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Release Date: February 14, 2020
Catalog #: NV6270
Format: Digital & Physical

Indiana Collectanea

The Music Of Michael G. Cunningham

Michael G. Cunningham composer

Navona Live is proud to announce the release of INDIANA COLLECTANEA, which celebrates and preserves composer Michael G. Cunningham’s residency at Indiana University School of Music from 1969-1973. This live recording of Cunningham’s work comes on the heels of his acclaimed album ECUMENICAL SPIRIT from Navona Live earlier this year. This latest release captures a significant moment in time, when Cunningham’s work helped channel the talents of 30 burgeoning musicians.

In INDIANA COLLECTANEA, Cunningham expands his palette beyond traditional tonality, painting with chromatic, timbral, and rhythmic nuances. The work opens with Prisms, a four-movement piece in which dense tone clusters shift and refract among the strings like a kaleidoscope. This is followed by Polyphonies, a wild-eyed percussion piece that manipulates instrumental timbres to an exhilarating effect. As the album progresses, each piece is a surprise to the listener’s ears, with its unique assortments of instruments and sounds jolting the audience into new appreciation. The frenetic horns at the start of Concertant are further evidence of this. The penultimate track, Scenario, is particularly inventive, opening with a prelude of ethereal bells. Each musician is assigned to multiple instruments, showcasing both their own skills and that of their composer. Lastly, the album ends with the dramatic Noetical Rounds, which concludes with a soft, descending glissando into oblivion.

Despite the decades that have passed since the performances on INDIANA COLLECTANEA, each piece is as startlingly fresh as it was the day of its performance. Listen to hear this collection of talented musicians pushed to their utmost by the challenging and thoughtful compositions of Michael G. Cunningham.


Hear the full album on YouTube

Track Listing & Credits

# Title Composer Performer
01 Prisms, Op. 30 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Madeline Schatz, violin; Raymond Stillwell, viola; Gretchen Elliot, cello 6:02
02 Polyphonies, Op. 32 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham William Albin, xylophone; Richard Henton, tom-toms; Michael Berkowitz, bass drum, cymbals; Emily Kromer, timpani; George Gaber, conductor 3:15
03 Piano Sonata No. 2, Op. 33 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Patricia Montgomery, piano 8:34
04 Images, Op. 34 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Raymond Stillwell, violin; Paul Friedhoff, cello; John Hyslop, bass; Kent Hart, conductor 3:55
05 Phases, Op. 36 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Gregory Imboden, bass clarinet; Mary Jane Rupert, harp 4:04
06 Statements, Op. 43 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham James Kasprowicz, trombone; Marta Senra, piano 5:37
07 Brass Quintet No. 1 "Concertant", Op. 39 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham David Short, trumpet; Marshelle Coffman, trumpet; Patricia Hackbarth, horn; James Kasprowicz, trombone; David Pack, tuba 8:01
08 Triple Sonata, Op. 42 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Alice Meredith, flute; John Scott, clarinet; M.G. Cunningham, piano 12:00
09 Terzetts, Op. 54 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Pakala Fernandez, Harry Bell, Thom Gustavson - horns 3:25
10 Scenario, Op. 53 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Robin Kennedy, Tom Miller, Stan Jaworski, John Fedderson, Bill Moehlenhoff - each playing multiple instruments; George Gaber, conductor 7:16
11 Noetical Rounds, Op. 44 (Live) Michael G. Cunningham Madeline Schatz, violin; Barbara Reising, oboe; Michael Berkowitz, marimba; John Hyslop, bass; Kent Hart, conductor 7:49

Recorded 1969-1973 at the Indiana University School Of Music (later known as Jacobs School of Music) in Bloomington IN

Special thanks to the recording staff and engineers during those years.

Executive Producer Bob Lord

Executive A&R Sam Renshaw
A&R Director Brandon MacNeil

VP, Audio Production Jeff LeRoy
Audio Director Lucas Paquette

VP, Design & Marketing Brett Picknell
Art Director Ryan Harrison
Design Edward A. Fleming
Publicity Patrick Niland, Sara Warner

Artist Information

Michael G. Cunningham


A great artist can manifest answers to otherwise perplexing aspects of our world through their craft and help us find understanding. Composer, author, and long-time PARMA artist Michael G. Cunningham (1937-2022) was the embodiment of this truth, a prolific artist whose timeless body of work will resonate for years to come. From symphonies and other orchestral works to piano pieces, art songs, opera, choral compositions, and works for jazz ensembles spanning 11 Navona Records releases, Cunningham showed an unwavering dedication to sharing his music with the world. Upon receiving his doctorate from Indiana University, Cunningham embarked on an artistic journey that would lead him to write over 250 musical compositions spanning multiple genres, pedagogical music books, and more.


This album is testament to the exciting musical atmosphere that existed on the campus of the Indiana University School of Music, and my four-year residency there (l969 to l973). It is also proof of the amazing talents of the 30 young performers at the very beginning of their careers. The style exhibited in the pieces is somewhat wide-ranging. Lyricism is often offset by stimulating densities. Somewhat unusual is the canonic plotting in the Images, while manipulation of timbre is most obvious in the percussion pieces. My four years on the IU campus were indeed both energizing and fulfilling.

— Michael G. Cunningham