Assistant Professor of Voice Carl DuPont's new album, The Reaction, was recently released by Albany Records. The Reaction features songs by Black composers, most of which have never been recorded. Dr. Gregory Thompson of Winston-Salem State University is the pianist.
The Reaction is one dimension of a long-term research project that began when Dr. DuPont, a bass-baritone, was an undergraduate student at Eastman School of Music. After performing a recital of songs by European composers, he became interested in learning music by African Americans, which was rarely presented on conservatory concert stages. Discovering just one anthology of art songs by Black composers, Dr. DuPont committed then to build that repertoire and access to it.
"My challenge became to find songs that celebrated Blackness and the Black experience in order to make sure the next generation of students and teachers who searched for art songs by Black composers found resources that were easily accessible, practical, and appropriate," he wrote in an essay for CoAA.Community.
Dr. DuPont has since commissioned and performed works by contemporary composers, many of which are featured on this album, and plans to publish a musical score that could accompany the works. See a full track listing here.