For this bonus episode of Seekers and Scholars, we’ve recorded two very different pieces by Elisa Mazzucato Young. Her family ties and musical life took her from Europe to the far reaches of the United States, first as a composer and then as a practitioner of Christian Science healing. The first song, “A Bulgarian Pin,” is a playful selection from her comic opera Mr. Sampson of Omaha (1888)—one of the earliest operas produced in the United States that was written by a woman. By contrast, the second selection—“Now is come Salvation and Strength”—is a sacred song with a reverent demeanor, composed for the 1897 dedication services of Chicago’s First Church of Christ, Scientist. We welcomed guest Mike Hamilton, Executive Manager of The Mary Baker Eddy Library, on our April episode, “Bicknell Young—a Mormon and Christian Science story.” He returns here to introduce these pieces and share some additional background.

“A Bulgarian Pin” from Mr. Sampson of Omaha (1888)
Lyrics by Fred Nye
Music by Elisa Mazzucato Young
Teddy Crecelius, voice
Christa Seid-Graham, piano

“Now is come Salvation and Strength” (1898)
Words from the Bible
Music by Elisa Mazzucato Young
Teddy Crecelius, voice
Bryan Ashley, piano

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Podcast guests

Michael HamiltonMichael Hamilton is Executive Manager of The Mary Baker Eddy Library. His research and writing focus are on American religions. Recently his research on the Young family has been featured on The Mary Baker Eddy Library’s website, and he joined our April podcast to discuss Bicknell Young’s Mormon roots, along with distinguished scholar Kristine Haglund.

Teddy CreceliusTeddy Crecelius is a performer and director/producer, whose work spans diverse artistic genres—among them opera and musical theater. From 2013 to 2015, he taught on the Music Theater Faculty at Mahidol University College of Music in Bangkok, Thailand. He returned to the United States to participate in the 2015 Glimmerglass Opera Festival Young Artist Program. An experienced church soloist, his repertoire also includes a variety of sacred music. He is Plaza Group Tours, Marketing & Engagement Coordinator for The Mother Church.

Christa Seid-GrahamChrista Seid-Graham is a pianist and vocalist who serves as a church musician throughout the greater Boston area. She has performed with The Mary Baker Eddy Library on two live webinars, and her voice can be heard on the Christian Science Publishing Society’s 2016 album Celebration. As Programs and Communications Specialist for the Library, she produces the Seekers and Scholars podcast.

Bryan AshleyBryan Ashley has been active throughout his career as an international concert organist, church musician, and teacher, including four years as an organ instructor at the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music. He has served as Organist of The Mother Church since 2009 and has recorded two CDs on The Mother Church organ, titled Glorious and Majestic.

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