Early Music Ensemble to Perform Irish Music

On Sunday, March 18 at 4 pm, the early music ensemble Trio Galilei will present a concert of music at Christ Church Easton.  Part of the Christ Church Concert Series, this accomplished trio is making its second appearance on the series.  Specializing in music of the British Isles, the group will perform a mostly Irish program in a nod to St. Patrick, a fifth-century Romano-British Christian missionary and bishop in Ireland.

Trio Galilei began at the Mologne House at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Silver Spring where the ensemble performed every Friday that they were not out on tour since November of 2008. After six months of giving away Ensemble Galilei recordings at Mologne House, Carolyn Surrick, the group’s founder, decided that they needed to record the music that they were playing for the wounded warriors and their families. She called her friends in the industry and everyone agreed to donate their time—the recording engineer, to the studio, the mastering engineer, the photographer, the graphic artist, and the compact disc manufacturer.  That effort resulted in the creation of Above and Beyond, and since its release in 2009, four thousand compact discs have been given away to wounded warriors, their families, and the medical practitioners at Walter Reed. When the recordings are sold to the public, the money goes to manufacturing more CDs and then if there is money left over, the group donates it to The Special Operations Warrior Foundation. This year, at the urging of their audience at Walter Reed, Trio Galilei recorded a new CD, titled Home. Again, all of the aspects of the recording were donated by members of the recording industry, including Bias Studios in Springfield VA, Oasis Disc Manufacturing, local designer Marilyn Drea and photographer Burgess Blevins.

The group was also honored this year when they received the William Donald Schaefer People Helping Award for their ongoing work at the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda. The ensemble can still be found every Friday afternoon, from 11:30 to 1:00, playing music for wounded warriors and their families at the Warrior Café. However, it would be easier to hear them while they are in town, and their Irish concert is one you won’t want to miss!

The Christ Church Concert Series is sponsored in part by a grant from the Talbot County Arts Council with funds provided by the Maryland State Arts Council.  This Sunday’s concert is free and open to the public.  Christ Church is located at 111 South Harrison Street in downtown Easton.  A freewill offering will be received.

Christ Church Brass to Perform Music of the Renaissance

On Sunday, March 11 the Christ Church Brass will present an array of selections from composers including Pitoni, Palestrina, Molter, and Brahms as part of the 11 am morning worship service.  Prelude music will begin at 10:50 am.

Prelude music will begin with Cantate Domine, a gem composed by one of Italy’s leading composers of the late Baroque, Giuseppi Pitoni.  The piece, though commonly known as a choral motet, lends itself beautifully to four part instrumental writing, and the timbres of the brass maintain the brightness of composer’s original intent.   Another of Italy’s celebrated composers from the Renaissance period, Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, will be featured next in the lineup.  This particular composer is, perhaps, the finest representative from the sixteenth-century Roman School of musical composition.  Palestrina, whose work had both significant and lasting influence upon sacred music, is regarded as quintessential in polyphony of the Renaissance.

Johannes Brahms who was unswayed by the principles of the “New German School” believed the old methods of composition could still communicate the essence of German Romanticism.  Illustrative of this sentiment is his Lass dich nur nichts nict dauren, op. 30 which will also be featured.  A masterfully crafted composition, it is an eloquent setting of a text by seventeenth-century author, Paul Flemming.  Of particular interest is the double canon between the first trumpet and trombone and the second trumpet and trombone.  Added to the serene mood of the piece is the light and transparent organ accompaniment throughout.

During the communion, the brass quartet will feature the work of the German Baroque composer and violinist, Johann Melchior Molter.  Educated in Eisenach, the composer went on to study composition in Italy for about two years before becoming court Kapellmeister at Karlsruhe and later, in 1734, of the court of Duke Wilhelm Heinrich of Sase-Eisenach.  Listeners will recognize in his setting of Hertzlich tut mit verlangen a tune widely known as the Passion Chorale used prevalently in J. S. Bach’s setting of the St. Matthew Passion.

