The Longfellow Chorus

Traci Mendel

Dr. Traci Mendel, a native of south Louisiana, recently joined the faculty at Appalachian State University where she teaches courses in music theory and aural skills. She holds the Bachelor of Music in Theory and Composition degree from Centenary College of Louisiana, and the Master's and Doctoral degrees from The Florida State University. As an undergraduate she was the Southwest division alternate in the 1990 CPP/Belwin Mills MNTA Compostition Competition, and in 2001 her setting of The Heaven of Animals was selected as a winner in the Sandlapper Singers Composition Contest. Her compositions have been performed at festivals and in concert both in the United States and Europe. Ms. Mendel's list of works includes solo, chamber, and large ensemble compositions across the board of classical composition style. Her current projects include works for solo guitar, voice and guitar, mixed choir, and various instrumental chamber ensembles. She is also Composer-in-Residence for the Nashville Double Reed Ensemble.

The first time Dr. Mendel read Longfellow's Autumn Within, it was late Fall in the mountains of North Carolina and the forest around her house was starting to look a bit desolate without the bright leaves. The lack of a clearly discernable tonal center in the music is meant to reflect the dissonance between the external world and the internal world of the poet.

Dr. Mendel's first exposure to Longfellow's writing was her mother's re-telling of the story of Evangeline to her as a small child. It is part of the folklore of her home state. It was a pleasure to spend the hours she did reading Longfellow's works and learning more about Evangeline's author. She has found a new favorite poet..

Return to the list of winners of the Longfellow Chorus International Composers Competition

Return to the Longfellow Chorus Longfellow 202 Concert Program.