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Faces of Love: A graduate choral conducting recital. 

Little Trần, Timothy and University of Washington Recital Choir and Cohort Ensemble. Graduate Choral Conducting Recital. Seattle, WA: 2021.  
People Involved: 

The Faces of Love

Timothy Little Trần presents "FACES OF LOVE," sharing music that expresses the "other sides" of love, such as sacrifice, regret, longing, hate, loneliness, hope, and more 

Friday, October 29, 2021
Epiphany Parish of Seattle
7:30 p.m.

Supported by the generosity of:

Lake Washington United Methodist Church
Joan Catoni Conlon Endowed Fellowship 
UW School of Music Sacred Music Fund
Epiphany Parish of Seattle

Timothy is from the studios of Dr. Geoffrey Boers and Dr. Giselle Wyers.
This recital is in partial fulfillment of the Doctoral of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting.


Say Something (Love by Letting Go) as performed by Pentatonix                                               
Ian Axel, Chad (King) Vaccarino, Mike Campbell                    

Only In Sleep (Love by Remembering)
Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977)                                                

Let My Love Be Heard (Love by Sorrow)                                                         
Jake Runestad (b. 1986)                                                              

Historia di Jephte (Love by Sacrifice)                              
Giacomo Carissimi (baptized 1605–1674)    

Higher Love (Love by Belief) as performed by Kygo & Whitney Houston
Steve Winwood & Will Jennings; adapted by Timothy E. Little


Say Something (Love by Letting Go) as performed by Pentatonix                                               
Ian Axel, Chad (King) Vaccarino, Mike Campbell                    
Virginia Elizondo, Sarah Santos, Tyler Kimmel, Joseph Pavelek, soloists
Savannah Helming, cello
Galin Hebert, drum set

Say something, I'm giving up on you. I'll be the one, if you want me to. Anywhere, I would've followed you. Say something, I'm giving up on you.

And I was feeling so small. It was over my head, I know nothing at all.

And I will swallow my pride. You're the one that I love, And I'm saying goodbye.

And I will stumble and fall. I'm still learning to love, Just starting to crawl.

Ian Axel first released Say Something as part of his 2011 This Is the New Year solo album. The song was written while he and his roommate at the time, Chad King, were both “going though unrequited love things” as stated in an interview with American Songwriter. Ian and Chad shared how hard it was to write the song, but how cathartic it was to release such deep feelings and emotions during a difficult season of their lives. One year later, Ian joined Chad and formed the duo band A Great Big World. On September 3, 2013, the duo released the second version of Say Something which was performed the next day on So You Think You Can Dance season 10, episode 17. The acclaim of this performance skyrocketed and immediately captured the heart of superstar Christina Aguilera, who collaborated with A Great Big World for a third version of the song on November 4, 2013. Say Something earned A Great Big World and Aguilera a Grammy Award for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. Since then, Say Something has been performed, arranged, and adapted by artists all over the world, including today’s version, adapted by Pentatonix.

This slow ballad if full of sadness, humility, and regret, as an unrequited love is implored to “say something” because the singer is “giving up on them.” Listen to the aching tones in the choral voices, the crying of the obbligato cello, the rhythmic sternness of the percussion, and the growing tension between love and hate in the soprano solo. 

Only In Sleep (Love by Remembering)
Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977)                                                
Amy Boers, Katrina Turman, soprano

Only in sleep I see their faces,
Children I played with when I was a child, Louise comes back with her brown hair braided,
Annie with ringlets warm and wild.

Only in sleep Time is forgotten—
What may have come to them, who can know? Yet we played last night as long ago, And the doll-house stood at the turn of the stair.

The years had not sharpened their smooth round faces, I met their eyes and found them mild—Do they, too, dream of me, I wonder, And for them am I too a child?

Latvian composer Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977) is one of the most sought-after composers working today. He has won multiple awards for his works, including the Latvian Grand Music Award (2005, 2007, and 2015), The International Rostrum of Composers Award (2006), and The Year’s New-Composer Discovery of the Philadelphia Inquirer (2010). In 2018 he was bestowed Officer in the Order of the Three Stars, the highest state decoration of his home country Latvia, for merits in the field of culture.