In addition to the music of the brass quartet, the Christ Church Choir will present during the offertory Sir John Stainer’s, God so Loved the World from late nineteenth-century oratorio, The Crucifixion.  The piece will be preceded by the tenor solo that segues into the beloved a cappella chorus.  The soloist will be tenor, Jason Kakuk.  Also, featured will be the Christ Church Choral Scholars in a setting of George Herbert’s text, Lord, Who Hast Formed Me arranged by a South Carolina composer, Arlen Clarke.

For more information about this and other music offerings at Christ Church, please visit www.christchurcheaston.org or call 410-822-2677.

Accomplished Violinist to Perform with Christ Church String Quartet

The Christ Church String Quartet will perform a series of pieces appropriate to the Lenten season at the 11:00 worship service at Christ Church Easton this Sunday, February 25.  Guest violinist Netanel Draiblate, concertmaster for the Annapolis Symphony and rising star in the violin world, will be performing as part of the ensemble.  Hailed as “an extremely gifted violinist with a strong stage personality and charisma,” Netanel Draiblate has concertized across four continents. The versatile artist performs as a soloist, chamber musician and recording artist, and The Washington Post has called him “a violinist who combines confidence and virtuosity with a playful musical personality.”  Draiblate made his solo debut at Carnegie Hall in 2008.

Prelude music will begin on Sunday at 10:45 am.  The quartet will open with the lovely Canzona in d minor (BWV 588) by J. S. Bach.  Originally composed for organ, the piece contains four distinct voices lending itself to this rendition performed by two violins, viola, and cello.  Following the canzona, the quartet will be joined by oboist Heidi Schultz to present an aria from Bach’s Cantata BWV 197.  Originally composed for a wedding ceremony, the elegant piece is in the form of a trio sonata originally written for soprano solo, here substituted by the oboe.  At the communion, the string quartet will perform the immensely popular, The Prayer by Carol Sager and David Foster.  The piece will precede the Adagio from Concert in d minor (BWV 1060) also by Bach.  This charmingly exquisite movement will feature both Mr. Draiblate and Ms. Schultz with continuo.  Also, included in Sunday’s lineup is Gilbert Martin’s When I Survey the Wondrous Cross to be performed by the Christ Church Choir.   A classic in the world of choral literature, the arrangement contains all the elements of choral expression beginning with a pensive and reflective beginning that builds to an unrestrained and passionate resolve at its conclusion.

Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in downtown Easton.  The public is invited to share in this experience.  For more information, call 410-822-2677 or visit www.christchurcheaston.org.

Maryland State Boychoir to Perform at Christ Church Easton

On Sunday, February 11 at 4 pm, the Maryland State Boychoir will perform at Christ Church in Easton.  The performance under the direction of Artistic Director, Stephen Holmes will feature the Tour Choir and Young Men’s Choir.  Founded in 1987 with 14 boys, the mission of The Maryland State Boychoir has been to foster the boychoir tradition by offering talented boys opportunities to sing and build self-esteem, self-discipline and character. Thirty years later, the MSB still embraces that goal and is now comprised of approximately 130 choristers and five choirs.

Recognized as Maryland’s “Official Goodwill Ambassadors,” the MSB performs over 80 times annually. In addition to performing throughout Maryland, the boychoir performs  in surrounding states, and on tours that have taken them to Ireland, Wales, England, The Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Italy, France, Canada, Iceland, Bermuda and more than thirty-five states in the mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest, and Southwest regions of the U.S. Throughout the state of Maryland, the MSB has performed at the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, the United States Naval Academy Chapel, the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, the Lyric Opera House, the State House, the Governor’s Mansion, the College of Notre Dame of Maryland, and Loyola College. Throughout the U.S., the MSB has performed at the White House, the Kennedy Center, the PGA President’s Cup, the National Cathedral in Washington DC, St. Patrick’s and Holy Trinity Cathedrals in New York, Dickinson College in Pennsylvania, Capitol University in Ohio, and The University of Central Arkansas.

