Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents Apple Hill String Quartet Performing the World Premiere of Harbison’s “Presences” in the St. Bart Chapel on Sunday, March 5, 2017, at 2:30 PM

Composer Patrick Castillo Talks With John Harbison at 1:30 PM

Apple Hill String Quartet

The Great Music at St. Bart’s concert series presents New Hampshire’s Apple Hill String Quartet (Elise Kuder, Colleen Jennings, violin; Mike Kelley, viola; Rupert Thompson, cello) in the Chapel of St. Bartholomew’s Church – a beautiful, intimate space perfectly suited to contemporary chamber music – on Sunday, March 5, 2017, at 2:30 pm. The quartet will perform the world premiere of John Harbison’s Presences for string quartet, cello, and bass; Ahmed Saygun’s String Quartet No. 1 (which is featured on the ensemble’s latest recording); and Haydn’s String Quartet Op. 54, No. 2, in C Major. Joining Apple Hill for the Harbison work are Tony Rymer, cello; and Max Zeugner, bass.

This is the Apple Hill String Quartet’s seventh annual appearance on the St. Bart’s series. Last March, the ensemble offered a performance of Pavel Haas’s String Quartet No. 2, “From the Monkey Mountains,” that The Strad magazine called “extraordinary.”

Patrick Castillo, composer and board member of the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, which produces Great Music at St. Bart’s, will interview John Harbison in a pre- concert talk in the Chapel at 1:30 pm. Harbison’s new work Presences was commissioned in memory of David Anderson, a young student cellist who studied at the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music in Nelson, New Hampshire, the quartet’s home.

Since its founding in 2007 the Apple Hill String Quartet has earned praise around the world for its performances of traditional and new repertoire. Central to the mission of Apple Hill is “Playing for Peace,” an innovative outreach program that focuses on social change and conflict resolution through music. Founded in 1971 and situated on 100 acres of fields and woodlands in rural New Hampshire, Apple Hill is a center of chamber music performance and teaching. It is stewarded today by the organization’s director, Leonard Matczynski, and ensemble-in- residence, the Apple Hill String Quartet. www.applehill.org

Learn more:
Violinist Elise Kuder’s note on performing Ahmed Saygun’s String Quartet No. 1: http://applehill.org/concerts/program-notes/#Saygun1

The 2016-17 season of Great Music at St. Bart’s continues the new programmatic focus initiated last year by MMPAF Artistic Director William K. Trafka (Director of Music and Organist of St. Bart’s): to embrace a wider range of music in programs that shine in St. Bart’s spaces. The spring 2017 season also features programs of chamber music in the Chapel that showcase modern and new repertoire, including acclaimed ensemble ECCO East Coast Chamber Orchestra (A Thousand Cranes by Christopher Theofanidis, NY premiere, April 20). Among the programs presented in the magnificent sanctuary are two vastly different interpretations of the St. John Passion: Bach’s, performed by The English Concert Players and the Choir of New College, Oxford, conducted by Robert Quinney (March 28) and Arvo Pärt’s, performed by Trafka leading the St. Bartholomew’s Choir (April 4) and Orff’s Carmina Burana performed by the Dalton Chorale (May 17).

Great Music at St. Bart’s, the concert series produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, for the past six years has presented music in St. Bartholomew’s Church, a parish of the Episcopal Diocese of New York located in the heart of midtown Manhattan. The magnificent 1918 Romanesque-style church features a portal designed by Stanford White and a grand Byzantine-style interior – and two of New York’s unlikely but outstanding concert spaces: the 150-seat chapel, an intimate and acoustically brilliant space that is perfectly suited for contemporary chamber music, and the majestic 1,000-seat sanctuary – outfitted with comfortable chairs enabling flexible seating – whose Aeolian-Skinner pipe organ is the largest in New York City and one of the finest examples of the American Classic Organ in the U.S.

Sunday, March 5, 2017, at 2:30 pm
APPLE HILL STRING QUARTET
Tony Rymer, cello
Max Zeugner, bass
HARBISON Presences (World premiere)
SAYGUN String Quartet No. 1
HAYDN String Quartet, Op. 54, No. 2, in C

Major Tickets: $25, $15 for Students and Seniors

Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

 

Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents Two February Events Showcasing the St. Bart’s Organ, the Largest Pipe Organ in New York City

• JOHN ZORN: CANDLEMAS EVE AND THE HERMETIC ORGAN, FEBRUARY 1, 2017

• JASON ROBERTS: LIVE IMPROVISED ORGAN ACCOMPANIMENT TO BUSTER KEATON’S THE GENERAL, FEBRUARY 17, 2017

To jolt New Yorkers out of their winter doldrums, the Great Music at St. Bart’s concert series presents two events in February showcasing the famed St. Bart’s pipe organ, the largest in New York City, that will literally shake the rafters. On February 1, in St. Bartholomew’s magnificent Romanesque-style church, iconic New York composer John Zorn performs The Hermetic Organ Office Nr. 15 (2017), a new chapter in his epic organ improvisation, praised by Lou Reed as one of “culmination and conquest,” and his new work Candlemas Eve. And on February 17, St. Bart’s presents the third annual screening of a silent film classic to live organ accompaniment by St. Bart’s Associate Organist Jason Roberts – this year, The General, the comedy masterpiece by Buster Keaton.

