In the early 1990s, Judith Radell and Delight Malitsky became fascinated by the music of the British-American composer Clara Kathleen Barnett Rogers (1844-1931). Delight had been invited by Hildegard Publishing Company's founder, Sylvia Glickman, to prepare a new edition of Rogers’s violin sonata. The sonata was originally published in 1893 by the Arthur P. Schmidt Company, but had been out of print for many decades. Delight not only prepared the edition for Hildegard (1994), but also performed the work many times with Judith. The striking beauty and virtuosity of the music left them amazed that Rogers's music had been unavailable to the public for so long. Exploring further, they read Rogers’s memoirs, where they found references to further chamber works which she had been unable to publish. In particular, Clara had expressed bitter disappointment about the rejection of a Fantasia for Viol d’amour she had written for the violinist and composer Charles Martin Loeffler. There was also a reference to an early cello sonata. Might manuscripts for any of these works still exist? They shared the information with their colleague, Dieter Wulfhorst, who expressed interest in performing any of Rogers’s cello music that they might find. This provided the impetus for a research trip to Boston and Cambridge. Delight and Judith learned that Clara's husband, Henry Munroe Rogers, had donated musical manuscripts and theatrical memorabilia to a room he had endowed in Harvard’s Widener Library, but that the collection was no longer held in that library. After several days of searching, their inquiries at the University Archives led them to the Harvard Theatre Collection. There they found the “Rogers Room” materials, held as a Rogers Collection, with much of it stored offsite. Over a period of two days folders of manuscripts were brought to them for viewing. On the day before Delight and Judith were scheduled to return home, they found the chamber music. It was in its original folder, on which Clara Rogers had written instructions to her husband: “There are, I think some worthwhile things of the past, but I doubt if any musician would care to give the time to looking through all this stuff. DESTROY!" Fortunately, her husband had not done so. Delight, Dieter and Judith were determined to make the music available to the public by performing, editing and recording the works. The music presented here includes three works found in the folder marked "Destroy." Of these, the Reverie for Violoncello and Piano and the Sonata for Violoncello and Piano in G Major, op. 23, are published in Clara Kathleen Rogers: Chamber Music, ed. by Judith Radell and Dieter Wulfhorst, Recent Researches in American Music, vol. 42 (Middleton, WI: A-R Editions, Inc., 2001), and the manuscript for the Fantasia for Viol d'amour and Piano is held in the Rogers Memorial Collection: Clara Kathleen Rogers Papers (MS Thr 470 (668) - (877), Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard University. Also on this CD is the work that originally inspired the research, the Sonata for Violin and Piano in D Minor, op. 25, ed. by Delight Malitsky and available through Theodore Presser Company (Bryn Mawr: Hildegard Publishing Company, 1994).
Clara Kathleen Barnett Rogers’s career as a composer began when she was a teenaged student at the Leipzig Conservatory in the late 1850s. Eager to make an impression on her popular fellow student, Arthur Sullivan, she began work on a string quartet. Duly impressed with the result, Sullivan copied the parts and arranged a surprise performance of the first movement. The quartet impacted the culture of the conservatory, prompting the faculty to offer classes in composition for female students. Although she was also a fine pianist, Clara chose the profession of opera singer and enjoyed a long career in Italy and America. She settled in Boston and married a prominent attorney, Henry Munroe Rogers. But rather than devoting herself to social life, she renewed her interest in composition. By 1900 Clara was a successful composer of songs and had also published her violin and piano sonata. Later in life, she taught at the New England Conservatory, traveled extensively, and wrote books on vocal technique as well as her memoirs. This CD features her chamber music for piano and strings, most of which remained unpublished at her death in 1931.