Ešenvalds sets the poetry of Sara Teasdale’s reminiscence of one’s past through dreaming. The opening soprano solo is simple, folk-like, and harkens to one looking back to the simplicity of childhood. The slow harmonic motion of the non-texted choral background transforms us to “sleep” and is heightened by the rise of pitch and faster harmonic motion of the choir on text. The “middle of the dream” climaxes to a deep sleep with a high soprano descant and as we vividly see our past. The piece closes with a return to the opening soprano solo theme, but with an improvisatory fashion. This recapitulation sets the character back into the present, or even a return to dreamless sleep. 


Let My Love Be Heard (Love by Sorrow)                                                         
Jake Runestad (b. 1986)                                                              
Marshell Lombard, tenor                                                      

Angels, where you soar Up to God’s own light,

Take my own lost bird On your hearts tonight;

And as grief once more Mounts to heaven and sings,

Let my love be heard Whispering in your wings.

Jake Runestad is considered “one of the best of the younger American composers” (Chicago Tribune). His setting of Alfred Noyes’ Let My Love Be Heard employs gentle, but powerful emotions embedded within the music. The opening solo leads into a homophonic choral section with slow and legato triplets. The middle section separates the lower and higher voices, with the sopranos and altos “flying” with cascades of alternating triplets on “ah” in 4-part divisi while the tenors and basses constantly crescendo in homophonic repetitions of “let my love be heard.”

On Friday, November 13, 2015, a series of terrorist attacks in Paris killed 137 people, while injuring hundreds more. Just after the attacks, California State University’s choir (Long Beach) found that one of their own students, Nohemi Gonzalez, was killed studying abroad in France. The following day, the CSU choir was scheduled to rehearse their holiday music. Instead, to grieve the loss of their beloved colleague, they sight read, rehearsed, and recorded this piece, in one single rehearsal.


Historia di Jephte (Love by Sacrifice)                              
Giacomo Carissimi (baptized 1605–1674)         

No. 1 Recitative: “Cum vocasset” - Cee Adamson, mezzo-soprano
No. 2 Recitative: “Si tradiderit Dominus” - Lyon Stewart, tenor
No. 3 Chorus: “Transivit ergo Jephte”                                                                       
No. 4 Duet: “Et clangebant tubae” - Sophia Parker, Katrina Turman, soprano
No. 5 Arioso: “Fugite, cedite, impii” - Justin Birchell, baritone
No. 6 Chorus: “Fugite, cedite, impii”                                                                        
No. 7 Recitative: “Et percussit Jephte” - Katrina Turman, soprano
No. 8 Chorus: “Et ululantes filii Ammon”                                                                    
No. 9 Recitative: “Cum autem victor Jephte” -  Justin Birchell, baritone
No. 10 Aria: “Incipite in tympanis” - Amy Porter, soprano
No. 11 Duet: “Hymnum cantemus Domino” - Sophia Parker, Katrina Turman, soprano
No. 12 Aria: “Cantate mecum Domino” - Amy Porter, soprano
No. 13 Chorus: “Cantemus omnes Domino”                                                                
No. 14 Recitative: “Cum vidisset Jephte” -  Cee Adamson, mezzo-soprano
No. 15–21 Arioso: “Heu mihi! Filia  mea” - Lyon Stewart, tenor; Amy Porter, soprano
No. 22 Chorus: “Abiit ergo in montes”                                                                      
No. 23 Aria with Echo: “Plorate colles” - Amy Porter, Katrina Turman, Sophia Parker, soprano
No. 24 Chorus: “Plorate filii Israel”  

Giacomo Carissimi, a leading composer of sacred music during the early seventeenth century, is hailed as the progenitor of the oratorio (Joseph T. Rawlins, Howard E. Smither). Jephte, like all Carissimi’s oratorios, is an Oratorio Latino founded in expressive vocal technique using symbolism and The Doctrine of the Affections. Athanasius Kircher, one of Carissimi’s contemporaries, published the final chorus of Jephte in one of his encyclopedias of music as an “illustration of the power of music to move the soul and portray human emotions,” expressing regret at not having the space to print the entire oratorio. 

Jephte was composed around 1648 and originates from the biblical book of Judges 10–12. The unknown librettist tells the story of a Canaan commander (Jephte) who vows to God that he will sacrifice the first person he sees if he triumphs over the Ammonites. When the triumphant Jephte returns, the first person he sees is his daughter. Out of love for her father, she commits to honor the vow and retreats to the mountains to weep her virginity. The final chorus, “Plorate, filii Israel,” is based on Monteverdi’s Lamento della ninfa (chromatic descending fourth) as the daughter is joined by the community in a final lament to weep the sacrificial death.

