Concerts in the Baltics and Finland - Choral Ensembles of the College of William and Mary
Date: May 14, 2014
Choir type: College and University Choirs
Classical Movements announces
The Choral Ensembles from the Second-Oldest University in America
on Tour in the Baltics & Scandinavia:
Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland
May 13-27, 2014
Premiere of New Work by Estonian composer Piret Rips-Laul
Alexandria, VA, USA—Classical Movements is pleased to announce the upcoming tour of the Choir of the College of William & Mary and the William & Mary Botetourt Chamber Singers, together as the Choral Ensembles of the College of William & Mary. This year, the ensembles will be traveling to Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, and Finland to perform an exciting and diverse program of American, British, and Estonian music. Concerts will be held in Vilnius, Riga, Tartu, Tallinn, Helsinki, and Turku at beautiful venues such as St. Casimir’s Church in Lithuania and the Helsinki Cathedral in Finland. Over 90 years old, the choral ensembles have a wonderful history that has paved the way for international recognition and numerous international tours to countries such as Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Italy, Greece and Turkey.
The program will include the European premieres of a commissioned work by the Estonian composer Piret Rips-Laul, which was commissioned by Classical Movements through the Eric Daniel Helms New Music Program. The piece, Salve Regina, is a fourteen-part work written for two antiphonal choirs that is a prayer for the Mother of God. The composer meant for the piece to fill the entirety of the hall in which it is sung, and Rips-Laul has stated that it was her dream to write music for two choirs that could be performed in churches and cathedrals. Rips-Laul has written more than 100 songs for various choir types and soloists, many of them with her own lyrics, and has received awards for her work, including recognition at a composition contest dedicated to the 95th anniversary of Gustav Ernesaks (2003). In 2005, Rips-Laul was awarded the Riho Päts School Music Foundation Stipendium, and her works have been published in Estonia, Germany, Sweden, and the USA and have been recorded on more than 30 albums in Estonia and abroad. The choral ensembles are looking forward to premiering the piece on tour in the magnificent churches of the Baltic countries.
*Concerts free and open to the public.
St. Casimir’s Church (Šv. Kazimiero Bažnyčia)
Thursday, May 15th, 2014
St. John’s Church (Rīgas Sv. Jaņa Baznīca)
Saturday, May 17th, 2014
Hall of Tartu University (Aula Tartu Ülikooli)
Sunday, May 18th, 2014
With guest choir E STuudio
St. John’s Church (Tallinna Jaani Kirik)
Tuesday, May 20th, 2014
Helsinki Cathedral (Helsingin Tuomiokirkko)
Friday, May 23rd, 2014
Turku Resurrection Chapel (Turun Ylösnousemuskappelissa)
Sunday, May 25th, 2014
In conjunction with the Turku Conservatory Chamber Choir (Turun konservatorion kamarikuoro) and Värinä
About the Choir of the College of William & Mary
Over 90-years-old, the Choir of the College of William and Mary is an auditioned undergraduate ensemble of fifty-five members who major in a wide range of academic disciplines. The Choir makes between thirty and forty appearances during the year with Winter and Spring concerts and performances at most of the formal events of the College, including Convocation, Homecoming, Charter Day and Commencement. In addition, every third year the Choir performs a major choral work with orchestra and soloists. Most recently, the Choir has performed Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, the Johannes Passion of J. S. Bach, and Haydn’s Die Schöpfung and Missa in Angustiis (Lord Nelson Mass). The Choir has released CDs of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana and J. S. Bach’s motet Jesu, meine Freude (BWV 227) in addition to works by Michael Haydn, Orlando Gibbons, Georgy Sviridov, Virgil Thomson, Undine Moore, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Leoš Janáček, Einojuhani Rautavaara, and Johannes Brahms.
