CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
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Iowa City IA 52242
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Violist Christine Rutledge will perform English music at free recital
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Violist Christine Rutledge, a new member of the faculty
of the University of Iowa School of Music, will perform a recital of English
music, with works from the 18th through 20th centuries, at 8 p.m. Thursday,
Dec. 3 in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.
A graduate of the UI School of Music, Rutledge was a student of William
Preucil, whose former position on the UI faculty she now fills.
Performing with Rutledge will be pianist Darlene Lawrence, also from
the School of Music faculty. Their UI faculty recital will be free and
open to the public.
The program will include the Sonata in C major for viola and keyboard
of the 18th-century composer William Flackton, the earliest sonata for
viola by an English composer.
Rutledge will also play three works by major English composers of the
20th century: Two Pieces for viola and piano by Frank Bridge, the Sonata
for viola and piano by Sir Arthur Bliss and "Lacrymae" by Benjamin
Relatively little known to American audiences, the Bridge and Bliss
works are part of a project Rutledge has recently undertaken to record
early 20th-century English music for viola and piano.
Rutledge, who has been teaching at Notre Dame and playing in the Notre
Dame String Trio, considers both the CD project and the move to the UI
as constituting a shift in her career, from a focus on chamber music to
a greater concentration on solo performance.
"By coming to Iowa I saw a wonderful opportunity to at last bring
to fruition my ideas and goals as a soloist," she said. "One
of these goals was the solo CD project, recording important works that
I felt needed to be recorded, due to both the general lack of recorded
solo viola repertoire, and the lack of CD recordings of the Bridge and
Bliss works specifically.
"The early 20th-century works were written at a time when the viola
began to take on a more significant role as a solo instrument, due largely
to the work of these English composers. Their works showed other composers
that there could be such a thing as a 'solo violist.'"
Rutledge also sees both the CD project and her solo recital as a vital
part of her work as a teacher. "It is of the utmost importance that
viola students, and particularly my students at the UI, become familiar
with the repertoire and have a recording available to them for reference.
A solo recital and a recording by their professor is an important way for
my students to experience what it is I am trying to teach them, letting
them hear how I do it, just as students in other fields refer to their
professors' books and articles."
Rutledge joined the UI faculty at the beginning of the fall semester.
She has appeared as soloist, chamber musician and orchestral player throughout
the United States and abroad, including performances as a member of the
Fontana Chamber Music Festival ensemble. Her performances and recordings
with the Notre Dame String Trio have earned glowing reviews from "The
Strad," "Fanfare" and other music publications.
Her solo performances have included those before her professional peers
at the 23rd International Viola Congress in Bloomington, Ind., and the
24th Congress in Marchneukirchen, Germany. She has performed the standard
viola repertoire, her own transcriptions of Baroque works, several lesser
known works for viola and new works that were written specifically for
Rutledge is the former assistant principal viola of the Louisville Orchestra
and violist of the Ceruti Chamber Players and the Kentucky Center Chamber
Players, with whom she continues to perform as a guest artist. She is a
graduate of the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia, where she studied with
the distinguished viola teachers Karen Tuttle and Michael Tree, and the
Interlochen Arts Academy, where she was valedictorian of her class and
recipient of the Young Artist Award.
She is also a prize winner in the Aspen Festival Viola Competition,
and the recipient of an Indiana Arts Commission Individual Artist's Fellowship,
an Eli Lilly Foundation grant for undergraduate teaching development and
awards from the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts at Notre
Lawrence received her doctorate from the University of Southern California.
She has accompanied many prominent California artists and has toured under
the management of Sol Hurok. She has served as accompanist for the Oregon
Bach Festival with noted conductor Helmuth Rilling and was selected to
accompany the 1,000-voice choir for the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los
In addition to her work as an accompanist, Lawrence is a published composer/arranger,
and she has worked as a studio singer in film, television and the recording
industry. Since 1989 she has been on the faculty of the UI School of Music,
where she teaches song literature and is coach/accompanist in the voice
and opera areas.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/~uiowacr
on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at