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Mixed Choral Chorus from MT, United States.

Musikanten (German for "musicians") was formed by Artistic Director Kerry Krebill in 1979 in Bethesda MD, as a project for her masters degree in choral conducting at the Catholic University of America. In its 31 seasons, the ensemble has made nearly a thousand appearances, including DC area concerts at the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, Kennedy Center, and venues in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Maryland, as well as 19 international tours, including Maestra Krebill's 50th birthday celebration singing Monteverdi's Vespers in Venice with the acclaimed ensemble now known as the Venice Baroque Orchestra. The group continues to perform in the Washington area, appearing each year at a local First Night celebration, singing a traditional Latin Mass at St. Mary's in downtown DC, and to tour; in September 2007 Musikanten made its first foray to South America, performing in Buenos Aires, La Plata and Ayacucho, Argentina.

In June of 2004, Maestra Krebill instituted Helena Choral Week in her new home in Montana, inviting singers from the Helena Symphony Chorale, Musikanten and other ensembles to come together in Helena for an intensive week of rehearsals, concerts, classes and private lessons. Building on the success of this project, Musikanten Montana was established as a new choral chamber ensemble in Helena in September of 2004. The new group's first season included liturgies at St. Peter's Episcopal Cathedral, St. John's Lutheran Church and the Cathedral of St. Helena, culminating in two performances, in Helena and Missoula, of Monteverdi's masterpiece, the Vespers of 1610, as part of the Montana Early Music Festival, which the ensemble sponsored.

Musikanten Montana continues to produce the Montana Early Music Festival, hosting guest performers from across the US. In addition to Monteverdi's Vespri and Bach's Hohemesse, repertoire has included Handel's Dixit Dominus, Charpentier's Le Reinement du St. Pierre, Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri, Scarlatti's Stabat Mater, Valls' Missa Scala Aretina, Cavalieri's La Representazione di Anima e di Corpo, Bach's Jesu, meine Freude and his Johannespassion. Featured performers from the festival's inception have included tenors Kevin Sutton and Steven Soph, soprano Evanne Browne, mezzo-soprano Marjorie Bunday, contralto Bailey Whiteman, baritones Brian Ming Chu, Bobb Robinson, Robert W. Tudor, James Shaffran and Joel Lankford and bass-baritone Richard Dirksen, as well as keyboard and continuo artists Gabriel Shuford (harpsichord), John Lenti (lute and theorbo), Brady Lanier (cello and gamba), and organists Keith Reas, Brent Erstad, Denise Finn, Joe Munzenrider and Dale Fleck.

Missoula's popular Brandhout Ensemble (founded in 2003 - under the indomitable leadership of traverso player Katherine Skinner) has also figured prominently in the chamber concerts of MEMF, forming the core of the MEMF Chamber Orchestra, performing both in Helena and Missoula each year and hosting prominent Baroque flute players from around the country.

Besides the Helena Choral Week in June (now attracting singers from all over the US and Argentina) and the spring Montana Early Music Festival, Musikanten Montana continues to sing an annual concert for All Souls, the Advent Lessons and Carols, and Christmas Eve Prelude and Mass at St. Peter's Cathedral. The ensemble also searches out collaborative appearances in the Helena community - in November 2007, the group participated in "Raise the Roof!" - an event celebrating Harper Lee's classic To Kill a Mockingbird, which featured two local actors, the Helena Middle School Voices of Tomorrow and a gospel choir from Great Falls. In August 2009, the ensemble was honored to perform music for "Catch and Release," featuring 4 fly-fisherman on the Boulder River choreographed by Ann Carlson under an American Masterpieces Dance grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Singers from Musikanten Montana continue to venture to Washington DC and further (including the spring 2009 tour to the Baltic capitals) to perform with their Washington DC friends. Musikanten Montana has invited Argentina conductor Andres Bugallo to Montana for the 2010 Early Music Festival, continuing on to Washington to conduct the combined Musikanten forces in Schutz' Musikalisches Exequien and Scarlatti's Stabat Mater.


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Musikanten : Sacred Choral Music of Robert Evett : 00  1 CD : Kerry Krebill : Robert Evett

Musikanten : Sacred Choral Music of Robert Evett

Review: Robert Evett (1922-1975) was a highly esteemed American composer who was a major contributor to the cultural life of Washington, DC. A student of Roy Harris and Vincent Persichetti, Evett was nominated for Pulitzer prizes not only in music but also for his literary contributions: he was critic and editor for the New Republic, Atlantic Monthly and Washington Star. Evett composed in many genres, including orchestral and chamber music. His devout and personal choral pieces for the Catholic liturgy are undiscovered gems that deserve a wide hearing, not just on Sundays. The works on this disc, some a cappella, some with organ accompaniment, span music for Christmas and Lent, as well as the daily offices of Prime, Vespers and Compline. Masterfully sung by the 19 voices of Musikanten, the oldest choral chamber ensemble in the nation's capital, the music is given sublime interpretations in the warm environment of the Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church, Bethesda, MD. Conductor and founder of the group, Kerry Krebill, directs the expressive and precise performances that led Musikanten's previous CD to be nominated Choral CD of the Year by Chorus! Magazine.

Songlist: Prime, What An Attractive Thing Is Judgment, Propers for the Second Sunday in Lent, Propers for the First Mass of Christmas, Vespers, Four Marian Antiphons, Compline

6826c | 00 1 CD | $15.98 | A Cappella

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