WATCH: A video about the St. Bart’s organ on Vimeo.

Tickets may be purchased online at this website, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

The 2016-17 season of Great Music at St. Bart’s continues the new programmatic focus initiated last year by MMPAF Artistic Director William K. Trafka (Director of Music and Organist of St. Bart’s): to embrace a wider range of music in programs that shine in St. Bart’s spaces. The spring 2017 season also features programs of chamber music in the Chapel that showcase modern and new repertoire, performed by acclaimed ensembles ECCO East Coast Chamber Orchestra (A Thousand Cranes by Christopher Theofanidis, NY premiere), and Apple Hill String Quartet (Presences by John Harbison, world premiere). Among the programs presented in the magnificent sanctuary are two vastly different interpretations of the St. John Passion: Bach’s, performed by The English Concert Players and the Choir of New College, Oxford, conducted by Robert Quinney, and Arvo Pärt’s, performed by Trafka leading the St. Bartholomew’s Choir; and Orff’s Carmina Burana performed by the Dalton Chorale.


Wednesday, February 1, 2017, at 8:30 pm in the Church
JOHN ZORN: CANDLEMAS EVE AND THE HERMETIC ORGAN

Barry Crawford, flute
Isabel Gleicher, flute
Al Lipowski, vibraharp
Sae Hashimoto, vibraharp assistant
John Zorn, organ

Modern music icon John Zorn returns to St. Bart’s with a performance of The Hermetic Organ Office Nr. 15 (2017), a new chapter in his epic organ improvisation, praised by Lou Reed as one of “culmination and conquest.” His 2016 work Candlemas Eve for two flutes and vibraharp will be offered on the eve of the church’s feast day of Candlemas.

John Zorn performed The Hermetic Organ Office Nr. 14 last year at St. Bart’s and has released a recording of that performance on his Tzadik website, www.tzadik.com (Cat. #8340): “Recorded at midnight on the eve of Halloween on the largest organ in New York City, Zorn approaches this performance as ritual, creating a mysterious mood of contrasts, colors, bells, drones, counterpoint and simultaneity.”

“The one word virtually everyone can agree on in any discussion of the work of composer John Zorn is ‘prolific,’ in the strictest sense of the definition,” says Thom Jurek in allmusic.com. “Though he didn’t begin making records until 1980, the recordings under his own name number well over 100, and the sheer number of works he has performed on, composed, or produced easily doubles that number. Though now an internationally renowned musician and the founder and owner of the wildly successful and equally prolific Tzadik imprint, Zorn is a cornerstone of New York’s fabled and influential downtown scene. In addition, he has played with musicians of every stripe. He is … a quintessential mirror of 21st century culture.”

WATCH: John Zorn’s talks about his approach to The Hermetic Organ on YouTube
Tickets: $25, $15 for Students and Seniors


Friday, February 17, 2017, at 7:30 pm in the Church
JASON ROBERTS ACCOMPANIES THE GENERAL

Jason Roberts, organ

St. Bart’s Associate Director of Music and Organist Jason Roberts improvises organ accompaniment to The General, the great 1927 action-packed comedy adventure from Buster Keaton inspired by the Great Locomotive Chase of 1862.

As Gary Giddins wrote in Slate.com, “The General belongs to at least three movie genres: comedy, historical, and chase. Most of it is constructed around a pursuit as relentless as any Bourne blowout, involving a Confederate locomotive, called the General, hijacked by Union spies. … Keaton’s authenticity and comedic understatement make The General a surprisingly modern experience. The storytelling and the gags are free of sentimentality and knockabout clichés. The four-minute battle scene is simply one of the most gripping, and occasionally hilarious, ever filmed.”

Over the past two years, Jason Roberts has improvised the organ accompaniment to St. Bart’s screenings of The Wind starring Lillian Gish and the Buster Keaton classic Steamboat Bill, Jr. St. Bart’s Associate Director of Music, Organist, and the Director of the Boy and Girl Choristers since 2014, Jason is a sought-after recitalist in the U.S. and an avid improviser. He won first prize at the AGO National Competition in Organ Improvisation in 2008 and was a finalist at the St. Alban’s International Organ Competition in 2011 (Improvisation). He holds degrees from Rice University, Yale University and the Manhattan School of Music.

