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betsy podsiadlo

composer  vocalist  advocate
facilitator
producer  
educator

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SUNDOWN
Hills, wrapped in gray, standing along the west;
Clouds, dimly lighted, gathering slowly;
The star of peace at watch above the crest --
Oh, holy, holy, holy!

We know, O Lord, so little what is best;
Wingless, we move so lowly;
But in thy calm all-knowledge let us rest --
Oh, holy, holy, holy!
John Charles McNeill (1894-1969)

a proof of concept recording made with multi tracking by composer Betsy Podsiadlo.

RECONCILIATION
WORD over all, beautiful as the sky!
Beautiful that war, and all its deeds of carnage, must in time be utterly lost;
That the hands of the sisters Death and Night, incessantly softly wash again, and ever again, this soil'd world
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass (1867)

performed by (from left to right) Morgan Mastrangelo, Cara Search, and Betsy Podsiadlo at Christ Church NYC in Spring of 2023

About
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at a glance: 

 Master of Music in Voice from the Mannes School of Music 2023
  Mellon Producing Fellow with Beth Morrison Projects 2023-2024
 
Bachelor of Music in Voice from Westminster Choir College 2016
✷ Specializing in vocal music and fixed media
✷ Devoted crafter, hiker, and admirer of fiber arts and fashion design

about

Betsy Podsiadlo is a composer, performer and producer living in Richmond, Virginia. Betsy’s work as a composer features the combination of medieval religious tonality, traditional Appalachian style and surprising whimsical electronics. With work ranging from choral suites and string quartets to solo trumpet with fixed media, Betsy enjoys writing for many different instruments. As a composer and performer, Betsy is consistently engaged in the pursuit of creating art that, above all else, tells the truth. In addition to composing, Betsy is a founding partner and Creative Director of Art Grove Newsletter with her partner and managing editor, Tom Jakob. Betsy was awarded the 2023 Mellon Producing Fellowship with Beth Morrison Projects and was a 2023 Big Ears Festival scholarship winner.  Her Lux Aeterna with fixed media, commissioned and performed by inimitable soprano, Ariadne Greif, will premiere on New York City's WQXR on February 7th, 2024. 

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Commissions & Premieres

Lux Aeterna with Fixed Media 

for Voice and Electronic Fixed Media

Commissioned by Ariadne Greif, soprano

Premiere: February 7th 2024 on WQXR in New York City 

Performed by Ariadne Greif

Deep Field with Fixed Media 

for Trumpet and Electronic Fixed Media

Commissioned by Connor Johnson, trumpet

Premiere: To be announced

Performed by Connor Johnson

Listening

further listening 

Lux Aeterna

instrumentation: pipe organ, classical guitar, voice

Premiered: March 10th 2023 at Christ Church NYC

Chant melody accompanied by organ bass and punctuated with minimalist guitar chords.y

Ladies of the Canyon

instrumentation: Handmade Mandolele by Jim Morris,

Layered Voice, Synthesizer, Vocal Looping and digital modulation.

Released July 14th, 2023

Ladies of The Canyon features improvised vocal harmonies hauntingly filtered and modulated digitally

Contact
Projects

Projects

These projects are ongoing and in various stages of completion. If you'd like to get involved in any of these projects or you're interested in learning more, please feel free to reach out via the contact form.

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Roads:

Suite for String Quartet

Pulling from my roots as an Old Time and Bluegrass fiddle player, this string quartet collection combines the idioms of modern classical music and Appalachian traditional style. This multimedia collection features multiple works based on long, rambling country roads in and out of Hampshire County, West Virginia. Featuring videography by Tom Jakob. 

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Potomac River Mass

The Potomac River Mass is in the process of text selection and seeking collaborators from West Virginian performing ensembles. 

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Deep Field Suite

After a commission in 2022 from trumpeter Connor Johnson, I began to develop the idea of a multi-instrumental suite accompanied by fixed electronics based on various photographs from NASA's James Webb telescope. These pieces seek to explore our relationship to what is not of Earth and explores humanity's role in the tapestry of the universe.

Photo courtesy of  NASA

James Webb Telescope

Photo courtesy of  the Library of Congress

1898 Map of West Virginia

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Working Title:

Folk Fairy Album 2

After the exploration of my E.P. To be Loved by You (2023), I began to explore the combination of my work as a modern classical composer with my songwriting aesthetic, birthing a romantic, psychedelic-folk style that bridges sacred music with the hard edges of reality, or something like that.

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Gun Reform Anthem

In partnership with Kat Oros, organizer of a gun reform awareness event in Richmond, VA. Premiere date to be determined. 

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

Photo by Philip Bonn

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

Color engraving by R. Havell, after drawing by John J. Audubon

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Biblically Accurate Angels:

Song Collection for Ariadne Greif

Following the success of Ariadne's commission of my fixed media accompanied Lux Aeterna, we are in the process of creating 3 additional songs in this collection for voice and fixed media that explore the supernatural elements of sacred texts and the elasticity of the soprano voice punctuated by idiosyncratic electronics and bass.

Ezekiel’s Wheel in St. John the Baptist Church in Kratovo, Macedonia (1836)

and much, much more..

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