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Fyre Burn and Cauldron Bubble: Music of Seers, Sorcerers and Sprites"

Location: California, USA
Choir type: Chamber Choirs and Vocal Ensembles
Voicing: Women
Voci Women`s Vocal Ensemble, conducted by Jude Navari,presents   "Fyre Burn and Cauldron Bubble: Music of Seers, Sorcerers and Spritesfeaturing works of magic and witchery by Holst, Larsen, Lassus, Lebic, Mendelssohn, Purcell, Ratcliff, Stravinsky and Verdi.
Saturday, May 14, 4:00 PM
Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley
Saturday, May 21, 8:00 PM
Lake Merritt United Methodist Church
$20 at the door; $18 advance; $15 students
FREE for Children under 12
Available at the door or online at
Information: (510) 531-8714
Voci’s otherworldly spring concert, “Fyre Burn and Cauldron Bubble: Music of Seers, Sorcerers and Sprites,”features the dark chromaticism of Orlandus Lassus’s ancient oracles in an excerpt from his “Prophetiae Sibyllarum,” the feathery lullabies of Felix Mendelssohn’s brownie spirits in his “Fairy Songs” and  “A Midsummer’s Night Dream,” the frenzied moonlit howls of Gustav Holst’s Bacchae in his “Hymn to Dionysus,” and the diabolic cackles of Purcell’s Evil Sorceress and witchy consort from his opera Dido and Aeneas. 
Mysteries abound in Reynaldo Hayn’s “O Fons Bandusiae,” featuring Horace’s mystical fountain, and in Brahms’ arrangement for female voices of Schubert’s “Ellen’s Second Song,” a setting of Walter Scott’s enigmatic “Lady of the Lake.”
Things get really “wyrd” in the concert’s second half, with Stravinsky’s mesmerizing “Four Russian Peasant Songs,” purportedly sung while fortune-tellers read their fingerprints on the smoke-blackened bottoms of saucers, and preternatural thrills and chills are elicited by the spooky spells cast in Libby Larsen’s “Witches Chorus,” Lojze Lebic’s “Urok,” and Verdi’s “Witches Chorus” from Macbeth.
Voci Women’s Vocal Ensemble, founded in 1991, is recognized as one of the finest choral groups in the Bay Area. Led by artistic director Jude Navari, who is active throughout the Bay Area as a conductor and composer, the Ensemble has been described as having a particularly lush and ethereal quality. Voci champions music by women and for women and commissions new works by contemporary composers, especially from the San Francisco Bay Area.  The group’s size of 24 voices conveys a poignant intimacy and allows for a deep, personal connection among chorus members and between chorus and audience. Voci’s commitment to musical excellence, unique mastery of style and technique, and adventurous and innovative programming have earned high praise from critics and choral musicians alike.
The 2010-2011 season is Jude Navari's twelfth year as Artistic Director of Voci.  He has prepared choruses and conducted performances for Berkeley Opera, arranged folk music and coached rehearsals for Westwind International Folk Ensemble's chorus Westwind Voices, conducted premieres of new works by UC Berkeley graduate student composers for the Berkeley New Music Project, and served as Artistic Director of the Sacramento Men’s Chorus.  In August 2001, Jude prepared the vocal ensemble for the West Coast Premiere of Philip Glass’s The Photographerat the Cabrillo Music Festival.  Currently, Jude serves as Professor of Music and Director of Vocal Ensembles at Skyline College in San Bruno.  Jude Navari received his Ph.D. in Music Composition from the University of California, Berkeley, where he also studied conducting with Marika Kuzma and Jung Ho Pak.
Assistant Conductor Edna Huelsenbeckis the founder and former director of the Pacific Women’s Chorus in San Diego, and Concentus Women’s Chorus in Rochester, NY.  She previously served as Interim Director for the University Section Club Chorus at U.C. Berkeley and the Interim Assistant Director of the San Diego Master Chorale.  She received her Master of Music degree from The University of Texas at Austin, where she studied conducting with Morris Beachy and Craig Hella Johnson. 
Guest accompanist Heather Heisestudied classical piano at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and earned her M. F.A. from Mills College. She has performed and presented original works in New York and Mexico; at Princeton and Stanford Universities; and at Old First Church, Theatre Artaud, and The Marsh in San Francisco.  Ms. Heise is currently designing sound for a new dance theatre project by Paufve Dance and composing an original video + audio performance piece for the June 21 "Garden of Memory" event at the Oakland Columbarium.
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