Windswept Glory Program

Celebrate the State of Kansas on her 161st birthday with powerful live classical music, local poetry, and severe weather photography straight from the heartland in this brand new interdisciplinary production, Windswept Glory. The bold combination of Brian J. Nelson’s new composition for The Lyric Arts Trio, Poet-Laureate Emeritus Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg’s poetry, and the severe-weather photography of Stephen Locke will bathe audiences in Kansas’ awe-inspiring wide-open skies, intrepid supercell thunderstorms, and snowy landscape calm that could only exist in the place we call home.

The Lyric Arts Trio will feature soprano Sarah Tannehill Anderson, clarinetist Elena Lence Talley, and pianist Daniel Velicer.  Audiences will hear a selection of Kansas-themed piano works by Shane Spangler, a set of three short piano pieces from Evan Hunter, with additional music by Brian J. Nelson, including his Ballade for Violin and Piano, and Ad Astra per Aspera, featuring pianists Ellen Sommer and Regina Tanujaya, violinist Kenya Patzer, with bassoonist Leigh Munoz.

Please join us after the show for a Q&A with the composers.

Windswept Glory   Classical Music, Poetry, and Images from the Heart of Kansas

Brian J. Nelson – Director 

Celebrate This Kansas……………………………………..……..Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

Read by the Poet                Photo by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.

 Ad Astra per Aspera – Opus 19, no. 1……………………………Brian J. Nelson (b. 1967)

Kenya Patzer, Violin

Leigh Muñoz, Bassoon 

 Stomping Ground1………………………………………………….Shane Spangler (b. 1975)

  1.     At a Crossroads 
  2.     Mary’s Song
  3.     To Know the Dark
  4.     The Wathena Declaration Fantasy

Ellen Sommer, Piano

Ballade for Violin and Piano – Opus 15…………………………………..Brian J. Nelson  (b. 1967)

Kenya Patzer, Violin

Ellen Sommer, Piano

 All We Have: 12 Pieces for Solo Piano1……………………………………Evan Hunter (b. 1988)

  1.  Light Showers
  2.   Hummingbird
  3.   Twirling Dance

Regina Tanujaya, Piano

 *World premiere*

Windswept Glory – Opus 22…………………..Music by Brian J. Nelson, Text by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

  1.     Welcome
  2.     Still Life
  3.     Surrender

Lyric Arts Trio

Elena Lence Talley, Clarinet

Sarah Tannehill Anderson, Soprano

Daniel Velicer, Piano

Poetry read by the poet prior to each song

Ad Astra per Aspera – Opus 19, no. 1……………………………Brian J. Nelson (b. 1967)

Kenya Patzer, Violin

Leigh Muñoz, Bassoon 



Photography Credits (See full detailed description below)

Lead Photographer

Stephan Locke

Visual Artist

Nathalie Hunter for All We Have

Additional Photographs

Michael Anfang     Kansas School for the Blind     Mathieu Bigard Bballj     Christian Bowen

Aaron Burden     Pascal Debrunner     Patrick Emerson     Kerin Gedge     Ken Goulding 

Vincent Ledvina    Marco Midmore     John Peters     Matt Phillips     Mark Shibly

Shane Spangler     Tengyart Ufarhi     Vincent Van Zalinge

Production Team

Artistic Director Elizabeth Sullivan

Director/Lead Composer Brian J. Nelson

Stage/Production Manager Samaria Fleig

Sound Engineer Ben Knight

House Manager Lisa Purdon

Livestream Tech Ian Weaver

Tech Crew Eli Hill, Alysha Burr


Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Ph.D., the 2009-13 Kansas Poet Laureate is the author of 24 books, including How Time Moves: New & Selected Poems; Miriam’s Well, a novel; Needle in the Bone, a non-fiction book on the Holocaust; The Sky Begins At Your Feet: A Memoir on Cancer, Community, and Coming Home to the Body. Founder of Transformative Language Arts, she leads writing workshops widely, coaches people on writing and right livelihood, and guides artists and change-makers on their Right Livelihood journeys. She is a registered songwriter with B.M.I., and she co-writes Americana, gospel, folk, and rhythm and blues songs regularly with singer-songwriter Kelley Hunt. Her poetry has been set to music as art songs by composers Bonnie McLarty, Frank Nawrot, and Ben Justis, and she has cowritten songs with Kathryn Lorenzen and Rick Frydman. More at,, and, and Tell Me Your Truest Story.


 Brian J. Nelson

Brian J. Nelson was born in Madison, Wisconsin in 1967 and began composing at age twelve. He received his Bachelor of Composition degree from the University of Michigan in 1990, where he studied with William Bolcom, William Albright and Nick Thorne. He completed a Master’s degree in Composition at the University of Wisconsin in May 2000 and a D.M.A from the University of Kansas (2011) where he studied with James Barnes.

