|Halifax Camerata Singers Come Celebrate! 2019-20 Season (Halifax, NS) Halifax Camerata Singers launches its 2019-20 season (33rd) with programs moving from themes of Remembrance to a choral celebration with acclaimed Canadian superstar tenor, Ben Heppner. First up is To Soothe a Suff’ring Heart, a Remembrance-themed concert at Saint Andrew’s United Church on Saturday, November 9 at 7:30 p.m. The repertoire features Dan Forrest’s Requiem for the Living, Missa Pax by Tim Corlis and the premiere of a new work by Nova Scotia composer Derek Charke, Sonnet to the Moon. The concert’s title comes from a line in Sonnet to the Moon, written in 1823 by English poet, Helen Maria Williams. The concert features a guest chamber orchestra and clarinet soloist, Symphony Nova Scotia member, Eileen Walsh.
New this season, Camerata has invited members of the Nova Scotia Youth Choir to join the choir in a professional development opportunity for the fall term, and is pleased to welcome Molly Anderson and Morgandy Levy to rehearse and perform with them.Canadian tenor Ben Heppner joins Camerata for three concerts of Come Celebrate! in Nova Scotia in June of 202 in a special program of Gospel, spirituals, folk music and more. The Halifax performance is on Saturday, June 13 at First Baptist, with concerts in Amherst (June 12) and Lunenburg (June 14).Ben Heppner, renowned operatic tenor, public advocate for the arts, and radio broadcaster has been among the most sought after musical talents in the operatic world for almost three decades. His command of the heroic repertoire of Wagner, Strauss and Verdi, among others – is second to none. He is widely appreciated for the depth of his interpretations, his musicality and his humanity. Heppner won the CBC Talent Festival in 1979 and the Metropolitan Opera auditions in 1988. His career has taken him from Vienna to Paris, Berlin, London, New York and beyond. He set new standards in some of the most demanding operatic roles including such as Wagner’s Tristan, Verdi’s Otello and the complex role of Benjamin Britten’s Peter Grimes.
Ben Heppner has recorded numerous recordings and has won three Juno and three Grammy awards. He has nine honorary doctorates and has been the recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award. In 2008, he was promoted to Companion of the Order of Canada. Just last year, Ben received a lifetime achievement award from the Governor General Performing Arts Award. Five years ago Ben announced his retirement from the stage – but Canadians continue to hear his voice as host of CBC Radio’s Saturday Afternoon at the Opera and Backstage with Ben Heppner. He offers the insights and stories that can only come from someone who has spent a lifetime as an engaged interpreter and performer.
Camerata has been invited as guest artists in March by Symphony Nova Scotia to perform J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor, conducted by Jeff Joudrey. Performances take place at St. Andrew’s on March 21 and 22, and feature Jane Archibald (soprano), Vicki St. Pierre (mezzo-soprano), Philippe Gagné (tenor) and Joel Allison (bass-baritone). The choir will once again perform as the core choir of the Symphony Nova Scotia Chorus in December for two performances of Handel’s Messiah. on Friday and Saturday, December 20 and 21 in the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium, and in Beethoven’s massive opera, Fidelio, on May 1 and 3, 2020, along with soloists from the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance and the Nova Voce Men’s choir.
Founded by Artistic Director Jeff Joudrey in 1986, Halifax Camerata Singers includes performers from many parts of Nova Scotia, and is Atlantic Canada’s leading chamber choir. Supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Lloyd Carr-Harris Foundation, the SOCAN Foundation, the Province of Nova Scotia/Arts Nova Scotia, Halifax Regional Municipality and individual donors and corporate supporters, the choir has distinguished itself by performing exciting choral repertoire from many periods and styles, with special attention to Canadian music. Winners of Music Nova Scotia’s Best Classical Recording in 2016, and nominated for an ECMA in the same category in 2017, the choir also won the Healey Willan Grand Prize in the 2010 National Competition for Canadian Amateur Choir. Camerata often collaborates with chamber ensembles, Symphony Nova Scotia and other musicians. Their five recordings are for sale at the Symphony Nova Scotia Boutique, Taz Records, online and through iTunes, and are distributed through Naxos of America, Inc. through Halifax’s Leaf Music catalogue. Halifax collaborative pianist Lynette Wahlstrom accompanies the choir.
Tickets for To Soothe a Suff’ring Heart and Come Celebrate! (Ben Heppner concert) are on sale now through Ticket Halifax, and are $35 regular, $30 senior, and $20, student/under-waged. As well, patrons can purchase tickets to both Camerata feature concerts, with a 10% discount ($63/$54/$36). Please go to www.tickethalifax.com to purchase, or visit The Coast offices at 2309 Maynard Street, Halifax.
Tickets for Symphony Nova Scotia performances are available through the Dalhousie Arts Centre Cohn Box Office, http://www.dal.ca/dept/arts-centre.html.
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