2022-2023 Season

Autumn Harvest

October 23, 2022 | 3 PM
St. Ann’s Catholic Church
4001 Yuma St. NW
Washington, DC

We open the season with Autumn Harvest, a concert of beautiful romantic and modern choral works for guitar, piano and chorus.  The program will include works inspired by the “En Plein Air” or “outdoor” style of painting, with poetry about nature and autumn. The concert will feature several Washington premieres by emerging composers, as well as secular partsongs by Brahms, and a performance of Jeffrey Van’s hauntingly beautiful work for guitar and chorus, “A Procession Winding Around Me,” a setting of four Civil War poems by Walt Whitman. The program will also include Estonian composer Veljo Tormis’ late 20th century a cappella masterpiece Autumn Landscapes.

Featured artists will include Mark Edwards, Guitar, Sophia Kim Cook, piano, Foster Wang, violin, and Daniel Frankhuizen, cello

 

Guitarist Mark Edwards has been hailed by the Montgomery Advertiser as a player who “transfers to another zone, effortlessly strumming, plucking and picking a variety of classical masterpieces with clarity.” Susan Brall says, “If you want to hear the best, you will want to catch Mark Edwards performing…His talent is unbelievable.”

Mark began his life dedication to the classical guitar after seeing guitarist Benjamin Verdery perform a concert in Boaz, Alabama. For further inspiration, he looked to the great masters of the guitar, such as Andres Segovia, Julian Bream, and David Russell.  Mark’s major teachers during this formative time were Dr. Andrew Zohn and Douglas Back.   Mark earned his undergraduate diploma Magna Cum Laude from Columbus State University’s Honors Program, his Master of Music in Guitar Performance and Guitar Pedagogy from the Peabody Institute of Music, and his Graduate Performance Diploma also from Peabody.  He is currently completing his Doctorate in music under the mentorship of Julian Gray.

 

Violinist Foster Wang has been praised by The New York Times for his “seductive” playing and by Musical Opinion for his “impressive virtuosity” and “playing of great assurance.”

He is a member of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band, and has given solo recitals in such renowned concert halls as Wigmore Hall in London and the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris. A devoted chamber musician, Foster has performed with Yo-Yo Ma and members of the Silk Road Ensemble, and has been featured on the nationally syndicated radio program From the Top. Foster recently completed a fellowship at the New World Symphony in Miami, where he had the privilege of serving as concertmaster under such distinguished conductors as Michael Tilson Thomas.

Born and raised in New York City, Foster began his musical education at the age of four with his parents, both of whom were professional violinists in China. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard University and a Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School. His principal teachers include David Chan, Lynn Chang, Naoko Tanaka, and Rafail Sobolevsky.

 

Daniel Frankhuizen has performed throughout the United States and abroad as a soloist, chamber musician, and in several pop groups. He has performed in venues from Alice Tully Hall and Carnegie Hall, to the Corcoran Gallery of Art, and Storm King Art Center. He has served as principal cellist for the Empire Chamber Orchestra and Opera in the Ozarks Festival Orchestra and section cellist with the Binghamton Philharmonic and Hudson Valley Philharmonic.

Daniel is a founding member of the Orvieto Piano Trio. A group that, over the last ten years, has performed classical piano trio literature throughout the United States, Canada, and Italy. In 2014, the Orvieto Piano Trio released a recording of works by Mendelssohn, Smetana, and Piazzolla. In 2018, Daniel was Artist-in-Residence at the Chinquapin Arts Center in Oregon with the Chinquapin String Quartet, where they premiered an electro-acoustic opera by composer Alex Vassos.

 

View the program


O Great Mystery

December 18, 2022 | 5 PM
Church of the Epiphany
1317 G St. NW
Washington, DC

In December, the Washington Master Chorale will present a concert of a cappella seasonal masterpieces, including Francis Poulenc Quatre Motet pour le temps de Noel, and Thomas Luis de Victoria’s ancient masterpiece Missa O Magnum Mysterium. The program will also feature favorites from the British choral tradition including works of Howells and Healy Willan, and secular winter works on texts of e.e cummings and Sara Teasdale.

 

 

 

 

Poetry Into Song

March 5, 2023 | 5 PM
The National Presbyterian Church
4101 Nebraska Ave. NW
Washington, DC

The conclusion of our 13th season will end with a landmark event, the world premiere of The Unknown Sea, by renowned composer David Conte. It will feature mezzo soprano Lena Seikaly, SATB chorus, piano, and chamber orchestra and is based on the texts of preeminent American poet, Elizabeth Bishop.  Conte will attend the premiere and participate in a pre-concert conversation led by former Poet Laureate of California, Dana Gioia. The Unknown Sea will be paired with Ralph Vaughan Williams’s masterful cantata, Dona Nobis Pacem based on Walt Whitman’s poems and texts from the Hebrew Bible and Latin Mass, and re-orchestrated by British composer and conductor Jonathan Rathbone. The cantata features soprano Laura Choi Stuart, Soprano and James Rogers, baritone.

