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Melodia Women's Choir 'Visions of Peace'

 23 November 2013 at 07:30 pm 

Melodia Women's Choir 'Visions of Peace'

Church of the Holy Apostles
296 Ninth Avenue, NYC, New York
United States
+1 800-838-3006

Cynthia Powell, Conductor
Taisiya Pushkar, piano
Rita Costanzi, harp
Barbara Merjan, percussion
Transfiguration Quintet

Melodia Women’s Choir of NYC led by Artistic Director Cynthia Powell opens its eleventh season with 'Visions of Peace,' a bold and irrepressible holiday program centered on a Melodia reprise performance of Benjamin Britten’s “A Ceremony of Carols.” Composed for women's voices and harp in 1942, “A Ceremony of Carols” is one of Britten’s most beloved works, resonant for its purity of spirit and sense of hope and joy. It is a fitting tribute to mark the centenary of the English composer, born on November 22, 1913, and celebrated around the world through Britten 100 events.

In atmospheric complement to Britten’s piece, “Seven Part-Songs for Female Voices and Strings,” by Gustav Holst (1874-1934) is an ethereal and deeply haunting work set to the poetry of Robert Bridges (1844-1930). In perfect counterpoint is Paul Csonka’s (1905-1995) sensuous Spanish-language piece “Concierto de Navidad,” rarely performed settings of three Spanish Christmas carols sparked by the rhythms of Cuba.

“This concert is eclectic, but will come together beautifully,” said Powell. “Holst is a natural to pair with Britten - they both had a profound appreciation for great poetry. And Paul Csonka’s ‘Concierto de Navidad’ is a gem that will lead into several popular tunes in jazz samba style, arranged for our instrumental forces.”

Performing throughout the concert will be award-winning pianist Taisiya Pushkar (, accomplished harpist Rita Costanzi (, percussionist Barbara Merjan, and the Transfiguration String Quintet.

Benjamin Britten : A Ceremony of Carols
Gustav Holst : Seven Part-Songs for Female Voices and Strings
Paul Csonka : Concierto de Navidad
- - : Arrangement of popular samba songs

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