We met Elizabeth Ann Baker at TEDxYouth@TampaBay 2011, where she regaled us with Suitcases of Sound, a quite literally electric performance, a loud, stunning blend of synthetic and richly organic sounds that audience members could feel down into their bones! This year, this immensely talented young musician returns to TEDxYouth@TampaBay 2012, and to her classical music roots.
Ms. Baker has studied piano with Steinway Artist Dr. Luis Sanchez, Carolyn McGovern, Eileen Mattioli, Andrew McCardle, and currently studies with Jeff Donovick. Miss Baker has performed in master classes on classical guitar for Jason Vieaux and Dr. Stephen Robinson. She has also played her solo piano compositions in master class for Larry Groupe, who referred to her work as “Perfect.” comparing one of her compositions to the level of Debussy’s Engulfed Cathedral. Baker has played piano in master class for concert pianist Charlie Albright and was invited to study with composer David Cope at the University of California—Santa Cruz’s prestigious Workshop on Algorithmic Computer Music.
As a composer, Baker views her works as a series of musical paintings and collections as a feature in a gallery. Each piece has multiple micro and macro meanings from the composer’s perspective; however, it is intended that, in addition to the predilections outlined by the composer in the program notes, each audience member experiences the work and it’s applicable emotion relevant to their life and experience of the music. Baker likens the role of the composer to that of a philosopher; each ponders the world, universe, and nature of the human condition; except whereby the philosopher uses the medium of ink, paper, and his native tongue to communicate his theories the composer does so through the universal language of sound.
In performance Baker has become known for her soulful interpretations, clean tone, and deep connection with the music. Her performance philosophy regarding the role of an educated musician is that it is not only in duty, but also in privilege that one preserves the music of yesteryear’s composers as well as the works of present-day and future composers.
“It is the divine destiny of a performer to fill the ether with sweet melodies amid colorful harmonies, born and reborn. Devoid of this celestial calling, past and present music to future generations would become as that of the ancient Greeks, an archaic preoccupation studied in great detail, but whose sounds are lost to the ages.”
Ever committed to music education and community involvement, Baker is frequently featured as a guest speaker in local grade schools, retirement communities, and recreation centers. Her students in both piano and guitar have gone on to pursue music academically at colleges and universities including the University of Florida. In September of 2011, St. Petersburg College featured a concert of sixty-five minutes of her solo piano compositions. Baker has also been a featured presenter at TEDxYouthTampaBay, Tampa Bay’s Inaugural Mini Maker Faire, and Orlando’s Mini Maker Faire.
We’re deeply grateful that Ms. Baker is joining us again at TEDxYouth@TampaBay 2012 with her incredible passion, talent, and music .