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Principal Conductor Juanjo Mena and the CSO join the May Festival for a bouquet of heartfelt works. A famous love letter here, some of Schubert’s spellbinding songs there, and the “radiantly sublime” (The Los Angeles Times) soprano Joélle Harvey shining in a mystical work by Britten. We complete the program by featuring the sopranos and altos of the May Festival Chorus singing two ethereal hymns from Holst’s Rig Veda, as well as selections from Los Angeles composer Reena Esmail’s tribute to women who have shaped the world.
The May Festival, led by Principal Conductor Juanjo Mena and joined by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, opens with a prismatic program that brings each voice into light. The CSO strings blossom in Bruckner, and Sara Couden’s “huge and fluid voice” (San Francisco Chronicle) shines in a neglected work by Julia Perry, a composer with Ohio roots. Experience the angst of Mahler’s Songs of a Wayfarer, sung by baritone Elliot Madore, before being transported to another plane when members of the May Festival Chorus reunite to perform three of Holst’s hymns on texts from the Rig Veda.
Rewatch the live virtual interview hosted by Matthew Swanson, Associate Director of Choruses, with the acclaimed composer Jessie Montgomery and special guest Christopher Eanes, Executive Director of Cathedral Choral Society in Washington, D.C.
Consider anew the foundation of singing: breath. Rachel Roberts of The Yoga Bar led a contemplative and breath-focused class of yoga, mantra and pranayama featuring a musical performance by Sarah Folsom.
Two leading authorities on American music, Dr. Tammy Kernodle of Miami University and Dr. Doug Shadle of Vanderbilt University, join forces to explore moments of crisis in American history and the musical responses that followed. Click the video to begin watching.
Watch our distinguished panel of Cincinnati arts leaders as they discuss how choral organizations can creatively address the challenges of COVID-19.
Dr. Wendy LeBorgne, Voice Pathologist & Singing Voice Specialist
Dr. Joe Miller, Director of Choral Studies (incoming), UC-CCM
Robyn Lana, Managing Artistic Director, Cincinnati Youth Choir
Jason Alexander Holmes, Artistic Director, Cincinnati Boychoir
Todd Duesing, Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Cincinnati Arts Association
Betsey Zenk Nuseibeh, Executive Director, Melodic Connections
Host: Matthew Swanson, Associate Director of Choruses, Cincinnati May Festival
John Adams, the 2020 May Festival Artistic Partner, chats with May Festival Associate Director of Choruses Matthew Swanson about his choral music, his past collaborations with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and May Festival Chorus, and his life as one of the world's leading composers.
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