In the Middle of Summer Suddenly the Smell of Rain β€”1993

In the Middle of Summer Suddenly the Smell of Rain is a love duet for tenor and baritone with a text by poet Howard Kaplan. It was premiered at the New York Festival of Song. It was presented in Philadelphia as part of the AIDS Quilt Songbook Benefit Concert by Orchestra 2001.

Reviews

Among the most interesting new ones…[written for the AIDS Quilt Songbook Benefit Concert was]…a quite remarkable love duet for tenor and baritone, ‘In the Middle of Summer,’ by Robert Maggio, text by Howard Kaplan, in which the two voices echo each other, then join in harmony.

Diana Burgwyn, The Philadelphia Inquirer, May 25, 1996

As for the chromatic rumbles and descending dyad whistles in Robert Maggio’s ‘In the Middle of Summer’β€”the influence of Crumb seems never far away in Philadelphia. The Debussian/minimalist, almost Lenz-Muzak-romantic piano was a breath of fresh air in middle-of-sultry-summer musings of Bradford (tenor) and McDowell (baritone). Nice interplay and a nice piece. A bit of Britten reconciliation in the ‘War Requiem.’

Mark Alburger, 2001: An AIDS Odyssey, New Music Review, June 1, 1996

. . . and finally to the broadly paced, sweetly elegiac music of Robert Maggio. Maggio has chosen to set the Howard Kaplan poem ‘In the Middle of Summer Suddenly the Smell of Rain’ for two voices, tenor and baritone, constructing a sort of overlapping strophic pattern that softly built to a firm climax, as the solo piano accompaniment imitated the splatter of raindrops.

Peter Burwasser, Philadelphia City Paper, May 31, 1996