2016 – 2017 Season
The Ars Musica Chorale is proud to announce its 2016–2017 Season, Making Peace, featuring five programs of outstanding choral, orchestral, and operatic works. Under the baton of Music Director Dusty Francis, Ars Musica’s fifty-first season includes collaborations with the Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra, the Adelphi Orchestra, Ars Musica’s own Encore Young Artists, and a roster of world-class soloists in some of Bergen County’s most breathtaking venues. Each concert will be preceded by a brief lecture exploring the works’ inspirations, as well as historical and contemporary significance.
The season opens Friday, November 18 at 8 p.m. with Gioachino Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle (Little Solemn Mass). Rossini penned this statement of personal faith more than three decades after completing his final opera and shortly before his death in 1868. Rossini described it as “the last of my sins of old age.”
Continuing one of Bergen County’s favorite holiday traditions, Ars Musica will present its annual Messiah Singalong on Friday, December 9, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, December 11, at 4:00 p.m. After an initially modest public reception, this piece gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music. Join your voice with one of the area’s most distinguished choruses for Handel’s cherished oratorio dedicated to the “Prince of Peace.”
On Friday, February 24, at 8 p.m., Ars Musica partners with the Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra for an evening of Beethoven, culminating in the dramatic finale to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, “Ode to Joy.” The words are from a poem written by Friedrich Schiller in 1785, with additions made by the composer. Today, it stands as one of the most-played symphonies in the world. Don’t miss this one-night-only performance at West Side Presbyterian Church.
Ars Musica goes to the opera on Saturday, March 18, at 8 p.m. for a program of beloved arias and choruses entitled Queen for the Night. Join us as we explore the always dramatic, never boring life of a diva in her natural element—competing love interests, mistaken identities, and (mostly) happy endings abound as we raise the curtain on this evening of vocal virtuosity.
Concluding Ars Musica’s season on Friday, June 2, at 8 p.m. are Ralph Vaughan Williams’s Dona Nobis Pacem (Grant Us Peace) and Franz Joseph Haydn’s Missa in Angustiis (Mass for Troubled Times) or Lord Nelson Mass. In Dona Nobis Pacem, Vaughan Williams produces his plea for peace by referring to recent wars amid growing fears of a new one. His composition includes texts taken from the Latin Mass, Walt Whitman, contemporary political speech, and the Bible. Haydn’s Missa in Augustiis, is one of six masses written near the end of his life which are seen as a culmination of his liturgical composition. Haydn’s chief biographer, H. C. Robbins Landon, claims it “is arguably Haydn’s greatest single composition”. Ars Musica’s 80-voice chorus is joined by the award-winning Adelphi Orchestra for this double-bill of two of music history’s greatest hits.
Ars Musica’s concert season is made possible in part by a grant administered by the Bergen County Division of Cultural & Historic Affairs from funds granted by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Ars Musica Chorale, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) registered non-profit organization.