New Music For Old Instruments

Welcome! This is the website for the Boston-area composer and musician Mel Fitzhugh, who enjoys playing and composing for historical instruments (e.g., Renaissance and Baroque recorders, viols, harpsichord and chest/continuo organ).

Biography

A native of Stafford, Virginia, Melika M. Fitzhugh (A.B. Harvard-Radcliffe: Music Theory and Composition, M.M. Longy School of Bard College: Composition) has studied conducting and composition with Thomas G. Everett, Beverly Taylor, James Yannatos, Julian Pellicano, Roger Marsh, Jeff Stadelman, and, most recently, Osnat Netzer and John Howell Morrison. Performed internationally, Mel's compositions have been commissioned by John Tyson, Catherine E. Reuben, John and Maria Capello, Laura and Geoffrey Schamu, and the Quilisma Consort, and have been performed by those artists as well as the B3:Brouwer Trio, the Radcliffe Choral Society, Berit Strong, Miyuki Tsurutani, Libor Dudas, and Aldo Abreu.

Mel was the 2014 winner of both the Longy orchestral and commencement processional/recessional composition competitions, and has performed with the Radcliffe Choral Society, Coro Allegro, the Harvard Wind Ensemble, the Village Circle Band, and WACSAC. The artist, who has composed music for film and stage, was a member of Just In Time Composers and Players and is currently a member of world/early music ensemble Urban Myth and the early music ensemble Quilisma Consort, in addition to playing bass guitar with acoustic rock singer/songwriter Emmy Cerra, the ambient rock band Rose Cabal, the symphonic metal band Illusion's End, and the Balkan folk dance band Balkan Fields. Mel enjoys teaching and playing a variety of instruments for folk dance ensembles, including: violin/viola/violoncello/double bass; acoustic guitar/bass; recorders; flute; clarinet; saxophone; trumpet; hand percussion including dumbek/djembe/kahoun.

Recordings Available


Fantasies for a Modern Recorder
Featuring Respiravisse in Perpetuo for Tenor Recorder

What Others Have Said

American Recorder Society Magazine, Fall 2015

"...Also returning to the Relay was the Quilisma Consort (Lisa Gay, Carolyn Jean Smith, Melika Fitzhugh), here playing exclusively works by the last member -- and this time adding tenor voice (Elijah Hopkin). Fitzhugh's poignant Lamentations of an Aztec Poet, played mostly on [ATB] Renaissance recorders (occasionally requiring a recorderist to play two simultaneously) was full of percussive chiffs, word-painting of the texts, and Ligeti-like clusters. Hopkin's vocal gymnastics included slides and leaps to unexpected intervals -- difficult for many singers to pull off, yet he did."

American Recorder Society Magazine, Winter 2017: Tom Bickley

"The genuinely remarkable work is one by Boston-area composer Melika Fitzhugh, whose works have been heard in the past on the ARS Great Recorder Relay and Next Generation concerts (held in conjunction with the Boston Early Music Festival in odd-numbered years). Her Respiravisse in Perpetuo is a seven-minute tour de force of listening, subtle manipulation of timbre, and lyricism. Rather than disguising the breathing of the player, Fitzhugh makes it an audible part of the performance of the work, and the recording captures this to very good effect. Fitzhugh plays and writes for historical instruments as well as modern ones—in that, she is ideally positioned for the commission from O’Brien for this disc."

New Music For Old Instruments

Events

If you want to find me, I will be in the following places at the corresponding times.

Group/Event Time Place
Ginger Ibex with the BackAttitude Dance Company Saturday, 15 September 2018
7pm
Third Life Studio
Union Square
Somerville
B3: Brouwer Trio will be performing my composition
Lythraceae: Punica Grantum on a concert of
the Phona New Music Series
Sunday, 16 September 2018
7pm
Teatre Xesc Forteza, Palma
Mallorca, Spain
Quarteto Larianna, with guests Daniel Murray (guitar)
and Gustavo Fontes (bass) will be premiering my new sextet
Waiting for the Future to Start at the Sao Paulo Contemporary Composers Festival
Monday, 24 September 2018
7pm
Unibes Cultural
Sao Paulo, Brazil

Get in Touch

If you find that you have questions, comments, or would like to inquire about purchasing or commissioning a score, please contact me.

Contact Details