Saturday, May 10, 2014 E-mail

W. Powell


R. Powell

Robert Harris

R. Harris

051014_3sheet_cryjeremiah_fnl.jpgSaturday, May 10, 2014
7:00 PM

Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center

The Cry of Jeremiah

William Powell, DCINY Debut Conductor
Rosephanye Powell, Composer/Narrator
The Cry of Jeremiah (New York Premiere)

Robert Harris, Composer/Conductor
Robert Harris: Gloria (New York Premiere)

heather_hill_web.jpgSoloist: Heather Hill, Soprano

Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International

Contact us about this concert and future performance opportunities.




05-10-dciny-jeremiah-program.jpg Participating Ensembles:

Auburn University Choirs (AL)
The Augustana Collegiate Chorale & Angelus (SD)
The College of the Bahamas Choir (Bahamas)
Heritage Chorale of Eastern North Carolina
North Shore Community Singers (IL)
Saint Viator High School Choir (IL)
Wellington High School Concert and Chamber Choir (FL)
Winston-Salem State University Choir (NC)


Concert Photo Gallery

What They Said...

Read the review



Download the program

Participating Ensembles:


Auburn University Choirs, Alabama

051014_powell.jpgDr. William C. Powell is professor of music and director of choral activities at Auburn University in Auburn, Alabama (USA). He holds degrees from Alabama State University, Westminster Choir College, and Florida State University. At Auburn University, Powell teaches choral-related courses and he conducts the Chamber Choir, Concert Choir, Men's Chorus, and Gospel Choir. He has served as a guest conductor for various choral festivals and for various performances in Italy, at New York’s Carnegie Hall, Walt Disney World, etc. Powell has also given presentations for American Choral Directors Association, Intercollegiate Male Choruses, College Music Society, and others. His choral arrangements are published by Hal Leonard, Gentry Publications, and Oxford University Press.



The Augustana Collegiate Chorale & Angelus, South Dakota

The Augustana Choir has a rich history spanning more than 90 years. The Choir was founded in 1921 and chartered by the faculty of Augustana College to "serve God, the Church, and our school" through choral music. In the words of the choir's founding conductor, Dr. Carl Youngdahl, the choir would "perform a cappella and could thereby appear in the smallest of churches as well as the largest and our concert would be a sermon in song." Today, The Augustana Choir continues to bring sacred choral music of the highest caliber to people around the region, nation, and world.

051014_grevlos.jpgDr. Lisa Grevlos is associate professor of music and director of vocal studies at Augustana College, Sioux Falls, SD. She directs the Augustana Opera Theatre program, conducts the Augustana Women's Choir — Angelus, and teaches in the areas of applied voice, vocal pedagogy, singer's diction, and choral music education. She received the Doctorate of Arts degree in voice performance and opera stage directing from the University of Northern Colorado. She holds master of music degrees from Northwestern University, Evanston, in voice performance and choral conducting, and she completed her undergraduate degree in music education at Augustana College.

051014_svenningsen.jpgDr. Russell Svenningsen is assistant professor of music at Augustana College, Sioux Falls, South Dakota where he conducts the Collegiate Chorale and teaches applied voice. He holds a D.M.A., Music Education, from Boston University, an M.M. in Choral Conducting from the University of Cincinnati and a B.M., Music Education, from Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota. An active performer, Dr. Svenningsen is currently preparing the role of "Meriwether Lewis" for fall 2014 world premiere of "Meriwether," an opera by Jim Lahti and John Woodruff that deals with the gritty realities of Lewis' life after his two-year exploration of the American West.





The College of The Bahamas Concert Choir, Nassau, Bahamas

The College of The Bahamas Concert Choir was founded by its director, Audrey Dean-Wright, in 1998.
The Choir has performed nationally and internationally thrilling audiences with their choral expertise and varied repertoire from standard choral works to Bahamian Folk songs.

In 2012 they hosted and performed with '105 Voices of History;' and In 2013, delighted a New York audience in their performance 'From Classical to Calypso.' As the only non-American member of the South-east African-American Music Festival, they have concertized under the baton of outstanding composers such as Moses Hogan, Mark Butler and Rosephanye Powell, performing at historically black universities such as Fisk, South Carolina State and Savannah State. The choir had the honour to perform for President Nelson Mandela and the President of Botswana.

051014_dean-wright.jpgAudrey Dean-Wright, conductor, pianist, composer and poet, is probably the most prolific Bahamian composer, having composed over 250 compositions for voice, piano and flute. Her community choirs have distinguished themselves internationally, performing with John Rutter at Carnegie Hall, winning awards in Russia, Poland and China. She has been a featured composer at the Southeast African-American Music Festival, the International Symposium of Afro-Caribbean Composers and at Xavier University, Louisiana.



