Recording of John Corigliano’s “Mr. Tambourine Man”

We are thrilled to be working on our next recording project: John Corigliano’s song-cycle “Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems of Bob Dylan” (chamber ensemble version).
John Corigliano after winning the Oscar for his film score for The Red Violin.

Mr. Corigliano is a Grammy Award-, Pulitzer Prize-, and Oscar-winning composer and one of the most important musical voices of our time. We had the great honour of performing this work of his in 2018 at Calgary’s National Music Centre with him in attendance as our Guest Composer. He was so enthralled by our performance that he awarded us exclusivity to create the first commercial recording of this version of the work. In Mr. Corigliano’s words about the piece:

“I bought a collection of [Bob Dylan’s] texts, and found many of them to be every bit as beautiful and as immediate as I had heard-and surprisingly well-suited to my own musical language. I then contacted Jeff Rosen, his manager, who approached Bob Dylan with the idea of re-setting his poetry to my music.

I do not know of an instance in which this has been done before (which was part of what appealed to me), so I needed to explain that these would be in no way arrangements, or variations, or in any way derivations of the music of the original songs, which I decided to not hear before the cycle was complete. Just as Schumann or Brahms or Wolf had re-interpreted in their own musical styles the same Goethe text, I intended to treat the Dylan lyrics as the poems I found them to be. Nor would their settings make any attempt at pop or rock writing. I wanted to take poetry I knew to be strongly associated with popular art and readdress it in terms of concert art-crossover in the opposite direction, one might say. Dylan granted his permission, and I set to work.”


The whole ensemble at the Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary.
Maria and Beth
Karl speaks with John during the recording process.

Laura Hynes (soprano)

It has been amazing collaborating with him on this project so far! He has been providing us terrific feedback on the recordings we have been emailing him during our 2-week rehearsal period, and we are now onto the editing stages with him. We are excited to have this recording released worldwide next season! Here are some photos from our recording sessions on October 30th and November 6th.

The Ensemble:

  • Karl Hirzer, conductor
  • Laura Hynes, soprano
  • Mary Sullivan, flute/bass flute
  • Cedric Blary, Eb/Bb/bass clarinet
  • Kyle Eustace, percussion
  • Maria van der Sloot, violin
  • Beth Root Sandvoss, cello
  • Susanne Ruberg-Gordon, piano
  • Recording engineers: Zana Warner and Alex Bohn
  • Producers: Chris Sandvoss and Vincent Ho

Recording of John Corigliano’s “Mr. Tambourine Man”

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