A devoted Catholic, he is a prolific composer of sacred music as well as chamber and orchestral works. His growing catalogue includes his Te Deum for Full Orchestra, Chorus and Soloists; Ballade for Violin and Piano; Mass of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne; Two Pieces for Orchestral Brass; and Responsorial Psalms for Advent and Christmas, a collection of responsories based on the Catholic lectionary, et al. Recent presentations include Ballade – An Evening with Composer Brian J. Nelson, a full-length concert of his works in Lawrence, Kansas in May 2019, a Kansas Public Radio preview concert of the same, and is the director of Windswept Glory – Poetry, Music and Images from the Heart of Kansas, premiered at the Lawrence Art Center on Kansas Day, January 22, 2022.

 To date, Brian’s music is represented on two CD’s: Responsorial Psalms for Advent and Christmas

(November, 2009), featuring a sampling from the collection just mentioned; and Vocalise – Instrumental & Vocal Music of Brian J. Nelson which features a complete representation of Brian’s output from instrumental to chamber to choral to sacred music. Brian’s music is characterized by a strong melodic sense and an original tonality – his work is deeply engaging, and in each piece, he clearly demonstrates his mastery of form, structure and powerful expression. He continues to compose both commissioned and non-commissioned works across a wide variety of genres and forms.

Brian J. Nelson



Shane Spangler

Shane Spangler, pastor, pianist and composer, grew up in Fairview, Kansas and Branson, Missouri, and made his orchestral debut in 1998, soloing with the St. Joseph Symphony Orchestra. He graduated from Washburn University in 1997 with degrees in French and piano performance. In 2001, Shane moved to Boston to enter Andover-Newton seminary, and continued piano studies at New England Conservatory. In 2005, Shane returned to northeast Kansas to be near his family and neighbors. He has been pastor of Bethany United Church of Christ in Hiawatha, Kansas and Fairview United Church of Christ in Fairview, Kansas since 2007. Shane enjoys both solo and collaborative piano playing, and has been part of many chamber music ensembles.  A published composer, he released his first album of solo piano music, Home By Another Way, in 2003.  He recorded a Christmas-themed duo album, Incarnation, with cellist Samuel Cho in December 2010, and in 2018, recorded Stomping Ground, an album of his own solo piano compositions inspired by people and places in Kansas.  Currently, he and Kenya Patzer are working on writing and recording a new album of original compositions and arrangements for violin and piano.  In addition to music, Shane also enjoys restoring antique water-pumping windmills.


Evan Hunter

Evan Hunter is an author, music composer, music teacher, and blogger. His passion, with all of these things, is storytelling. Some of his stories, he tells with prose. Others, he tells with musical themes.

He has a Bachelor of Music Composition degree from the University of Kansas, where he studied composition with James Barnes and trumpet with Stephen Leisring. He composes liturgical works, commercial music, music for the concert hall, and pieces in a variety of other idioms. His works often feature simple melodies, clear orchestration, colorful harmony, and aim to take the listener on a journey that delights, refreshes, and inspires.

With his father, he co-owns Keys of Joy! Studio, where he has taught hundreds of piano students to acquire music as a lifelong companion.

To learn more about Evan Hunter, read more of his writing, or listen to his music, please visit his blog, The Inner Orchestra:



Leigh Muñoz

Leigh Muñoz is adept as an orchestral musician, entrepreneur and educator and brings a variety of experiences to her career.

Leigh is the Assistant Professor of Bassoon at University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory. She is also on the faculty for the Bassoon Institute at Interlochen Arts Camp. Prior to her appointment at UMKC, she has held bassoon teaching positions at Middle Tennessee State University, University of Missouri, Washburn University and Missouri State University. She is second bassoon of Symphony of Northwest Arkansas (SoNA). She has held contrabassoon positions in both the Springfield and Cedar Rapids Symphonies and was a regular substitute bassoonist and contrabassoonist with the Kansas City Symphony, Lyric Opera, and Kansas City Ballet. Leigh has performed as concerto soloist with the University of Missouri Wind Ensemble and Orchestra, University of Kansas Wind Ensemble, University of Kansas Symphony Orchestra, Ottawa University Symphony Orchestra and Ohio University Symphony Orchestra.

Additionally, Leigh is the founder and owner of GoBassoon Reeds, which provides professionals, amateurs and students from around the world with bassoon and contrabassoon reeds. In demand as a clinician, she has spread her knowledge of reed making throughout the country.

