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College of Liberal Arts

University of Mississippi

Piano and Vocal Recital Offers ‘Words of Love’

Longtime collaborators present program of traditional, contemporary work

Johnston, UM associate professor of music

Amanda Johnston, UM associate professor of music


Pianist Amanda Johnston and mezzo-soprano Tracelyn Gesteland will perform a program all about love, entitled “Mots d’amour,” or “Words of Love,” on Monday (Sept. 9) at the University of Mississippi.

The 7:30 p.m. recital in Nutt Auditorium is free and open to the public.

“We’re performing songs about various facets of love,” said Johnston, UM associate professor of music. “Expected love, romantic love, lost love, love of country and even love of reading!”

The duo will perform works spanning the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries by Guastavino, Chaminade, Viardot, Heggie and Bucchino. From tender to mournful, from traditional to contemporary and from songs of lost love to unexpected odes to first ladies, this program explores the wide variety of emotion, subject and nuance one might imagine when thinking of love in its broadest sense.

Gesteland is an opera, concert and recital singer who performs throughout the United States and Canada. She is an associate professor of voice and opera at the University of South Dakota, where she holds the Walter A. and Lucy Yoshioka Buhler Endowed Chair.

Besides teaching and performing at Ole Miss, Johnston is on the faculty at Musiktheater Bavaria and the Druid City Opera Workshop, and is a frequent master class clinician and lecturer on comparative diction. Her book “English and German Diction for Singers: A Comparative Approach” (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2011) is in its second edition.

Besides the Oxford performance, Johnston and Gesteland also will perform “Mots d’amour” in Memphis.