland, specializes in the American wind band tradition. “This talk traces Sousa’s connection with British music, from his youthful experiences orchestrating Gilbert and Sullivan to his efforts to alter English copyright law,” Warfield said in an email. “Along the way, we'll see how Sousa used public opinion to solidify his reputation as the March King.”

For more information, contact Bashford at bashford@illinois.edu.

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