OSSCS Press Release: September 9, 2019

Media Contact: William White, wwhite@osscs.org, 847-651-5055

September 9, 2019 • FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

OSSCS unveils its 50th anniversary season, “Monuments”

Orchestra Seattle and the Seattle Chamber Singers, Seattle’s premier vocal-instrumental ensemble, celebrates its fiftieth anniversary in 2019. Founded in 1969 by George Shangrow, an ambitious 18-year-old senior at Roosevelt High School, the group has grown from its humble beginnings as a chamber vocal ensemble to a mainstay of Seattle’s artistic scene.

This season, the second for William White as music director of Orchestra Seattle and the Seattle Chamber Singers, is programmed with the group’s history and its future in mind. Reprising works that made OSSCS’s name, the group will mount performances of Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s St. Matthew Passion and The Earthmakers, a major oratorio composed for the group in 1986 by Carol Sams.

Local composers have featured heavily in the group’s history and this season is no exception, with music by Sams (Edmonds), Huntley Beyer (Seattle), Robert Kechley (Seattle), Carlos Garcia (Everett) and William White himself (Seattle). Specially programmed a cappella concerts will feature the music of Sheila Bristow (Tacoma) and Morten Lauridsen (Waldron Island).

Masterworks abound this season, including Beethoven’s “Eroica” Symphony, Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring and Maurice Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloé (in a rare performance of the entire score — with choir, as Ravel intended it).

The group will take its performances into a variety of spaces this season, including First Free Methodist Church in north Queen Anne, Plymouth Congregational Church in downtown Seattle, Bastyr Chapel in Kenmore, the Shorecrest Performing Arts Center in Shoreline, St. Joseph Parish Church on Capitol Hill and, finally, Benaroya Hall for the gala finale concert.

Season subscriptions and tickets to individual concerts are available now. Concertgoers under 30 can attend each concert for just $10, with college students and youth admitted free of charge (except for the Benaroya concert on May 3, 2020).

For tickets and more information, please visit www.osscs.org.

2019–2020 Season: Monuments

Saturday, October 5, 2019 • 7:30 p.m. • First Free Methodist Church

Carlos Garcia Vast Array [world premiere]
Darius Milhaud La création du monde
Carol Sams The Earthmakers

The OSSCS 50th anniversary season begins with music of creation. Hear trailblazing composer Carol Sams’ epic masterpiece, The Earthmakers, an oratorio that recounts creation stories from a multitude of world cultures. Also featured are La création du monde, a jazzy work by Sams’ teacher, Darius Milhaud, and the world premiere of local composer Carlos Garcia’s fanfare, Vast Array.

Saturday, November 2, 2019 • 7:30 p.m. • First Free Methodist Church

Jennifer Higdon blue cathedral
Huntley Beyer Circumference [world premiere]
Ludwig van Beethoven Symphony No. 3 (“Eroica”)

The world premiere of Huntley Beyer’s Circumference, an oratorio written in memory of OSSCS founder George Shangrow, Jennifer Higdon’s blue cathedral, composed to honor her late brother, and Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Eroica” symphony, written “to the memory of a great man.”

Saturday, December 14, 2019 • 2:00 p.m. • Plymouth Congregational Church (Seattle)
Sunday, December 15, 2019 • 2:00 p.m. • Bastyr Chapel (Kenmore)

G.F. Handel Messiah

A timeless classic and a Seattle tradition. OSSCS once again presents the region’s only performances of Handel’s full and unabridged score.

Saturday, February 15, 2020 • 7:30 p.m. • Shorecrest Performing Arts Center

Quinn Mason A Joyous Trilogy [world premiere]
W.A. Mozart Clarinet Concerto
Igor Stravinsky Le sacre du printemps

A world premiere by young composer-conductor Quinn Mason, a performance of Mozart’s exquisite clarinet concerto by Seattle Symphony principal clarinetist Ben Lulich, and Igor Stravinsky’s epochal The Rite of Spring make this a concert for the ages.

Friday, March 20, 2020 • 7:00 p.m. • St. Joseph Parish

J.S. Bach St. Matthew Passion

The music of J.S. Bach has been at the core of OSSCS’s repertoire since its inception 50 years ago. Now a new generation interprets this supreme masterpiece.

Sunday, May 3, 2020 • 7:30 p.m. • Benaroya Hall

Robert Kechley Psalm 100
Lili Boulanger Psaume XXIV
William White Psalm 46 [west coast premiere]
Maurice Ravel Daphnis et Chloé [complete]

The OSSCS 50th anniversary season concludes in grand style at Benaroya Hall with jubilant psalm settings by Robert Kechley, Lili Boulanger and OSSCS music director William White. The grand finale is a rare performance of the complete score of Maurice Ravel’s dazzling “symphonie choréographique,” Daphnis and Chloé.

Selected list of works given their world premieres by OSSCS

Media Contact: William White, wwhite@osscs.org, 847-651-5055