Featured guests

Dessa

Dessa

2020 Festival Guest

Dessa is an internationally touring rapper, singer, and writer who has built a career by defying genre conventions and audience expectations. As a musician, she’s recorded critically acclaimed studio albums (Dessa “sounds like no one else” according to the LA Times, and was called “a national treasure” by NPR’s All Songs Considered); appeared on the Billboard Top 200 charts both as a solo artist as as a member of the Doomtree hip-hop collective; co-composed for a 100-voice choir; collaborated with full orchestras; and contributed to The Hamilton Mixtape on the invitation of Lin-Manuel Miranda.

As a writer, Dessa's work has appeared in the New York Times, National Geographic Traveler, and literary journals across the United States. She's published two collections of essays and poetryand has served as a guest writer for the Welcome to Night Vale podcast. In 2018, Dutton Books (Penguin Random House) published her first hardcover book, a non-fiction essay collection titled, My Own Devices: True Stores from the Road on Music, Science, and Senseless Love. As a presenter, Dessa served as Artist in Residence at WNYC's The Greene Space, where her HEARTBREAKERS series investigated research on love, sex, and determinism with both scientists and musicians. She also became a frequent radio contributor: on behalf of Minnesota Public Radio she's interviewed best-selling authors in front of live audiences (most recently talking with Michael Pollan about his exploration into psychedelic drugs).

In recent years, Dessa partnered with the GRAMMY-winning Minnesota Orchestra to stage six sold-out performances at Minneapolis’s Orchestra Hall. The Minnesota Orchestra and Dessa cut a live record together in March of 2019—Sound the Bells; Recorded Live at Orchestra Hall, released in November of 2019. On stage and on the page, Dessa’s work is driven by an interest in finding unexpected connections—between heartache and neuroscience, aerodynamics and grief, or simply between two people who live far away and in disparate circumstances. Her delivery is crafted to balance wit and tenderness, intellectual rigor and a poetic sensibility.  

Dessa splits her time between Manhattan, Minneapolis, and a tour van cruising at 6 miles per hour above the posted limit. For dates, music, and assorted nonsense, visit dessawander.com; @dessa on Instagram; or @dessadarling on Twitter and Facebook. 

Ingrid  Stölzel

Ingrid Stölzel

2020 Festival Guest

Composer Ingrid Stölzel has been described as having “a gift for melody” (San Francisco Classical Voice) and “evoking a sense of longing” that creates “a reflective and serene soundscape that makes you want to curl up on your windowsill to re-listen on a rainy day.” (I Care If You Listen)  

Stölzel’s compositions have been commissioned by leading soloists and ensembles, and performed in concert halls and festivals worldwide, including Carnegie Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, Kennedy Center, Seoul Arts Center, Thailand International Composition Festival, Festival Osmose (Belgium), Vox Feminae Festival (Israel), Dot the Line Festival (South Korea), Ritornello Chamber Music Festival (Canada), Festival of New Music at Florida State (USA), Beijing Modern Music Festival (China), Festival of New American Music (USA), and SoundOn Festival of Modern Music (USA). Her music has been recognized in numerous competitions, among them recently the Suzanne and Lee Ettelson Composer's Award, Red Note Composition Competition, the Robert Avalon International Competition for Composers, and the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra Competition. Recordings can be found on various commercial releases including her portrait album “The Gorgeous Nothings” which features her chamber and vocal chamber music. Stölzel serves on the composition faculty at the University of Kansas School of Music. For more information: www.ingridstolzel.com

Maegan Crowley

Maegan Crowley

2020 Festival Guest

Maegan Crowley owns and operates “Iron Maegan Metalworks” in Dolores, Colorado where she produces custom metalwork for residential, public and commercial sites. From this small town she has created a client base that spans the country producing anything from railings or fireplace accessories to cabinet hardware and furniture, all with a modern aesthetic and impeccable craftsmanship. Maegan is passionate about material exploration and uses it as a vehicle to create sculpture. She draws her inspiration from plant life, mostly from the southwest region where she lives. The work she creates strives to emphasize the beauty of detail found in nature and preserve its ephemeral gestures of form. Maegan earned a BFA from University of the Arts in Metalsmithing and her MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. Her work is in private collections and is exhibited nationally. She has taught blacksmithing workshops at Haystack, Penland, Ox-Bow, Peters Valley School of Craft and the New England school of Metalwork, and has demonstrated at numerous regional blacksmithing conferences across the country.