For its first concert of the 2018–2019 season, Voices Chorale NJ will present “A Winter’s Night” two times in December: Saturday, December 8, at 4pm at Trinity Episcopal Church in Princeton, NJ, and Sunday, December 16, at 3pm, at Pennington Presbyterian Church in Pennington, NJ. Tickets are available at www.voiceschoralenj.org.
Voices Chorale NJ is an auditioned chorus with members from throughout central New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania who are now singing together as they once did as part of the original Voices Chorale, founded by Dr. Lyn Ransom in 1987. Voices Chorale NJ seeks to fulfill a similar mission: to bring outstanding music to the public, inspire audiences, and provide performance opportunities for skilled singers. The group is preparing for their first performances under direction of Artistic Director Dr. David McConnell.
“A Winter’s Night” will feature works by Nicholas Myers, Bob Chilcott, John Rutter, Ralph Vaughan Williams, and more. Included are six carols by English composer Bob Chilcott, described in The Observer as “a contemporary hero of British choral music.” Chilcott’s carols are beloved for their wonderful text setting, with words that fully explore the various moods and emotions of the December season. Voices Chorale NJ will also present a little-known setting of the Magnificat text by Czech composer Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745), led by Assistant Conductor Cory Davis. While Zelenka’s music was greatly admired during his lifetime—many Zelenka scores were found in Bach’s library!—his music is little known and performed today. His Magnificat setting readily reveals his harmonic inventiveness and mastery of counterpoint.
Regarding the program, Dr. McConnell says, “For our first concert together, I choose texts that speak with beauty and depth about the holiday season. This allows the choir and me many ways to explore performing together: why the composer chose this text, how he sets the words, how can we more fully communicate those words to our audience? Exploring these kinds of questions opens us up to one another. You cannot answer these types of questions without revealing a great deal about yourself in the process! In learning to work together in this way, we prepare ourselves to offer the same connection with our audience, so that our concerts can be a meaningful and much-needed moment of beauty and comfort in their lives.”
Tickets for the December concerts are available at www.voiceschoralenj.org. General admission: $25 in advance, $30 at the door; Limited Preferred Seating: $35 in advance, $40 at the door; Child/Student (with ID): $10 at all times. For advance tickets and additional information about Voices Chorale NJ, please visit www.voiceschoralenj.org.
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