Save the Date

Essence, Music of Amber, I Sing – The Body


Essence, Music of Amber, I Sing – The Body

When: March 18-19, 2011 @ 8 pm
Where: Roundhouse Performance Centre, (181 Roundhouse Mews, Vancouver, BC)

Pierre Simard

Kokoro Dance

Conductor / Performers

Pierre Simard
Kokoro Dance Dancers

The VSO and dance company Kokoro team up again for the Vancouver International Dance Festival. This concert will feature the premiere of a collaborative work between Kokoro and Waterhole, a new Vancouver band (with C.I.R. Scott Good) that defies traditional labelling. Working closely together, they will present a large scale new work inspired from Walt Whitman’s trenchant poem ‘I sing the body electric’ which explores the question: what is the soul, if not the body?

Michael Hynes Essence
Joseph Schwantner Music of Amber
Waterhole I Sing – The Body

Michael Hynes
b. Luxembourg / August 22, 1960

was written specifically for the 1991 New Music Concerts national composition contest (for which it was selected as the winning entry).
Mr. Hynes says about Essence:

“This piece was written as an overreaction to a lecture I had just heard, the names of the parties involved herein redacted. As Harold Bloom has said ‘all art is a reaction to lack of or, conversely, an overabundance of something’ – I felt the need to divest myself of the… emotional stimuli.

The competition concerned Herr Mozart (part of the CBC’s Mozart celebration). I used as raw material a 100 millisecond sample of the Jupiter Symphony. I applied various electro-acoustic manipulations to said sample to arrive at a piece of about ten minutes in duration. The result I then orchestrated to fit the specifications of M. Aitken’s band. As I had really bad gear, noise and digital hiccups etc. were included in the orchestration.”


Joseph Schwantner
b. Chicago, Illinois / March 22, 1943

Music of Amber

Music of Amber is indicative of Schwantner’s colouristic and evocative music. He provides a short lyric as guidance into the mood and meaning behind the piece.

Deep forests
a play of Shadows
most ancient murmurings
from a dark millennium
the trembling fragrance
of the music of amber
Joseph Schwantner

I Sing – The Body

I Sing – The Body is a reflection upon Walt Whitman’s poetic masterpiece I Sing The Body Electric. It is a celebration of the beauty of the human body, that dwells on its physicality and forms, its sexuality, and its divinity.

Program Notes © 2011 Scott Good

Original link:

March 18, 2011
8:00 pm
March 19, 2011
8:00 pm



When: Saturday 19 March 2011 at 8:00 p.m.
Where: The Orpheum
Ticket: Ticketmaster 1.855.985.ARTS (2787);

On March 19, the Vancouver Bach Choir presents Rachmaninoff’s All Night Vigil (Vespers), a stunning unaccompanied work that is considered one of Russia’s greatest musical achievements. In an unusual juxtaposition, the choir will also perform Still Life by Jordan Nobles, Erroneous Kudos by Iman Habibi and the world premiere of a specially commissioned work entitled Three Sitka Portraits by Owen Underhill.

The Rachmaninoff Vespers, or All Night Vigil, was premiered in Moscow in 1915 when Russia was at war and revolution was on the horizon. Rooted in the traditions of the Russian Orthodox Church, it has become an icon of Russian music. The work is unaccompanied and its rich sonorities will be wonderfully showcased by the 150-voice Vancouver Bach Choir. Soloists are fast-rising stars of the operatic world, Barbara Towell, mezzo and John Arsenault, tenor.

Jordan Nobles, Iman Habibi and Owen Underhill are all award-winning Vancouver composers working on the cutting edge of contemporary music.

Leslie Dala became Music Director of the Vancouver Bach Choir in July, 2010.

Described as “a dynamic young conductor, equally at home with symphonic music, opera and contemporary work”, Leslie Dala is in demand across Canada. He has been Music Director of the Prince George Symphony Orchestra for the past seven seasons, Chorus Director and Associate Conductor with the Vancouver Opera for five seasons and was recently appointed Principal Conductor of the Vancouver Academy of Music Orchestra. Maestro Dala’s first full concert debut as Music Director for the Bach Choir was on 11 December 2010, leading an unedited performance of Handel’s Messiah, hailed in reviews as “…sparkling…an exceptional reading. A fresh, inspiring performance of an inspired work.”

March 19, 2011
8:00 pm