READ: Critic Roger Ebert’s review of “Great Movie” The General
Tickets: $20, $10 for Students and Seniors


Tickets may be purchased online at this website, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Great Music at St. Bart’s, the concert series produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, for the past six years has presented music in St. Bartholomew’s Church, a parish of the Episcopal Diocese of New York located in the heart of midtown Manhattan. The magnificent 1918 Romanesque-style church features a portal designed by Stanford White and a grand Byzantine-style interior – and two of New York’s unlikely but outstanding concert spaces: the 150-seat chapel, an intimate and acoustically brilliant space that is perfectly suited for contemporary chamber music, and the majestic 1,000-seat sanctuary – outfitted with comfortable chairs enabling flexible seating – whose Aeolian-Skinner pipe organ is the largest in New York City and one of the finest examples of the American Classic Organ in the U.S.

Welcome to Our 2016 – 2017 Season

The new season for 2016-2017 has just been announced, and we’ve got quite an exciting line up as well as a new, updated look for the website.   To explore the concerts and events, click here.

To read the press release for this season, click here.

Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents – Andy Akiho and the Sebastians

Monday, April 25, 2016, at 7:30 pm in the Chapel

ANDY AKIHO & THE SEBASTIANS

with:
Kristin Lee, violin
Ian David Rosenbaum, percussion
Amphion String Quartet

andy_akiho_and_sebastians

Andy Akiho, photo by Aestheticize Media; The Sebastians

Music by the dynamic young composer Andy Akiho, which has been praised as “mold-breaking” and “vital,” mixes with a series of Baroque masterpieces in this program performed by some of the finest young chamber musicians and ensembles on the New York music scene: violinist Kristin Lee, percussionist Ian David Rosenbaum, the Amphion String Quartet, and “leading young early-music ensemble” The Sebastians. Akiho himself also performs, on steel pan. The concert, presented by the Great Music at St. Bart’s series (produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation), takes place in the St. Bart’s Chapel, a wonderfully intimate space ideally suited for contemporary chamber music.

The Sebastians’ segments of the program, early-Baroque works – chamber pieces by Purcell , Schmelzer, and Graupner; and Biber’s exciting Battalia (Battle) for string ensemble – and one of the era’s most popular masterpieces, Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 3, both echo and contrast with the keen sense of line and syncopated counterpoint in Akiho’s LIgNEouS for string quartet and marimba and Deciduous for violin and steel pan, which will be performed by Kristin Lee, for whom the work was written, and Akiho.

BIBER Battalia à 10 for strings (1673)
AKIHO LIgNEouS for marimba and string quartet (2010)
SCHMELZER Sonata for three violins in D Major (c. 1660-1670)
PURCELL Fantasia upon a Ground for three violins in D Major (c. 1680)
GRAUPNER Presto from Canon for two violins, cello, and continuo
AKIHO Deciduous for violin and steel pan (2014)
BACH Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 (1721)

Watch Kristin Lee and Andy Akiho perform Deciduous in the video clip below:

Andy Akiho, whose work has been described as “mold-breaking,” “alert and alive,” “dramatic,” and “vital” by The New York Times, is an eclectic composer and performer of contemporary classical music. Recent engagements include commissioned premieres by the New York Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, and Carnegie Hall’s Ensemble ACJW. Akiho’s debut CD, No One To Know One, on innova Recordings, features compositions that pose intricate rhythms and exotic timbres around his primary instrument, the steel pan. www.andyakiho.com  Twitter

Named the recipient of a 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Korean-American violinist Kristin Lee has been praised by The Strad for her “mastery of tone.” A violinist of remarkable versatility and impeccable technique, Ms. Lee enjoys a vibrant career as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and 
educator. www.violinistkristinlee.com  Twitter

Praised for his “excellent” and “precisely attuned” performances by The New York Times, percussionist Ian David Rosenbaum made his Kennedy Center debut in 2009 and later that year garnered a special prize created for him at the Salzburg International Marimba Competition. Mr. Rosenbaum joined the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s CMS Two program in 2012 as only the second percussionist they have selected in their history. www.iandavidrosenbaum.com  Twitter

Hailed for its “gripping intensity” and “suspenseful and virtuoso playing” (San Francisco Classical Voice), the Amphion String Quartet (Katie Hyun and David Southorn, violin; Wei-Yang Andy Lin, viola; Mihai Marica, cello) is a winner of the 2011 Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition and joined the roster of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s CMS Two Program in fall 2013. Through CMS, the ensemble made its Alice Tully Hall debut in March 2014, about which The New York Times praised “the focused, forceful young Amphion String Quartet” for its “sharply detailed performances.” www.amphionquartet.com  Twitter

