NewMusicShelf Anthology of New Music for Tenor, Vol. 1


20 songs for tenor and piano

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About the Anthology

Curated by composer/tenor Dennis Tobenski, this collection of 20 art songs is ideal for active performers looking for exciting new repertoire, voice teachers searching for fresh contemporary songs for their studios, or student vocalists seeking out unique and culturally-relevant new works to fulfill 21st century repertoire requirements.

These songs, which were predominantly composed in the 21st century, represent a broad range of compositional styles from composers living and writing today, and were curated for intermediate through advanced voices. Many of the songs in this volume are excerpted from larger cycles of songs, available directly from the composers.

The NewMusicShelf Anthologies of New Music are a bold, new publishing initiative aimed at bringing new and unknown composers and repertoire to student and professional performers alike. With an emphasis on works not found in the traditional publishing ecosystem, each volume is curated by performers who have a reputation for championing new music, with an eye toward selecting works with a range of styles and difficulties that are suitable for concert and recital performance.

With this innovative mode of publishing, NewMusicShelf advocates for self-published composers in a way previously unheard of in the realm of classical music: all self-published composers retain full ownership of their work while earning a generous royalty on every sale. Your support of this project directly benefits these composers, and also helps NewMusicShelf to continue to promote the works of the many excellent composers writing today. We encourage you to explore these composers' catalogs in greater depth, and hope that these songs inspire many fruitful and rewarding collaborations!

Songs in this volume

ComposerSong TitleAuthor of TextYear Composed
Paul Ayres The Salutation (from The Light Walking) Thomas Traherne 2015
Chester Biscardi At Any Given Moment (from Modern Love Songs) William Zinsser 2002
Clint Borzoni In The Golden Afternoon (from Within the Looking Glass) Lewis Carroll 2015
Steven Burke Inebriate of Air Emily Dickinson 2012
Daniel Gilliam Like men and women (from Songs of Insects and Animals) Emily Dickinson 2011
Juliana Hall June (from The Poet’s Calendar) Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 1999
Drew Hemenger Her Final Show Rafael Campo 2012
Garrett Hope Princess Stories (from Somewhere, Love) Joel E. Jacobson 2009
Rory Johnston Like the dove (from Nostalgia) Eli Carvajal 2015
David Leisner Love and Friendship (from Confiding) Emily Brontë 1985
Lisa Neher Tuesdays and Thursdays (from Snapshots) Anonymous 2010
Frank J. Oteri Prick’d William Shakespeare 2016
Gabrielle Owens Black is the Color (from Three Folk Songs) Traditional 2016
Darien Shulman If Thou’lt Be Mine (from Three Poems of Thomas Moore) Thomas Moore 2007
Dennis Tobenski John Anderson, My Jo (from And He’ll Be Mine) Robert Burns 2005
Craig Urquhart Here The Frailest Leaves of Me (from Leaves) Walt Whitman 1986
Philip Wharton Let Me Play the Fool (from Fools) William Shakespeare 2014
Scott Wheeler Night (from Heaven and Earth) William Blake 2007
David Wolfson When First I Loved You (from Six Love Songs) David Wolfson 1998
Roger Zahab River Roger Zahab 2016

Audio Samples

About the Curator

Dennis Tobenski is a composer of acoustic new music, a vocalist, and a strong advocate for new music and for the interests of living composers.

Dennis’s Only Air, a 20-minute work for high voice and orchestra memorializing the gay teenagers who have taken their own lives in recent years, was commissioned by the Illinois State University Symphony Orchestra, and has been performed in a chamber version by The Secret Opera in New York and members of the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony.

Called a “dynamic vocalist” by Anthony Tommasini of The New York Times, and “a skillful and sensitive singer who shapes phrases and renders text with expert care” by Gregory Berg of Journal of Singing, Dennis’s focus as a vocalist is primarily on the works of the 21st and late 20th centuries. He has premiered works by David Del Tredici, Chester Biscardi, Ricky Ian Gordon, Darien Shulman, and Hadar Noiberg, among others.

In February 2016, he and pianist Marc Peloquin released their first album together, a disc of 19 art songs by living American composers titled And He’ll Be Mine, which features works by David Del Tredici, Chester Biscardi, Zachary Wadsworth, Darien Shulman, and Dennis Tobenski.

Dennis hosts the Music Publishing Podcast and The Composer’s Guide to Doing Business: two music business-centered podcasts aimed at helping composers and performers to learn more about the practical aspects of their careers.

He is also the founder of NewMusicShelf, an online marketplace devoted to bringing together performers of new music and independently-published composers by offering a platform for composers to sell digital editions of their works.

Dennis received his B.Mus. in Vocal Performance and Music Theory & Composition from Illinois State University, and his M.A. in Music Composition from The City College of New York.

His principal teachers have included David Del Tredici, Chester Biscardi, and David Feurzeig. He is a member of the Board of Advisors for Composers Now, and the Board of Directors of the KeyedUp MusicProject. Dennis lives in New York City with his husband Darien Scott Shulman and their cat Pistachio.



A Note on Binding

To adhere to recommendations by the Music Library Association, and to aid in library shelving, the NewMusicShelf Anthologies are perfect bound books. Since perfect binding frequently prevents books from lying flat (which is especially helpful for pianists), you may choose to have the anthologies rebound for use in performance. Most copy shops are able to - quickly and cheaply - shave off the spine of a perfect bound book and rebind it with a coil/spiral. Coil binding is usually preferable to comb binding in this instance because coils preserve the pages better, and turn more quietly, provided that the coil is wide enough to accommodate page turns.

Additional information

Weight 0.875 lbs
Dimensions 11 × 8.5 × 0.3 in


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