Jennifer Goodenberger to release seventh album, 'Sonnet'

 

 

  

ASTORIA — Pianist and composer Jennifer Goodenberger will release her latest CD of original compositions, “Sonnet: Poetry for Solo Piano,” in concert at 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21 at Grace Episcopal Church. Admission is $10 at the door. There will be a reception following the concert.
The CD is titled “Sonnet” because all the compositions were either inspired by a poem or are in and of themselves a poem. The album is Goodenberger’s seventh solo piano recording. In this CD release concert, she will also read the poetry which inspired the compositions, including poems by Emily Dickinson and May Sarton.
Known for the elegance of her playing, Goodenberger is a sensitive and expressive performer. For more than 30 years, she has been engaging audiences as a concert pianist, composer, studio and ensemble pianist, and as a musical director for theater. She also teaches adult piano students.
Goodenberger’s intimate and contemplative piano solos are an introspective journey into one’s soul. Her original works range from healing and spiritual compositions to passionate and romantic creations. The music is a mesmerizing fusion of classical, improvisational and contemporary styles. Her CDs of original compositions are ideal for use in healing, massage, yoga, birthing, hospice, and as ambient music for creativity and relaxation.
Grace Episcopal Church is located at 1545 Franklin Ave. in Astoria. For more information, call 503-325-5310.

Grace Episcopal Church to host new Goodenberger show

ASTORIA - Jennifer Goodenberger will present a show of new textile artwork, "Jardin de Fleurs" (Flower Garden), at Grace Episcopal Church, Dec. 6 through Jan. 17. An opening reception will be held from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9.

This exhibit includes 72 pieces, ranging in size from 4-by-4 inches to 10-by-10 inches. The work, created in dupioni silk and beads, is influenced by the Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau styles, international design movements that flourished between 1860 and 1930. Like the artwork of that time, Goodenberger's pieces are simple and emphasize the quality of the material. They use patterns inspired by flora and fauna, and draw on bold forms and strong colors. As a unifying theme, each piece has been given a woman's name.

Grace Episcopal Church is located at 1545 Franklin Ave. The church is open from 9 a.m. to noon, Sundays through Thursdays. For more information, call 503-325-5310.

26 hours of talent boosts the PAC

Jennifer Goodenberger of Astoria was at home performing on the same piano that she has played at the Performing Arts Center since 1979. Her fine classical style of tranquility was in perfect harmony with the soft rain outside during this weekend’s fundraiser for the PAC.

Jennifer Goodenberger Honored by HonorWorks and Swil Kanim

Jennifer Goodenber plays piano on our grand piano, Gloria, on a somewhat regular basis–often on Saturday nights and for special events, where she tailors the music to the theme of the evening. Be sure to join us for Tea, Tarot and Terrestrial Treats, coming up soon on Saturday, October 27th.  She was recently invited to Bellingham by Swil Kanim to perform at the Fairhaven Firehouse Performing Arts Center. An excerpt of that concert has just been posted on youtube. Here’s a link to Jennifer’s performance of her original recording, “Morning Dew.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4TvVC0DI6w&feature=plcp

Honorworks Presents: Jennifer Goodenberger performing the song "Morning Dew"
This is an excerpt from the three day live recording event of Swil Kanim's album "you, Me, and the Tree" . This particular song was performed by special guest Jennifer Goodenberger on the third day…
00:09:54
Added on 10/08/12
68 views

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4TvVC0DI6w&feature=plcp

Concert for a Winter’s Night:

Music for Chanukkah, Solstice and Christmas – December 22

Shelley and Jennifer

Flutist Shelley Loring and pianist Jennifer Goodenberger perform on Thursday, December 22 at 7pm at Grace Episcopal Church.  The concert will include Jewish, Celtic, Carols, holiday music, and original compositions to celebrate the Season. These long-term friends, who have until now been pursing separate musical careers, are thrilled to create music together for this concert.

Loring’s early years were spent performing with her father, a Jewish cantor. She has toured the Western States with the Community Concerts Association in addition to playing with many regional and local music organizations. Most recently she returned to performing her life-time passion – jazz and improvisation.

Goodenberger, was the producer for the legendary “Winter Solstice Concerts” of the late 1990’s. She is currently active as a recording artist and solo pianist, performing her original compositions and arrangements of folk and Celtic music. Her recordings are often used in the healing arts, and as film soundtracks. Go to jennifergoodenberger.com for a complete audio and art listing of her works.