Heritage Chorale of Eastern North Carolina

Heritage Chorale of Eastern North Carolina grew out of eastern NC's celebrations of its 300th anniversaries. Preceded by the Hymnfest Choir, Heritage Chorale is 40+ singers who have presented concerts of historic music to chronicle 300 years of settlement in historic eastern NC. Its director is Cheryl Arthur Kite. In 2012, the Chorale sponsored the creation of Carolina Coast Choral Festival to assist in building choral skills and repertoire in the area. Administered by area church and community choral directors, the Festival premiered in May 2013, with Dr. Robert Harris conducting.

051014_kite.jpgA church organist and director since her teens, Cheryl Arthur Kite has served churches in the Carolinas and Illinois, she is currently organist for Trinity UM Church, Jacksonville, NC. In 2009, she co-founded the New Bern/Craven Hymnfest Choir, which has evolved into Heritage Chorale of Eastern NC. In 2012, she co-founded Carolina Coast Choral Festival, which premiered with Dr. Robert Harris conducting 85 voices and orchestra in Shubert’s Mass in B-flat. Cheryl is a retired development executive, holds a B.A. in church music/business from East Carolina University, and studied at Northwestern University.    





Saint Viator High School Choir, Illinois

The Saint Viator High School Choir program is a rapidly growing group of enthusiastic young singers from grades 9 - 12. Under the leadership of Mrs. Kristina M. Sandrock, the program has expanded to feature three choirs that not only perform for school concerts and masses, but also provide music for fundraising events and other performances in the community. The Saint Viator Choirs maintain a solid grounding in technique and music theory as they study a well-balanced repertoire featuring different styles of choral literature. Several students have performed as part of the ILMEA All-State and Honors Choirs, and many alumni have maintained their involvement in choral singing at prestigious colleges and universities throughout the United States.

051014_sandrock.jpgMrs. Kristina M. Sandrock is the choral director at Saint Viator High School in Arlington Heights, IL. She holds a Master's degree in Music Education from Northwestern University, where she studied conducting under Dr. Robert Harris and Professor Victor Yamposky. Mrs. Sandrock also holds Bachelor's degrees in English and Music Education from Northwestern University and Elmhurst College. Mrs. Sandrock has had an active performance career as a vocalist, performing with the DuPage Opera Theatre for four years and in the symphonic concert of Howard Shore’s Lord of the Rings at the Auditorium Theatre in 2004.  Mrs. Sandrock currently performs as a freelance vocalist at churches throughout the Chicagoland area, as well as serving as the music director and a soprano for The Canterbury Carollers, a Victorian caroling ensemble. With the Canterbury Carollers, Mrs. Sandrock had the honor of performing at the White House in 2008 and 2010.

In addition to her performing credits, Mrs. Sandrock is an Illinois State Certified Teacher and has extensive experience music directing, conducting choirs, and teaching music to students of all ages. She has served as music director for many musicals with children's theatres, high schools, and community theaters, and has also taught piano and voice lessons from her private studio in Elmhurst, IL.


The Wellington High School Chorus, Florida 

The Wellington High School Chorus has a long history of excellence in South Florida.  The program has performed both nationally and internationally, most recently at Carnegie Hall in 2011 and Ponce, Puerto Rico in 2013.  In their hometown of Wellington (Florida) they keep an active performing schedule and regularly earn superior rating at choral festivals around the region.

A native of East Greenwich, Rhode Island, Bradford Chase is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music and the University of Connecticut.  He has conducted ensembles of all ages and experience levels, from elementary schools to professionals, including multiple youth orchestras, magnet arts schools, and various ensembles at Harvard University. Equally at home in both orchestral and choral music, his ensembles have performed extensively throughout both the United States and Europe.


Winston-Salem State University Choir, North Carolina 

The Winston-Salem State University Choir is one of the oldest student organizations on the campus. There is evidence to prove that the institution of the choir predates the Department of Fine Arts/ Music, of which it is now a part. In the illustrious past of the choir, names such as Noah Ryder appear as one of the founding fathers of both the choir and the Department of Music. After Noah Ryder, famous composer and conductor, the choir was led by Dr. James A. Dillard. Other composers/conductors that have continued the unforgettable traditions of the choir have been Dr. Roland Allison, Dr. Permilla Dunston, Dr. Robert Morris, and Dr. James B. Kinchen, Jr.

