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If you are coming to one of our Holiday POPS! concerts this Friday, December 6th, in addition to your singing voice we hope you will consider bringing a contribution for the Lexington Food Pantry to help support families and children in need and Project 351.
Talia Ruxin, an 8th-grader from Lexington, has organized the food drive at our Holiday POPS! concerts as an Ambassador of Project 351 — a service leadership program that unites inspiring young leaders from every city and town in the state for a year of enrichment, leadership development, and service. Talia is one of more than 400 8th-grade Ambassadors who were nominated and selected by educators for their exemplary ethics, kindness, compassion, humility, and generosity of spirit.
To support Project 351 in its efforts to ensure that local children and families are nourished during the winter months, simply drop off your contributions as you enter Cary Hall for one of our Holiday POPS! concerts.
Please bring one or more of the following items ONLY:
tuna fish (5.7-ounce cans)
peanut butter (15-ounce jars)
canned fruit (16-ounce cans)
Lexington Symphony is pleased to be supporting Talia in her efforts to build skills, confidence, empathy, and compassion, and to engage with and help her community.
Lexington Symphony is proud to present the guest artists for our upcoming concert on November 16th with New World Chorale! Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem features soprano Michelle Trainor and baritone Michael Prichard, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 features Michelle Trainor, soprano; Janna Baty, alto; Ray Bauwens, tenor; and Mark Risinger, bass.
Michelle Trainor has been acclaimed by The Boston Phoenix for her “powerful singing and dramatic delivery.” The Musical Intelligencer has called her performance of Hagar’s Lament “spell-binding and intense” and the Harvard Art Review hailed her for her “vocal virtuosity and superb acting” in the role of Floria Tosca. Ms. Trainor’s roles include Tosca, Contessa, Turandot, Mimì, Santuzza, Fiordiligi and Suor Angelica.
Her awards include first place in the New Jersey Verismo Opera Competition, St. Botolph Club Grant Winner, first place in the Peter Elvins Competition, first place in New England Regional NATSAA, NATSAA National finalist, and the Berton Coffin Award.
Equally at home with concert repertoire, Ms. Trainor has performed works such as Mozart’s Requiem, Mass in C Minor, Solemn Vespers and Missa Brevis in B Flat, as well as Mahler’s Eighth Symphony, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, and Vaughn Williams’ A Sea Symphony. She recently made her Carnegie Hall debut as a soloist in Mahler’s Eighth Symphony with Canterbury Choral Society. In 2011, she joined Boston Ballet in its production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream as the soprano soloist, and was named the winner of Boston Lyric Opera’s Shrestinian Award for Excellence.
As a Boston Lyric Opera emerging artist, she has sung roles in its productions of Hansel and Gretel, Macbeth, and The Inspector. A returning BLO emerging artist, she has recently sung in Boston’s Outside the Box festival, in Landmark Orchestra/Boston Lyric Opera’s concert at the Hatch Shell, and in BLO’s production of The Magic Flute this fall.
A member of the Yale School of Music faculty since 2008, mezzo-soprano Janna Baty has performed with the Boston Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Daejeon Philharmonic (South Korea), Hamburgische Staatsoper, L’Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Tallahassee Symphony, Tuscaloosa Symphony, Longwood Symphony, Hartford Symphony, the Orquesta Filarmónica de Bogotá (Colombia), Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Eugene Opera, Opera North, and Boston Lyric Opera. She has performed at the Aldeburgh and Britten Festivals in England, The Varna Festival in Bulgaria, the Semanas Musicales de Frutillar Festival in Chile, and the Coastal Carolina and Tanglewood Festivals. A specialist in contemporary music, Ms. Baty has performed with Chameleon Arts Ensemble, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Collage New Music, LA Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella series, San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, Auros Group for New Music, and the new chamber music ensemble Cantata Profana. She recently premiered a new song cycle by Andy Vores written for her and Collage New Music, recorded Donald Crockett’s new opera The Face, and participated in collaborative workshops with Prof. Crockett at the University of Southern California. Her discography includes numerous critically lauded recordings with Boston Modern Orchestra Project and Gil Rose, the most recent of which (John Harbison’s opera “Winter’s Tale”) was released in 2012. Formerly on the faculty of UMass Amherst, she regularly performs with her Yale colleagues on campus, in New York, and at the Norfolk Festival. She lives in the Bronx.