Thursday, December 22, 7pm, at Grace Episcopal Church.  1545 Franklin Avenue, Astoria. There is a $10 suggested donation at the door.

THE ARTS: Composing music for relaxation proves to be a challenge

Story and photos by DWIGHT CASWELL   For Coast Weekend, The Daily Astorian 


Music has been used in healing throughout the world for millennia, and it was more than 300 years ago that William Congreve wrote, "Music hath charms to soothe a savage beast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak." In this country, music therapy began to be taken seriously in the 1970s.

 

Local pianist and composer Jennifer Goodenberger has been interested in the effects of music on health for 30 years, an interest that culminates this Friday evening in a program called "Music for Health and Healing." Goodenberger's latest solo piano CD, "Breathe Peace," which is specifically designed to create a state of deep relaxation, will be released at the event, which is presented in cooperation with the Astoria Conservatory of Music.

 

As a musician, Goodenberger has always been interested in how music works, not just the technical aspects of composition, but "how and why we react to music; why music can make us joyful, or sad, or can energize us." She devoted some formal study to the subject, "but more than anything I've been on my own, with my own music." While music can be healing in many ways, she became interested in deep relaxation "because so many of our physical and emotional problems are caused by stress." She also knew that hospice and nursing situations need ways to find calm and comfort, and she decided to compose music that would do just that.

 

The music of "Breathe Peace" is made of slow tempos, simple melodies and simple harmonies. Writing this sort of music proved to be a unique challenge. "I had to make it musical and simple," says Goodenberger, "without it being pabulum." She discovered that there is a fine line between being relaxed and being bored, not just in the listening but in the playing. "It was an interesting line to walk."

 

Since the music required quiet dynamics, Goodenberger sometimes found herself tossing a take in the recording studio because there was too much rhythm, too much excitement - and excitement leads to faster tempos. Her problem was this: She had to remove emotion from the music, and music is all about emotion. She had to allow enough emotion for people to listen, but not so much that they couldn't relax.

 

This is the reason that "Music for Health and Healing" will not be a traditional concert. You can't have your audience drifting off into profound relaxation. Goodenberger and Lisa Nelson, of the Astoria Conservatory of Music, worked out what they call "A Presentation in Lecture and Music." The pieces on the new CD will not be played in their entirety, but only several minutes each, and the remaining musical selections will be from Goodenberger's other work.

 

Interspersed with the music will be a discussion of how music and sound is being used in scientific and medical fields. For example, sound is now routinely used to destroy kidney stones; might it sometime be used against cancer? Sound is being used to treat dyslexia as well, and scientists are comparing the structures of music and DNA. Goodenberger will also keep it personal with stories of the way music has touched people in her life. There will be time for questions from the audience.

 

"Music for Health and Healing" takes place at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, at the Clatsop Community College Performing Arts Center, 16th Street and Franklin Avenue. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors. For further information, contact the Conservatory at (503) 325-3237.

 

 

Jennifer Goodenberger,  Breathe Peace

 by Lisa Evans for Hipfish Monthly

        A new direction in recording
        and a new release just in time for a new year

IT’S A FITTING EXPRESSION for the holidays.  It’s an spot-on suggestion for our world right now.  It also happens to be the title for the latest, and very well perhaps the greatest, c.d. of local musician and artist, Jennifer Goodenberger.  I had the opportunity to attend her presentation, “Music for Health & Healing” at the Performing Arts Center last month and it was both informative and inspirational.  I’d heard her play many times before and have always enjoyed her music, but this particular performance was diff erent.  It was different because she not only played her passion, she spoke about it in such an uplifting and life-affirming way that one couldn’t help but be moved by the whole experience.  

Fellow artists will understand what I’m about to say next.  Doing your art (whatever your medium happens to be) is often easier than talking about it.  Explaining what you do is one thing, but being able to express why you do what you do and getting others to really understand your art from that perspective…well, that’s an art in itself.  And that’s what Jennifer did that night.  Through her music and her words, she gave the audience a chance to “get” why she plays the piano.    