In addition to its live performances, the MSB has produced six recordings: The Healing Power of Music (2013), Brothers (2006), Remember Me (2001), What Sweeter Music (1998), The Maryland State Boychoir—Live in Performance (1997), and An Die Musik (1994). They have been featured on NBC’s “Homicide: Life on the Street,” National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered,” and on Maryland Public Television. In addition, its Christmas CD, What Sweeter Music, was broadcast nationally on National Family Radio.

Sunday’s concert is sponsored in part by the Talbot County and Maryland State Arts Councils.  Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in downtown Easton.  Doors open at 3:30 pm, and a freewill offering will be received.  For more information, call 410-822-2677 or visit www.christchurcheaston.org.

U. S. Naval Academy Organist to Perform at Christ Church Easton

This Sunday, January 21, at 4 pm Monte Maxwell, principal organist for the United States Naval Academy, will present a concert on the four-manual console of Christ Church in Easton. Mr. Maxwell holds degrees from Texas Christian University, the Curtis Institute of Music, and the Juilliard School of Music where he studied with John Weaver. While at Curtis, Mr. Maxwell was an Associate Organist at the John Wanamaker Store playing the famed six-manual organ, the largest playing organ in the world. Later, he received an Artist Diploma, Curtis’ highest degree. At the Naval Academy, Mr. Maxwell commands the five-manual, 268-rank organ in the main chapel, which has recently undergone substantial enhancement under his direction and design. His annual All Saints’ Day Organ Concert has become a staple of the Naval Academy and greater Annapolis cultural community. The standing-room-only event drew some 3,000 people into the Naval Academy Chapel in 1998, breaking all records in attendance for any event throughout the Chapel’s history.

Sunday’s concert will be comprised of a host of works composed by Richard Wagner, J. S. Bach, Charles-Marie Widor, John Phillip Sousa, Anton Dvôrak and others.  Also known for his improvisational prowess, Maxwell will conclude the performance with an improvisation on submitted themes.  The concert is part of the Christ Church Concert Series and is underwritten in part by the Talbot County and Maryland State Arts Councils.  Doors open at 3:30 pm, and the public is invited.  A freewill offering will be received.  Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in Easton.  For more information, call 410-822-2677 or visit www.christchurcheaston.org.

Christ Church Easton Celebrates Advent

This Sunday, December 10, Christ Church in Easton will present music of the Advent season in two contrasting lineups.  During the morning 11:00 service, the Christ Church Brass will present two selections transcribed for brass from George Frederick Handel’s Messiah as well as other seasonal selections including J. S. Bach’s, Shepherds Wake!  A Voice is Calling often referenced as Wachet auf, ruft us dir Stimme.  Additionally, the Christ Church Choir will present Charles Villiers Stanford’s Benedictus in C, a majestic and powerful example of the English repertoire.  Prelude music will begin at 10:50 am.

At 4:00 pm, the music ministry will combine to present Advent Lessons and Carols which will include the Christ Church Choir, the Choral Scholars, St. Peter’s Carillion (the adult handbell choir), the Christ Church Boychoir, harp, oboe, flute, and organ.  The program, officially part of the Christ Church Concert Series, is a service of Advent music developed at Salisbury Cathedral and St. James Cathedral in Chicago.  Among the various musical selections are the work of composers including Palestrina, Johann Sebastian Bach, Elizabeth Posten, Francis Patrick O’Brien, Malcolm Archer, and others.  A freewill offering will be received, and the public is cordially invited to attend.  Support for this musical feast is given in part by the Talbot County Arts Council and the Maryland State Arts Council.  Doors open at 3:30 pm.  The church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in downtown Easton.

Christ Church to Host Annapolis Chamber Ensemble and Two World-Class Pianists

The Christ Church Concert Series in Easton continues its 2017-18 season this Sunday afternoon at 4 pm featuring the Annapolis Chamber Players.  The ensemble whose members have been collaborating for more than fifteen years is composed of some of the finest musicians in the Baltimore-Washington DC area.  Known for their eclectic programs with repertoire ranging from the eighteenth through the twenty-first centuries, the ensemble specializes in mixed chamber music for winds, strings, and piano. Unlike homogeneous chamber groups, such as a string quartet or woodwind quintet, the Annapolis Chamber Players’ diverse instrumental colors and flexible instrumentation offers a variety of musical colors and styles.

