Opera's Greatest Hits
Standing ovations from large, appreciative audiences at both the Rehoboth and Ocean View performances (April 20 and 21) made it obvious Opera's Greatest Hits was a hit in its own right. Please visit the Bravo page for audience comments.
The idea for this concert was suggested by SDCS member Carol Denenberg, who performed for many years in opera. Carol served as the narrator doing a wonderful job of explaining the plots and history of each work along with many humorous anecdotes. There was a strong resemblance to the above photo when Carol introduced Wagner wearing Brunhilda's horned helmet with the Flight of the Valkyries theme being played spontaneously by accompanist Paul Fleckenstein.
The chorus did an impressive job of performing the songs in Italian, French and German, but it was the professional solosists who "put the icing on the cake." Jennifer Holbrook and William Davenport, a husband and wife team from Philadelphia, have beautiful operatic voices that are wondrous as soloists and even better when singing together, especially the love songs.
Rehoboth resident Alex Helsabeck did an amazing job in his role as the toreador from Carmen. Alex honed his craft with the Singing Sergeants, Airmen of Note and most recently the Army Chorus. He performed Toreador at a White House dinner honoring the President of France. Alex sang in full toreador costume to the delight of the audience.
Interim Conductor Ann Freeman deserves much credit for getting more from the singers than most thought possible. This concert was a real challenge for a group that usually sings classical choral works. The volunteer chorus of about 50 singers worked very hard to learn the music and especially the text. The result was an absolutely beautiful concert.
A Holiday Voyage
Christmas Around the World
Audiences at both Bridgeville and Lewes demonstrated their appreciation for our performances with standing ovations. The program included Christmas songs from around the world, many sung in the native language (or as close as we could get!). Interim Conductor Ann Freeman did an outstanding job of leading nearly 60 talented singers in a concert that many attendees said was a highlight of their Christmas season.
Performances were held on December 8th at Woodbridge High School in Bridgeville and on December 9th (2012) at Cape Henlopen High School in Lewes.
Please see the Previous Concerts page for soloist photos and the songs that were included in the program. Also see the Bravo page for comments from the audience.
Sopranos Fall 2012
Fortier Photography Photo
Puttin' On The Ritz
Puttin' On The Ritz was performed the third weekend in April at Delaware Technical and Community College in Georgetown, Epworth United Methodist Church in Rehoboth Beach and Seaford High School. The program featured many of the standards of George and Ira Gershwin, Irving Berlin and Cole Porter from Broadway's Golden Age.
Mac Huff arrangements of the Gershwins' Strike Up The Band, Summertime, and Someone To Watch Over Me along with these well-known songs by Irving Berlin were included: There's No Business Like Show Business, Alexander's Ragtime Band, Blue Skies, Puttin' On The Ritz and God Bless America. Huff's arrangement of Cole Porter's songs included: Another Op'nin Another Show, I've Got You Under My Skin, Anything Goes and Night And Day. The above is just a small sample of the many songs performed with nearly all of them being very familiar.
Second Set of April 21st Concert at Epworth UMC, Rehoboth Beach, DE
Fortier Photography Photo
Handel's Messiah was performed at Cape Henlopen High School on December 10th and Sunday, December 11th at the Georgetown Campus of Delaware Technical and Community College. The Choral Society sang the well-known choruses with professional soloists and a small orchestra. The audience was invited and encouraged to sing with the chorus during the Sunday concert.
Both performances were very well-received. Please visit the Bravo page to see a sampling of audience accolades.
We were pleased to have professional soloists join us for both Messiah concerts.
Praised for her "bell-like clarity and fine control" and "radiant full-bodied voice" by The Washington Post, American soprano Meghan McCall is establishing herself as a fine young artist of opera today.
Julie Diniz is an exciting new Mezzo with growing credits to her name around the New York City metropolitan area.
Brian Cheney is emerging as one of the most unique and thrilling American tenors of his generation. He is no stranger to the concert stage.
Andrew Adelsberger, bass-baritone, has been praised for his charismatic performances and enjoys an active performing schedule.
Gabrieli to Gospel
The Spring 2011 Concert was "Gabrieli to Gospel," a joint venture with the Delaware Choral Society. Performances were on April 9th at Epworth UMC in Rehoboth Beach and on April 10th at Wyoming UMC, Wyoming, DE.
The two groups jointly performed: "O Magnum Mysterium" by Gabrieli, "Ave Maria" by Lobos, "Jachzet dem Herrn" by Schuts, "Sanctus and Hosanna from B-minor Mass" by J.S. Bach, "Coelis Ascendit Hodie" by Sanford, "'Tis the day of the Resurrection" by Wood, "Rock-a My Soul" arranged by Page and "Ride on King Jesus", "We Shall Walk Through the Valley" and "Elijah Rock", all arranged by Moses Hogan. All of the music was in eight parts except the gospel pieces.
The Delaware Choral Society performed: "Loquebantur Variis Linguis" by Tallis, "Ave Verum Corpus" by Byrd, "Hosannah to the Son of David" by Weelkes and "Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in E-minor" by Sowerby.
SDCS sang: "Kyrie from Mass #9 by Haydn, "Hosianna dem Sohne" by Tunder, and "Ascribe Unto the Lord" by Samuel Wesley.
Both performances were well-received. Visit the Bravo page to read audience comments.
An English Christmas
The 2010 Christmas Concert featured Benjamin Britten’s "A Ceremony of Carols" with harp, "Fantasia on Christmas Carols" by Ralph Vaughan Williams and a half dozen familiar English Carols with audience participation encouraged.
The program also included: Medieval Carols by Richard Pygott, performed by the Ensemble, Quem Vidistis Pastores by Richard Dering, Alleluia, I heard a voice by Thomas Weelkes, Behold, I Bring You Good Tidings by Sr. John Goss, I Sing the Birth and Hark! What Mean those Holy Voices by Arthur Sullivan, and Three Carol-Anthems by Herbert Howells.
Click Concert Program to see the entire program.
Soloists were all SDCS members and include: Rich Boyd, Arielle Foster, Ann and Richard Freeman, Paul Hanke, Danielle Levredge, Casey McFarland, Rose McFassel, David Miller, Taylor Phillips and Virginia Van Tine.
Performances were held on December 11th at Cape Henlopen High School in Lewes and December 12th at Delaware Technical and Community College, Georgetown.
See the Bravo page for audience comments.