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, John Howell Morrison. 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 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. Mel, 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 and the Balkan folk dance band Balkan Fields. Mel enjoys playing a variety of instruments for folk dance ensembles, including: violin/viola; acoustic guitar/bass; recorders; flute; 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
Women Composers Festival of Hartford
Expansion, Test and Journey Revisited being premiered by the forty/sixty trio.
31 March 2017
7pm
Charter Oak Cultural Center
Hartford, CT
Balkan Fields at NEFFA 22 April 2017
9:30pm
Mansfield Middle School
Mansfield, MA
Boston Recorder Orchesra 30 April 2017
7:30pm
Old North Church
Boston, MA
Quilisma Consort
Concert in historical home, with tea reception afterward
Sunday, 7 May 2017
300pm
Loring-Greenough House
Jamaica Plain, MA
Quilisma Consort Tuesday, 22 August 2017
12:15pm
King's Chapel
Boston, MA

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