The Sebastians are a dynamic musical ensemble specializing in music of the Baroque and Classical eras. Lauded as “everywhere sharp-edged and engaging” (The New York Times), the Sebastians have also been praised for their “well-thought-out articulation and phrasing” (Early Music Review) and “elegant string playing… immaculate in tuning and balance” (Early Music Today). Winners of the Audience Prize at the 2012 Early Music America Baroque Performance Competition, the Sebastians were also finalists in the 2011 York International Early Music Competition and the 2011 Early Music America/Naxos
Recording Competition. www.sebastians.org

Tickets: $35, $15 for Students and Seniors

Tickets may be purchased online at on the event page, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Great Music at St. Bart’s is produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) corporation established to cultivate, promote, sponsor and develop the understanding and love of the performing arts as presented at St. Bartholomew’s Church, a treasured masterpiece of architecture on the east side of Manhattan’s midtown. The corporation sponsors performances of music, dance, drama, and other performing arts as well as the exhibition of works in the film and fine arts genres.

Click here for full press release on these concerts.

Press Contact:
Jennifer Wada Communications
718-855-7101
jennifer@wadacommunications.com

Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents – The Apple Hill String Quartet

Sunday, March 13, 2016, at 2:30 pm in the Chapel
THE APPLE HILL STRING QUARTET – Music of Purcell, Glass, Haas

Apple Hill String Quartet (Elise Kruder, Colleen Jennings, violin; Mike Kelley, viola; Rupert Thompson, cello)

apple_hill_string_quartet_2016

The Apple Hill String Quartet performs its sixth annual performance on the Great Music at St. Bart’s series, a program in the intimate St. Bart’s Chapel: an arrangement of Purcell’s Three Fantasias (1680); Philip Glass’s String Quartet #4 “Buczak,” written in 1987 in remembrance of the artist Brian Buczak; and Pavel Haas’s String Quartet No. 2, “From the Monkey Mountains,” Op. 7 – a 1925 work that continues the Czech heritage of Haas’s teachers Dvořák and Janáček and evokes the Moravian highlands of its subtitle, with four movements titled “Landscape,” “Coach, Coachman and Horse,” “The Moon and I,” and “Wild Night.”

Since its founding in 2007 at the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music in Nelson, New Hampshire, the quartet has earned praise around the world for its performances of traditional and new repertoire. Central to the mission of Apple Hill is “Playing for Peace,” an innovative outreach program that focuses on social change and conflict resolution through music. As resident musicians at the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music, the Quartet is featured in the summer concert series held every Tuesday night at the Center in Nelson, N.H. These concerts attract hundreds of visitors and have become a mainstay of the Monadnock area summer music offerings. Watch the quartet perform a segment from Geoffrey Hudson’s The Quartet Project in a video clip on the St. Bart’s event page.

Click here for full press release on these concerts.

Press Contact:
Jennifer Wada Communications
718-855-7101
jennifer@wadacommunications.com

Great Music at St. Bart’s – Apple Hill String Quartet, March 13, 2016.
Click here to learn more.

Tickets: $25, $15 for Students and Seniors
Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Great Music at St. Bart’s is produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) corporation established to cultivate, promote, sponsor and develop the understanding and love of the performing arts as presented at St. Bartholomew’s Church, a treasured masterpiece of architecture on the east side of Manhattan’s midtown. The corporation sponsors performances of music, dance, drama, and other performing arts as well as the exhibition of works in the film and fine arts genres.

Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents

THIRD SOUND – A NEW ENSEMBLE MAKES ITS U.S. DEBUT WITH A PROGRAM OF NEW AMERICAN & CUBAN MUSIC – January 12
CONCORDIA CHOIR – February 23

Third-Sound-photo-by-Tristan-Cook-1

Third Sound in Havana, photo by Tristan Cook. Click on photo for hi-res.

The U.S. debut of Third Sound, a “supergroup” of young New York musicians, performing new American and Cuban music, and a performance by the renowned Concordia Choir from Moorhead, Minnesota, are the first events of 2016 from Great Music at St. Bart’s, presented by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation:

Tuesday, January 12, 2016, at 7:30 pm in the Chapel

THIRD SOUND – U.S. Debut
Third Sound is a new collective of virtuoso performers drawn from New York City’s finest chamber musicians: Sooyun Kim, flute; Romie de Guise-Langlois, clarinet; Karen Kim, violin; Michael Nicolas, cello; and Orion Weiss, piano; composer Patrick Castillo is the artistic director. Having just made its debut as part of the delegation from the American Composers Forum invited to participate in the Festival de Música Contemporánea (Contemporary Music Festival) in Havana, Cuba, this New York ensemble will present its first performance in the U.S. in the St. Bart’s chapel, an acoustically brilliant space perfectly suited for contemporary chamber music.

