Matthew Ricketts’ (CRF 2021) work There Once… will be performed in NYC this Sunday, May 8 at 3PM at Tenri Cultural Institute. Ricketts wrote his piece at Civitella and each movement is centered around a different part of the Castle; moreover, he used short epigrams by two poets in his session, Leah Naomi Green (CRF 2021) and Matvei Yankelevich (CRF 2021), as inspiration. Civitella Advisory Council Member Tania León’s (CRF 2003, Juror) work Alma is also on the program. Purchase tickets here.

Ricketts says:
“Across the three movements, I poetically explore the sense of place and space at Civitella Ranieri in Umbria, Italy. I spent summer 2021 at this miraculous 15th-century castle while writing There Once and wanted to respond musically to the surreal, ancient, otherworldly beauty surrounding me those months, dedicating each movement to a specific place on the castle grounds at a specific time of day. I also asked several poets / fellow Civitellians to furnish my imagination (and score) with epigraphs:”

I: “Secret Garden, Dawn” (for bass flute and piano)

This time, it is the rain when you wake. Murmuring what?—Leah Noami Green (CRF 2021)

II: “Courtyard, Midday” (for flute and piano)

Is there nothing more to trespass, now
that all property is private? Nowhere to be
alone, mine ore of stones by hand to mediate
lost souls. Dogs at their work of barking at the wild 
impossible of passing worlds. Wine in my head—
the night in morning’s light. The hills too far to touch,
their sorrel haze floats off the chestnut fields below,
blind in the mustard sun… —
Matvei Yankelevich (CRF 2021)

III: “Russian Terrace, Dusk” (for piccolo and piano)

Su tutte le lucide vette
tremava un sospiro di vento:
quassavano le cavallette
finissimi sistri d’argento
(tintinni a invisibili porte
che forse non s’aprono più?…);
e c’era quel pianto di morte…

Giovanni Pascoli