Canadian-born composer Ruth Lomon (1930-2017) numbered among her teachers Frances Judd Cooke and Miklos Schwalb at New England Conservatory, Witold Lutoslawski at England’s Dartington College, and Lutoslawski and Henri Dutilleux at Centre Acanthes in Provence, France. A composer of concertos for piano, bassoon, and trumpet, Lomon was probably best known for her song-cycle Songs of Remembrance, and her oratorio, Testimony of Witnesses for chorus, orchestra, and soloists. Both works are based on the poetry of Holocaust victims and survivors that Lomon researched at the Yad Vashem World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Jerusalem, Israel, and the library at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.
Commissions included Odyssey, a trumpet concerto for former BSO principal trumpet Charles Schlueter, and the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra of Boston. ReWeavings, a chamber work composed for Native American flutist R. Carlos Nakai, was commissioned by the Abiquiu NM Chamber Music Festival. The work is scored for Native American flute, clarinet, cello, piano, and marimba. In 2016, The Hallé Orchestra, conducted by Stephen Bell, released an album of viola and orchestral music including Lomon’s orchestration of the Rebecca Clarke viola and piano sonata, commissioned by the Rebecca Clarke Society and performed by Sarah-Jane Bradley, viola. The recording label was Dutton Epoch Records. Lomon made about 60 visits of several weeks’ duration to New Mexico, where her interest in Native American ceremonials was the catalyst for the composition of such works as ReWeavings, Imprints, and Five Ceremonial Masks.
In addition to her career in composing and teaching, Lomon was a distinguished pianist. She made her piano debut with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra in 1949, at the age of 18, while earning her Licentiate of Music at McGill University. Lomon concertized from 1971-1983 with the two-piano team Lomon and Wenglin in concerts of standard repertoire and specializing in the music of women composers. Lomon performed her own works as a soloist internationally.
At the end of her life she was working with great determination on this piano duo album project. For a list of her scores, visit I Resound Press at iresound.umbc.edu.