Women's Vocal Ensemble
Jude Navari, Artistic Director
4024 Everett Ave, Oakland, CA 94602
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
March 2003 Susan Sands (510) 841-3552
A Spiritual Journey Through American Choral Music"
Honoring AASK Adopt A Special Kid
Featuring music by Samuel Barber, Libby Larson, Jude Navari, Alice Parker, and Vincent Persichetti.
Spirituals arranged by Jacqueline Hairston. Early American Sacred Songs by the Shakers.
Appalachian Folksongs arranged by Ron Nelson.
World premiere of commissioned piece by Oakland composer Steven Clark.
Sunday, April 27, 2003, 4 PM
First Unitarian Church of Oakland, 685-14th Street (at Castro), Oakland
Saturday, May 3, 2003, 4 PM
St. Mark's Episcopal Church, 2300 Bancroft Way, Berkeley
Tickets: $20 general/$15 students, seniors and groups/children under 12 FREE
Tickets available at the door or online at www.angelfire.com/la/VOCI
Tickets purchased in advance will be held at the door. Information: (510) 531-8714
A percentage of concert proceeds will go to AASK
In this time of national soul-searching, VOCI Women's Vocal Ensemble invites audiences to experience the strength of the American tradition through "American Pilgrimage: A Spiritual Journey Through American Choral Music." The program traces themes of loss, rebirth and eternity through two centuries of American choral music, including Shaker songs, African-American spirituals, mountain ballads, and 20th century choral masterworks. It features the world premiere of a new work by Oakland composer Steven Clark written especially for VOCI. In keeping with VOCI's commitment to the community, the concert celebrates the 30th anniversary of AASK Adopt A Special Kid's extraordinary efforts on behalf of children with special needs.
VOCI Women's Vocal Ensemble, recognized as one of the finest choral groups in the Bay Area, champions music by women and for women. "American Pilgrimage" features Oakland composer and pianist Jacqueline Hairston's joyous settings of African-American spirituals, as well as Alice Parker's inspirational setting of poems Emily Dickinson, and Libby Larsen's "Today, This Spring," commissioned by David L. Cooper and Thomas Scott in remembrance of David's wife and Tom's sister, both of whom succumbed to breast cancer.
Now in its 12th season, VOCI's commitment to musical excellence, unique mastery of style and technique, and adventurous and innovative programming have earned VOCI high praise from critics and choral musicians alike. Led by artistic director Jude Navari, who is active throughout the Bay Area as a conductor and composer, VOCI has been described as having a particularly lush and ethereal quality. The group's size of 20 voices conveys a poignant intimacy and allows for a deep, personal connection among chorus members and between chorus and audience. VOCI is a dynamic, diverse group of women of all ages and walks of life who share a passionate love of music and deep commitment to giving back to the community. VOCI has given benefit performances for the Oakland firestorm victims, the Faithful Fools Street Ministry of San Francisco, as well as the annual Voices in Peace concerts in December 2001 and 2002, which honored the Global Fund for Women.
VOCI is proud to present the world premiere of "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking" by Oakland composer Steven Clark written especially for VOCI as a memorial for Steven's first piano teacher. This evocative setting of a fragment from Walt Whitman's powerful poem incorporates Bach's Little Prelude in C Minor, which was the piece Steven first studied with his late teacher. "American Pilgrimage" also features an exquisite cantata by Vincent Persichetti, the transcendent "WaveSong" by VOCI's own artistic director, Jude Navari, as well as works by Samuel Barber, Ron Nelson and William Billings.
"American Pilgrimage" honors AASK Adopt A Special Kid, a private adoption and foster care agency that provides no-cost education, support services, advocacy to children and their adoptive families, and promotes change within the child welfare system. AASK believes that every child is adoptable and has the right to a safe, stable and nurturing home. It has become the model for adoption programs nationwide.
Join us as the warmth and serene tonal beauty of VOCI's music creates a community of spirit and harmony, honoring AASK and journeying through our American choral tradition.
Supported in part by grants from the The California Arts Council and the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce Business Volunteers for the Arts Program.
Media Sponsor: Bay Area BusinessWomen News
Visit VOCI's website at http://www.angelfire.com/la/VOCI
Visit Adopt a Special Kid's website at: http://adoptaspecialkid.org
To Contact AASK: Andrea Schneider at 510.553.1748