“Hundreds of music lovers ... who were lucky enough to hear it won’t soon forget the thrilling, at times moving, concert.”
Channing Gray
The Providence Journal

5 March 2012
(Britten War Requiem)



 






Reviews


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  |  Requiem

The Providence Singers began its 45th season as guests of the Rhode Island Philharmonic. Guest conductor Bramwell Tovey led the Singers, soloists, and orchestra in two performances of the Mozart Requiem.

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Providence Journal: “While the piece is not all Mozart, it’s still thrilling to hear it live with forces as fine as the Philharmonic and the Singers, who made all the riveting counterpoint sizzle.”


Ludwig van Beethoven  |  Symphony No. 9

The Ninth Symphony has marked so many historic events that the United Nations added Beethoven’s autograph to its Memory of the World Programme Heritage list, the first musical composition so honored. This performance occurred on the 192nd anniversary of the work’s premiere.

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Providence Journal: “The orchestra was joined by the Providence Singers for the last movement, the so-called ‘Ode to Joy,’ which was one of the more moving moments in the Philharmonic’s season. The Singers sounded terrific.”


Carl Orff  |  Carmina Burana

The Providence Singers and Rhode Island Philharmonic took a sold-out house for a few turns on Fortune’s wheel: Riding high like the King and Queen of Everything, then plunging to the bottom of the pile. The audience responded enthusiastically, even outside The Vets as people were making their way home.

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Providence Journal: “The Orff drove a packed house wild, in part because of a sizzling performance …”



Gustav Mahler
Gustav Mahler  |  Symphony No. 2 ("The Resurrection")

Symphony No. 2, the “Resurrection Symphony,” was, with Symphony No. 8, among Mahler’s most popular and successful works during his lifetime. Preoccupied by visions of his own death and by larger philosophical questions about the purpose of life, Mahler pondered a kind of immortality through artistic achievement. Mahler himself wrote much of the text in the final movement.

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Providence Journal: “The Providence Singers ... opening entrance in the final movement was breathtaking”


Sistine Chapel
Franz Joseph Haydn  |  The Creation

Haydn had many choral successes late in his life, none greater than The Creation. In a work first heard 215 years ago this spring, Haydn recounts the creation of the world with wit, humor, great elegance, and a child-like simplicity. (A pivotal moment — “And there was light!” — may be the greatest C-major chord in Western music. It brought down the house at the premiere.) The texts come from the Bible and John Milton’s Paradise Lost; the freshness and sense of wonderment are pure Papa Haydn.

4:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, 2013, at Temple Emanu-El in Providence
Monday, Feb. 11 2013, at the Zeiterion Theatre in New Bedford
More about the concert

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South Coast Today: “A spectacular performance of a truly timeless masterpiece”


Our 40th Season

Brahms
May 5, 2012: Johannes Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem

There is no fiery, threatening Dies Irae in this requiem, no sorrowful tone or extended grieving. Johannes Brahms set out to provide comfort, consolation, and beauty for the living — and succeeded magnificently. This is a beautiful and profoundly moving requiem, the largest work Brahms ever composed. The Providence Singers will perform Ein deutsches Requiem as guests of the Rhode Island Philharmonic.

8 p.m. Saturday, May 5, Veterans Memorial Auditorium, Providence
Tickets are available from the Rhode Island Philharmonic online or through the box office: 401-248-7000.

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Providence Journal: “A seamless blending of chorus and orchestra”


Out of ruin, hope:  Benjamin Britten | War Requiem
Coventry

On November 14, 1940, the Luftwaffe began the Coventry Blitz — wave after wave of nighttime bombing attacks code-named Operation Moonlight Sonata. When the all-clear sounded at 6:15 a.m. the next day, the attacks had damaged or destroyed more than 60,000 buildings, including three-quarters of Coventry’s factories, more than 4,000 homes, and the Cathedral of St. Michael. Little more than two decades later, Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem led the reconsecration of Coventry Cathedral. It is a powerful work for three choirs and orchestra, interlacing the Latin Requiem Mass with nine starkly beautiful poems by the British war poet Wilfred Owen.

8 p.m. Saturday, March 3, 2012, Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Boston
3:30 p.m. Sunday, March 4, 2012, Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul, Providence
About the concert  |  The texts  |  Notes on the poems  |  ‘Of War and Music’

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Boston Globe: “Philharmonic joins voices in stirring War Requiem
Providence Journal: “Britten’s War Requiem glorious, memorable event”
Musical Intelligencer: “New England Philharmonic’s Impressive War Requiem
The Arts Fuse: “An Inspirational War Requiem