LAURA INGRAM SEMILIAN - ABOUT

Laura Ingram Semilian's powerful, haunting soprano voice hunts the nuances of arcane tales, enticing the listener to revisit the lost and longed-for, to experience known feelings in familiar yet forgotten context.

Born in San Diego to scientist parents, she came of age on the northern shores of the Gulf of Mexico in the Borderlands of Mississippi and Louisiana before moving to her present home in the North Carolina Foothills, from whence she endeavors the Seek-and-Salvage of Echoes.

A first-place winner of the southeastern region's Metropolitan Opera competition, Laura studied bel canto technique with acclaimed Transylvanian soprano Virginia Zeani, and holds graduate degrees in both history and opera performance.  

An innovative, interdisciplinary artist with facility for performing in numerous languages and musical genres, Ms. Semilian's impulse to discovery, uncommon repertoire, and shared realms of magic realism evidences in her conceptual concert programs, including:

The Enchanted Tradition -- CD to be released Spring 2015 --- Voices of 1800s America brought to life.  

 Szalon Transylvania:  Marvelous True Tales of Love & War, featuring vocal works of Béla Bartók and Zoltán Kodály, performed in Hungarian.  Equipped with Edison's wonderful talking machine and its wax cylinders, these pioneering composers and ethnomusicologists gathered songs from villages throughout the Austro-Hungarian Empire and from soldiers during the First World War.  Several of Laura's new translations of Hungarian folk songs from the program, along with automatic notations, are published in the January 2013 issue of Hyperion:  On the Future of Aesthetics.

Szalon Europa, a nostalgic journey of continental capitals through the music of popular European composers of the early-to-mid 1900s.

Ms. Semilian's original musical compositions include soundscapes for Julian Semilian's experimental films, screening at festivals and galleries the US, Cyprus, Israel, and Italy, and viewable online at Exquisite Corpse.  She has composed vocal settings of Will Alexander's poetry, commissioned by and performed in collaboration with the author on subconscious piano.

 Her writings have been cited/featured/reviewed in The Journal of Southern HistoryExquisite CorpseThe Brooklyn Rail, Hyperion:  On the Future of Aesthetics and Hyperallergic.  Together with Julian Semilian, she has translated the works of surrealists from Romania, including Ghérasim LucaGellu Naumand Max Blecher. Featured appearances at literary venues include performances at the 17 Poets! Series at the New Orleans Institute of the Imagination, the So & So Series in Raleigh, and Contra Mundum Press's celebration of Ghérasim Luca in Brooklyn.  

 

To Laura 

your voice naturally rings

like pure silver

from utopia

----Will Alexander

 

Beautiful artist, beautiful music, beautiful voice

--- George Quasha