“Third Sound is already one of the country’s best contemporary music ensembles,” says composer Michael Harrison, who also took part in the Havana residency. “For their debut concert at the Havana Contemporary Music Festival they selected an incredibly diverse range of ten works by leading American composers. Everything was executed with the kind of passion and precision that one only hears from the most experienced ensembles. Working with Third Sound is a composer’s dream!”

Drawing on its Havana program, which was the first live concert in that festival’s history featuring American performers in a program of exclusively contemporary American music (read about it, and hear selections from the concert, in Anastasia Tsioulcas’s story for NPR Music, “Hear a New Music Journey, from the U.S. to Havana“), Third Sound will perform American works along with music by Cuban composers Wilma Alba Cal, Juan Piñera, and others to be announced, acquired during the ensemble’s Havana visit. All the works on the program were written within the past 15 years, and eight of them will receive their New York or U.S. premiere performances:

CINDY COX Wave for piano trio (first movement) (2009) (New York premiere)
KAI-YOUNG CHAN Mieko for flute and electronics (2014) (New York premiere)
AMADEUS REGUCERA Inexpressible (v. 2) for flute, violin, and cello (2013, rev. 2015) (U.S. premiere)
JUAN PIÑERA Work for clarinet, violin, and piano to be announced (U.S. premiere)
INGRID ARAUCO Fantasy Quartet for clarinet, violin, cello, and piano (2001) (New York premiere)
WILMA ALBA CAL Homenaje a Piazzolla for clarinet and piano (second movement) (U.S. premiere)
CHRISTOPHER WENDELL JONES A Crowd of Twisted Things for violin and piano (2011) (New York premiere)
JEREMY GILL Paean, Epitaph, and DIthyramb for flute, cello, and piano (2008) (New York premiere)
JENNIFER HIGDON Smash for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano (2006)

The program, which will be recorded for commercial release later in 2016, is the first of two American/Cuban programs that Third Sound will present this season, the second to take place in May.

Conceived from a desire to present music as a rich and dynamic continuum, Third Sound brings together an accomplished group of musicians equally skilled in – and equally passionate about – the work of Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms as that of composers ranging from Schoenberg, Stravinsky, and Messiaen; Carter, Wuorinen, Adams, and Reich; to emerging composers of the early 21st century. The group’s members have appeared on the most prestigious series and stages around the world and garnered major honors, including the Avery Fisher Career Grant, the Georg Solti Foundation Career Grant, and the Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance, among many others.

Learn more:
“Hear a New Music Journey, from the U.S. to Havana,” coverage and concert excerpts, from NPR Music: http://tinyurl.com/qg9nr3t
Third Sound and the ACF delegation to Havana: http://composersforum.org/press/acf-cuba-delegation
Third Sound: Facebook and website
Blog post from composer Kati Agócs about the Havana festival: http://www.katiagocs.com/blog/

Tickets: $35, $15 for Students and Seniors

Tuesday, February 23, 2016, at 7:30 pm, in the Church

THE CONCORDIA CHOIR
The Concordia Choir
René Clausen, conductor

The renowned 72-voice Concordia Choir from Moorhead, Minnesota, makes its only New York City appearance this season with a return visit to St. Bart’s, part of a 16-city U.S. tour. The choir, led by Dr. René Clausen, will perform a diverse program of traditional and contemporary choral works drawing from, or inspired by, hymns, spirituals, and the Lutheran tradition – including works by Dr. Clausen, Stephen Paulus, Jens Klimek, David Dickau, and Bobby McFerrin; Ives, Vaughan Williams, and Copland; and Bach and Mendelssohn.

The Concordia Choir continues to affirm its reputation as one of America’s finest a cappella choirs. Since 1920, the choir has performed in nearly every major hall including Carnegie Hall and Kennedy Center as well as on numerous international tours, and has performed many times on Garrison Keillor’s “Prairie Home Companion” radio show. Recent activities include a 2010 performance and recording with the Grammy Award-winning King’s Singers and a 2011 tour of South Korea. The Concordia Choir is featured in the Emmy-winning “Concordia Christmas Concerts,” which are nationally broadcast on public television. The choir’s recordings are distributed internationally and through iTunes, and it is one of the top-selling choirs in the country.

Dr. René Clausen is the third conductor in the choir’s history, assuming the role in 1986. As a composer he has written more than 120 commissioned works. The Kansas City Chorale recording Life and Breath: Choral Works by René Clausen won two Grammy awards in 2013.

