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FREE Courtroom Concert featuring the music of Catherine Dalton, with Margaret Humphrey, violin, Jacqueline Ultan, cello, and Bjorn Grina-Shay, percussion

Thursday, March 21, 12:00PM

Landmark Center Courtroom 317

Catherine Dalton Catherine Dalton specializes in vocal compositions that are inspired by classical, jazz, folk, world music and chant. Her music has received performances around the world by new music ensembles such as Zeitgeist; by singers Clara Osowski, Carrie Henneman Shaw, and Nicole Warner; and by over a hundred choirs, including Vox Femina Los Angeles, VocalEssense Chorus, and Amuse Singers New York.

Her organically-composed pieces use everyday life and our entanglement of human experience as their common palette. Whether setting her own lyrics or the carefully selected texts of others, these intersections of life and art explore themes of hardship and uncommon courage, mystical experience and everyday joy.

Catherine has been awarded grants from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, the Minnesota State Arts Board, and Meet the Composer MetLife Creative Connections. Her choral works are regularly selected for regional and national choral conference reading sessions and have been sung by Minnesota All State Choirs. Her multi-genre production “Bluets,” based on MacArthur-winning author Maggie Nelson’s book of the same name, will have a Staging Workshop in January 2019.

About the Program:

“Walking Together” weaves together prose and poetry on the topic of cultural experience with original music composed by Catherine Dalton. Featuring Margaret Humphrey, violin, Kirsten Whitson, cello, and Erik Barsness, percussion, the compositions underscore texts by poets such as Peter Blue Cloud, Naomi Shihab Nye, and Kao Kalia Yang read by people representing the diversity of the Twin Cities community. The project was born out of Catherine’s desire for neighbors to meet and get to know each other’s stories. Her composition is inspired by, and a response to, the personal and intimate accounts of navigating daily life as it sheds light on the ways people from different backgrounds experience our shared world.

“Walking Together” premiered in Mahtomedi, Minnesota in 2017 with support from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council and is available for performance in your community

Margaret Humphrey maintains a vibrant freelance schedule based in St Paul, Minnesota, and performs with orchestras and chamber ensembles around the country. A featured concerto soloist with several local orchestras, Ms. Humphrey is also a member of the Minnesota Opera Orchestra. Early music being her special focus, she tours as with the Kingsbury Ensemble in St Louis, and in chamber ensembles in the Ancient Music Series of St. Savin France. A founding member of Belladonna, she has toured nationally and internationally for festivals and music series and was featured on the syndicated radio shows Harmonia and Performance Today with two CDs on the Dorian and Ten Thousand Lakes labels. Ms Humphrey has also recorded for Chandos and Naxos. Her newest chamber ensemble Cerulean Fire, performs Early Music combined with Jazz, Contemporary, and Latin repertoire in compelling programming concepts.

Jacqueline Ultan is a singularly creative artist with a unique versatility as a cellist, composer, improvisor and collaborator. Jacqueline performs and composes in a number of ongoing acclaimed projects that include: Jelloslave, J2J, Saltee, The Starfolk, Douglas Ewarts’ Quasar, The Minneapolis Music Company and The Cherry Spoon Collective. Jacqueline has received several awards including a 2014 McKnight Performing Artist Fellowship; a 2015 MRAC Next Step Fund Grant, and a 2015 MacPhail Commissioning Grant. In 2013 Jelloslave (co-founded with fellow cellist Michelle Kinney) received a Minnesota State Arts Board Arts Tour MN grant, and in February 2012, the two cellists co-wrote and performed music for a TED Talks! conference in L.A., with Twin Cities-based Black Label Movement dance theater. Jacqueline was also a featured artist in the 2011 inaugural season of the Cedar Cultural Center’s 416 Club Commissions Series, funded by Jerome Foundation. Jacqueline has recorded for The Jayhawks, has performed and recorded with Grammy-winning songwriter/producer Dan Wilson, and has worked with numerous theater and dance companies, including her annual collaboration with local storyteller Kevin Kling, now in its’ 9th year. Jacqueline is a dedicated teacher, serving on the faculty of the Macphail Center for Music, Minneapolis Community and Technical College and also runs a home teaching studio. Jacqueline holds a Master’s Degree in performance from Yale University.

Born and raised in the Twin Cities, percussionist Bjorn Grina-Shay is a new member of the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra. He received his Bachelor’s Degree and Graduate Performance Diploma in percussion performance from the Peabody Institute in 2016 where he studied with Robert van Sice. Most recently, he has performed with the Lakes Area Music Festival, Oratorio Society of Minnesota, and the Mankato Symphony Orchestra. In 2015, Bjorn was percussionist with the Evermay Chamber Orchestra for a production of Swan Lake at the Kennedy Center featuring ballerina Misty Copeland. He was a member of both the Aspen Festival Orchestra (2013) and the Chautauqua Music School Festival Orchestra (2012).

Also an avid chamber musician, Bjorn is a co-founder of 10th Wave, a Twin Cities based chamber music collective. Bjorn also recently performed with Twin Cities based new music ensemble, Zeitgeist. Bjorn is currently a freelance musician and percussion teacher in the Twin Cities. He is also pursuing his Masters of Music in percussion performance at the University of Minnesota where he studies with Fernando Meza.


View the Frequently Asked Questions about the Courtroom Concerts.

About the Host

Composer Abbie Betinis writes music called “inventive, richly melodic” (The New York Times), “superb, whirling, soaring” (Tacoma News Tribune), and “the highlight” of the program (Boston Globe).  With over 50 commissioned works for ensembles such as Cantus, the New England Philharmonic, and The Rose Ensemble, Abbie has been awarded a McKnight Composer Fellowship, grants from the American Composers Forum, ASCAP, and Jerome Foundation, and was recently listed in NPR Music’s Top 100 Composers Under 40.  A resident of Saint Paul, she is adjunct professor of composition at Concordia University, and was composer-in-residence with the Schubert Club from 2005-2017.