Passion often begins as a yearning for something you can’t have.  At six years of age, Jennifer begged her parents for piano lessons.  Even though her folks loved music and there was a piano in their home, it wasn’t until she was nine when she began learning how to tickle the ivories. Perhaps they made her wait because it was the conventional wisdom of the day. Perhaps they wanted to make sure she was serious about learning an instrument.  Perhaps they weren’t quite ready to hear what passion sounds like from a young child.  What Jennifer didn’t know back then was her journey as a life-long artist had begun. Perhaps that’s what her parents had concerns about...being an artist can be a challenging profession.  Passion often leads a person to follow the less-traveled path of instability. Passion isn’t always reasonable and reliable.  Passion doesn’t always pay the bills.  All of this is irrelevant, however, to a person who must create their art.  

Jennifer has been studying and creating music for the last forty years.  Despite her early interests in folk and pop music, (she was a big fan of Elton John’s in her teens), her education was centered on classical formal training. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in music from Marylhurst University in Portland and her Master’s in Music from Northwestern University in Illinois. It was while she was attending Marylhurst and taking music classes taught by strict nuns that she discovered she was a non-traditional student.  While learning music theory and methodology were important in her studies, so was learning about the spiritual and healing qualities of music and these two elements were missing. She remembers asking herself, “How can music change the world?” and after she received her undergraduate degree, she began exploring how her music could answer that question.

In the early eighties, Jennifer discovered the music of Steven Halpern who was using his piano compositions as instruments of healing. This struck a deep chord (piano pun intended) with Jennifer and she was inspired to create her music in a similar style.  While many people would categorize it as “New Age”, Jennifer prefers to call it “a mesmer- izing fusion of classical, improvisational and contemporary styles.”  Her latest work, BreathePeace, is more than a style.  It is a true reflection of who Jennifer is as an artist and how she hopes to make a difference in healing the world.

During her presentation Goodenberger also gave the audience a glimpse of her research into the connections between sound, music, health, and all else, which she has been refi ning over the last 30 years. She revealed that the ancient civilizations of India, Greece, Egypt, China and Tibet had vast knowledge of the power of sound to heal, based on an understanding that vibration was the fundamental creative force of the universe. Scientists have recently proposed that “superstrings” are the fundamental building blocks of matter and energy, and their vibrations are manifestations of everything in the universe. Goodenberger sums it up as, “The universe is a symphony of vibration.”

And she was quite excited to learn that sound and health had a common etymology. Health (Gesund in German) is defined as soundness of body and mind, and to heal is to “make sound”. “Music is life made audible,” says Goodenberger.

Goodenberger’s extensive home library includes two books that demonstrate how water and other materials are aff ected by vibrations. Cymatics: A Study of Wave Phenomena and Vibration by Hans Jenny, and the newer Water Sound Images by Alexander Lauterwasser, seem to say that the world (and the rest of the universe) is (and has been) essentially formed by sound. The ancients had it right after all.

So why did Jennifer record this kind of c.d. now?  About a year and a half ago, she was asked by a couple of friends to consider lengthening some of her songs from earlier works and that marked the beginning of the idea of BreathePeace.  Longer songs with extended pauses that didn’t stir up emotions, but would provide a sense of calm and comfort was what Jennifer wanted to create.  Having done her research regarding using music as a healing modality, she wanted to find out what kind of aff ect her new songs had on people before she recorded them.  This past summer she held several mini-concerts for friends and the feedback she received confirmed that this new c.d. had to be made.   

After two days of recording in mid-August, on a Steinway in a professional studio in Portland, BreathePeace was born. It’s the perfect time now for this c.d. Our world is stressed-out, sped-up, and stripped of serenity.  While Jennifer’s big dream is to have this c.d. playing in hospital rooms and hospice centers around the country, she created BreathePeace for all of us.  We can all use a bit of healing these days.  Indeed, BreathePeace is spiritual, soothing soul-food.  

BreathePeace is available at Gypsy’s Whimsy in Astoria and House of the Potter in Cannon Beach. Ann Baldwin, LMT (503-791-1858) is also selling Jennifer’s CDs.  She is offering discounts on massage gift certificates for anyone purchasing a CD from her. You can also purchase BreathePeace from Jennifer directly by sending an email to jenniferspiano@hotmail.com.  It will also be available soon on her website with a link to C.D. Baby.  

To find out more information about Jennifer and her passions, go to www.jennifergoodenberger.com or give her a call and take her out to lunch at her favorite restaurant, The Urban Café.  That’s what I did.     

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