Abby Leusink Sheppard will perform a senior vocal recital this Sunday, Nov. 8, at 3 p.m. in Christ Chapel. Sheppard studies voice with Emily Lodine, lecturer in music, and has prepared a diverse repertoire.
Sheppard said her songs hit a broad spectrum of emotions. She explained that the audience’s emotional reactions caused by the recital’s pieces range from, “‘Oh, I’m sad!’ to ‘I’m happy’ to ‘Rejoice!’ to ‘I’m going to kill myself’ to ‘Love is cute and beautiful!’”
Some of Sheppard’s vocal selections include “O Mio Babbino Caro” by Gicomo Puccini, “Flower Duet” from the opera “Lakme” by Leo Delibes, “Dido’s Lament/When I am Laid” by Henry Purcell, “Take Care of This House” from “1600 Pennsylvania Avenue” by Lerner & Bernstein, three Schumann pieces and a piece by Argento. Her program will finish with a very humorous piece entitled “Vocal Modesty,” which is very sarcastic and dramatic.
Her favorite piece from the recital is “O Mio Babbino Caro.” Although the piece is quite popular, Sheppard has fallen in love with it in a unique way. She said, “I love the way the melody lines match the pleading of the daughters so perfectly.”
After graduating from Northwestern, Sheppard plans to be either a vocal music teacher or an elementary music teacher. Although she is unsure of which school she will be teaching at, she feels quite sure she and her family will remain in the state of Iowa. Abby said that she and her husband, Clint, plan to “buy a house and have babies and get on with our lives.”
Abby has a great love for music, which has inspired her to pursue music in a profession and to do such rigorous vocal study. She explained her love of music: “Music can reach parts of your soul that nothing else can reach.”
Sheppard believes music is such a powerful art that she cannot ignore it or allow her gift to go to waste. Her favorite quote about music comes from Victor Hugo: “Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.”