DCINY’s Inaugural 2008 Concert

Monday, January 21, 2008, 8PM, Martin Luther King Jr. Day

inaugural_poster.jpgCarnegie Hall, Isaac Stern Auditorium
The Music of Karl Jenkins

Jonathan Griffith, Conductor
Distinguished Concerts Orchestra International
Distinguished Concerts Singers International

Lori Singer, Cello
Pamela Hinchman, Soprano
Tracy Watson, Mezzo-soprano
William Watson, Tenor
Ricardo Herrera, Bass

Hymn – In Memoriam: Martin Luther King, Jr. (World Premiere)
Walter Cronkite, Recording of Martin Luther King, Junior’s "I Have a Dream" speech


Accompanied by “The Armed Man film” (U.S. Premiere)

View the ensembles and read their biographies

Concert Artists

Karl JenkinsKarl Jenkins, Composer, was born in Wales and educated at Gowerton Grammar School before reading music at the University of Wales, Cardiff. He then commenced postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music, London. It was in jazz that he initially made his mark. In those days of ‘Jazz Polls' he was a prolific poll winner, playing at London's famous Ronnie Scott's club before co-forming Nucleus, which won first prize at the Montreux Jazz Festival and appeared at the Newport Jazz Festival, Rhode Island. This was followed by a period with Soft Machine, one of the seminal bands of the 70s. Through many incarnations, ‘Softs' defied categorization, playing venues as diverse as Carnegie Hall, the classical BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall, the Reading Festival as well as touring the USA and Europe. In the field of advertising music, he has won the prestigious D&AD award for best music [twice], the ‘Creative Circle Gold' and several ‘Clios' [New York] and ‘Golden Lions' [Cannes]. Advertising credits include Levi's, British Airways, Renault, Volvo, C&G, Tag Heuer, Pepsi, as well as U.S./global campaigns for De Beers and Delta Airlines. In addition he gained Bafta ‘gongs' for his scores for the documentaries "The Celts" and "Testament." After this period as a media composer, his return to the music mainstream was initially marked by the success of the "Adiemus" project. "Adiemus," combining a classical base with ethnic vocal sounds, ethnic percussion, and an invented language, topped classical and pop charts around the world, and was performed in cities as diverse as Tokyo, Madrid, London, Helsinki, Munich etc. The Armed Man; A Mass For Peace, commissioned by the Royal Armouries for the millennium and premiered at the Royal Albert Hall, London, has had over 300 performances, while the CD, featuring the National Youth Choir of Great Britain and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, has gained "Gold Disc" status in the UK. Recent commissions include the harp concerto "Over The Stone" commissioned by HRH the Prince of Wales for the Royal Harpist, Catrin Finch; the concertante, "Quirk," commissioned by the London Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Sir Colin Davis as part of its 2005 centenary season; and "In These Stones Horizons Sing," featuring Bryn Terfel, Catrin Finch with the WNO Orchestra and combined chorus which was premiered at the Royal Gala opening of the Welsh Millennium Centre in the presence of Her Majesty The Queen. In the summer of 2005, he scored his first feature film, "River Queen," starring Kiefer Sutherland and Samantha Morton. Following the success of Requiem, which went to No.1 in the UK classical charts, his latest release is "Kiri Sings Karl" with the great soprano, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa. He was recently the subject of the ITV South Bank Shows' special by Lord [Melvyn] Bragg as well as being a ‘castaway' on "Desert Island Discs." In 2004 he entered Classic FM's "Hall of Fame" at No.8 and has been in the top ten both in 2005 and 2006. Karl holds a Doctor of Music degree from the University of Wales and has been made both a Fellow and an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music, where a room has been named in his honor. He has fellowships at Cardiff University, the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Trinity College Carmarthen, Swansea Institute, and was presented by Classic FM with the Red f award for outstanding service to classical music. He was awarded an OBE, by Her Majesty The Queen, in the 2005 New Years Honors List "for services to music."