Woobin Park and Stefan Petrov

While all six of the ensemble’s members unite to amass a most impressive cache of honors and distinctions, its two pianists, each a world-class talent, will perform on Sunday’s concert. Dr. Woobin Park made her Carnegie Hall debut in 2010 to critical acclaim. The New York Concert Review raved“…Park gave a brilliant performance, handling the virtuosity with beautiful sense of style…” She has appeared throughout the United States and South Korea in solo and chamber recitals as well as solo performances with orchestra. Park has performed in distinguished concert venues including Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Steinway Hall in New York, Strathmore Hall in Washington D.C., Elizabeth Horowitz Performing Arts Center in Maryland, Tedmann Concert Hall in Minneapolis, Auer Concert Hall in Bloomington, Indiana and Preston Bradley Hall of the Chicago Cultural Center. Her live performances have been nationally broadcast on WFMT in Chicago and KSJN in Minneapolis. Woobin has earned prizes in several competitions including the Los Angeles Liszt International Piano Competition, where she was also awarded “Best Performance of the Required Work,” San Nicola di Bari International Piano Competition in Italy, University of Minnesota Concerto Competition, and American Protege International Competition of Romantic Music. On Sunday, Dr. Park will perform Carl Frühling’s Trio for Clarinet, Violoncello and Piano, Op. 40 with clarinetist and ensemble director, Phyllis Richardson and cellist Dorotea Racz.  In addition to her performing career and masterclasses throughout the country, Dr. Park serves on the piano faculty at Washington College.

American-Bulgarian pianist Stefan Petrov, whose arresting interpretations and broad musical versatility has captivated classical music audiences as a soloist and a chamber musician in venues across Europe, North America and the Caribbean, will perform Johannes Brahms’ Trio in E-flat Major for Piano, Violin and French, Op. 40 along with violinist Kristen Bakkegard and hornist, Heidi Brown. Mr. Petrov’s performances have been broadcast on CBC (Canada), WDAV(NC), WFMT (Chicago), WMRA(VA) and Bulgarian National TVand Radio. He has appeared in Steinway Hall (New York, NY), Steinway Series at the Smithsonian Museum (Washington D.C.), the Bulgarian National Palace of Culture, Teatro Nacional (Dominican Republic), Chicago Cultural Institute and others. Equally at home as a collaborative pianist, Stefan partners frequently with Israeli-American cellist Amit Peled in recitals across the U.S., while also serving as head of the collaborative piano department at the prestigious Heifetz International Music

Sunday’s concert is partially funded by a grant from the Talbot County Arts Council and the Maryland State Arts Council.  Doors open at 3:30 pm, and the public is invited.  A freewill offering will be received to support this and upcoming concerts.  Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in downtown Easton. For information call 410-822-2677 or visit www.christchurcheaston.org.

Christ Church to Host Multiple Music Events This Weekend

This Sunday, October 29, Christ Church in Easton will present multiple music events and invites the public to attend.  During the 11:00 a.m. service the Christ Church Brass will present music of the Reformation in Benjamin Culli’s Reformation Suite.  Carlos Zabala, a frequent trumpeter at Christ Church, will perform in collaboration with organ Voluntary for Trumpet and Organ by Domecq Smith.  Also, included in the musical lineup will be Sonata da Chiesa by Charles Callahan.  An original composition in three movements, the piece is characterized by expansive, flowing lines for the brass and its ongoing dialogue with the organ played by Dale Krider.  Concluding the morning service will be the brilliantly festive La Rejoussance from Handel’s Water Music Suite.  Prelude music will begin at 10:50 a.m.