Also an active member of the double reed community, Leigh has both performed and given clinics at multiple international and regional conferences including International Double Reed Society, Meg Quigley Vivaldi Symposium, Midwest Double Reed Society, and International Women in the Arts. She is currently the online contrabassoon fingerings editor for IDRS and vendor coordinator for Meg Quigley. She has served Treasure and Web Editor for Midwest Double Reed Society.

Leigh completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Kansas with her research “Bassoon Pairings: A Theoretical and Performance Guide to the Duets with Bassoon of John Steinmetz.” She also holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory, Ohio University and a Performance Diploma from New England Conservatory. Her principal teachers include George Sakakeeny, Eric Stomberg, and Richard Svoboda.​


Kenya Patzer

Kenya Patzer is Associate Concertmaster of the Topeka Symphony and Concertmaster of the Lawrence Community Orchestra. She has degrees in Violin Performance from the University of Denver and Rice University and is a former member of the National Repertory Orchestra and the American Russian Young Artist’s Orchestra. Kenya regularly performs chamber and solo works with pianist Shane Spangler and collaborates with orchestral and chamber groups across the state of Kansas.


Ellen Sommer

Pianist Ellen R. Sommer is a sought-after collaborative pianist, chamber musician, and coach. Her reputation for excellence has led to extensive engagements throughout the United States, Canada, Central and South America, Europe, and Asia. Recent performances include a chamber music recital at the Montgomery Arts House for Music and Architecture in Malibu, California with Maria Newman, Scott Hosfeld and instrumentalists from the Metropolitan Opera orchestra; and a series of concerts and masterclasses in San Jose, Costa Rica at the Universidad de Costa Rica and Casa de la musica in Quito, Ecuador.

Ellen can be heard on numerous professional recordings, including five under the auspices of Potenza Music and Albany Records. Her performances of Ingrid Stölzel’s compositions were recently released on Parma Records’ The Gorgeous Nothings. Recently Ellen recorded with saxophonist, Nick May, performing compositions of the late David Maslanka.  This recording will released by Albany at a later date.

Ellen is a founding member of Allégresse, a trio that champions fresh, inspiring repertoire, both established and contemporary, for flute, oboe, and piano. Recipients of the National Endowment for the Arts American Masterpieces: Chamber Music Grant, the trio has performed throughout the United States and the globe. Allégresse recently premiered Bonnie McLarty’s, Still Life with poetry by Caryn Miriam-Goldberg, and Stölzel’s,The Gorgeous Nothings based on Emily Dickinson’s writings.  Both works were commissions for the trio and soprano, Sarah Anderson. They will release their third album spring 2019.

Ellen is in high demand as a pianist for regional, national, and international conferences, competitions, and festivals, including MTNA, NATS, IDRS, and ICA and for concert series and radio broadcasts such as the Dame Myra Hess recital series in Chicago. She frequently performs live on Kansas Public Radio.

Ellen is Lecturer in Piano at the University of Kansas School of Music, where she regularly performs with faculty, visiting artists, and students. From 1994-2003, she taught piano and voice at Missouri Western State University. Ellen serves on faculty as a coach and collaborative pianist at the Omaha Conservatory of Music Institute, Brian Lewis Young Artist Program, Sound Encounters Suzuki String Camp, Midwestern Music Camp, and Interlochen Arts summer camps. In 2016 Ellen was named one of three Distinguished Alumni from Missouri Western State University.


Regina Tanujaya

Dr. Regina Tanujaya is a Chinese-Indonesian pianist, collaborator, and educator currently based in Kansas City, Missouri. As a sought-after educator, she was recently invited as a faculty to teach lectures and masterclasses at the Illumine Star Academy, Toronto, Canada, and served as a Piano Faculty for the Young Musicians program at the Conero International Music Festival 2021. She is a co-founder of Online Piano Camp, a virtual music-education platform for young and beginner music students and is currently an Adjunct Piano Faculty at MidAmerica Nazarene University.

Actively performs around the world, she performed in Carnegie Hall and had her debut orchestral performance with the Ashdod Symphony Orchestra in Perugia, Italy in 2013. In summer of 2019, she had concerts in six different cities in Czech Republic and she was invited to perform with the Topeka Symphony Orchestra in 2020. Dr. Tanujaya strives to present diverse and distinctive concert programming, which includes premiering new music and exploring lesser-known composers. She also works with the Emerald Coast Music Alliance, an organization that brings exposure to Classical music to populations that would otherwise not have access to such. Dr. Tanujaya is very passionate about doing outreach programs in performing and teaching as well as promoting Indonesian music, culture, and arts. Learn more at


Lyric Arts Trio

Sarah Tannehill Anderson Coloratura Soprano

Coloratura soprano Sarah Tannehill Anderson is a versatile musician, excelling as a singer of opera, oratorio, choral music, contemporary works, and art song; she is also a pianist and violinist. Having performed at companies including Opera Company of Philadelphia, Boston Lyric, Opera Omaha, Fort Worth Opera, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Sarah is now thrilled to make her career in the vibrant Kansas City music scene.
2022 marks Sarah’s 14th season with the Lyric Arts Trio.  She is also a member of the Bach Aria Soloists, and the Kansas City Chorale ~ she is a featured soloist on the Chorale’s Grammy Award-winning album, “Life and Breath.”

