In Celebration of the Human Voice - The Essential Musical Instrument
The Kansas City Chorale is a professional vocal ensemble that enriches the local, national and international communities through its dedication to excellence in performing music from diverse historical periods. In its twenty-ninth season, the Chorale will present nine concerts as part of their subscription series as well as seven non-subscription concerts.
The Chorale, along with the Phoenix Chorale, has signed a recording agreement with Chandos Records, and in October 2006, released their first recording on this label, Eternal Rest. Their recording of Grechaninov's Passion Week was released in February 2007, and The Sacred Music of Josef Rheinberger in November 2007.
In December 2007, Passion Week was nominated for four Grammy awards. Nominated categories included Best Classical CD, Best Choral Performance, Best Surround Sound CD and Best Engineering. On February 10, the Academy awarded a Grammy award to Passion Week for Best Classical Recording ,Engineering. In December 2008, Music of Josef Rheinberger was nominated in two Grammy categories, Best Choral Performance and Best Surround Sound Album. Mr. Bruffy's album with the Phoenix Chorale, Spotless Rose, won the Grammy for Best Performance by a small ensemble.
Recent performances by the Chorale include those at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center, the Troy Music Hall in Troy, New York, and as one of four invited choirs at the 2009 Incheon Choral Festival in South Korea.
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Review: Although he writes in all genres, Rene Clausen is today one of America's most popular choral composers, and for more than twenty years he has been the conductor of the internationally acclaimed Concordia Choir of Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota. On this release, choral works by Clausen are performed by the Kansas City Chorale, another choir of great international renown, whose recording, with the Phoenix Chorale, of Grechaninov's Passion Week won a Grammy award in 2008, in the category Best Classical Recording, Engineering. 'Set me as a Seal' is arguably the composer's best-known work, and has long been popular at weddings, funerals, and in the concert repertoire. Clausen has described the work as 'various kinds of discussions between God and humans, both from the human aspect and from the God aspect, so a lot of variationsÉ of love, of disappointment, of anxiety, of doubt'. All that hath life and breath is one of Clausen's earliest works, and a favourite of choirs across the world. The Mass for Double Choir was commissioned by the Kansas City Chorale. The composer, who had never written a mass before, looked on it as an 'interesting challenge'. In the work emotions ebb and flow kaleidoscopically, taking the listener from the strength of the unison writing at the opening, to the sorrowful falling lines of the Crucifixion of Christ and the bubbling, dancing figures for the Resurrection. Expressions of praise spill forward atop one another in the Sanctus, a choir of angels too exuberant to be contained.
Songlist: All that Hath Life and Breath Praise the Lord, O magnum mysterium, The Tyger, The Lamb, Mass: Kyrie, Mass: Gloria, Mass: Credo, Mass: Sanctus, Mass: Agnus Dei, Magnificat, Prayer, O vos omnes, A New Creation: Set me as a seal
Review: In this their fifth recording for Nimbus, the Kansas City Chorale are very much on their home turf, with a programme of American sacred music, which includes Randall Thompson's famous Alleluia.
Songlist: Southern Harmony, Hark, I Hear the Harps Eternal, Come Away to the Skies, Precious Lord, Take My Hand, Shaker Songs, I Want to Shake with Indignation, I've Set My Face for Zion's Kingdom, The Precious Way of Go, Encouragement, The Sacred Harp, Wondrous Love, Saints Bound for Heaven, Sunday Morning, Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing, Alleluia, E'en So, Lord Jesus, Quickly Come, All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name, Sing Me to Heaven, Spirituals, I Wanna Be Ready, We Will March Thro' the Valley, I Want Two Wings, Is There Anybody Here, My God is a Rock, Give Me Jesus
Review: This collection opens with a group of four songs scored for three-part women's chorus and the unusual combination of two horns and harp. They are settings of an interesting spread of poems including one by Ossian and the Clown's song from the thrid act of Twelfth Night. Other items include Three Songs Op. 42, Two Motets, Op. 29 and, to finish with, one of the songs from Brahms much loved 'Neue Liebeslieder Waltzes', Op. 65.
Songlist: Four Songs for Women's Chorus, 2 Horns and Harp, Op. 17, Three Songs, Op. 42, Four Quartet, Op.92, Two Motets, Op. 29, Op. 112, Nos. 1 and 2, Five Songs, Op. 104, Neue Liebeslieder, Walzer, Op. 65, No. 15
Review: Listening to this new CD was a sublime pleasure, I was immediately struck by the beauty of the choral tone, at once warm and pure. The repertoire is a magnificent blending of the familiar... with previously unrecorded works of John Corigliano, Conrad Susa, and Jean Belmont. This recording is a necessity for all choral conductors. It represents the best of choral singing and introduces some fine new works. Choral Journal
Songlist: At the Round Earth's Imagined Corners, L'Invitation au Voyage, The Passionate Shepherd to His Love, The Roadside Fire, A Red, Red Rose, Reincarnations, Op. 16, Fern Hill, Shenandoah, Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier, Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ye, I'm Goin' Away, Deep River
Review: A program of Christmas music by American composers, the Kansas City Chorale sings pieces from the late nineteenth century to the present. Composers include Ned Rorem, Norman Dello Joio and Charles Ives. This recording also contains several premier recordings, including 'Nativitas' by Jean Belmont. This cycle of eight choral cameos depicts the ceremony of Christmas with texts from the fourth through seventeenth centuries. According to the composer, 'The intent in 'Nativitas' is to create a musical shape which conveys some of the anticipation, reverence, mysticism and celebration surrounding the Birth of Jesus Christ.' This is a great alternative to traditional Christmas recordings.
Songlist: Three Mystical Carols, In the Time of Softest Snow , Shout the Glad Tidings , Silent Night, Nativitas , Love Came Down at Christmas, A Christmas Carol , Three Shepherd Carols , The Holy Infant's Lullaby, There Is No Rose , I Saw Three Ships , Sweet Was the Song the Virgin Sung , "Silent Night" from Three Carols, Op. 20