At 6 pm in the evening, theater organist Michael Britt returns for the third consecutive year to accompany on the large screen the 1923 silent film classic The Hunchback of Notre Dame. The program, sponsored in part by the Talbot County and Maryland state arts councils, has become one of the highlights of the Christ Church Concert Series drawing enthusiasts of all ages for this capacity crowd event.  Doors open at 5:30 pm and early arrival is recommended.  Attendees are asked to note the time change of the event which is necessary for showing of the film.

For more information about either these or other music-related programs of Christ Church Easton, please call 410-822-2677 or visit christchurcheaston.org.

Christ Church Ensemble to Welcome Guest Musicians

On Sunday, October 22 at 11 am, the Christ Church String Quartet will be joined by bass player Christopher Hofer and local flautist Sally Montgomery.  One of two resident ensembles, the other being the Christ Church Brass, the quartet is a flexible ensemble that occasionally expands to include a variety of chamber ensemble configurations.  Also included in Sunday’s  appearance will be Dale Krider on the continuo part.  The ensemble will be directed by music director Wes Lockfaw.

The repertoire for Sunday will begin with a prelude starting at 10:50 am.  The first selection will be the four-movement Chamber Suite in D by George Frideric Handel.  Following the baroque sonata da chiesa form, meaning church sonata, the work was transcribed by Samuel Applebaum from the original Violin Sonata, Op. 1, No. 15.  The first movement Adagio is through-composed, a very common feature in many baroque compositions.  That is, the movement has a continual generation of thematic ideas.  The second and fourth movements, faster in tempo, are in sonata-allegro form which evolved from the binary dance form.  Movement three, like the first, is a slower Andante movement.  Following the suite, the chamber ensemble will perform a 2010 composition by German composer, Joachim Johow.  The piece which prominently features the flute opens with the flute on a simple but elegant theme accompanied by string orchestra and harpsichord.  Before proceeding to the second section of the work, the opening section repeats but with a much more complex and fluid flute part.  Like the opening section, the second section of the piece ensues with the flute playing a part that resembles the mood of the opening section, then following by a more improvisatory repeat.  The piece concludes by recapitulating the opening section.

During the service, the chamber ensemble will join the Christ Church Choir in a rendition of “O God Beyond All Praising” derived from the tune THAXTED.  A very familiar piece, the tune originated from Gustav Holst’s 1918 composition, The Planets.  At the communion, the string orchestra will render J. S. Bach’s beloved “Sheep May Safely Graze” followed by a hymn based on the lovely chorale “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” also by Bach.  Concluding the musical feast, Dale Krider will perform a Toccata by French composer and organist Théodore Dubois.

The public is cordially invited to attend Sunday’s presentation of music.  For more information contact 410-822-2677.  Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in downtown Easton.

Christ Church Easton Celebrates Music Sunday

On Sunday, October 1 Christ Church in Easton will celebrate its second annual Music Sunday.  Started in October 2016, the emphasis was a way to recognize those who participate in the church choirs or ensembles.  During the midpoint of the service, a blessing will be said by the Reverend Dr. William Ortt recognizing all who participate in the various ministries.

Sunday’s Music Dedication will begin with prelude music starting at 10:50 am.  Selections will include Edward Elgar’s beloved “Salut d’Amour” featuring Carlos Zabala on the trumpet, “All Praise to Thee” based on George F. Handel’s Largo for handbells and organ, and Benedetto Marcello’s “Psalm XIX” for brass quintet and organ.  The latter, a Baroque piece based on the text “The Heavens Declare the Glory of God” is a ceremonial piece often associated with grand and glorious occasions.  Also featured within the service will be Elgar’s “Nimrod” from the Enigma Variations played by the Christ Church Brass Quartet with Dale Krider at the organ, Handel’s “The Trumpet Will Sound” from the oratorio Messiah” arranged for brass and organ, and a host of other iconic titles.  The centerpiece of Sunday’s selections will be the combination of adult and children’s choir, organ, brass, and timpani in Lloyd Larson’s festive anthem “Psalm 150” conducted by Wes Lockfaw, music director.

Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in Easton, and the community is invited.  For information on this or other musical offerings at Christ Church, call 410-822-2677 or visit www.christchurcheaston.org.


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