For its Centennial Year celebration, Carnegie Hall commissioned Yeston to compose this series of new songs for the noted cabaret artist Andrea Marcovicci, to be premiered on their Weill Hall stage. Having taught the great Schubert lieder for many years as a Yale professor he had been inspired by Schubert’s great masterpiece song cycle - Die Winterreise (A Winter’s Journey).
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That sequence of twenty songs tells the story of a young jilted man of the 19th century wandering the snows of the Vienna woods and descending into madness. Inspired by the Schubert tale and in keeping with the history of the numerous styles of music that had graced the Carnegie Hall stage for 100 years (classical, jazz, cabaret, folk, rock, musical theater etc.), this new Yeston song cycle portrays instead a brokenhearted young woman of the modern age wandering the snowy paths of Central Park. In this contemporary musical portrayal of her journey, she finds the strength to recover and begin her life anew. First recorded by Marcovicci accompanied by piano, December Songs has been additionally recorded, accompanied by numerous different chamber ensembles, six times in English, as well as in French, German, and (listen here) in Polish. (Click on the PRODUCTS link above to find many of these recordings, or see below on this page.)