Ann K. Gebuhr
Composer, Music Theorist, Sometimes Author
15 February 2014
Thank you to each and everyone who has sent messages of concern and support this past week. It has been a humbling and deeply loving experience. My hope is that the love and concern you have expressed to me and to my colleagues is fully reflected back to you, as it has been there from our first meetings. And will continue.
There are many twists and turns in the labyrinthian path we follow through life. Born in, raised through, and still growing and learning from my personal Lutheran labyrinth, I have experienced and know that the guiding light of unconditional love coming from the center is always present and is the promise received through baptism. At times my path has taken me further away from that center, but it always, through grace and sometimes a theophanic knock on the head, turns my face and heart again to the light, to the center.
This week I was told that the current – rather long – path must be redirected in two year’s time. I have been very much blessed on this path, with wonderful colleagues and students who have been my community, my family here in Houston. They have inspired and encouraged me to strive to be the best steward of the gifts given to me by God at birth – music, creativity and teaching. The responsibility of the journey so far has been, like the stewards of the Gospel, to care for, nurture, grow and use wisely the talents entrusted to me and to do so with love for all I meet and with whom I interact.
I am more fortunate than some of my colleagues in that I have two years to discern where the new path leads. I am blessed with good energy, continued creative ideas, manageable health issues, and the support and love of all of you. Retirement is not the next path, whatever retirement means.
Please keep me and my colleagues in your thoughts and prayers for the time being. This kind of change is difficult, and all five of us, as well as those not dealing with termination at this point, believe that God will guide us to good, joyful, and useful paths in the very near future. But we are having, naturally, to work with overcoming feelings of shock, anger, betrayal, and the implications of being no longer useful. There was nothing loving or caring in the way this happened. No man-made institution or organization is perfect, nor do any replace or serve as the center of our individual labyrinths. Thus our human condition and vulnerability. But we all believe that center not only affords us unconditional love, it is the guiding force of our earthly lives and that removes us ultimately from the power or control of temporal hurt or injuries. We will continue to live in that light and to use our God-given gifts to good purpose – joyfully.
Ann K. Gebuhr holds the Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, Master of Music in Theory, and Doctor of Philosophy with a major in Music Theory from Indiana University. Her music has been performed throughout the United States and in Europe, including performances by the Houston Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, Filharmonie George Enescu of Bucharest, Romania, Evergreen Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra of Indianapolis, Naponsett Valley Philharmonic and the Waterloo Symphony.
She is a MacDowell Colony Fellow and is the first woman to be awarded the Creative Artist Award in Composition by the Cultural Arts Council of Houston/Harris County. Works have been published by the Bassoon Heritage Edition, MMB Music, Impression Arts and Thomas House Publications. Bonhoeffer, her second opera, received its world premiere in Houston in May 2000, and a compact disc recording of that premiere was released in November 2000. In 2002 she was awarded a Scholar in Residence Fellowship by the Rockefeller Foundation for a month-long residency at the Study and Conference Center in Bellagio, Italy. Her symphonic essay Voyage d’Anima was winner of a Louisville Orchestra competition in 2003, and she was named the Texas Commissioned Composer by the Texas Music Teachers Association for 2004-2005. She was commissioned by the Foundation for Universal Sacred Music for Pax Vobiscum, a work for chorus, soloists, organ and bells, premiered in New York City late in the Fall of 2005. In May and June 2006 violinist Rodica Weber premiered her Concerto for Violin in Romania and the Mass for Peace was premiered in Houston. Friedenskantate, a cantata commissioned for the dedication of the 'Friedensfenster' (peace window) in St. Thomas Church (Leipzig), works for solo flute, rainstick and chimes in response to Hildegard von Bingen texts, and a book about Hildegard von Bingen with an accompanying CD of those responses have been recent projects.
2013 included several presentations of Eight Contemplations in Houston and Germany, the Houston premiere of Gigalambo, an invitation to present Hildegard for the World Community of Christian Meditation 'Root Courses' on Christian mysticism, and an invitation to present a paper at the international conference, ...Generation '33. Bujarski, Gorecki, Penderecki in Krakow, Poland in November. She will co-present a paper on Penderecki's A sea of dreams did breathe on me... with Dr. Robert Hatten (UT Austin). Drs. Gebuhr and Hatten will also co-present an invited paper at the 18th Annual Beethoven International Festival in Warsaw on the general topic "Beethoven and the Idea of Freedom".
1-hour Information Presentations
Hildegard von Bingen
4-week Series (1 lecture/week)
Hildegard von Bingen, A Benedictine
for Our Time
Bonhoeffer: The Opera
Arvo Pärt -- 21st Century Mystic
Krzysztof Penderecki in the
Individual 50 minute
(High School or older)
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