Anne LeBaron

Unearthly Delights

Innova 026



Disc A (49:34)


1.         Fissure (2016) 5:35

            Pasha Tseitlin, violin

            Nic Gerpe, piano

            Anne LeBaron, electronics


2.         Los Murmullos (2006) 10:30

            Mark Robson, piano


3.         Devil in the Belfry (1993) 11:19

            Pasha Tseitlin, violin

            Nic Gerpe, piano


4.         Julie’s Garden of Unearthly Delights (2014) 11:43

            Julie Feves, Jon Stehney, bassoons

            Anne LeBaron, electronics


5.         Poem for Doreen (2017) 3:21

            Alison Bjorkedal, harp


6.         Four (2009) 7:04

            Mark Menzies, violin


Disc B (55:34)


1.         Is Money Money (2000) 9:20

            Kirsten Ashley Wiest, soprano

            Chris Stoutenborough, clarinet

            Jim Sullivan, bass clarinet

            Erik Rynearson, viola

            Charlie Tyler, cello

            Eric Shetzen, contrabass

            Nicholas Olof Jacobson-Larson, conductor


2.         After a Dammit to Hell (1982) 9:48

            Jon Stehney, bassoon


3.         Creación de las Aves (2011) 8:34

            Nic Gerpe, piano


4.         Fore (2009) 5:58

            Mark Menzies, violin


5.         A Zythum (2016) 18:43

            Stephanie Aston, soprano

            Andy Dwan, baritone

            Linnea Powell, viola

            Nick Deyoe, guitar, banjo

            Cory Hills, percussion

            Anne LeBaron, electronics

            Mark Menzies, conductor


6.         Poem for Doreen (2017) 3:08

            Anne LeBaron, harp


I consider this collection of solo and chamber music compositions to be a self-contained musical memoir. Each work embodies a personal story, each came with its own challenge, and each challenge was met with an epiphany that led to a conceptual, stylistic, or technical breakthrough. These compositions represent my interpretations of and responses to literature (Edgar Allan Poe, Juan Rulfo, Gertrude Stein), art (Remedios Varo), nature (frogs), food, friendship, J.S. Bach, and the Oxford English Dictionary. Although one piece reaches back to the early 1980’s, they are mostly from the past decade. Several were commissioned by organizations: Library of Congress, the Montecito Festival, the Library Foundation of Los Angeles, Sequitur. Others were commissions from musicians: Ana Cervantes, Julie Feves, Jay Barksdale, and the Panic Duo; one was composed as a birthday gift.

– Anne LeBaron


*Please visit for complete album details


Produced by Anne LeBaron

All works published by Golden Croak Music (BMI)

Compositions available from Composers Edition and from Theodore Front Musical Literature


Thanks to CalArts, David Rosenboom, and all the performers, commissioners, artists, and engineers.



James R. Thomaston

front cover: Sing Spring, Flower-Mimic-Art ©2013;

inside cover: Medusa, Flower-Mimic-Art ©2013

Adel Oberto: composer photo;

Ginger Ann Brook: The Tired Texan BBQ;

Remedios Varo: Creación de las Aves. © 2019 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid. Used by permission.

Studio locations: CalArts: Roy O. Disney Hall; Wild Beast; Digital Recording Studio; Film/Video Studio; Nick Tipp Studio; Capitol Records.


Mastering Engineer: Evren Goknar, Capitol Records

Pre-mastering Engineer: John Baffa, TV Tray Studios


innova is supported by an endowment from the McKnight Foundation.

Philip Blackburn, director, design

Chris Campbell, operations director

Tim Igel, publicist


Disc A

Fissure. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Daniel McNamara. June 20, 2017

Los Murmullos. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Daniel McNamara. June 19, 2017

Devil in the Belfry. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Ian Stahl. June 20, 2016

Julie’s Garden of Unearthly Delights. Recording Engineer: Nick Tipp. Sept. 22, 2016

Poem for Doreen. Recording Engineer: Alberto Cruz. Dec. 15, 2017

Four. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Ian Stahl. March 24, 2017


Disc B

Is Money Money. Recording Engineer: Alberto Cruz; Assistant Engineer and Mixing: Daniel McNamara. May 9, 2018

After a Dammit to Hell. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Daniel McNamara. June 20, 2017

Creación de las Aves. Recording Engineer:  John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Ian Stahl. June 20, 2016

Fore. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineer: Ian Stahl. March 24, 2017

A Zythum. Recording Engineer: John Baffa; Assistant Engineers: Aidan Gould, Ian Stahl. May 6, 2016

Poem for Doreen. Recording Engineer: John Baffa. Sept. 5, 2017


A Los Angeles-based experimentalist who is an innovative performer on the harp as well as a composer embracing unusual challenges, Anne LeBaron’s compositions have been performed around the globe. Venues in Italy, Mexico, Sydney, Vienna, Sweden, Kazakhstan, New York, Los Angeles, Italy, and elsewhere have programmed her works for chamber ensemble, orchestra, opera, and chorus, and presented her as a performer. Major awards she has received include the Alpert Award in the Arts, a Fromm Foundation commission, a Guggenheim, a Fulbright, and NEA grants. Her operas celebrate legendary female figures, such as Marie Laveau in Crescent City. She is currently completing LSD: Huxley’s Last Trip, an opera that includes many of the instruments built by Harry Partch. Her newest opera-in-progress, This Lingering Life, examines the notion of karma, with a libretto by Mark Campbell and Chiori Miyagawa. LeBaron teaches in the Experimental Sound Practices and Composition Program at CalArts.


