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May 2014 - Orff's Carmina Burana

In a season of polar vortexes and startling snowfall amounts, it was sometimes hard to imagine that spring would ever come again. But just as the unseen forces brought the crocuses and daffodils, the voices of Grace & Spiritus Chorale of Brooklyn burst forth on May 2 and 3 in concert performances of Carmina Burana by Carl Orff at the Church of St. Ann and the Holy Trinity. 

A perennial audience favorite, Orff’s masterpiece is a cantata based on 24 medieval poems in both Latin and Middle High German.  Written in 1936, the text is lusty, dealing with timeless themes of love, sex, drinking, gambling, fate and fortune. The music is, by turns, boisterous and hypnotic, and has been featured in numerous films and at least one notorious faux Super Bowl commercial.

Soloists Peter Clark (Baritone), Anthony Webb (Tenor) and Louise Sullivan (Soprano) accompanied by three percussionists and two pianists joined the chorale to standing ovations from our largest audiences yet! On Saturday night, almost three hundred music lovers filled St. Ann's (including the balconies).

Listen in below: 

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Jan 2012 - Transforming Traditions

Giacomo Carissimi (1605-1674) was appointed maestro di capella at the German College in Rome at age 24, an appointment he held until his death.  Although he became famous for his vocal compositions, both liturgical and non-liturgical, he is still celebrated for his crucial work in the development of the oratorio.  The oratorio was the church’s response to the public’s growing infatuation with genre of opera, which was banned during the season of Lent.  His masterpiece, Jephte, reflects the pioneering elements of the genre, which applied operatic techniques without staging and costumes.

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