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Meet the Artist Marya Hart


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Hinge Arts at the Kirkbride is hosting a meet and greet for Marya Hart on Tuesday, May 22nd at Springboard for the Arts, 4:30 - 5:30PM. Located at 201 West Lincoln Ave., Fergus Falls, MN. We will provide beverages and appetizers and Marya will share her work and what inspired her for her Prairie Cantana. This event is FREE and open to the public. Please share and invite family and friends. Marya will be in residence through our Homecoming residency Monday, May 21st – Saturday, June 9th, 2018.

Marya Hart is a lyricist and composer, concentrating on vocal and theatrical music. Many of her compositions explore subjects of social interest and controversy, including mental illness, women’s fate in wartime, and political dynamics and conflict. She is interested in making art that tests audience preconceptions and challenges them to discussion and action, and that addresses the situation of those who are left behind or forgotten.
She is a self-taught composer, she draws her vocabulary from a performing career working in the traditions of Euro- and Afro-American folk music, jazz and pop, and from the contemporary music of such twentieth century masters as Hanns Eisler and Bela Bartok. She favors close harmony and irregular forms. As a lyricist, she researches subjects deeply, and aims for simplicity, clarity and condensation. Structure, use of rhyme and suitable register for the subject and character are important values.
Marya has worked in collaboration with many artists, and has found that an open and democratic process is the best. Structuring music for particular performers, answering their questions, and responding to their needs yields joyful and informed music-making.
Marya is creating, refining, rehearsing and supervising the performance of several sections of a Prairie Cantata, to be performed by local choirs, with the possible addition of a soprano soloist. The cantata would consist of three to four movements dealing with the history of the prai- rie, flora and/or fauna, and the changing relationship of people to the land in the Anthropocene. The lyrics will reflect accurate scientific information. Teresa Jaskiewicz of the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center has agreed to review the text, and to serve as an interlocutor for the project.
The Prairie Cantata is part of a larger project She has been working on intermittently—a natural history oratorio. She has written two draft movements about insects, one for a vocal octet, the other for soprano soloist. The project grows from her interest in fostering scientific literacy by using music as a means of emotional engagement with the subject matter.
There is a growing environmental awareness in the prairie region, as shown by many education, preservation and conservation initiatives. But coupled with this are effects of human activity that threaten to outpace environmental remediation, and the unfortunate growth of public distrust in science, which may lead to further degradation. In part, this is because the work of scientists is often specialized and abstruse, and seems inaccessible to “ordinary” people. There have been social and political barriers erected between people and the natural world, but art is a way to lower them, and to forge a connection based on wonder. The particulars of the natural world are awe-inspiring, and science education is not limited to classrooms nor to the young.

Here is the website for her Prairie Cantana.