Chamber Ensemble Releases a New Album and Performs in Brazil

The members of Mélomanie pack their bags and head to Rio de Janeiro to commemorate the release of “Excursions,” their latest CD.

Wilmington-based Mélomanie, the five-piece chamber ensemble known for provocative pairings of early and contemporary works, celebrates the release of “Excursions,” its newest new CD, and takes an excursion of its own in November with a performance in Rio de Janeiro. “Excursions” features pieces written for and premiered by Mélomanie: “Excursions: Fantasie Mélomanie” (2009) by Roberto Pace; “Pavane-Variations” (2009) by Ingrid Arauco; “Dumgoyne” (2012) by Jennifer Margaret Barker; and “The Nobility of Women” (2011) by Philadelphia composer, Kile Smith. The fifth work is “Angico” (2009) by Brazilian composer Sergio Roberto de Oliveira.

Mélomanie returns the favor in Rio, where it has been invited to perform at the four-day festival, Compositores de Hoje (Composers of Today), Nov. 20-23. “We chose the title ‘Excursions’ because the five pieces written for Mélomanie take the listener on different journeys,” says co-artistic director Tracy Richardson. Barker’s “Dumgoyne” describes her childhood memories of Scotland. Pace’s “Excursions” explores multiple moods and musical terrain. Arauco’s “Pavane-Variations” and Smith’s “The Nobility of Women” give us a fresh visit to old dance forms, and de Oliveira’s “Angico” tells the story of his family’s home in the Brazilian countryside. “This trip is an exciting landmark for our ensemble,” Richardson says. “We’re thrilled for the opportunity to share our music and serve as Delaware’s ‘musical ambassadors.’”

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Mélomanie includes Kimberly Reighley, flute; Christof Richter, violin; Donna Fournier, viola da gamba; Douglas McNames, cello; and Tracy Richardson, harpsichord. Mélomanie’s participation in Compositores de Hoje is supported by of Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation through USArtists International, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; the Delaware State International Trade Commission; Delaware Division of the Arts; Paul M. Angell Family Foundation; The Music School of Delaware; and A Casa Produções. The CD is available for download at or your favorite online music outlet. It is well worth a good listen.

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