hero_Noel! Noel!

Noel! Noel!

On Sunday, December 20, at the Church of the Epiphany, the Washington Master Chorale presented Noel! Noel!, an assortment of time-burnished carols, motets, folk ballads, shape–note hymns, and chants ranging from Medieval to modern times. In programming this seasonal spectacular, the Chorale reached into its catalog of past winter concerts to select works by composers from both sides of the Atlantic from Estonia (Arvo Pärt, “Bogoroditse Djevo”) to Minnesota (Stephen Paulus, “Three Nativity Carols”).  Texts will be no less diverse ranging from the 16th century Piae Cantiones, to the poetry of Christina Rossetti (“In the Bleak Mid-winter”) and e.e. cummings (“Little Tree”) and Mother Thekla, the longtime spiritual muse of the late Sir John Tavener (”Today the Virgin”).  Concert goers can also expect to hear Chorale favorites Charles Ives (“A Christmas Carol”), Robert Shaw (“Deck the Halls”), Healy Willan (“Hodie, Christus Natus Est”), and Gustav Holst (“Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent) among others.  And no Chorale holiday concert would be complete without several selections from “Carols for Choirs” the masterful compilation of songs edited by the late Sir David Willcocks, arguably the most influential choirmaster of his generation.

The centerpiece of Noel, Noel! will be the world premiere of Russell Nadel’s “Early Winter Tree” commissioned by the Washington Master Chorale for chorus and harp.  Through artful interweaving of harp and voice, Nadel’s impressionistic composition with a text by American lyric poet Sara Teasdale, both evokes winter’s time of sadness and loss and presages the inevitability of spring’s renewal.

So strike the harp and join the chorus for a concert that will fill you with joy and hope for a bright new year.

(Photo by Diane Kresh)

Meet the Guest Artists

Russell Nadel, composer

Russell Nadel

Russell Nadel

Russell Nadel graduated from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland, in 2006, having earned Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Music Composition and a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education.  He has had original compositions commissioned and performed by adult and children’s performing ensembles in the United States and Canada, and has won a variety of awards for his compositions at the local, national and international levels.
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Rachel Carlson, assistant conductor

Rachel Carlson

Rachel Carlson

Rachel Carlson enjoys a versatile career as a conductor, soloist, chamber ensemble singer, and voice teacher based in the Washington, DC area.  She founded and serves as Artistic Director of Six Degree Singers, a community chorus in Silver Spring, Maryland, serves as Assistant Conductor of the Washington Master Chorale, assistant conducts the Chamber Singers and Women’s Chorus at the University of Maryland.  She is in demand as a vocal coach and adjudicator in the Washington, DC area.
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Paul Skevington, organ

Organist, Paul Skevington

Paul Skevington

Paul Skevington is a sought after choral accompanist in the Washington, D.C. area, and has an active schedule as a solo performer. He can be heard on five compact disc recordings, including two with trumpeter Phil Snedecor. He is soloist on the internationally released Organ Concertos by Joseph Rheinberger on the Naxos label. Organist Paul Skevington has been at St. Luke Parish in McLean since 1993.
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Lee Hinkle, percussion

Lee Hickle, percussion

Lee Hinkle

Lee Hinkle, D.M.A. is a percussionist and baritone vocalist whose percussion playing has been called “rock-steady” by the Washington Post. Dr. Hinkle is the principal percussionist with the 21st Century Consort, a position he has held since 2012. He made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in March 2014 with the world premiere performance of Baljinder Sekhon’s Double Percussion Concerto for two percussion soloists and wind ensemble. The live performance was released on CD in Fall 2014.
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Church of the Epiphany
1317 G St. NW
Washington, DC 20005

 

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Lee Hickle

Lee Hinkle, percussionist

Lee Hinkle, D.M.A. is a percussionist and baritone vocalist whose percussion playing has been called “rock-steady” by the Washington Post.  Dr. Hinkle is the principal percussionist with the 21st Century Consort, a position he has held since 2012.  He made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in March 2014 with the world premiere performance of Baljinder Sekhon’s Double Percussion Concerto for two percussion soloists and wind ensemble.  The live performance will be released on CD in Fall 2014.