Delight Hine Malitsky began playing the piano at age three, and violin at age five. As a child, she studied in the preparatory program at The Juilliard School. She made her violin debut at Town Hall, New York City, at the age of seven, playing the first movement of the Violin Concerto no.1 by Charles de Beriot. She then studied violin in California with Ellis Levy and piano with C. Purves-Smith. While there, Delight was assistant concertmaster of the San Francisco Little Symphony. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Hawaii while serving as concertmaster of the Honolulu Symphony, and she earned the Master of Music degree in violin and piano from the Manhattan School of Music. In 1966 she became assistant to Daniel Guilet at Indiana University (Bloomington) where she completed all course work and recitals toward the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in violin performance. Equally a virtuoso on both instruments, Professor Malitsky taught violin and piano for twenty-four years at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. As a violinist, she was a member of the IUP Faculty Piano Trio and the Faculty String Quartet, and concertmaster of the Johnstown (Pennsylvania) Symphony Orchestra and the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra. She appeared as soloist with orchestras in the United States and Europe, including the Honolulu Symphony, the Houston Symphony, and the Stüttgart Philharmonic. As a pianist, she was a prize winner in the North American contest for pianists and made several LP recordings under the Music Library label, including works by Charles Griffes. Her interest in both American music and the music of women composers led her to research, publish and perform the works of Clara Kathleen Rogers. After she retired, Delight Malitsky continued to be an active performer, teacher and researcher until her passing in 2002. This album is dedicated to her memory.
Dieter Wulfhorst has performed extensively in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Asia, and Australia as soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral performer. He studied with Friedrich-Jürgen Sellheim at the Musikhochschule in Hannover, Germany where he finished the five-year study program leading to the degree "Künstlerische Reifeprüfung." As a prize winner in the nationwide youth competition "Jugend musiziert," he was a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Germany from 1976 to 1979. He was awarded grants to participate in master classes with Frédéric Lodéon, Sellheim, and Piérre Fournier in France, Greece, and Switzerland. In 1985, Wulfhorst came to the U.S. to continue his studies with Evelyn Elsing and the Guarneri Quartet at the University of Maryland at College Park where he earned his Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees. In September 2003 Dr. Wulfhorst was invited to represent the City of Santa Fe, NM at the 6th Tsuyama International All-Round Music Festival in Japan. He performs regularly with the Monterey Symphony, Fresno Philharmonic, and Tulare County Symphony, and performed for many years with Santa Fe Pro Musica, the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra and various chamber music ensembles. Dr. Wulfhorst has taught at universities in Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Mississippi. In 2007 he joined the faculty of Fresno Pacific University where he teaches the scholarship string quartet, orchestra, cello, music history, and other courses. Several compact discs featuring Dr. Wulfhorst are available, including a compilation of chamber works featuring Bruch’s Kol Nidrei and Ernest Bloch’s Three Nocturnes for Piano Trio with pianist Norman Krieger and violinist Susan Doering and a recent recording of music for choir and strings by British composer Tarik O’Regan with the professional vocal ensemble “Conspirare” for the harmonia mundi label. That CD was nominated for two Grammy® awards.
Judith Radell has played the piano since the age of three. As a Chicago area teenager, she was a winner of the Society of American Musicians Senior Piano Competition and performed as concerto soloist with area orchestras. She holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Illinois, where she studied the piano with Claire Richards and Soulima Stravinsky, and the harpsichord with George Hunter. Her interest in the music of the classical era led her to seek additional study with Lili Kraus. She has performed extensively as pianist and harpsichordist in such venues as the Dame Myra Hess Concerts series in Chicago, the Frick Museum series in Pittsburgh, the Steinway Society of Western Pennsylvania, the Hildegard Chamber Players in Philadelphia, Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s International Festivals of Women Composers, and on college campuses. A dedicated collaborative musician, Dr. Radell has served as orchestral pianist for the Johnstown (Pennsylvania) Symphony Orchestra and the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra. As piano accompanist, she performs on a recently released CD of piccolo and piano music with piccoloist Therese Wacker. Dr. Radell is Professor Emerita of Music at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she taught piano and served as a member of the Gorell Trio until her retirement in 2010. Her research is focused on the music of women composers. In 1991, she received the first Music Performance Fellowship from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, enabling her to present lecture-recitals of music by women composers on college campuses and in communities throughout Pennsylvania. Dr. Radell is the editor of two volumes of piano music by Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel for Hildegard Publishing Company. Her collaboration with Delight Malitsky and Dieter Wulfhorst has led to publications of Clara Kathleen Rogers’s music and essays about her life, and to production of this CD.