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Songs of Smaller Creatures - American choral works by Betinis, Kesselman, WhitacreGarrop, del Tredici, Rorem

Audio Samples

>Betinis, Abbie : Toward Sunshine, Toward Freedom
>     Songs of Smaller Creatures, for chorus
>Kesselman, Lee : Buzzings
>     Three Pieces about Bees, for chorus
>Whitacre, Eric : When David Heard
>Garrop, Stacy : Sonnets of Desire, Longing, and Whimsy, for chorus
>Del Tredici, David : Acrostic Song (from Final Alice), for saxophone & piano
>Rorem, Ned [Composer] : Motets (7) for the Church Year, for chorus
>Crabtree, Paul : Romantic Miniatures (5), for chorus
>Whitacre, Eric : Sleep

Album Summary

>Betinis, Abbie : Toward Sunshine, Toward Freedom
>Kesselman, Lee : Buzzings
>Whitacre, Eric : When David Heard
>Garrop, Stacy : Sonnets of Desire, Longing, and Whimsy, for chorus
>Del Tredici, David : Acrostic Song (from Final Alice), for saxophone & piano
>Rorem, Ned [Composer] : Motets (7) for the Church Year, for chorus
>Crabtree, Paul : Romantic Miniatures (5), for chorus
>Whitacre, Eric : Sleep
Performers Conductor Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

Conducted by Christopher Bell, Chicago's Grant Park Chorus, "as fine a symphony chorus as any to be found anywhere in the nation" (Chicago Tribune), makes its a cappella CD debut with an all-American program of eight imaginative, moving, and sometimes whimsical works written between 1975 and 2005, including four world-premiere recordings. Premieres include Abbie Betinis's Toward Sunshine, Toward Freedom: Songs of Smaller Creatures. Lee Kesselman's Buzzings: Three Pieces about Bees offers vignettes based on Emily Dickinson poems. Paul Crabtree's Five Romantic Miniatures is a set of affectionate tributes to characters from The Simpsons animated TV series. The chorus made its commercial recording debut performing with the Grant Park Orchestra on the 2011 Cedille Records release The Pulitzer Project, which attracted international attention. Chicago's New City said the CD "spectacularly showcased" the chorus's "remarkable transparency and flexibility."

American Record Guide, November/December 2012
The choir is perfectly placed on the sound stage: not too reverberant and not too close, but not too far either. Notes and texts. Enjoy the preliminary buzzing, then, but be ready for more. A lot more.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Ch (06/28/2011/06/30/2011).



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Works Details

>Betinis, Abbie : Toward Sunshine, Toward Freedom :: Songs of Smaller Creatures, for chorus
  • Performer: Hanna Dixon
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Ensemble: Grant Park Chorus
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 11 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2005

>Kesselman, Lee : Buzzings :: Three Pieces about Bees, for chorus
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 16 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1976

>Whitacre, Eric : When David Heard
  • Performer: Peter Sovitsky
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1999

>Garrop, Stacy : Sonnets of Desire, Longing, and Whimsy, for chorus
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 10 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2004

>Del Tredici, David : Acrostic Song (from Final Alice), for saxophone & piano
  • Performer: Amy Conn (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1976

>Rorem, Ned [Composer] : Motets (7) for the Church Year, for chorus
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 10 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Crabtree, Paul : Romantic Miniatures (5), for chorus
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1999

>Whitacre, Eric : Sleep
  • Conductor: Christopher Bell
  • Notes: Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, IL (06/28/2011/06/30/2011)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2000