MAFB Announces Program Change and Guest Soloist, Liz Pearse

Mid America Freedom Band is delighted to announce that soprano Liz Pearse will be joining us for our Green, Blue, and Purple concert on Saturday, May 4th at 7:30 pm at Plexpod Westport. With Liz’s availability the previously announced program has been altered to highlight her talents and to feature LGBTQ+ rights more prominently.

Verdi’s highlights from Il Trovatore has been replaced with his own Ave Marie: volgarizzata da Dante which will feature Liz Pearse. This piece is a hushed, serene setting of Dante’s altered version of the Ave Maria while carrying the hallmarks of Verdi’s operatic style. Also soloing will be MAFB’s own John J. Pearse, and yes, they are brother and sister. Lee Hartman’s …in fragile bark, o’er a tempestuous sea, the common harbor… will feature JJ on vibraphone. This piece was written in tribute to those 49 souls killed during the Pulse nightclub shooting.

MAFB also presents two world premieres. Salvadore Alan Jacobo’s Colors Ever So Vibrant is a rapturous hommage to LGBTQ individuals. The Four Swords by Olivia Kieffer was commissioned by MAFB for this concert as a result of our 16th season Call for Proposals. Olivia’s work is a driving tour de force infused with Balkan rhythms, bombastic percussion, rock and EMD influences, and it is just a whirlwind of sonic joy that you’re sure to enjoy.

For tickets visit

Green, Blue, and Purple revised program

MONTEVERDI: Toccata from L’Orfeo

MCMICHAEL: Sapphire (Jessica Riggins, alto saxophone)
JACOBO: Colors Ever So Vibrant (world premiere)

HARTMAN: …in fragile bark, o’er the tempestuous sea, the common harbor… (John J. Pearse, vibraphone)

TICHELI: Blue Shades

MCGINTY: Greensleeves Fantasia

PRINCE: Prince in Concert
KING-SMITH: Reflections Through Green and Gold

VERDI: Ave Maria: volgarizzata da Dante (Liz Pearse, soprano)

KIEFFER: The Four Swords (world premiere)


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 looks forward to presenting her second full-length recital of such pieces, a celebration of the 100th anniversary of Poulenc’s La bestiaire featuring newly-commissioned animal portraits, in 2019.

Liz is one-fourth of Quince Ensemble, a treble-voice quartet dedicated to “charting bold new directions in vocal chamber music” (John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune). Their third album, Motherland, was released by New Focus Recordings in spring 2018.

Liz Pearse (Photo by Aleks Karjaka of Karjaka Studios, 2015)