Woman of Note: Fanny Mendelssohn
𝐅𝐚𝐧𝐧𝐲 𝐌𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐥𝐬𝐬𝐨𝐡𝐧 𝐇𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞𝐥 (1805-1847), a prolific composer, shared a great love and talent for music with her brother, Felix Mendelssohn. At twelve years old, Fanny demonstrated the remarkable accomplishment of performing twenty-four preludes from J. S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier from memory before a private audience. Eventually her expertise at the piano surpassed even her brother's talent, however social limitations did not allow her to share her talents openly with the world.
Because of her gender, Fanny was afforded very little recognition for her work at the time. Many of her works were published after her death, some of which were published under her brother's name.
Now we are thrilled to recognize and celebrate this notable woman. 𝐅𝐚𝐧𝐧𝐲 composed the song Wandl’ ich in dem Wald des Abends, a piece we will perform at our Women of Note concert on May 15th!
Woman of Note: Joy Harjo
Let's get to know 𝐉𝐨𝐲 𝐇𝐚𝐫𝐣𝐨, internationally renowned performer and writer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. Joy is the first Native American named Poet Laureate of the United States.
Joy focuses on First Nation storytelling and histories, as well as feminist and social justice poetic traditions, and frequently incorporates indigenous myths, symbols, and values into her writing. Her work is also deeply concerned with politics, tradition, remembrance, and the transformational aspects of poetry.
In February 2022, Joy was named the Bob Dylan Center’s first artist-in-residence and will spend six years presenting educational programs and live performances at the new center in Tulsa.
Joy wrote “Eagle Poem” which serves as the text for Joan Szymko’s Eagle Rounding Out the Morning, a piece we are delighted to perform for you in May!
Woman of Note: Rosario Cooper
Rosario Cooper is recognized as the last speaker of the tiłhini language, the language of the Northern Chumash people who lived for thousands of years in the general region now referred to as San Luis Obispo County.
Working with linguist and ethnographer John P. Harrington between the years of 1912 to 1917, Rosario Cooper revealed rich details about her family, extended kinships, events, places, daily activities and memories from her long life. These efforts saved her tribal language from almost certain extinction. Her contributions to Harrington’s studies are memorialized in more than ten thousand notes, now archived at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
Recorded on wax cylinders, she sang beautiful traditional songs. Thanks to Rosario, the tiłhini language and songs are being spoken and sung by yak tityu tityu yak tiłhini Northern Chumash Tribe of San Luis Obispo County and Region, where many are direct descendants and relatives of Rosario Cooper.
They are bringing new life to the monumental work of their grandmother Rosario.