Learn more:
https://www.concordiacollege.edu/music/ensembles/choirs/the-concordia-choir/

Tickets: $30, $20 for Seniors, $10 for Students

Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Great Music at St. Bart’s is produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) corporation established to cultivate, promote, sponsor and develop the understanding and love of the performing arts as presented at St. Bartholomew’s Church, a treasured masterpiece of architecture on the east side of Manhattan’s midtown. The corporation sponsors performances of music, dance, drama, and other performing arts as well as the exhibition of works in the film and fine arts genres.

Click here for full press release on these concerts.

Press Contact:
Jennifer Wada Communications
718-855-7101
jennifer@wadacommunications.com

A Joyous Christmas Concert Artwork by Steve Ross

Title: Theotokos (Mary and Baby) Medium: Watercolor Artist: Steve Ross

Title: Theotokos (Mary and Baby); Medium: Watercolor; Artist: Steve Ross

Of all the players during Advent, I believe the season really belongs to Mary. She said ‘Yes’ to God, with no guarantee as to how it would pan out, so I wanted to pay tribute to her courage and generosity with this painting. Many artistic interpretations of Mary render her in a submissive and passive role, with eyes downcast or meekly looking at her baby. My interpretation affords Mary much more agency and thus I have her break from demure tradition and engage the viewer boldly and directly. I also have her holding her baby in such a way as to acknowledge that the child is not just hers, but that she is consciously “offering” the child to us, the viewer.

Artist Bio:
Steve Ross is an illustrator and artist living in New York City. His work is in many private collections and his illustrations have appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Economist and many other magazines and publications. He is the author of two graphic novels; “Marked” based on the Gospel of Mark, and “Blinded,” based on the adventures of St. Paul of Tarsus. More of his work can be seen at www.StevenTracyRoss.com.

Great Music at St. Bart’s Presents Its Annual Holiday Events

A JOYOUS CHRISTMAS CONCERT – December 15
ADORATION OF THE MAGI – December 18
A CONCERT FOR THE NEW YEAR – December 31 – FREE

st_barts_snowThe December events presented by Great Music at St. Bart’s, the concert series at St. Bartholomew’s Church produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation (MMPAF), are among New Yorkers’ favorite holiday traditions. A Joyous Christmas Concert offers choral, orchestral, and organ music of the season along with a Christmas carol sing-in; Adoration of the Magi is an intimate visual and musical celebration of the holidays in the St. Bart’s Chapel; and A Concert for the New Year, a holiday gift to the city, is a late evening organ concert by William Trafka, Director of Music and Organist of St. Bartholomew’s Church, and post-concert reception, that is free to the public.

Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Click here for full press release on Holiday Events.

Great Music at St. Bart’s: “The Argentinian-Italian Bach,” Domenico Zipoli

Click here to read a news-filled pdf brochure about this concert.

Italian_Argentinian_Bach_Zipoli_flier

The Program

Domenico Zipoli
(1688–1726)
Misa San Ignacio
Kyrie
symbol Gloria

symbol Tantum Ergo

symbol Credo
from Misa San Ignacio

Johann Sebastian Bach
(1685–1750)
symbol Cantata BWV 150 “Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich”
1. Sinfonia
2. Coro: “Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich”
3. Aria (soprano): “Doch bin und bleibe ich vergnugt”
4. Coro: “Leite mich in deiner Wahrheit”
5. Aria (alto, tenor, bass): “Zedern mussen von den Winden
6. Coro: “Meine Augen sehen stets zu dem Herrn”
7. Coro (ciaccona): “Meine Tage in dem Leide”

– Intermission –

Domenico Zipoli

symbol Confitebor Domine
from Vespers San Ignacio

symbol Laudate Dominum
from Vespers San Ignacio

Johann Sebastian Bach
symbol “Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn”
Aria BWV 1127 – verses 1, 4, 8, 12

Domenico Zipoli

symbol Beatus Vir
from Vespers San Ignacio

symbolsymbol symbol

The Performers

Vocal soloists

Julianne Baird – Soprano (Zipoli & BWV 1127)
Sarah Moulton Faux – Soprano (BWV 150 & BWV 1127)
Nicholas
Tamagna – Countertenor
Pablo Bustos
– Tenor
John-Arthur Miller
– Baritone

Crescendo Period Instrument Orchestra

Judson Griffin – Violin 1, Concertmaster
Margaret Ziemnicka
– Violin 2
Carlos Boltes
– Viola
David Bakamjian
– Violoncello
Jane Hershey
– Violone
Rachel Begley
– Bassoon & Dulcian
Christa Patton
– Baroque Harp
Rodrigo Tarraza
– Quena 1
Gonzalo Cortes
– Quena 2
Carlos Boltes
– Charango
Scott Hill
– Guitar*
Juan Andres Mesa
– Organ

*Mr. Scott’s performing fee was generously underwritten by Cynthia Walsh.