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Jonathan GriffithJonathan Griffith, Conductor, Co-founder, Artistic Director, and Principal Conductor of Distinguished Concerts International New York, is an active conductor, educator, lecturer, and consultant. His conducting credits in this country and abroad include the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Salt Lake City; Manhattan Philharmonic and New England Symphonic Ensemble, both in performances at Carnegie Hall; Nova Amadeus Orchestra, Italy; The European Symphony Orchestra, Spain; Bohuslava Martinu Philharmonia and Philharmonia Chorus, Virtuosi Pregensis Chamber Orchestra, Karlovy Vary Symphony Orchestra, and Dvorák Chamber Orchestra, Czech Republic; Bialystok State Philharmonic, Poland; and several regional orchestras and choruses in the U.S. As the conductor of the World Premiere of Earnestine Rodgers Robinson's The Nativity in Carnegie Hall, he was featured in an interview which aired on National Public Radio's Morning Edition, and also appeared in two recent documentaries about Ms. Robinson and her music - "Hidden Treasure" and "Sounds of a Miracle." During the summer of 2007, he conducted his ensemble, the Jonathan Griffith Singers, in performances of Verdi's Requiem at two historic venues in Italy - the Church of Santa Marie Sopra Minerva in Rome and the Cathedral Duomo in Pisa, the latter which was celebrating the 20th anniversary of its designation as an international historic landmark. Of the Pisa concert, a reviewer for Il Tirreno said, "The Mass' performance received great acclaim resulting in an extended standing ovation. Those attending the concert found the Duomo's unique architecture and beautiful lighting added to the concert, thus giving it a magical spiritual quality." He made his Carnegie Hall conducting debut in 1989. His 45-plus Carnegie Hall appearances span the major works of the classical repertoire and include the U.S. premieres of Taneyev's Upon Reading a Psalm, Czech composer Miloš Bok's Missa Solemnis, Luigi Boccherini's Villancicos, and Eugène Goossens' re-orchestration of Handel's Messiah, as well as numerous world premieres, including Eric Funk's Pamelia, Seymour Bernstein's Song of Nature, and Robert Convery's The Unknown Region and I Have a Dream. He has served as chorus master for the Utah and Portland Opera companies; founded the Kansas City Chorale and the Jonathan Griffith Singers; and was a member of the faculties of the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Wichita State University, Marylhurst University, and Warner Pacific College, the last two in Portland, Oregon. A native of St. Louis, he received his B.M.E. from the University of Kansas, an M.M.E. from Wichita State University, and his D.M.A. in Conducting from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

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Lori SingerLori Singer, Cello, daughter of conductor Jacques Singer and protégé of legendary cellist Leonard Rose, made her symphonic debut as soloist at age 13 with the Oregon Symphony. National attention came to Ms Singer with the coupling of her acting and musical talents as leading actress in the acclaimed television series "Fame." Her subsequent career of leading roles in the films "Footloose," "Falcon and the Snowman," "The Man with One Red Shoe," "Trouble in Mind," "Equinox," "The Last Ride," and "Shortcuts," have garnered for her a Golden Globe Award, Newcomer of the Year Award at Sho West, a Silver Halo, and an Indie Spirit Award nomination for Best Actress. She was the producer of the film "Summer Heat." Additionally, she had a starring role on the television series, "V.R.5." Her latest feature film, "Grisha," which she authored, is currently in pre-production. She is honored to play this tribute to the heroic Martin Luther King, Jr. on Perelman Stage in Carnegie Hall. Tonight, Lori is playing on a Benjamin Banks cello, courtesy of Gregory Singer Rare Violins, New York City.

