Lyric Fest was founded in 2003 by three Philadelphia-area musicians: Suzanne DuPlantis, mezzo-soprano, Randi Marrazzo, soprano, and Laura Ward, pianist, with the shared goal of celebrating and revitalizing the song tradition. It has produced and presented over 60 concerts and recitals featuring more than 160 local, regional and national artists. Currently LF is run by Artistic Directors, Suzanne DuPlantis and Laura Ward.
Commissioning and performing new works has become integral to the mission and programming philosophy. Since its founding, Lyric Fest has commissioned 17 and premiered over 20 new works of local, regional and nationally recognized composers. Lyric Fest enjoys working in partnership with composers providing them with opportunities for creating and mounting performances of their work.
It is one of a very few voice recital series of its kind in the area. While still a relatively young organization, its reputation for excellence and innovation is growing nationally and has begun to receive invitations to bring concerts to Pittsburgh, PA, Princeton, NJ, Washington, DC, and Concord, NH. Lyric Fest has received critical acclaim locally and has been noted in a number of national publications such as Opera News.
The organization remains committed to access through affordable ticket prices; broadening its audience; and to expanding the area’s interest in and knowledge of song as an important and relevant art form.
Friday Arts was delighted to sit down with Suzanne and Laura to talk about how the organization came about and where they would like to see it go. We experience a 2015 concert with the Singing City Choir and a more recent performance at The Academy of Vocal Arts, where 8 composers were commissioned to set letters to music.
Web Extra: Suzanne DuPlantis
Edited by Joy Waldinger
In addition to being a fantastic musician, Suzanne DuPlantis is also an accomplished artist. In this video, she talks about the thoughtful programs that she creates for each Lyric Fest concert.