Ray Bauwens is well known to audiences in the New England area. Some of his recent performances include such roles as Cavaradossi in Tosca, Dick Johnson in La Fanciulla del West, Riccardo in Un Ballo in Maschera, and Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana. Mr. Bauwens has performed with the National Symphony of the Ukraine, the Mexico State Symphony Orchestra, the Handel and Haydn Society, Boston Academy of Music, Connecticut Concert Opera, Opera Providence, Warren Symphony, Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, Boston Civic Orchestra, the Rhode Island Philharmonic, the New Philharmonia Orchestra, and even the Boston Ballet in Lila York’s staging of the final movement of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
His operatic roles have also included Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Matteo in Strauss’ Arabella, the title role in Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux, Canio in I Pagliacci, Don Alvaro in Giuseppe Verdi’s La Forza Del Destino, Pollione in Norma, Ferrando in Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte, and Don Jose in Bizet’s Carmen. His concert and oratorio performances include Elijah, Messiah, J.S. Bach’s B-Minor Mass/St. John Passion, Verdi’s Requiem, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9.
Mr. Bauwens has been recorded in Kiev in his role of Anatol in Samuel Barber’s Vanessa by Naxos Records. For more information, please visit www.raybauwens.com.
Mark Risinger, bass, has performed opera and oratorio throughout the United States, Europe, and Mexico. He has made numerous appearances with New York City Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, Baltimore Opera, Arizona Opera, Utah Opera, Fort Worth Opera, Connecticut Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and the Lyrique-en-Mer Festival, in repertoire that includes Leporello, Figaro, Sarastro, Raimondo, Frere Laurent, the Hoffmann villains, and several roles in Strauss’s Salome. He has performed under Seiji Ozawa and James Levine with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Fort Worth Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, New York Choral Society, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Opera Orchestra of New York, Boston Baroque, and Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia, in repertoire ranging from the cantatas and Passions of J.S. Bach to Haydn’s Die Schöpfung, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, and the Requiem masses of Mozart and Verdi. In addition to degrees in English literature, Mr. Risinger holds a Ph.D. in Musicology from Harvard University, where he completed a dissertation on the compositional process of G.F. Handel and where he was a lecturer on music for five years. In addition to singing, he is a frequent guest lecturer and is editing Handel’s Semele for the Hallische Händel-Ausgabe.
Michael Prichard began his professional career at the age of 9 singing treble with the Choir of Men and Boys of Trinity Church in New Haven, Connecticut. As a mechanical engineering undergraduate at MIT, he studied voice and was a founding member of the MIT Chamber Chorus. A longtime member of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, his local solo appearances include Brahms’s German Requiem, Carmina Burana, and the Pirate King from the Pirates of Penzance with the New World Chorale; and Mozart’s Requiem and Boris Godunov with Lexington Symphony under Jonathan McPhee. He made his solo debut at Tanglewood in Stravinsky’s Les Noces with Charles Dutoit. His opera appearances include Colline in La Boheme and two of the kings in Amahl and the Night Visitors.
New World Chorale Artistic Director Holly Krafka talks about the chorus’s upcoming November 16th collaborative performance with Lexington Symphony
As the artistic director of New World Chorale, I can tell you that we are thrilled and excited for the opportunity to collaborate once again with the fantastic Lexington Symphony orchestra. Our first collaboration was Mozart’s Requiem back in 2008. We knew right away that Lexington Symphony was a very special orchestra, and getting to sing in historic Cary Hall was a thrill. We have continued to work with Lexington Symphony since then on other fantastic projects, such as Mahler’s stunning Symphony No. 8, which was presented in November of 2010. That was followed by a 2011 performance of Debussy’s Nocturnes and Holst’s Planets.
This year, we return with two pieces that are different in style and context — the familiar Symphony No. 9 by Beethoven, and the lesser-known Dona Nobis Pacem by Vaughan Williams. Both of these pieces present challenges for the orchestra and the chorus.
Beethoven 9 is familiar to audiences everywhere, and there is always the challenge of being relevant when taking an old “war horse” and making it fresh and appealing. This piece, which presents tremendous range and stamina challenges for the chorus, is not undertaken lightly. One truly needs to be in top vocal form to bring the artistry and intensity needed to this beloved piece.
Williams’s Dona Nobis Pacem is a stunning combination of texts from the Mass, three poems by Walt Whitman, parts of a political speech, and the Bible. Williams wrote it in 1936 as a plea for peace, hoping that humanity might have learned something from the carnage of World War I. Choruses have the “burden and privilege” of delivering the demanding text in this particular piece. The Whitman poetry is at once chilling and haunting, as demonstrated in this excerpt from the third movement:
“Word overall, beautiful as the sky, beautiful that war and all its deeds of carnage must in time be utterly lost.”
This piece is as relevant and timeless now as when it was written. It is also, sadly, as needed today in our war-torn world as it has ever been.
I love the combination of these two pieces on one program. Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9: an ode to joy, and Vaughan Williams’s Dona Nobis Pacem: a plea for peace. What could be more contemporary and appropriate? These two pieces allow the orchestra and symphonic chorus to do what they do best: to speak and communicate through music and melodic voice the timeless and universal concepts of joy and peace.