Carissimi was very known at the time by his position as maestro di cappella at the Jesuit Collegio Germanico in Rome. His manuscripts circulated the region, and his music was performed all over Europe. However, many of Carissimi’s autographed manuscripts, including Jephte, were lost. Today’s performances originated from a personal copy of one of Carissimi’s students, French composer and prolific oratorio creator, Marc-Antoine Charpentier (1643–1704). Ritornellos have been added by Timothy E. Little and Federico Bardazzi.


Scene 1, No. 1 Recitative “Cum vocasset”                                                                    
Judges 11:28-30
Historicus:  When the king of the children of Ammon made war against the children of Israel, and disregarded Jephte's message, the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephte and he went on to the children of Ammon and made a vow to the Lord, saying:

Scene 1, No. 2 Recitative “Si tradiderit Dominus”                                                         
Judges 11:30-31

Jephte: If You will indeed give the sons of Ammon into my hand, then whoever comes first out of the doors of my house to meet me, I will offer him to the Lord as a complete sacrifice.

Scene 1, No. 3 Chorus “Transivit ergo Jephte”                                                                  
Judges 11:32
Historicus:   So Jephte crossed over to the sons of Ammon with the spirit, strength, and valor of the Lord to fight against them

Scene 2, No. 4 Duet “Et clangebant tubae”
Historicus: And the trumpets sounded, and the drums resounded, and battle against Ammon ensued.

Scene 2, No. 5 Arioso “Fugite, cedite, impii”
Crowd: Flee and give way, godless ones; perish, foreigners! Fall before our swords, for the Lord of Hosts has raised up an army, and fights against you.

Scene 2, No. 6 Chorus “Fugite, cedite, impii”
Crowd: Flee, give way, godless ones! Fall down! And with our raging swords, be scattered!

Scene 2, No. 7 Recitative “Et percussit Jephte“                                                                 
Judges 11:33
Historicus: And Jephte struck twenty cities of Ammon with a very great slaughter.

Scene 2, No. 8 Chorus “Et ululantes filii Ammon”                                                              
Judges 11:33
Historicus: And the children of Ammon howled, and were brought low before the children of Israel.

Scene 2, No. 9 Recitative “Cum autem victor Jephte”                                          
Judges 11:34
Historicus: When Jephte came victorious to his house, behold, his only child, a daughter, was coming out to meet him. She sang:

Scene 2, No. 10 Aria “Incipite in tympanis”
Filia: Strike the timbrels and sound the cymbals! Let us sing a hymn and play a song to the Lord, let us praise the King of Heaven, let us praise the prince of war, who has led the children of Israel back to victory!

Scene 3, No. 11 Duet “Hymnum cantemus Domino”
Crowd: Let us sing a hymn and play a song to the Lord, who gave glory to us and victory to Israel!

Scene 3, No. 12 Aria “Cantate mecum Domino”
Filia: Sing with me to the Lord, sing all you peoples! Praise ye the prince of war, who gave glory to us and victory to Israel!

Scene 3, No. 13 Chorus “Cantemus omnes Domino”
Crowd: Let us all sing to the Lord let us praise the prince of war, who gave glory to us and victory to Israel!

Scene 4, No. 14 Recitative “Cum vidisset Jephte”                                              
Judges 11:35
Historicus: When Jephte, who had sworn his oath to the Lord, saw his daughter coming to meet him, with anguish and tears he tore his clothes and said:

Scene 4, No. 15–21 Arioso “Heu mihi!”                                                                       
Judges 11:35–38
Jephte: Woe is me! Alas, my daughter, you have undone me, my only daughter, and you, likewise, my unfortunate daughter, are undone.

Filia: How, then, are you undone, father, and how am I, your only-born daughter, undone?

Jephte: I have opened my mouth to the Lord that whoever comes first out of the doors of my house to meet me, I will offer him to the Lord as a complete sacrifice. Woe is me! Alas, my daughter, you have undone me, my only daughter, and you, likewise, my unfortunate daughter, are undone.

