Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Cathedral Choral Society Announces 75th Season

From our friends at the Cathedral Choral Society...

Season Celebrates the Chorus' 75th Anniversary Year

Music Director J. Reilly Lewis and Executive Director Genevieve Twomey are pleased to announce the 2016-17 Season of the  Cathedral Choral Society. The upcoming season celebrates the chorus’ 75th anniversary with four programs featuring 15 guest soloists, 4 guest ensembles, and more than 50 works of music, including a newly-commissioned carol by composer Carson Cooman and a new work for symphonic chorus and orchestra by composer Nico Muhly.

“I am very excited about our 2016-17 season. This music is mighty, celebratory, and passionate - perfect for our 75th year,” said Music Director J. Reilly Lewis. “Highlights of this special season include our collaboration with the vocal chamber ensemble New York Polyphony, and a premiere of a big new work by Nico Muhly. I so look forward to sharing this season with our audience.”

The season will begin with Berlioz Te Deum on Sunday, October 16. The concert opens with Saint-Saëns’ Symphony No.3 in C Minor, Op. 78 (“Organ Symphony.”) Todd Fickley performs as organ soloist. Next, Berlioz’s setting of the Te Deum, a hymn for celebratory occasions, provides a fitting start for an anniversary year. The chorus is joined by Gordon Gietz, a Canadian tenor who has performed internationally with the Opera National de Paris, BBC Symphony, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, and more. Recently, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut as the title role in Shostakovich’s The NoseThe Choristers of Washington National Cathedral, Michael McCarthy, conductor are also featured on the Berlioz as the Children’s Chorus.

The season will continue with the annual favorite Joy of Christmas concerts on Friday, December 9 and Sunday, December 11. In addition to Christmas favorites, the program will feature a newly-commissioned piece by composer Carson Cooman. The chorus will be joined by the Lyric Brass Quintet, a Baltimore/DC-based ensemble whose members have played in the Baltimore, San Francisco, and New World Symphonies and the Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School Choir, led by conductor David Nastal.

Vocal chamber ensemble New York Polyphony joins as special guest for the March concert, Amid a Crowd of Stars. The program will feature intimate, meditative music spanning from chant to renaissance to contemporary, featuring both New York Polyphony and Cathedral Choral Society separate and combined on works by Tallis, Elgar, Tavener, Willaert, Guerrero, Stucky, Andrew Smith, and Ola Gjeilo. NPR wrote of the four men of New York Polyphony “their voices blend into a rich, natural sound that’s larger and more complex than the sum of its parts,” and San Diego Story said that “... the individual character of each voice, the way each singer shaped and colored a phrase gave the ensemble its vibrant vitality and its identity.”

The season will end with Te Deum Finale on Sunday, May 21. Folk-inspired works by Vaughan Williams - The Lark Ascending and Five Mystical Songs - and Dvořák - Te Deum, Op. 103 - will be performed. The program features a premiere of a new work for symphonic chorus and orchestra by Nico Muhly, “one of the most celebrated and sought-after classical composers of the last decade” (The Guardian). Nurit Bar-Josef, violin will solo on The Lark Ascending. Bar-Josef was appointed Concertmaster of the National Symphony Orchestra in 2001 (then the youngest such appointee to a major U.S. orchestra.) The chorus is joined by vocal soloists Michael Nyby, baritone, who has performed with the Vancouver Opera, Minnesota Opera, Caramoor Festival, and more; and Colleen Daly, soprano, a native of Washington, DC who has been called “dramatically powerful” by The Washington Post.

“We are excited to announce this 2016/17 Season. The Cathedral Choral Society is Washington DC’s oldest symphonic chorus. We have been welcoming and inspiring audiences for 75 years, and this year, the journey continues,” said Executive Director, Genevieve Twomey. “We will present four concerts that will celebrate and showcase our chorus and the best of choral music in a truly exciting season.”

About the Cathedral Choral Society:
The Cathedral Choral Society is the resident symphonic chorus of Washington National Cathedral. The 145-voice chorus presents an inspiring concert season at the Cathedral and shares the joy of choral singing throughout the Greater Washington, DC Area through its community engagement programs.

For Subscriptions:
An early bird special with a savings of more than 15% off single ticket prices is currently being offered through Friday, June 17. Subscriptions start at $84.60 for four concerts. To purchase tickets, or for additional information, please call (202) 537-2228 • 1(877) 537-2228 or visit the website, www.cathedralchoralsociety.org.

At a Glance:
Sunday, October 16, 4:00 PM
Saint- Saëns, Symphony No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 78 (“Organ Symphony”)
Berlioz, Te Deum, Op. 22

Soloists: Gordon Gietz, tenor; Todd Fickley, organ.
Guest ensemble: The Choristers of Washington National Cathedral, Michael McCarty, conductor.

Friday, December 9, 8:00 PM & Sunday, December 11, 4:00 PM
Christmas favorites, a carol sing-along, and a newly-commissioned carol by composer Carson Cooman.

Soloists: Edward Nassor, carillon; Todd Fickley, organ.
Guest ensembles: Lyric Brass Quintet; Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School Choir, David Nastal, conductor.

with New York Polyphony
Sunday, March 19, 4:00 PM
Including plainsong and works by Tallis, Elgar, Tavener, Willaert, Guerrero, Stucky, Andrew Smith, and Ola Gjeilo.

Sunday, May 21, 4:00 PM
Vaughan Williams, The Lark Ascending
Vaughan Williams, Five Mystical Songs
Nico Muhly, New Work for Symphonic Chorus and Orchestra
Dvořák, Te Deum, Op. 103

Soloists: Nurit Bar-Josef, violin; Michael Nyby, baritone; Colleen Daly, soprano.