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Pamela HinchmanPamela Hinchman, Soprano, was an Adler Fellow with San Francisco Opera. She has performed with opera companies and symphony orchestras throughout the U.S. and was named Musical America's Young Artist to Watch. She has also sung in major venues in Italy, France, England, Israel, Mexico, Austria, Egypt, and Hong Kong. She created the title role in the world premiere of Menotti's The Bride from Pluto at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and has performed with the Spoleto Festival in Italy, and opera companies at Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Kentucky, Florida, Nashville, Cleveland, New Orleans, Chautauqua, and Grand Rapids. During the 2006-07 season, she gave recitals at Indiana University, University of Michigan, Curtis Institute of Music, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, University of Illinois, Victoria Symphony in Australia, Cleveland Institute of Music, Riga Academy in Latvia, Vilnius Academy in Lithuania, Georges V Recital Series at the American Cathedral in Paris, Rostov State Theatre in Russia, and the University of Melbourne in Australia. In the same year, she appeared as Zerlina in Don Giovanni with Opera Grand Rapids, and performed in Gershwin Galas in Naples and Lucca, Italy; Haydn's Die Schöepfung and Harmoniemesse in Vienna and Eisenstadt, Austria; and Carmina burana with the Billings Symphony. During 2008, she will tour five cities in South Africa, give recitals and master classes at China Conservatory in Beijing, China; and University of Melbourne in Australia; and give recitals at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and the University of Cincinnati's College Conservatory of Music. A native of Pennsylvania, Pamela Hinchman received her Master's Degree in Opera from the Curtis Institute of Music. She was recently given an Alumni Achievement Award by the Cleveland Institute of Music for "significant professional achievement in performance." In addition to maintaining an active career in opera and concert, Ms. Hinchman is currently professor at Northwestern University where she recently was awarded University Research Grants for the 2005-06 and 2006-07 season for "Songs Without Borders," a project facilitating international music collaboration.

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Tracy WatsonTracy Watson, Mezzo -soprano, has been praised for her "rich, shimmering voice" and "dynamic stage presence." At home on both the opera and concert stages, she has appeared regularly throughout the United States and Europe. She began her career as a member of Chicago's Lyric Opera Center for American Artists. At her first audition in Germany, she was engaged to sing Dorabella in Mozart's Così fan tutte by the Städtische Bühnen Dortmund. This led to her first Nicklausse in Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann. While under contract at the Theater Oberhausen, Ms. Watson sang numerous leading roles including Cherubino and Stefano, as well as Mrs. Cratchit in the German premiere of Thea Musgrave's A Christmas Carol, which was later featured at the opening night of the Nordrhein-Westfalen Festival of New German Theater - Stadttheater Aachen. She has twice appeared with the Europera Festival in France, and has performed various operatic roles in concert, including Carmen and Cornelia (Giulio Cesare). Her current season includes appearances with Chicago Master Singers, a live WFMT broadcast of Songs of the Wayfarer, a special appearance as guest soloist at the American Opera Society's Gala, Messiah with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra and Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with Lake Forest Symphony. She returns to South Bend Symphony Orchestra as alto soloist in Prokofiev's Alexander Nevsky. Other recent appearances include Beethoven's Choral Fantasy and Haydn's Creation Mass, Verdi's Requiem in Barcelona (début), Haydn's Mass in Time of War at the Grant Park Music Festival, débuts with Madison Opera (Musetta in La bohème) and as soloist with the Duluth-Superior Symphony, Rosina in her return to Chicago Opera Theater, Intimate Händel at Chicago's Händel Week, and with the Grant Park Music Festival in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Long a GPS favorite, she has also performed in Borodin's Prince Igor with Zdenek Macal, Janacek's Glagolitic Mass with Hugh Wolff, Bruckner's Te Deum with Jesus Lopez-Cobos, and Beethoven's Mass in C with Christof Perick.

