Eye on the Arts: Sept. 22 concert to feature SUNY Broome faculty

A portrait of Gerald Grahame

Gerald Grahame

After teaching 30 years in one place, it might be time for a swan song, and maybe some arias and duets too. The Music Program of SUNY Broome will present In Recital with Tenor Gerald Grahame and Friends at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 22, at the Angelo Zuccolo Little Theatre.

Noted pianist Margaret Reitz will accompany the recital.  Featured will be arias and selections from the realm of oratorio such as Handel’s Jephtha and exerpts from Schubert’s  Die Schöne Müllerin, as well songs by Samuel Barber and music from Manon Lescaut by Giacomo Puccini.  Mr. Grahame will also perform duets from Bizet’s Les Pêcheurs de Perles with soprano Brenda Dawe and Puccini’s La Bohème with baritone Randolph Messing.

A musician of many talents, Mr. Grahame is known as a gifted conductor and voice teacher, but is probably best known as a notable opera and concert singer.  After completing his Bachelor’s of Music Education at SUNY Fredonia, he received his Master’s of Music in Opera Performance from Binghamton University in conjunction with the Tri-Cities Opera, a company with which he has performed more than 20 lead roles, including Rodolfo in La Boheme, Alfred in Die Fledermaus, the title role in Faust, Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, as well as the Interrogator in the world premiere of Ezra Laderman’s Galileo Galilei.  When he debuted with the New York City Opera, he was the recipient of that company’s Rita and Herbert Z. Gold Debut Award.  He went on to sing other roles with the company including Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Alfred in Die Fledermaus, and Tamino in The Magic Flute under the baton of Julius Rudel.  Since then, Mr. Grahame has appeared with orchestras and opera companies throughout the country including the Binghamton Philharmonic, the Utica Symphony, the Syracuse Symphony, the Virginia Symphony, the Rochester Oratorio Society, and the National Symphony under Eric Leinsdorf, as well as the Syracuse Opera, the Tulsa Opera, the Cleveland Opera, Opera/Omaha, the Lake George Opera Festival and the Opera Company of Boston with Sarah Caldwell conducting.

Currently, Mr. Grahame is an adjunct music instructor at SUNY Broome, where he retired after 26 years as a music professor teaching voice and other courses in addition to his duties as director of the College Choir and Chamber Singers.

A portrait of Pej Reitz

Pej Reitz

Pej Reitz, pianist, is a native of the Binghamton area.  She received her Bachelor’s and Master’s of Music degrees in piano performance with accompanying emphasis.  She attended Boston University, New England Conservatory and Binghamton University.  She has studied piano with Jean Casadesus, Victor Rosenbaum, Seymour Fink and Walter Ponce and accompanied with Allen Rogers.  She has accompanied throughout the United States, in England, South America, Spain, and Austria.  She was the winner of the Artistic Ambassadors Program by the United States Information Agency in partnership with the John F. Kennedy Center for the performing arts. She is currently on the faculty at Binghamton University, Ithaca College School of Music and SUNY Broome.

General admission for the concert is $10 for adults with proceeds going to the BCC Foundation to support scholarships for applied voice students.  The concert is free for students.