 

 

David Conte is the composer of over one hundred and fifty works published by E. C. Schirmer Music Company, including seven operas, works for chorus, solo voice, orchestra, band, and chamber music.  He has received commissions from Chanticleer, the San Francisco, Oakland, Stockton, and Dayton Symphonies, the Atlantic Classical Orchestra; and from the American Guild of Organists.  In 2007 he received the Raymond Brock commission from the American Choral Directors Association, one of the nation’s highest honors in choral music.  His work is represented on many commercial CD recordings, including in 2015 Chamber Music of David Conte, on the Albany label; in 2016 Choral Music of Conrad Susa and David Conte, on the Delos label; and in 2018 Everyone Sang: Vocal Music of David Conte on the Arsis label.   His opera The Gift of the Magi has received over 30 productions in the U. S., Canada, Europe, and Russia. He co-wrote the film score for the acclaimed documentary Ballets Russes, shown at the Sundance and Toronto Film Festivals in 2005, and composed the music for the PBS documentary, Orozco: Man of Fire, shown on the American Masters Series in the fall of 2007.   In 1982, Conte lived and worked with Aaron Copland while preparing a study of the composer’s sketches, having received a Fulbright Fellowship for study with Copland’s teacher Nadia Boulanger in Paris, where he was one of her last students.   He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University and his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from Cornell University, where he studied with Karel Husa.  He is Professor of Composition and Chair of the Composition Department at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he has taught since 1985.  From 2011-2022 he served on the composition faculty of the European American Musical Alliance in Paris. In 2014 he was named Composer in Residence for Cappella SF, a professional chamber choir in San Francisco.  In 2016 his song cycle American Death Ballads won First Prize in the NATS Composition Competition and was premiered by tenor Brian Thorsett and pianist Warren Jones at the NATS Conference in Chicago.

 

Hailed by the Washington Post as a “superb soloist” with a “sensitively turned lyric baritone”, James Rogers has performed as a soloist in opera, oratorio, concert and recital in the Washington area with ensembles including Cantate Chamber Singers (Curlew RiverNoye’s Fludde), the Fairfax Choral Society (Lord Nelson Mass), Opera AACC (Don Giovanni), the New Dominion Chorale (Bach Magnificat), Inscape Chamber Orchestra (Façade, Trouble in Tahiti, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen), Urban Arias (The Filthy Habit), the Washington Savoyards (The Merry Widow), the Arts Chorale of Winchester, the Annapolis Chorale, the Reston Chorale, and the City Choir of Washington (The Creation).

This season he has made debuts with the Chesapeake Orchestra (Songs of Travel) and the Reston Community Players (A Little Night Music). National appearances include concerts and recitals in New York, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Dallas, and Honolulu.

 

 

Hailed as “a lyric soprano of ravishing quality” by the Boston Globe, Laura Choi Stuart’s solo appearances this season include Elijah with Baltimore Choral Arts, Dona Nobis Pacem with Washington Master Chorale, a debut with Bach Vocal Artists of Orlando, The Enlightenment Festival with Seraphic Fire, and a return to Washington National Cathedral for Messiah and the Monteverdi Vespers.

Recent season highlights include Mozart Requiem and Handel Israel in Egypt and Messiah, also at Washington National Cathedral, Christmas Oratorio with Washington Bach Consort, Brahms Requiem with The Washington Chorus and Fauré Requiem with The Choral Arts Society.

In opera, she has appeared on the mainstage with Boston Lyric Opera, Opera Boston, Annapolis Opera, Lake George Opera, the In Series, and Opera North in roles including Musetta, Adina, Gilda, Pamina, and Frasquita, and in premieres of new American works with Washington National Opera as part of the American Opera Initiative.

Laura was honored for art song performance at both the 2010 and 2012 National Association of Teachers of Singing Artist Awards and as one of the 2009 Art Song Discovery Series winners for the Vocal Arts Society.

Laura is a passionate teacher, and serves as Head of Vocal Studies at Washington National Cathedral and on the vocal faculty of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. She shares clear (fun) voice education for adult choral singers at TheWeeklyWarmUp.com.

She received her training at The Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program for Singers, Opera North, and Berkshire Opera, as well as The New England Conservatory (Presidential Scholar) and Dartmouth College (Summa Cum Laude).

 

 

 

 

 


Springtime Supper + Song

Late Spring, 2023

Alexandria, VA

Please join us for our elegant annual benefit dinner, Springtime Supper and Song, featuring the WMC Chamber Singers and pianist Sophia Kim Cook presenting a preview of our 2023-2024 season.  The program will be held in a private residence in Alexandria, VA and will include wine, hors d’oeuvres and a delicious buffet dinner following the program.