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William WatsonWilliam Watson, Tenor, most recently sang numerous performances as soloist in Bach's Christmas Oratorio and as The Evangelist in Bach's St. Matthew Passion with Xalapa Symphony, in a live NPR broadcast with Chicago's Music of the Baroque, and with the Bach Society of St. Louis, Buffalo Philharmonic, Portland Symphony, Nord Nederlands Orkest, and Oratorio Society of New York at Carnegie Hall. He has also appeared as The Evangelist in Bach's St. John Passion with the New Jersey, Youngstown, Alabama, and Kitchener-Waterloo (ON) symphony orchestras. He reprises his interpretation of this part during Bach Week in Evanston, Illinois, in May. During his long association with Chicago's Music of the Baroque, he has performed all of JS Bach's major works including numerous cantatas. He has also appeared as soloist in most of Händel's major cantatas and operas, including Alcina and Semele; works by Purcell; Monteverdi's operas, Vespers of 1610, Orfeo, Poppea, and Ulisse; and various works of Mozart and Haydn. Mr. Watson has performed at the Grant Park Music Festival as soloist in Bruckner's Te Deum with Jesus Lopez-Cobos, Mozart's Requiem with Christoff Perrick, Carmina Burana with Leonard Slatkin, Mozart's Davidde Penitente, Beethoven's Choral Fantasy, and Rachmaninoff's Vespers. On the opera stage, He sang the role of Elder Gleaton in Lyric Opera of Chicago's Susannah conducted by George Manahan, Strauss' Capriccio with Sir Andrew Davis, and in Lady MacBeth of Mtsensk conducted by Bruno Bartoletti. He created the role of President Van Buren in the world premiere of Amistad by Anthony Davis, conducted by Dennis Russell Davies. With Cleveland Opera, he sang Jaquino in Fidelio, Pedrillo in Abduction from the Seraglio, and David in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. He débuted as Tonio in Daughter of the Regiment with Chicago Opera Theater, and also performed Pedrolino in Mozart's Jewel Box and Amon in Philip Glass' Akhnaten. He also appeared as Apollo in Monteverdi's Orfeo with COT in Brooklyn Academy of Music's Monteverdi Opera Festival.

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Ricardo HerreraRicardo Herrera, Bass Baritone, an Adler Fellow at the San Francisco Opera Center, has appeared in many roles including Baron Douphol (La traviata), Zaretski and The Captain (Eugene Onegin), Henry B. (The Mother of Us All), and Second Mate (Billy Budd). Mr. Herrera recently débuted as the Marchese in Donizetti's Linda di Chamounix with Bel Canto at Caramoor. This past September, he made his New York opera début as Porteño in María de Buenos Aires with New York City's Gotham Chamber Opera. He performs as guest soloist in Beethoven's Symphony No.9 in gala concerts closing the 50th Anniversary Season of the Lake Forest Symphony Orchestra in May and June 2008. Mr. Herrera won First Prize in the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition, participated in Plácido Domingo's Operalia World Opera Contest, and with the Merola Opera Center where he performed the title role in the Western Opera Theater National Tour of Don Giovanni. After performing leading roles in the premiere season of Opera Aegean (Greece), he received the Demodocus Award which resulted in his Carnegie Hall début as the bass soloist in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Other operatic engagements have included Schaunard and Colline in La bohème with Western Opera Theater, the title role in Don Giovanni with Pine Mountain Music Festival, Escamillo in Carmen with El Paso Opera and the Oldenburgisches Staatstheater (Germany), The Green Knight in the American Opera Projects' premiere of Peaslee's Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Leo in the world premiere of Spratlan's Earthrise, the title role in Macbeth with Berkeley Opera, Pallante in Agrippina and Somnus in Semele, Cadmus with Chicago Opera Theater, Taddeo in The Italian Girl in Algiers with San Francisco Opera, and Tiresias and Le Veilleur in Enesco's Oedipe with Sinfonia da Camera. Mr. Herrera received a bachelor's degree from The University of Texas in his native El Paso and a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School.

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Walter CronkiteWalter Cronkite, Recorded excerpts from "I Have a Dream" speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., has covered virtually every news event during his more than 70 years in journalism - the last 57 affiliated with CBS News. He became a special correspondent for CBS News when he stepped down on March 6, 1981 after 19 years as anchorman and managing editor of the CBS Evening News. Affectionately nicknamed "Old Iron Pants" for his unflappability under pressure, he has won acclaim and trust from journalism colleagues and the American public alike. Born in St. Joseph, Missouri on November 4, 1916, he began his career in journalism as a campus correspondent at The Houston Post during high school and his freshman year at college. He also worked as a sports announcer for a local radio station in Oklahoma City and joined the United Press in 1937, where he remained for eleven years. In July 1950, he joined CBS News in Washington as a correspondent and was anchorman for their political convention and election coverage from 1952 to 1980. He assumed his duties on the CBS Evening News on April 16, 1962, which began as a 15-minute broadcast.

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