The Choir also takes an annual, six-day regional Spring Tour in March and travels internationally every third year, a tradition they have maintained since 1978. In the summer of 2011, the Choir joined the Botetourt Chamber Singers for a tour of Southern Italy, Greece and Turkey. Tours since 1999 have taken the Choir to Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, Greece, Turkey, Italy, Austria, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
The Choir has had the honor of performing twice for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, most recently in 2007, and was one of four choirs invited to perform with the United States Marine Band at the 1997 Presidential Inaugural on the Capitol steps in Washington, D.C. In February 1997, the Choir participated in Ambassador Pamela Harriman's funeral at the Washington National Cathedral. They also sang for Governor Kaine’s inaugural in Williamsburg in 2006 and performed at the investitures of Henry Kissinger, Sandra Day O’Connor and Robert Gates ’65 as Chancellor of William and Mary. (http://wmpeople.wm.edu/site/page/choir)
Dr. James Armstrong, Jr., Director of Choirs and Associate Professor of Music, received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University and his master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he studied conducting and voice with Robert Fountain. Before coming to the College of William & Mary, Professor Armstrong held faculty appointments at Mount Holyoke College, Vassar College and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research interests range from eighteenth-century Viennese sacred music to historically-informed performance. At present he is compiling a thematic catalogue of the complete Esterházy sacred music collection, which is housed today partly in Eisenstadt, Austria and partly in Budapest, Hungary. Recent publications include a seminal article on music at the court of Nicolaus II Esterházy, which appeared in connection with an exhibition in Compiègne, France devoted to Nicolaus as a patron of the arts in Europe. In 2009 Professor Armstrong contributed an article to the catalogue of the international bicentennial exhibition in Eisenstadt, Austria commemorating Joseph Haydn’s death. Professor Armstrong is active as both a clinician and adjudicator.
About the William & Mary Botetourt Chamber Singers
The Botetourt Chamber Singers was formed in 1974 by Dr. Frank T. Lendrim. Originally an auditioned subset of the W&M Choir, it now stands as a separate entity, and affirms some of the college’s best vocal talent, many of whom are music majors. The Bots, under the direction of Dr. Jamie C. Bartlett, continue to perform in and around Williamsburg for such popular events as Grand Illumination and caroling in Colonial Williamsburg, as well as many W&M sponsored events. The group has also been invited several times to perform at St. James’s Episcopal Church in Richmond on their Evensong series. The Bots were honored to be selected to perform as the VA College Representatives at the Virginia State Music Educator’s Association Convention in Norfolk in 2005, 2007 and 2011. The summer of 2005 marked the Bots first International Tour (with the W&M Choir) where they performed several concerts in Romania, Hungary, Croatia and Slovenia. In the summer of 2008 they embarked on a three-week tour to Spain, Portugal and Morocco and in 2011 to Italy, Greece and Turkey. The ensemble sings a wide variety of choral literature from the renaissance through contemporary music, including a full concert of jazz and Broadway standards at their annual Gala Concert Fundraiser in the Kimball Theater. They have released 2 CDs including “Sing We Joyous, All Together” and “All My Heart This Night Rejoices”. For more information, http://www.wm.edu/so/botetourtsingers/
Dr. Jamie C. Bartlett is Associate Professor of Music and Associate Director of Choirs at The College of William and Mary. A native of Massachusetts, she holds an A.B. in Music from Mount Holyoke College, a M.M in choral conducting from The Eastman School of Music and a D.M.A. in Choral Conducting with a minor in Musicology from The University of Wisconsin – Madison. At William and Mary she conducts the Women’s Chorus and the select Botetourt Chamber Singers (both GER6 courses). She also teaches beginning and advanced conducting, and introductory theory classes. She has written numerous articles about the British composer, Elizabeth Poston, including the Poston entry in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and The New Dictionary of National Biography (2004). In Oct 2006, she was the keynote speaker at the International Elizabeth Poston Conference in England. Her current research interest focuses on Dalcroze Eurhythmics and the importance of kinesthetic motion as an essential aide to musical expression and understanding. Dr. Barlett also directs the Women’s Chorus, which has sung for His Holiness, The 14th Dalai Lama, and has performed at The US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, and The Cathedral of St. Matthew in DC. In March 2013, they will perform in a joint concert with the Syracuse Women’s Choir.