Filia: My father, if you have made an oath to the Lord, and returned victorious from your enemies, behold! I, your only daughter offer myself as a sacrifice to your victory, but, my father, fulfill one wish to your only daughter before I die.

Jephte: But what can I do, doomed daughter, to comfort you and your soul?

Filia: Send me away, that for two months that I may wander in the mountains, and with my companions bewail my virginity.

Jephte: Go, my only daughter, go and bewail your virginity.

Scene 5, No. 22 Chorus “Abiit ergo in montes”
Historicus: Then Jephte's daughter went away to the mountains, and bewailed her virginity with her companions, saying:

Scene 5, No. 23 Aria with echo “Plorate colles”
Fillia: Mourn, you hills, grieve, you mountains, and howl in the affliction of my heart! Behold! I will die a virgin, and shall not in my death find consolation in my children. Then groan, woods, fountains, and rivers, weep for the destruction of a virgin! Woe to me! I grieve amidst the rejoicing of the people, amidst the victory of Israel and the glory of my father, I, a childless virgin, I, an only daughter, must die and no longer live. Then tremble, you rocks, be astounded, you hills, vales, and caves, resonate with horrible sound! Weep, you children of Israel, bewail my hapless virginity, and for Jephte's only daughter, lament with songs of anguish.

Scene 5, No. 24 Chorus “Plorate filii Israel“
Crowd: Weep, you children of Israel, weep, all you virgins, and for Jephte's only daughter, lament with songs of anguish

Higher Love (Love by Belief) as performed by Kygo & Whitney Houston         
Steve Winwood & Will Jennings; adapted by Timothy E. Little                                                      
Anika Padwekar, soloist
Dominico Reyes, piano
Galin Hebert, drum set

Think about it, there must be a higher love
Down in the heart or hidden in the stars above
Without it, life is wasted time
Look inside your heart, and I'll look inside mine

Things look so bad everywhere
In this whole world, what is fair?
We walk the line and try to see
Falling behind in what could be, oh

Bring me a higher love
Bring me a higher love, oh
Bring me a higher love
Where's that higher love I keep thinking of?

Worlds are turning, and we're just hanging on
Facing our fear, and standing out there alone
A yearning, yeah, and it's real to me
There must be someone who's feeling for me

Higher Love was first released in 1986 by Steve Winwood in his fourth solo LP, Back in the High Life with female vocals performed by Chaka Khan. The single was Winwood's first Billboard Hot 100 number-one song and earned two Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance. Whitney Houston’s 1990 cover of the song was meant for her third album I’m Your Baby Tonight. However, Houston’s producer at the time, Clive Davis, did not want her to become a “cover artists” and only released the single in Japan. In efforts to make many of Whitney’s unknown music known, the Houston Estate contacted Kygo to produce a remake of Higher Love. In June 2019, Norwegian DJ Kygo reworked Houston's cover and released it as a single on August 21, 2019. This final version is Houston's highest-charting posthumous release to date.


Bianca Bucerzan
Julia Carceroni
Virginia Elizondo*
Simrita Gopalan
Yijing Huang
Emily Huynh
Hinako Kawabe
Xuqi Li
Nicole Nomura
Meliza Redulla
Sarah Santos*
Veronique Streltsov
Ana Tanaka
Samantha Tien
Alexis Weathers
Angelina Yu


Cee Adamson*
Nora Boe
Caroline Cannistra
Anjali Chudasama*
Gray Creech
Fiona Flagstad
Ays Garcia
Colette Gauthier
Hongyi Ji
Lena Lee
Alicia Lopez
Grace Marshall
Chloe Peterson
Marley Ray
Zhiwei Wang
Tiffany Walker*


Ruby Whelan
Judy Woland
Leah Wyman*

Caleb Chan
Paul Jones
Tyler Kimmel*
Marshell Lombard*
Sebastian Pasion
Joseph Pavelek*

* Choral Cohort Ensemble 

Frank Goess*
Jacob Knight
Caelan Ritter
Peter Nicolas
Dale Largent
Justin Birchell*
Ken Schwartz*


Dominico ReyesTyler Kimmel


Wyatt Smith

Kevin Johnson

Daniel Frizzell

Savannah Helming



Isabella Pagel
Laura Faber

Rylan Virnig

Norah Duong

Galin Hebert
Daren Weissfisch


Status of Research or Work: