AU Press Releases

'Diary of Love Songs' to fill Howell Hall

Alfred University’s (AU) Performing Arts Division presents soprano Kelley Hijleh performing a “Diary of Love Songs,” Sunday, Sept. 15, at 3 p.m. in Susan Howell Hall on campus. The public is welcome and admission to the recital is free.

Hijleh will be accompanied by pianist Sharon Johnson, violinist Hannah Hijleh, and violist Steven Thomas.

“Diary of Love Songs” will contain a range of musical and poetic styles including works from Eric Whitacre, Brahms, Charpentier, and “More Precious than Rubies” by Hijleh’s husband, composer Mark Hijleh, who wrote the song to be played at the couple’s wedding. Their daughter, Hannah, plays in the second half of this piece.       

Kelley Hijleh is a graduate of the Peabody Conservatory and is in her 21st year of teaching at Houghton College where she is an assistant professor of voice. In 1990, Hijleh made her solo recital debut at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. as part of the New Young Performers Series. Since then she has appeared with the Rochester Philharmonic, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Ashland Symphony, the MasterWorks Festival, the Janus Orchestra, Baltimore Pro Musica Rara, the Baltimore Bach Ensemble, the Peabody Opera Theater, and the Houghton College Lyric Theater. She has also sung professionally with the Washington Opera chorus, the Delaware Singers, and Concert Artists of Baltimore.

Hijleh most recently appeared as soprano soloist with the Southern Tier Symphony and the Houghton College Choir in J.S. Bach’s “Cantata 147” and as soprano soloist for “Messiah” with the Orpheus Chorale in Hornell and the Olean Community Orchestra Academy and Chorus in Olean.

Johnson, assistant professor of piano and collaborative piano at Houghton College earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in piano performance at the University of North Carolina. She completed her doctorate of musical arts degree in collaborative piano with Margo Garrett and Tim Lovelace at the University of Minnesota.  She has been heard on Minnesota Public Radio and WFMT Radio in Chicago, with the Greensboro Symphony, and the Greensboro Philharmonia, in guest artist recitals at the North Carolina Museum of Art and Dickinson State University, “First Friday” series in Wooster, Ohio, the Baltimore Composers Forum in Maryland, and at the Schubert Club Courtroom Concert Series. Johnson is also one half of the duo piano team “Music By Two,” with pianist Nancy Davis. Their repertoire includes compositions that range in style from romantic to 20th century to sacred.