Fissure was commissioned by the Panic Duo as a companion piece for Devil in the Belfry. The title refers to the crack in the house in Edgar Allan Poe’s story, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” causing the collapse of the House of Usher into the tarn.


Los Murmullos distills spectral murmurs wafting through the streets of Comala, whisperings of dreams, and groanings in the ghost town cemetery of Juan Rulfo’s seminal and only novel, Pedro Páramo. The pianist whispers, speaks, shouts, intones, and performs with a special seed rattle.   The combination of piano, vocalizations, and percussion serves to illuminate the secret otherworldly utterances populating Rulfo’s deserted Mexican village. Pianist Ana Cervantes commissioned Los Murmullos in 2006 for her “Rumores” project.


Devil in the Belfry reflects the diabolic qualities in clockwork as observed by Edgar Allan Poe. Poe’s tale of 1839, with the same title, is set in the Dutch village of Vondervotteimittiss. The lives of its citizens, all obsessed with correct time and fine cabbage, are suddenly disrupted by the appearance of an outsider from “over the hills.” Brandishing his fiddle, the newcomer scampers up the town steeple, attacks the venerable belfry-man, and commits the heretical act of striking the bell thirteen times instead of the expected twelve. The perfectly regulated town is suddenly thrown into unprecedented disruption and chaos. Devil in the Belfry was commissioned by the McKim Fund at the Library of Congress, where it was premiered.


The idea for Julie’s Garden of Unearthly Delights emerged from spending time in bassoonist Julie Feves’ beautifully resonant garden. It was also inspired by the heavenly, hellish, hallucinatory imagery in the Hieronymus Bosch Garden of Earthly Delights triptych. With a nod to the heavenly, hellish, hallucinatory imagery in the Bosch, an accompanying soundscape features frog and toad vocalizations, howler monkey calls, and weird, fierce, sawtoothy bassoon sonorities. The bassoons played by Julie Feves and Jon Stehney move into, out of, and around extended techniques. The premiere took place in Los Angeles at REDCAT, on one of my portrait concerts in 2014.


Poem for Doreen was composed for my friend Doreen Gehry Nelson, on the occasion of her 80th birthday. Doreen, also a harpist, is so special and beloved, and her piece deserves two interpretations—one by harpist Alison Bjorkedal on CD 1, and the other by myself on CD 2.


Four, the more literal version of its graphically notated fraternal twin, Fore, was commissioned to honor the renowned violinist Ivry Gitlis. The mandate was to compose a work referencing a favorite composition by Mr. Gitlis, namely the Adagio movement from the Violin Concerto No. 2 in E by Johann Sebastian Bach. Ken Aiso gave the premiere at the Montecito Festival on Aug. 1, 2009.


 Is Money Money, for soprano, clarinet, bass clarinet, viola, cello, and contrabass, along with an assortment of call bells, launches with Gertrude Stein’s assertion: “All the trouble really comes from this question is money money.” The composition was in response to a commission with the requirement that the piece be about money. The texts I selected are from Stein’s “Money” and “All About Money, first appearing in 1936 in The Saturday Evening Post. The first performances of Is Money Money were given by the ensemble Sequitur at Joe’s Pub in The Public Theater, New York, on Feb. 3, 4, and 5, 2000.


After a Dammit to Hell, for solo bassoon, was commissioned by Jay Barksdale. It refers to the fieriest BBQ sandwich in the Deep South, available at the late Tired Texan in Birmingham, Alabama.


The music of Creación de las Aves, composed in 2012 and inspired by the Remedios Varo painting of the same name, reflects two elements that are striking in her surreal work of art: the extreme concentration shown by the Owl Woman as she paints birds into living creatures (with the assistance of alchemy and a cardio-violin), and the ecstasy of the newly liberated birds as they take flight through a star-studded window. The origin of life is thus transformed into a warm-blooded miracle, a song taking flight. I’m grateful to the Mexican-American pianist Ana Cervantes for commissioning and championing this work, as part of her visionary Monarca project.


Fore, composed before Four, was given its first performance by Mark Menzies on Feb. 6, 2010. Both violin solos were commissioned by the Montecito Music Festival and dedicated to violinist Ivry Gitlis.


A – Zythum, commissioned by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles, is scored for soprano and baritone with banjo, guitar, viola, vibes and percussion. It celebrates all words appearing on the spines of the Oxford English Dictionary during its first publication period from 1884 – 1928. This raucous accounting is framed by two words that begin and end the dictionary: A; Zythum. In addition, the composition draws upon the definitions and usages of Hobbit and Walrus, two words defined by J.R.R. Tolkien (who worked as an editor for the OED), having them emerge from and temporarily halt the chronologically ordered stream of words labeling each volume. Two ‘ghost words’—Dord, Abacot (impostors that escaped the editors’ scrutiny and were published but actually did not exist)—are embedded in the body of the score. A – Zythum unfolds in three sections: 1. the letter A; 2. A – Zythum; 3. the last word.

                                                                                                ----Anne LeBaron