 Elena Lence Talley  Clarinet

Clarinetist Elena Lence Talley is a graduate with highest honors from the University of North Texas. She has performed with the Kansas City Symphony, where she is also the principal music librarian. Ms. Talley has also performed with the Lyric Opera Orchestra of Kansas City, the Missouri Symphony, the Kansas City Camerata and the Kansas City Chamber Orchestra. The author of several cover stories for the Clarinet magazine, she was membership coordinator of the International Clarinet Association for ten years. Talley has taught at Emporia State University and Mid-America Nazarene University. She has performed at the International Clarinet Association ClarFest, the International Double Reed Society conference and the University of Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium. Talley is the founder of the Lyric Arts Trio.

 Dan Velicer   Piano

An active performer and teacher, Dan Velicer performs regularly with the Kansas City Symphony, the Lyric Arts Trio and Summerfest and is the rehearsal pianist for the Kansas City Symphony Chorus. He frequently collaborates with members of the Kansas City Symphony and UMKC faculty and helps prepare students for recitals and competitions. Previously, Mr. Velicer was an Opera Coach Fellow at the Aspen Music Festival, head staff pianist at the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music, chamber music coach and artist performer at the Rocky Mountain Summer Conservatory and member of Trio Fedele. He is a graduate of Cornell University, majoring in both anthropology and music, and Rice University, where he received a master’s degree in piano chamber music and accompanying.

Stephen Locke is a photographer, filmmaker, professional storm chaser, book author, and public speaker. He produces motion and still photography for business and private collectors worldwide. Clients include Andrews McMeel Publishing, CBS, Mayo Clinic, The Weather Channel, and Discovery. Stephen provides supercell time lapse cinematography to production houses across the globe including Japan, Europe, Canada, and Australia. He is an author of the book Chasing Weather. Stephen is also a keynote speaker who talks about supercell thunderstorms, storm chase adventures, and supercell time-lapse cinematography to corporate audiences, universities, and organizations.

Detailed Photography Credits by Piece

Celebrate This Kansas (Poem) ……………………………………………… by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

Photo by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.

Ad Astra per Aspera – Opus 19, no. 1 (start of program)………………Brian J. Nelson

  1. Photo by Matt Phillips
  2. Photo by Mathieu Bigard
  3. Photo by Ken Goulding
  4. Photo by Kerin Gedge
  5. Photo by Christian Bowen
  6. Photo by Michael Anfang
  7. Photo by Marco Midmore
  8. Photo by Vincent Van Saling
  9. Photo by Charles Jackson
  10. Photo by Joshua J. Cotten
  11. Photo by Pascal Debrunner

Stomping Ground………………………………………………….Shane Spangler

  1. At a Crossroads, Photo by com
  2. Mary’s Song, Photo by Matteo Vistocco
  3. To Know the Dark, Photo by Shane Spangler
  4. The Wathena Declaration Fantasy, Photo by Robert Kneschke via Shutterstock

Ballade for Violin and Piano – Opus 15…………………………………..Brian J. Nelson

  1. Photo by com
  2. Photo by Patrick Emerson
  3. Photo by Dave Hoefler
  4. Photo by Patrick Emerson
  5. Photo by Vince Ledvina

All We Have: 12 Pieces for Solo Piano……………………………………Evan Hunter

  1.   Light Showers
  2.   Hummingbird
  3.   Twirling Dance

All images by Nathalie Hunter


Windswept Glory – Opus 22……Music by Brian J. Nelson, Text by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

  1. Welcome

All photos by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.

  1. Still Life
    1. Photo by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.
    2. Photo by Ken Reynon
    3. Photo by Aaron Burden
    4. Photo by John Peters
    5. Photo by Tengyart Ufarhi
    6. Photo by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.
  • Surrender

Photos 1-3, 5-9 by Stephen Locke from Chasing Weather.

Photo 4 by Mark Shibly


Ad Astra per Aspera – Opus 19, no. 1 (end of program) ………Brian J. Nelson

  1. Photo by Matt Phillips
  2. Photo by Mathieu Bigard
  3. Photo by Marco Midmore
  4. Photo by Vincent Van Saling
  5. Photo by Charles Jackson
  6. Photo by Joshua J. Cotten
  7. Photo by Pascal Debrunner

Please join us after the show for a Q&A w/ the composers.