Announcing the 2016-2017 Season

Paul Rardin. Photo by Nick Kelsh
Paul Rardin. Photo by Nick Kelsh

Dear Friends,

I am thrilled to welcome you to our 143rd season, a celebration of compelling and uplifting music, in some of the Philadelphia area’s most beautiful and esteemed venues.

Great music tells great stories. We begin our story in November in the British Isles with the remarkable tale of Christopher Smart, whose poem Jubilate Agno was written while Smart was in an insane asylum. Benjamin Britten’s brilliant cantata Rejoice in the Lamb captures its many moods with voices and organ. We are delighted to welcome Alan Morrison who will play the magnificent Fred J. Cooper Memorial Organ for this program. We will also be joined by the Keystone State Boychoir.

February’s stories shift to the United States. American Stories will feature the words and music of the great Ysaye Barnwell, whose voice as a member of Sweet Honey and the Rock and whose community sings across the world have reminded us of the collective spirit that singing creates. She will help join your voice to ours for a Big Sing as part of this program, which also features music from many American folk traditions.

In April we follow the biblical story of David, from his boyhood as a shepherd to his reign as King of Israel. Arthur Honegger’s King David is one of the 20th century’s great oratorios, with music that pulses with energy and creativity, even nearly 100 years after King David’s premiere. Exciting new choreography by dancer Jillian Harris will bring a striking visual component.

Our June story is taken from a medieval collection of poetry whose discovery by Carl Orff may be the greatest stroke of luck in music history. Carmina Burana deserves its fame as one of the most popular choral/orchestral works of the 20th century. Its stories of the seasons, of fate, and of love are universal. We are delighted to share the stage with the Greater Philadelphia Youth Orchestra under the baton of Louis Scaglione.

And December features music on the greatest stories of all, as we celebrate the holidays with our traditional A Feast of Carols and The Glorious Sound of Christmas.

Come be part of our story this season. Welcome!

Paul Rardin
Artistic Director

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