New Art Song Cycle for Mezzo-Soprano, String Quartet, and Piano


Graphite Publishing is organizing an art song consortium for 4 brand new cycles of art
song. Four of our most prolific composers of art song will write a cycle for four different
voice parts. As a consortium member, you and your students will give regional
premieres of these songs. The buy-in cost is only $250 to get copies of all four new
cycles. You’d be helping to bring new art song into the world for $62.50 per cycle!
Martha Hill Duncan will write for soprano and piano, Jocelyn Hagen will write for mezzo-
soprano, piano and string quartet, Paul John Rudoi will write for tenor and piano, and
Timothy C. Takach will write for bass-baritone and piano. Help art song stay relevant
and fresh by contributing to its creation. Contact for more
details, or check out our consortium page here:


I will be composing two more songs for mezzo-soprano, string quartet and piano,
creating a 10 minute song cycle featuring two newly written poems that reflect on
women holding jobs or roles typically taken by men. “The Racing Form,” composed last
year, is about a female jockey riding so fast she transforms, winning the race in
spectacular fashion. Poet Brian Newhouse is currently writing a poem about the woman
who holds the Stop/Slow sign at road construction sites. I will write my own text for the
third song, reflecting on life as a female composer.


“The Racing Form” by Phil Dacey


And the cap flies off
and then the blouse,
silk rainbow
the wind balloons,
then breeches, boots,
and she’s left with
only underthings,
still riding hard,
the whip falls again
and again to the flank
of her naked horse,
and now the pink
top flutters away
and the bottoms tear
easily and ride the air.
O, it is too late

to bet on her!
I watch, through tears,
her body move
with her mount’s and cheer
against myself, the wad
I put down on the field.
As she wins, her whip
turns into a snake
wearing the colors of God.


Posted on

October 14, 2019

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