Liz Pearse

Special guest

Finding joy in variety, Liz Pearse is a musician of many pursuits. Liz began her exploration of the endless possibilities of the voice after a childhood spent playing any instrument she could lay hands upon. As a performer, her uniquely colorful and versatile voice has led to performances of wide-ranging works from medieval to modern, and though she is known as a specialist in contemporary vocal repertoire, she also deeply enjoys a well-aged song. Liz has recently begun a long-term project commissioning and performing works for singer at the piano (though she still enjoys the collaborative process!), and presented her second full-length recital of such pieces, a celebration of the 100th anniversary of Francis Poulenc’s Le bestiaire featuring newly-commissioned animal portraits, in 2019.

Liz has a special affinity for music post-1900. As a soloist, her recent projects include multiple performances of Pierrot lunaire, touring Olivier Messiaen’s Harawi, electroacoustic programming including Philomel, and on-going commissions dedicated to the creation of works for self-accompanying soprano.

In addition, Liz forms one-quarter of Quince Ensemble, a treble quartet dedicated to the creation and performance of contemporary vocal literature. With Quince, Liz has performed on tours of Morton Feldman’s Three Voices, David Lang’s love fail (including the work’s Polish premiere), and on numerous collegiate residencies and festivals from coast to coast. Quince’s third album, Motherland, was released to critical acclaim by New Focus Records in April 2018, and they recently released love fail, by David Lang, on Innova Recordings.

In previous seasons, Liz has had the privilege of performing at the Lucerne Festival, singing Berio's Coro under the baton of Sir Simon Rattle. She also performed at soundSCAPE Festival in Italy, where in 2013 she shared the distinction of "Outstanding Performer" with her brother, conductor and percussionist John J. Pearse. Other chamber and solo engagements have included the Toronto Electroacoustic Symposium; (le) poisson rouge; Omaha Under the Radar; Kerrytown Concert House; Baldwin Wallace University; and Constellation Chicago. Her opera credits include Lyric Opera Kansas City, Michigan Opera Theatre, Toledo Opera, and Opera in the Ozarks, in addition to many performances with Indiana University and Bowling Green State University Opera Theatre.

Liz recently received her Doctorate in Contemporary Music from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. There, her studies included research on the prevalence and incorporation of contemporary repertoire in the collegiate voice studio, and her dissertation “BECAUSE THERE IS NO BASIS FOR COMPARISON”: THE SELF-ACCOMPANYING SINGER AND ROGER REYNOLDS’ SKETCHBOOK FOR THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING was presented in October 2018.

Liz's doctoral recitals included Messiaen's Harawi and an electroacoustic program, among a diverse range of art song and chamber programs. She also won both the Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song Competition and the BGSU Competitions in Music concerto competition while at BGSU, and her mentor there was Dr. Jane Schoonmaker Rodgers. Prior to her doctoral work, Liz studied with Patricia Stiles at Indiana University.

More information about Liz can be found at Liz belongs to Beyond Artists, a coalition of artists that donates a percentage of their concert fees to organizations they care about. She supports Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter, and various Midwest-based new music presenters.

Liz teaches studio voice at Winona State University and The University of Wisconsin - La Crosse, and also maintains a private studio based (currently online-only!) in Minnesota. Please contact her for information regarding lessons or coaching sessions!

Liz has previously taught Vocal Pedagogy and applied voice at UW- Eau Claire, Vocal Repertoire and Singers' Diction at Bowling Green State University, and Group Voice at Owens Community College, in addition to studio teaching in person and via online platforms.

Liz Pearse has been a guest on 1 episode.