A frequent adjudicator for choral festivals, Dr. Bartlett has served as a clinician and guest conductor in several states including Wisconsin, Iowa, Virginia and Massachusetts. This past summer she conducted the Women’s Honor Choir at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Summer Music Clinic. Active as a church musician, she is currently the Director of Music at the Williamsburg Unitarian Universalists. She is married to Jamie Armstrong, Director of Choirs at William and Mary, and together they are the proud parents of two children, Robert, 17, and Caecilia, 14.
About the College of William & Mary
The College of William & Mary (chartered 1693), a publically funded university located in Williamsburg, Virginia, has played a significant role in the history of the United States since the colonial era. William & Mary counts among its graduates a number of Presidents of the United States, among them Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe. One of William and Mary’s early chancellors was George Washington, and Benjamin Franklin was the first to receive an honorary degree from the College. Williamsburg, a city of 13,000 inhabitants, is located in the Tidewater Region on the eastern seaboard, 150 miles south of Washington, D.C. Williamsburg is also the home of Colonial Williamsburg, a living museum comprising over 180 buildings that preserves the city's eighteenth-century heritage. In addition to the humanistic, liberal arts curriculum that forms the basis of its undergraduate program, the College of William and Mary supports graduate programs of study in American Studies, Anthropology, Applied Science, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Education, History, Marine Science, Physics, Psychology, Public Policy, Law and Business Administration.
Selections will be taken from the following:
Selections from Вечная память героям. Alexander Kastalsky (1856-1926)
Избранные песнопения панихиды (1916)
(Eternal Memory to the Heroes:
Selected Hymns from the Memorial Service (Panikhida))
Cade La Sera (from Tre Composizione Corali) (1942-43) Ildebrando Pizzetti (1880-1968)
Two Unaccompanied Part Songs (1920) Frederick Delius (1862-1934)
To be sung of a summer night on the water
I Love My Love (1917) arr. Gustav Holst (1874-1934)
Zwei Slawische Psalmen (1984/1997) Arvo Pärt (b. 1935)
Salve Regina (2014) Piret Rips-Laul (b. 1965)
Commissioned for Dr. James Armstrong and Dr. Jamie Bartlett, the Choir of the College of William and Mary and the Botetourt Chamber Singers, by Classical Movements, Inc. as part of the Eric Daniel Helms New Music Project
Chariot Jubilee (1919) R. Nathaniel Dett (1882-1943)
(Oratorio for eight-part mixed choir, tenor soloist and organ)
Elijah Rock (1994) Moses Hogan (1957-2003)
Ezekiel Saw the Wheel (1942) William Dawson (1899-1990)
Botetourt Chamber Singers
O dass ich dich, mein Bruder Melchior Franck (c. 1579 – 1639)
(from Hohelied Salmonis, 1608)
Alleluia (1940) Randall Thompson (1899-1984)
Virgo Mater Regina (2013) Costas Dafnis (b. 1989)
Haru Sareba Hikoe Moitsutsu (2005) Jackson Hill (b. 1941)
(When Spring is Born at Last)
Lux Aurumque (2001) Eric Whitacre (b. 1970)
O Magnum Mysterium (2010) Kevin Memley (b. 1971)
Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho (1996) Moses Hogan (1957-2003)
About Classical Movements, Inc.
Classical Movements is one of the world’s leading concert planning companies making travel arrangements for some of the world’s finest orchestras including the National Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, and London Philharmonic, and several other European and American Orchestras. They also are a leader in making concert and travel arrangements for some of the best choruses around the world, including the Dallas Symphony Orchestra Chorus, Pacific Boychoir, and many more! In its 21 years Classical Movements has worked in over 140 countries on six continents. The company also produces the Eric Daniel Helms New Music Program for new music commissions, an international choral series, and four annual international music festivals in Europe, South America, Africa and North America. Classical Movements strives to fulfill its mission of spreading global understanding and unity through cultural exchanges, made possible by means of the universal language of music.
Press Contact: Mary Katherine Clarke / +1-703-683-6040 / firstname.lastname@example.org
*Photo credits - Stephen Salpukas