14 Mar From the Podium
Greetings Friends of Ars Choralis,
I am excited to tell you about our upcoming concert, inspired by the South African word ubuntu. Ubuntu is best described as Nelson Mandela’s message “that we are bound together in ways that are invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve ourselves by sharing ourselves with others and caring for those around us.” We look forward to sharing this message with you.
In response to the pain and suffering in a broken world, we sing the resilience and hope found in Maya Angelou’s words, “When we come to it, we are the possible” and, in the words of a Somalian proverb, “If we come together, we can mend a crack in the sky.” To counter despair and heartbreak, we offer songs of love and compassion in words from the 13th-century mystic Meister Eckhart and the revered Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu.
We in Ars Choralis see the “meanness and agony” in the world described by Walt Whitman in his poetry, and we prayerfully offer U2’s simple requiem for those who have suffered and died at the hands of others. We uphold 93-year-old World War II veteran Philip Spooner’s plea for equality for his gay son and hope that 13-year-old refugee Warda Mohamed’s dream of “a world free of violence, hatred and suffering” will come true.
We are proud to feature the joyful voices of the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice Youth Chorale, led by Harvey Boyer. We are pleased to present college-age members of Ars Choralis as soloists and readers. We welcome distinguished friends in music who will lend their talents to elevate the message of the concert: pianist JoAnne Schubert, percussionist Paul Chambers, banjoist Jim Sullivan, narrator Gilles Malkine and flutist Dennis Yerry, as well as violinists Elizabeth Silver and Jessica Bellflower, violist Elizabeth Handman and cellist Erica Pickhardt.
The quartet of string players will join us to perform “Hope of Loving,” an acclaimed work by the young composer Jake Runestad. Although Runestad’s music is new to Ars Choralis, it has fully captivated us with powerful texts of love and healing expressed in a unique balance of gorgeous harmonies and driving rhythms. In Runestad’s words, “It is through love, both given and received, that our world can change.”
We invite you to join us for this affirmation of the power of hope and love. Into a broken world, we sing ubuntu.
With warm regards,
Performances for The Poets Speak: Mending a Broken World are
Saturday, March 30 at 7 p.m. at The Pointe Church, 243 Hurley Avenue, Kingston
Sunday, March 31 at 4 p.m. at Overlook Methodist Church, 233 Tinker Street, Woodstock