Harvard College Library

Carolann Buff Balances Life at Loeb Music with Music Career

Carolann Buff (center), with Liber unUsualis trio members Melanie Germond and William Hudson.
November 20, 2002 --Carolann Buff is an emerging singer and performer, who, after graduating with a Masters Degree in Vocal Performance from Longy School of Music, didn’t want to be a waitress. When the opportunity arose to work at Loeb Music Library while pursuing her career as a musician, Buff knew she had found a great way to combine a day job and her passion for music. Four years later, Buff continues to employ her musical expertise at Loeb Music, and her career as a musician is taking off.

"I enjoy my position at the library because I can use my training as a musician and a historian in the work that I do every day," said Buff, who specializes in Medieval and Renaissance music and has worked in various capacities at Loeb Music. Most recently, she is assisting with the LDI project Music from the Archive: A New Model of Access to Rare and Unique Sound Recordings. "In addition, my fellow employees are all musicians or music fans, and they are very supportive of my career as a singer. And, of course, I work in one of the finest music libraries in the world and I have the materials to create a performance program for my trio, Liber unUsualis, right at my fingertips," said Buff.

Liber unUsualis recently were awarded first place in the International Young Artists Presentation, a competition for musicians under 35 years old held in Antwerp, Belgium. The Boston based trio will be returning to the festival next year as main stage performers and will be recording a CD with the Belgium label Passacaille. The trio has been together for six years and is composed of Buff, mezzo-soprano, Melanie Germond, soprano, and William Hudson, tenor. The group is Ensemble-in-Residence at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Boston, where they perform regularly.

Buff is involved in other vocal performance groups such as the Waverly Consort based in New York City, a professional ensemble that tours the United States. She also performs with local groups Tapestry, Blue Heron Renaissance Choir, 17th-Century Voices, the Boston Bach Ensemble, Schola Cantorum, and Boston Camerata.

When asked about highlights in her singing career Buff noted the International Young Artists Presentation award, which is presented to a group of artists that have perfected each aspect of performance – technical skills, musical ability, performance style. But Buff continued, "Anytime the audience applauds is such a thrill. I love to walk out on stage and feel the lights and know the audience is waiting for me to open my mouth to sing. I feel so lucky to have something so wonderful in my life."

This story appears courtesy of the Harvard College Library Communications Office
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