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).


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


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

Group/Event Time Place
Workshop: Selected Compositions of Melika M. Fitzhugh

Boston area composer and instrumentalist Melika M. Fitzhugh is hosting
a workshop on Friday, 17 November 2017 at 3pm. It will be held in the
conference room at the Somerville Public Library, Central Branch.

Mel will be talking about recent zer compositions: showing scores,
playing excerpts and complete pieces, and discussing zer compositional process.
The workshop is free and open to the public thanks to the much appreciated
support of the Somerville Arts Council, the Massachusetts Cultural Council
and the Somerville Public Library!
Friday, 17 November 2017, 3pm Somerville Public Library, Central Branch
79 Highland Avenue
Somerville, MA
Illusion's End and Ginger Ibex Friday, 1 December 2017 Lilypad
Inman Square
Cambridge, MA
Duo Shonle House Concert
   I will be performing on Baroque violin and violoncello
   with Mike Shonle on Baroque violin and eCorder
   playing Baroque, Folk and newly composed pieces
   Please email for information prior to day of concert
Saturday, 9 December 2017, 8pm The Shonle Residence
Cambridge, MA
Solo Recorder performance
at the 3rd Baptist Church Annual Christmas Concert
Saturday, 16 December 2017, 3pm Methuen Memorial Music Hall
Methuen, MA
Balkan Fields at Folk Arts Center Monthly Dance
Saturday, 20 January 2018, 8pm Payson Park Church, Belmont, MA
The Deborah Abel Dance Company presents The Wild Divine Saturday, 17 March 2018, 7:30pm
Sunday, 18 March 2018, 3pm
Tsai Performance Center at BU
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