composer, singer, songwriter, creating sympathetic musical portraits of unusual characters
"A wonderfully difficult artist to define," (Minnesota Public Radio), composer, lyricist, and singer Corey Dargel writes songs that are detailed, sympathetic musical portraits of unusual characters in difficult situations. He uses songwriting and storytelling as a means to frame abnormal behavior in ways that audiences can relate to more sympathetically.
In his most recent projects--which include music-theater pieces, concert works, and studio recordings--Dargel has invited audiences to empathize with hypochondriacs ("Thirteen Near-Death Experiences"), voluntary amputees ("Removable Parts"), sexual incompetents ("Sexual Side Effects"), the "couple next door" ("Other People's Love Songs"), and death row inmates ("Last Words from Texas").
Dargel's work has been profiled by MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, PRI's "Studio 360," NPR's "Weekend Edition," and WNYC's "Spinning On Air." The New Yorker magazine calls him "a baroquely unclassifiable" composer of "ingenious nouveau art songs." The New York Times has called his work "almost perversely pleasurable... with an intelligent grace that is as moving as it is impressive."
Dargel was trained as a classical composer at Interlochen Arts Academy, then at Oberlin Conservatory where he studied with John Luther Adams, Pauline Oliveros, and Brenda Hutchinson. According to New Music Box, “Dargel is doing much more than writing extremely well-crafted songs. He is creating larger arcs of meaning, both musically and lyrically.”