THE KING’S SINGERS AT KENT HALL

Sunday, February 10th, 2013 at 7 pm

 

The Chorus of Westerly presents its Kent Hall Master Series performance of 2013 with a special concert by the world famous a cappella ensemble The King’s Singers on Sunday, February 10, 2013, in the George Kent Performance Hall, 119 High Street, Westerly, Rhode Island. Tickets can be purchased by calling 401.596.8663 or by visiting chorusofwesterly.org.

The King’s Singers latest program,“Pater Noster” (to be featured in Westerly) is a remarkable tribute to one of the most important texts in the Christian liturgy, the Lord’s Prayer. From Schüz to Stravinsky, Byrd to Bernstein, The King’s Singers perform music that ranges over centuries in order to explore this spiritually charged text.
The Lord’s Prayer is the best-known prayer in Christianity. It is an integral part of the liturgy in all Christian denominations, and its poetic verse has been spun into musical works by composers across the ages. The King’s Singers most recent album and program for their US tour, “Pater Noster” (Our Father) pays homage to this steadfast prayer.
Beginning and ending in plainchant and including works from composers such as William Byrd, Heinrich Schütz, Francis Poulenc, Orlandus Lassus and Leonard Bernstein, this programme aims to shed rich interpretative light on the poetic and devotional aspects of the prayer.

The King’s Singers, described by BBC Music Magazine as “…voices of spun gold,” are one of the world’s most celebrated ensembles. This stunning program is an immense task, to be sure, and they perform it with aplomb. They sing plainchant with as much assurance as Stravinsky, Duruflé and Tavener.

The program, though not chronological, opens with one of the most ancient iterations of the Lord’s Prayer in music: plainchant. From the pre-12th century “Pater Noster,” The King’s Singers effortlessly animate the work of Heinrich Schütz, perhaps one of the most important German composers before Bach. Josquin de Prés’ “Pater Noster” is wrought with advanced polyphony and Stravinsky’s “Pater Noster” captures the Orthodox faith of his Russian heritage. As The King’s Singers explore the various musical embodiments of the Lord’s Prayer, they pass through centuries of glorious vocal praise, including Leonard Bernstein’s “The Lord’s Prayer.”

This incredible program (and accompanying album) is an exceedingly important collection of music that not only pays homage to the most important prayer in all of Christianity, but pays homage to the music to which it has been indelibly tied.

During the 2012-13 concert season, The King’s Singers will perform across the globe in some of the world’s most famous venues, including Carnegie Hall, King’s College Chapel and Dresden Frauenkirche. Their concert schedule will take them to South America, France, Germany, Poland, Belgium, the Netherlands, the US and Canada, Russia, Italy, Switzerland, Denmark and Finland.

With a discography of over 150 recordings, The King’s Singers have garnered both awards and significant critical acclaim, including a Grammy® in 2009 for their studio album Simple Gifts on Signum. Always deeply committed to new choral music, they have commissioned over 200 works from prominent contemporary composers, including Richard Rodney Bennett, Berio, Maxwell Davies, Ligeti, Lukaszewski, Penderecki, Rutter, Takemitsu and Tavener. Their album High Flight includes works commissioned by The King’s Singers from Eric Whitacre and Bob Chilcott. It was recorded in the USA with the renowned Concordia College Choir and released in Autumn 2011 on Signum. Other recent Signum releases include Swimming Over London, which combines some of the group’s favourite numbers with new songs and arrangements; a world premiere recording of Pachelbel’s Music for Vespers with Charivari Agréable; and a DVD of Christmas repertoire released for December 2011.

The King’s Singers have an extraordinary history of television appearances. A favourite of The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, they performed with them for the Winter Olympics and appeared in their 2008 Christmas concert, which was broadcast on PBS across the US to a combined live audience of 80,000 and is available on DVD. Following their televised performance at the 2008 BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall, London (also available on DVD – awarded a Midem International Classical Award in January 2010), they have appeared on BBC breakfast television and performed frequently on Songs of Praise.

In addition to their sell-out concerts worldwide, The King’s Singers share their artistry through numerous workshops and masterclasses, and by publishing prodigious quantities of sheet music: at present, they have over two million items in circulation through their publisher, Hal Leonard. Their arrangements are sung the world over by school and college choirs, and by ensembles both amateur and professional.

 

The Kent Hall Masters Series (and revitalized version of The Chorus of Westerly’s Guest Artist Series) is a program that features some of the best musical ensembles in the world coming to Kent Hall for a special, one time performance. Made possible by the generous donations of Chorus patrons, the Blue Mitten Thrift Shop, and the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, previous guest appearances on the series have included Chanticleer, The Tallis Scholars, The Orthodox Singers, The Choir of Trinity College, and The King’s College Choir, Cambridge. The program will be expanded in the 2013-2014 seasons to include to special guest performances.

The George Kent Performance Hall is handicap accessible. All seating for this event is reserved, but patrons are asked to come early to allow time for parking.

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