The Crescendo

Choir Section leaders bolded; Singers with asterisk perform BWV 150

Sopranos: Louise Brown, Kathy Drake*, Sarah Fay*, Susan Fox, Anne Frieze, Carol Goodfriend, Peggy Heck, Jordan Rose Lee*, Sarah Moulton Faux*, Jane Meigs, Sarah Melcher, Margaret O’Brien*, Andrea Patel, Roberta Roll*

Altos: Pat Barton*, Laura Evans*, Susan Francisco, Martha King, Susan McBrien, Karen Miller, Martha Nesbitt, Randy Orzano*, Andrea Patel*, Susan Pettee, Trudy Weaver Miller*

Tenors: Gordon Gustafson, John La Porta*, Eric Martin*, Randy Orzano, Peter Perkins*, Doug Schmolze*, Richard Vreeland II

Basses: James Barrett*, Paul De Angelis, Stephen Enoch, John-Arthur Miller*, Rene Milo, Thomas Schindler*, Bruce Weinstein*, John Wightman, Michael Wise*

Youth Singers: Lucia Cicerchia, Charlotte Clulow, Eleanor Clulow

Christine Gevert, Conductor

Great Music at St. Bart’s: Fall 2015 Events

“THE ARGENTINIAN-ITALIAN BACH,” DOMENICO ZIPOLI – October 15
JOHN ZORN: THE HERMETIC ORGAN – October 30
JASON ROBERTS, ORGANIST, ACCOMPANIES THE WIND – November 20

The firMMPAF_press_release_iconst three events of the 2015-16 season of Great Music at St. Bart’s, the concert series at St. Bartholomew’s Church produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation (MMPAF), include a program focusing on the music of the “Argentinian-Italian Bach,” Domenico Zipoli, and J.S. Bach himself; and two events showcasing the magnificent St. Bart’s organ, the largest pipe organ in New York City: a performance by John Zorn of his own epic work The Hermetic Organ; and a silent film classic starring Lillian Gish, The Wind, screened to the accompaniment of live organ improvisation.

Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street.

Thursday, October15, 2015, at 7:30 pm, in the Church
“THE ARGENTINIAN-ITALIAN BACH,” DOMENICO ZIPOLI

Part of the New York Early Music 2015 Celebration “El Nuevo Mundo”
Julianne Baird and Sarah Moulton Faux, sopranos
Nicholas Tamagna, countertenor
Pablo Bustos, tenor
John-Arthur Miller, baritone
Crescendo Chorus & Youth Singers
Crescendo Period & Andean Instrument Orchestra
Directed by Christine Gevert

Famed early music artist Julianne Baird and rising young singers Sarah Moulton Faux, soprano; Nicholas Tamagna, countertenor; Pablo Bustos, tenor; and John-Arthur Miller, baritone, join Crescendo, the New England-based vocal and instrumental ensemble directed by Christine Gevert, for a program featuring the music of Baroque composer Domenico Zipoli (the Italian-born Jesuit musician and missionary who lived and worked in Paraguay and Argentina) alongside two cantatas of J.S. Bach. “Zipoli’s music is comparable in style and quality to his contemporary Antonio Vivaldi – full of contrasting and dramatic elements,” says Gevert. “In our performance we will combine European Baroque instruments with native Andean ones, such as quenas [flutes] and charango [lute], to create the unique sound of the Latin American Baroque,” as well as combining adult and youth voices in the chorus.

“All pieces, except the Tantum Ergo, were written for soprano, alto, and tenor voices only, as there practically weren’t any low voices among the indigenous people in Latin America (and still today we have many more tenors than basses among Latin American singers),” says Gevert. “My arrangement carefully includes the choral bass voice into the choral texture – sometimes in a quite high range for their voices, to preserve the character of Zipoli’s writing and the sound quality of what must have been heard back then in the missions.”

Domenico Zipoli was a successful organist and composer in Rome before his departure to Argentina in 1717. Zipoli became the most famous Baroque composer in South America – his works were performed all over the continent and his reputation spread from there to Europe. The music he wrote in South America was lost for more than 200 years, surfacing in the late 1970s – this program presents some of these works, including parts of Misa San Ignacio and Vespers San Ignacio. The program also features two sacred cantatas by Johann Sebastian Bach. His choral cantata Nach Dir, Herr, verlanget mich (For Thee, O Lord, I long), BWV 150, is an early one, and the abundance of short contrasting choral movements makes it similar to Zipoli’s works. The soprano solo cantata Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn (Everything with God and nothing without him), BWV 1127, was lost for almost 300 years, only re-discovered in 2005.