Dr. Hinkle’s notable performances have included the National Symphony Orchestra and the Taipei Philharmonic Orchestra as well as tours with Bebe Neuwirth, Bernadette Peters, and the American Wind Symphony Orchestra.  With several CDs to his credit, Dr. Hinkle’s recordings can be heard on six different labels including the Capstone Records, New World Records, and C. F. Peter’s Corporation labels.  His forthcoming solo CD entitled “Theatrical Music for Solo Percussion” will be released on Albany Records in November 2014.

An active percussion recitalist and soloist, Dr. Hinkle has performed at universities and festivals across the US, several state PAS Days of Percussion, as well as two Percussive Arts Society International Conventions.  He is in demand as a soloist and clinician both locally and internationally.

Dr. Hinkle currently serves on the faculty at the University of Maryland in College Park, MD where he teaches, performs, and directs the UM Percussion Ensemble.  He also serves on the Percussive Arts Society Percussion Ensemble Committee and is the President of the MD / DE Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society.  Dr. Hinkle is a Yamaha Performing Artist and proudly endorses Remo drumheads, Innovative Percussion sticks and mallets, and Grover Pro Percussion.

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Organist Paul Skevington has been at St. Luke Parish in McLean since 1993

Organist Paul Skevington has been at St. Luke Parish in McLean since 1993

Paul Skevington is the Minister of Music and Liturgy at Saint Luke Catholic Church in McLean, Va., and was very much involved in the project to secure the highly-acclaimed 61-rank Steiner-Reck mechanical-action pipe organ, installed in the church in 1998.  In his 21st year at the church, he has developed a well-rounded sacred music program with the 35 voice Festival Choir at the center of the musical activities.  In June of 2011, he led this choir in a pilgrimage to Italy, where they sang for masses at Saint Francis in Assisi and Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome.  They also sang for an audience with the pope and give a concert at Saint Ignatius in Rome.  The Festival Choir traveled to Paris in June of 2014.

Under Mr. Skevington’s direction, Saint Luke has become renowned as a superior site for concerts, with the Saint Luke Music in McLean concert series hosting 18 musical events per year.  The church has also served as a superior site for recordings with over 50 CDs recorded in this space.

Mr. Skevington is a sought after choral accompanist in the Washington, D.C. area, and has an active schedule as a solo performer.  He can be heard on five compact disc recordings, including two with trumpeter Phil Snedecor.  He is soloist on the internationally released Organ Concertos by Joseph Rheinberger on the Naxos label.  He has been invited to play the Organ Postlude mini-recital at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall on the new Casavant Organ on June 5, following the National Symphony Orchestra Concert.

Mr. Skevington  holds degrees in organ performance from Indiana University and a Doctorate degree in Liturgical Music from The Catholic University of America.  He is past dean of the Northern Virginia Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, and past chairperson for the National Association of Pastoral Musicians’ Section for Organists.

Rachel Carlson

Rachel Carlson

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Rachel Carlson enjoys a versatile career as a conductor, soloist, chamber ensemble singer, and voice teacher based in the Washington, DC area.  She founded and serves as Artistic Director of Six Degree Singers, a community chorus in Silver Spring, Maryland, serves as Assistant Conductor of the Washington Master Chorale, assistant conducts the Chamber Singers and Women’s Chorus at the University of Maryland.  She is in demand as a vocal coach and adjudicator in the Washington, DC area.  Under her direction, Six Degree Singers released their first album last year and was invited to perform in the Kennedy Center National Choral Festival in June, 2014.

