Crescendo’s 2018-19 Season
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This program features two “Requiems” and two “Jubilates” of different eras. From the 17th century: Henry Purcell’s “Funeral Sentences and Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary” and Purcell’s “Jubilate Deo,” also written for Queen Mary the year before her death. From the 20th and 21st centuries: composer Scott Perkins’ “A New England Requiem,” his “Jubilate Deo,” and Sir John Tavener’s “A Song for Athene,” that was performed at Princess Diana’s funeral.
The Crescendo Chorus will be joined by soloists, including internationally renowned countertenor Nicholas Tamagna, period brass, strings, basso continuo and organ. Christine Gevert conducts.
November 24 at 5:30 pm at the Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge, MA
“Music in the Museum: Paintings in Song”
John Myers’ “Paintings in Song,” a multimedia composition of nine choral pieces based on Norman Rockwell’s paintings, including the Four Freedoms, will be performed in the Galleries of the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA. You will hear Norman Rockwell’s images come alive with a fusion of Classical styles and American 20 th century popular music genres, surrounded by his paintings. One of the highlights of this concert is “Freedom from Want,” which portrays the American values associated with the Thanksgiving celebration.
Performers are singers of the Crescendo Vocal Ensemble, the Berkshire Children’s Chorus and instrumentalists, including the composer, all directed by Christine Gevert.
*This concert is hosted by the Norman Rockwell Museum and is a collaboration between the Museum, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Berkshire Children’s Chorus and Crescendo.
December 28 at 6 pm – Saint James Place, Great Barrington, MA
December 29 at 3 pm – Trinity Church, Lakeville, CT
“Sublime Love” The life of the Mexican nun, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz in 17th century Latin American Music, Poetry and Images
Called ‘The Tenth Muse’ and ‘Mexican Phoenix,’ the nun Sor Juana Inés De la Cruz is considered one of the finest poets of the Spanish New World Golden Age. She was also a philosopher, scholar and composer. Her life will be depicted through music, artwork and poetry readings.
Crescendo collaborates with “El Fuego,” an early music ensemble from North Carolina, in a program designed by their Artistic Director, Salomé Sandoval. The program features a selection of sacred and secular cantatas from the 1600s New World Colonies, featuring vocal compositions by Tomás de Torrejón y Velasco and his contemporaries.
Performers are the Crescendo Vocal Ensemble, Salomé Sandoval (voice, baroque guitar and archlute), Malina Rauschenfels (voice and violoncello), and Christine Gevert (organ and direction).
February 16 (snow date 22) at 6 pm – Saint James Place, Great Barrington, MA
February 17 (snow date 24) at 4 pm – Trinity Church, Lakeville, CT
“Concerto delle Donne—Consort of Ladies” Revolutionary Italian Vocal music of the late Renaissance.
In 1580 in Ferrara, Italy, an ensemble of professional female singers–probably the first one of their gender–became renowned for their technical and artistic virtuosity. This ensemble, the ‘Concerto delle Donne’, performed formal concerts for members of the inner circle of the Ferrara court and important visitors, and revolutionized the role of women in professional music.
Sopranos Catherine Hancock, Rebecca Palmer and Jennifer Tyo, accompanied and directed by Christine Gevert on the organ and harpsichord, will perform works by the Ferrara court composer, Luzzascho Luzzaschi, as well as early Italian Baroque arias and duets by Monteverdi, Barbara Strozzi and others.
April 6 at 6 pm – Saint James Place, Great Barrington, MA
April 7 at 4 pm – Trinity Church, Lakeville, CT
“The Mystical 16: The 1616 Settings of Psalm 116, and Contemporary Versions”
In the year 1616 Burckhard Grossmann, a merchant from Jena, Germany, after surviving a near death experience, in gratitude commissioned 16 composers from central Germany to write settings of Psalm 116. Among them were master composers of church music such as Heinrich Schütz, Christoph Demantius and Johann Hermann Schein. Our program will feature motets from this collection by these three composers, as well as Gregorian Chant, and works by Benedictus Ducis and Orlando di Lasso and J.S. Bach. Modern settings of the psalm by composers Jonny Priano and others will use contemporary poetry written for Crescendo by Bruce McEver, Frances Roth and Juliet Mattila. Three works have been commissioned for Crescendo, and will be premiered at this performance.
Performers are Crescendo Chorus, Vocal Ensemble and Soloists, with Period Instruments, directed by Christine Gevert.
May 18 at 6 pm – Saint James Place, Great Barrington, MA
May 19 at 4 pm – Trinity Church, Lakeville, CT
“Prince of Light and Prince of Darkness” Motets and Madrigals by Monteverdi & Gesualdo
Claudio Monteverdi lived in a time of great change, as the vocal polyphony of the Renaissance gave way to the textures of the early Baroque. He harnessed both styles with great skill, sometimes contrasting them in the same work, and wrote successfully in every vocal genre. His contemporary Carlo Gesualdo’s vocal music is among the most experimental and expressive of the late Renaissance. One of the most obvious characteristics of his music is the extravagant text setting of words representing extremes of emotion. This program features sacred and secular motets and madrigals by the two composers. Crescendo Vocal Ensemble is directed by Christine Gevert from the organ.
Our Concert Venues for this season are:
LISTEN TO EXCERPTS OF OUR RECENT CONCERTS:
We warmly thank our Season 2018-19 Sponsors!