Crescendo received the Alfred Nash Patterson Award given by Choral Arts New England for this program, presented in New England in November of 2014. Crescendo’s repertoire focuses mainly on music from the Renaissance and Baroque periods, but encompasses all musical eras. Chorus America’s 2014 Alice Parker/ASCAP award winner for innovative programming, Crescendo is led by Artistic Director and conductor Christine Gevert, whose exploration of her Latin American heritage has led to concerts of rarely heard Colonial Latin American music, as well as contemporary works by Latin American composers.

http://worldclassmusic.org/crescendo/

WATCH: Crescendo performs the Credo from Zipoli’s Misa San Ignacio on YouTube.

D. ZIPOLI
Misa San Ignacio (excerpts)
Vespers San Ignacio (excerpts)
Tantum Ergo

J.S. BACH
Nacht Dir, Herr, verlanget mich, BWV 150
Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn, BWV 1127

Tickets: $40 Preferred Seating; $30 General Seating; $10 for Students

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Friday, October 30, 2015, at 11:59 pm, in the Church
JOHN ZORN: THE HERMETIC ORGAN

Presented in tandem with National Sawdust’s John Zorn Festival
John Zorn, organ

Modern music icon John Zorn performs his epic solo organ improvisation The Hermetic Organ on the largest pipe organ in New York City, the magnificent Aeolian-Skinner at St. Bart’s. Zorn released a recording of the 2012 performance in St. Paul’s Chapel at Columbia University, which Lou Reed praised as one of “culmination and conquest,” on his own Tzadik Records.

From that album’s notes: “Although organ was Zorn’s first instrument (he often credits Lon Chaney in the silent classic Phantom of the Opera as a primal influence), in 2011 Zorn surprised even his hardcore fans by initiating a new series of solo organ concerts in churches around the world. Premiering at the historic Christ Church in Philadelphia, the word on these concerts spread like wildfire and further events were set up in Belgium, France and of course in New York. … the music is breathtakingly beautiful, and distinguished by a spiritual mood that only a huge pipe organ can create. A perfect outlet for Zorn’s dramatic sense of color and contrast, we hear the composer’s mind at work in all its bizarre permutations – huge blocks of sound, chords, clusters, counterpoint, drones, ostinatos, lyrical melodies and more – often all at the same time!” www.tzadik.com

“The one word virtually everyone can agree on in any discussion of the work of composer John Zorn is ‘prolific,’ in the strictest sense of the definition,” says Thom Jurek in allmusic.com. “Though he didn’t begin making records until 1980, the recordings under his own name number well over 100, and the sheer number of works he has performed on, composed, or produced easily doubles that number. Though now an internationally renowned musician and the founder and owner of the wildly successful and equally prolific Tzadik imprint, Zorn is a cornerstone of New York’s fabled and influential downtown scene. In addition, he has played with musicians of every stripe. He is … a quintessential mirror of 21st century culture.”

WATCH: John Zorn’s talks about his approach to The Hermetic Organ on YouTube.
WATCH: A video about the St. Bart’s organ on Vimeo.

Tickets: $35, $25, $15 for Students and Seniors

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Friday, November 20, 2015, at 7:30 pm, in the Church
JASON ROBERTS ACCOMPANIES THE WIND

Jason Roberts, organ

St. Bart’s Associate Director of Music and Organist Jason Roberts improvises organ accompaniment to one of the last great silent films, the romantic drama The Wind. This 1928 cinematic masterpiece by director Victor Sjöström stars the great Lillian Gish, who was an active member of St. Bart’s and who is interred in the church’s memorial chapel.

The Wind was the last silent film headlined by Lillian Gish, one of the silent screen’s greatest stars. Based on a novel by Dorothy Scarborough, it tells the story of a young Virginia woman who moves west to Texas and is almost driven mad by physical hardship, spiritual repression, and a howling wind.

Last season, Jason Roberts improvised the organ accompaniment for Steamboat Bill, Jr., at St. Bart’s. A sought-after recitalist, Jason was chosen to play at last summer’s Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists in Hartford, CT. An avid improviser, he won first prize at the AGO National Competition in Organ Improvisation in 2008, and was a finalist in improvisation at the St. Alban’s International Organ Competition in 2011.

WATCH: A video about the St. Bart’s organ on Vimeo.

Tickets: $20, $10 for Students and Seniors

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Tickets may be purchased online at www.mmpaf.org, by phone by calling 212-378-0248, or in person at St. Bart’s in Midtown Manhattan, 325 Park Avenue at 51st Street. Great Music at St. Bart’s is produced by the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) corporation established to cultivate, promote, sponsor and develop the understanding and love of the performing arts as presented at St. Bartholomew’s Church, a treasured masterpiece of architecture on the east side of Manhattan’s midtown. The corporation sponsors performances of music, dance, drama, and other performing arts as well as the exhibition of works in the film and fine arts genres.

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