Ms. Carlson has appeared as a soprano soloist with the Washington Master Chorale, Washington Bach Consort, Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Oregon Bach Festival, Tucson Chamber Artists, Festival Chorus of Madison, Potomac River Chorale, and Washington Revels.  Solo performed works include Bach’s Easter Oratorio, Christmas Oratorio, B minor Mass, St. Matthew Passion, Magnificat in D, Cantata 76, and Jesu, meine Freude, Telemann’s Der Tag des Gerichts and Deutsches Magnificat, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Little Organ Mass, Fauré’s Requiem, Finzi’s Requiem da Camera, Vaughan Williams’ Mass in G minor, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Jonathan Willcocks’ Lux Perpetua, Luna Pearl Woolf’s Après Moi, le Déluge, and Kenneth Leighton’s Awake my glory and An Evening Hymn.

Accomplished as a choral musician as well as a soloist, Ms. Carlson is a member of some of the finest ensembles in the United States, including Conspirare (Austin, TX), the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Tucson Chamber Artists, Washington Bach Consort, Vox Humana (Dallas, TX), Washington Master Chorale, and the Woodley Ensemble.  She performs extensively at the Kennedy Center with the National Symphony Orchestra and has sung under Helmuth Rilling, Simon Carrington, Emil de Cou, Rinaldo Alessandrini, Iván Fischer, and Paul Goodwin.  Ms. Carlson performs widely at ACDA and NCCO regional and national conventions around the United States and in 2007 made her first international choral tour.  In Wales, she competed as an alumna with the University of Maryland Chamber Singers at the prestigious International Musical Eisteddfod in Llangollen and the ensemble was awarded Second Prize in the Mixed Choirs division.

Ms. Carlson holds Bachelor’s degrees in both Vocal Performance and Music Education from the University of Maryland, as well as a Master’s degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  She is currently pursuing her DMA in Choral Conducting at the University of Maryland.

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Russell Nadel

Composer, Russell Nadel

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Russell Nadel graduated from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland, in 2006, having earned Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Music Composition and a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education.  While at Peabody, his primary instructors were Drs. Bruno Amato and Harlan Parker.  Mr. Nadel has had original compositions commissioned and performed by adult and children’s performing ensembles in the United States and Canada, and has won a variety of awards for his compositions at the local, national and international levels. Some of Mr. Nadel’s commissions include compositions for ARTSEDGE, the National Arts and Education Network and a program of the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC; the Vancouver Chamber Choir (Vancouver, BC); the guitar and viola duo Alturas Duo (New Haven, CT); the horn and harp duo apple orange pair (New Haven, CT); and the Woodbridge Flute Choir (Woodbridge, VA), among many fine groups and individuals. Notable composition awards include the 2013 Mu Phi Epsilon Original Composition Contest (Division III, Class A), the 2011 Ruth Boshkoff Composition Prize sponsored by the Organization of American Kodály Educators (OAKE), the 2010 Guild of Temple Musicians Young Composers Award, the Prix d’Été (twice), and more.

Mr. Nadel’s choral works Eldorado and Windy Nights were published in 2013 by Hal Leonard in the prestigious Henry Leck Creating Artistry Series, and his vocal work Shabbat Cycle was published in 2013 by Transcontinental Music Press, the premiere publishing house for contemporary Jewish music. Mr. Nadel’s compositions have been performed by individuals and ensembles in the United States in Canada, including the Phoenix Boys Choir (Phoenix, AZ), the Vancouver Chamber Choir (Vancouver, BC), the 2012 Treble Chorus of the OAKE National Conference (Phoenix, AZ), apple orange pair (New Haven, CT), Ruth and Timothy Mar (Seattle, WA), the Woodbridge Flute Choir (Woodbridge, VA), the 900-voice Sixth-Grade All-County Chorus of Fairfax County, Virginia, cantors Sharon Steinberg and Zev Sonnenstein, and elementary- and middle-school-aged students around the country.

Mr. Nadel has completed Orff Schulwerk Certification (three Levels plus the Master Level) and is currently serving as the Vice-President of the Middle Atlantic Chapter of the American Orff Schulwerk Association. He is currently in his second year as the Middle School Music Specialist at The Potomac School in McLean, VA, and before that taught for five years at Mount Vernon Woods Elementary School in Alexandria, VA, in Fairfax County Public Schools.

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