“The Providence Singers ... opening entrance in the final movement was breathtaking”
Channing Gray
Providence Journal
6 May 2013
(Mahler Symphony No. 2)


The Wachner Fund for New Music

Established June 2006 to commemorate Julian Wachner’s
decade of service as artistic director of the Providence Singers

Julian Wachner

The choral renaissance that arrived with Julian Wachner sparked great interest in performing new music. Carlyle Sharpe’s Proud Music of the Storm for chorus and orchestra and Wachner’s own Sometimes I Feel Alive, a setting of three poems by e.e. cummings for chorus a cappella, helped make commissioning new choral works a central part of the Singers mission.

To thank Maestro Wachner for his decade of artistic leadership, the Singers raised an endowment for new music and presented it at a reception following Wachner’s final Singers concert — Rachmaninoff’s Vespers, performed at St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in Bristol, Sunday, June 11, 2006.

Commissioned works

  • Tarik O’Regan: Where All Is Buried
    The inaugural commission of the Wachner Fund, Where All Is Buried is a setting of “Liberty” by Edward Thomas, one of Britain’s prominent World War I poets. The Singers sang the premiere at Beneficent Congregational Church in Providence on November 15, 2009. It is scored for SATB chorus, vibraphone and percussion.
  • Elena Ruehr: Bears
    Premiered on April 26, 2014, at St. Joseph’s Church in Providence, Bears sets a poem of the same name by Adrienne Rich, deeply evocative of childhood. It is scored for SATB chorus and piano.
  • Ola Gjeilo: Westminster Bridge
    Setting a poem by William Wordsworth, for SATB chorus, string quartet, and piano. The Singers gave the premiere at Central Congregational Church in Providence on May 13, 2017, accompanied by the Aurea Ensemble and the composer at the piano.

Founding donors of the Wachner Fund for New Music

Patricia Fuller

Allison McMillan

  Mark Nickel

Katrina Avery and Thomas Doeppner  •  Dorcey Baker  •  Dorie and Tom Bechtel
Donald and Patricia Blough  •  Laura Bronwell  •  Eric and Daisy Broudy
James Burress  •   Tina Butler  •  Andrew Clark and Amy Peters Clark
Bob Colonna  •  Faith Davis  •  Sandra and Anthony DeMarinis  •  Betsy and Wendell Dietrich
Edward and Brenda Doran  •  Alexander and Cynthia Dowgiallo  •  Josephine DuBois
Carolyn Duby and David Swift  •  Marilyn and Rob Edwards  •  Charles and Adele Eil
Allan and Dorothy Erickson  •  Pamela Erickson and Terry Pancoast  •  Amanda and Edwin Fischer
Rhoda Flaxman  •  Margaret and James Gardner  •  Gaye Tolan Hatfield  •  Christine Hauck
Lori and K.J. Istok  •  Elizabeth and David Kaplan  •  Maryann Lasorsa  •  David Keller and Julie Meyers
Kiran and William Kimbell  •  Christopher Koller and Colette Cook  •  Eleanor and David Lewis
Martha Mazzone  •  Lisa and Michael Noke  •  Elizabeth and Robert O’Neal  •  David and Virginia Parker
Nancy and John Pedrick  •  Janice and George Peters  •  Sarah Quinn  •  Robert Rappa
Roseann Robinson  •  Claire and Randall Rosenbaum  •  Joseph and Patricia Runner  •  Molly Schen
Edwin and Catherine Singsen  •  Susie Swenson  •  Kristen Thurber  •  Michael and Kathryn Trogolo
Steven Tundermann  •  Christine Wallis  •  David Wax and Elaine Cali
Wayne Wilkins  •  Donna Wulff  •  Anonymous