Happy 2019!

I didn't say "Happy New Year," because I still wonder about etiquette as far as just how long one can appropriately use that phrase. Is it like, after the first 10 days, you switch to the number of the year? When does the excitement wear off, you know? Well, as the New Year begins, it is an especially significant time for me, as I also celebrate my birthday in January. So, my entire life, whatever happened in a particular year also happened at a particular age. Being born at the start of the year is such a blessing to me; it means that I look ahead at 2019 with a healthy amount of optimism and hope for what's to come! I hope you do, too. Afterall, we have the whole year ahead of us right now. The beginning of this year for me is full of music, starting with a very special performance on Saturday, January 26th with the Mozartina Salon Series.

This performance will mark the first time I have the opportunity to share Respighi’s Il Tramonto. Il Tramonto translates to “The Sunset.” The work is a special chamber partnership between voice and string quartet and has some moments that will simply bring one to tears. I’ve been wanting to perform Il Tramonto for a very long time and so suffice to say, I’m extremely excited. Looking ahead to February, when I’ll share some tried and true music from the African-American tradition in NYC with Random Access Music. Then, in March, there will be Music and Moonlight at the Hudson River Museum; can’t wait for that. April is all about Easter and one cannot begin planning soon enough, before May, when I take a new twist on performance, launching a new series of workshops on how to use performance practice in everyday life. Whew, I think I’ll take a vacation in June!

One other exciting thing is that, in addition to vocal instruction, I recently began teaching music composition at the Mozartina Conservatory. If you have a song on your heart or in your head and want to get it onto paper, let me know!

That’s all for now, here’s wishing you a truly fulfilling and incredible 2019!

Yolanda Johnson