Songs of May Swenson, in progress
Whistling Hens has asked composer Diana Rosenblum to write a song cycle in 2020 based on text by May Swenson. We approached Diana Rosenblum for a piece seeking to diversify our programming by representing voices of the LGBT+ community. Rosenblum is setting texts by May Swenson. Swenson has a number of love poems, some posited as riddles, which obliquely imply her LGBT+ orientation; it is neither central to her identity as a poet, nor concealed (likewise, Rosenblum describes herself this way as a composer). Through this composition, we will amplify the voice of an LGBT+ composer and normalize sensuality as it relates to the female experience and LGBT+ experience (a stigma which does not exist in heteronormative literature).