The University Choir is now under the leadership of D'Walla Simmons Burke. This ensemble has performed commissioned works, such as On Imagination and I Too by Undine Smith Moore, Recent Reflections on Deep River by Michael Williams and Come Sunday arranged by S. Van Dixon. The choir also sings with the Winston-Salem Symphony Orchestra and the Gateways Festival Orchestra when major works are programmed. The choir received a $1,000.00 cash award and trophy from the American Negro Spiritual Festival in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1991 under the baton of Mrs. Burke.

051014_burke-simmons.jpgD'Walla Simmons Burke is the founder of three of the four choral ensembles currently existing within the Fine Arts Department at Winston-Salem State University (Winston-Salem State University Women; Winston-Salem State University Men and the renowned Burke Singers). She has performed frequently as a soprano and in such operas as Lost in the Stars, LaTraviata, Amahl and the Night Visitors, The Telephone and The Old Maid and the Thief. She continues to appear as a guest soprano.

She has studied voice with Anna L. Lumpkin (GA), Vernon Holliston (GA), Princess Brown (GA), Shelia Maye (VA), Samuel Roberson (VA), Dodi Protero (IL), William Warfield (IL), and mentor Roland M. Carter (TN). Simmons-Burke has held teaching positions in the Fulton County Public Schools (GA), Voorhees College (Denmark, SC) and presently at Winston-Salem State University where she has been the Director of Choral &Vocal Studies and Coordinator of the Choral/Vocal/Piano Area of the Fine Arts Department for 20 years.



What They Said...


"Thank you so much for allowing Rosephanye and me to be listed in DCINY’s Concert Series this year, and to perform in Alice Tully Hall on Saturday. We had such great rehearsal and performance experiences due to the quality and caliber of your work. Your knowledge, expertise, and selective criteria make DCINY such an outstanding company. Your harmonious staff (no pun intended) is the first evidence of your high standards. EACH staff member with whom I came in contact during the entire process was purposefully fit for the job and role he/she fulfilled. Their strong sense of professionalism and their individual areas of expertise reveal even further why DCINY is a top-notch company."
- William Powell

Twitter  #cryofjeremiah

"So pumped to perform on such a famous stage with some of the most amazingly talented people I know."
Kaitlyn Baxendale @kaitlynbax

"Dr. Powell just told me and the tenors around me, "y'all just lit. Up. Out there." Tonight's gonna go well."
Taylor Vogl ‏@Bari_Claritone

"These are young people with limited means, and except for a few, have never had the opportunity to sing in a major concert hall with a fine orchestra. I've been at Manhattanville College for 4 years, and it's been a slow, sometimes difficult process of exposing them to the real musical culture scene. This event was another step into opening their eyes on what is out there beyond the walls of the college."
-John Cuk, Manhattanville College


Review of the May 10, 2014 concert - The Cry of Jeremiah

"The Cry of Jeremiah... is a theatrical work that demands not just to be heard, but to be experienced in all its glory."

"Gloria is a work filled with brilliance and poignancy."


Distinguished Concerts International New York (DCINY) presented a concert of works by prominent African-American composers and scholars Robert Harris and Rosephanye Powell in a program entitled The Cry of Jeremiah, at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on May 10, 2014. Mr. Powell was to conduct the New York premiere of his Gloria. The Cry of Jeremiah (also a New York premiere) was to feature the composer, Ms. Powell as the narrator, with her husband William Powell conducting. With approximately two hundred and fifty singers from Alabama, Illinois, Florida, North Carolina, South Dakota, the Bahamas, and "individuals from around the globe," it was the tried-and true DCINY formula: Bring together talented musicians and let the magic unfold. This performance was no exception.

Opening the concert was the Gloria. It is a five-movement work scored for chorus, soprano soloist, and orchestra. The movements are Gloria in excelsis Deo, Laudamas Te, Domine Deus, Qui tollis, and Quoniam tu solus sanctus. As is stated in the notes, any of these movements could be performed independently. Often this modular approach leads to some unevenness, but the five movements mesh together well. Gloria is a work filled with brilliance and poignancy. Gloria in excelsis Deo is strongly reminiscent of the opening movement of John Rutter's Gloria in both the brass and vocal writing. Soprano soloist Heather Hill was exceptional in her role in the Domine Deus and Quomium tu solus sanctus movements. Her upper register was crystalline in its clarity and beauty, with an exquisitely controlled vibrato that was perfect for this work. This listener found the Qui tollis to be particularly compelling both harmonically and stylistically. The bold final movement dies away to a quiet ending with the word Amen delivered almost in a whisper. Mr. Harris is a no-nonsense conductor, who led with understated restraint. It was a performance of which the chorus, orchestra, and soloist could be proud.

Read the complete review




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