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The Schiller Institute New York City Community Chorus
At the Verdi tuning of A=432 Hz.
Easter Sunday, March 27, 2016
Visitation of the
Blessed Virgin Mary R. C. Church
Co-sponsored by the Schiller Institute and the Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture
Today’s Performance at the Church
of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
It is especially fitting that the Easter Sections of Handel's Messiah be performed at the Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The church has become well known in New York City in the aftermath of 2012's Hurricane Sandy for its role in assisting the nearby community during that crisis. The work of resurgence characterizes the ongoing efforts of the religious community of Koinonia John the Baptist to expand the church's role in the evolving sector of Brooklyn known as Red Hook.
As recounted on the Church website: “Between 1845 and 1854, nearly three million new immigrants entered the United States due to European political unrest, famine, economic hardship, and religious persecution. The two largest immigrant populations at this time in American history were the Irish and the Germans. During the 1840’s, nearly two million Irish came to America, and over one million Germans arrived during the 1850’s.” This led in the case of Brooklyn, to the creation of the Brooklyn Archdiocese in 1853-54, and the founding of the first Church of the Visitation the following year. The Irish and Italian parishioners, almost entirely composed of dock workers, factory workers and their families, quickly outgrew the first church, and a second church, seating more than 1500 congregants, was begun in 1876 and completed in 1878. A fire destroyed that church in 1896, and the third church, the one you sit in this evening, was begun immediately thereafter.
Church pastor Father Claudio Antecini, interviewed by The Tablet newspaper three months after the onset of Hurricane Sandy, said of the calamity “that during times of extreme duress, such as during a hurricane, there is only one thought on many people’s minds: how to help others. Visitation parish helped about 4,000 people from the neighborhood who came looking for food and supplies.” That is the same spirit that characterizes Handel's Messiah, first performed in Dublin, Ireland in 1742. Handel demanded and successfully fought to direct that all proceeds from his oratorio's premiere should go to benefit the cities' debtors' prisons, the Mercer's Hospital and the Charitable Infirmary.
One-hundred-forty-two debtors were freed from debtors' prison following that first concert. Later, Handel performed the Messiah in London, with all proceeds benefiting the Foundling Hospital -- a needed home for abandoned infants and children. In part because of this, the piece, though written as an Easter composition, came to be particularly associated with Christmas. On this occasion, we return to Handel's original intent in part, by emphasizing the theme of resurrection, renaissance, and resurgence.
The Italian expression, Risorgimento, holds all three meanings, and is perhaps most appropriate as a single term that might embody the joint mission of the Schiller Institute, the Foundation For The Revival Of Classical Culture, and the Church of the Visitation in this joint effort. While the term “Risorgimento” is usually used to refer to the campaign for Italian unification and independence of the nineteenth century, it can and should be used in today's America in a completely different sense. The access to the best creations of Classical civilization, both that of what is traditionally called “Western Civilization” and other great language cultures of the world--the Sanskrit culture of India is one such “non-Western” example--is most efficiently approached through music. This is because the hazards of cultural misunderstanding and conflict, so characteristic of the written and spoken word, are minimized when music composed according to Classical principles is the universal language mutually employed.
Our time has seen not only a waning, but a rejection of the use of Beauty, especially in the form of artistic composition, as a means to elevate the mind away from the merely sensual, visible and sense-perceivable, to direct it towards the “unthought-like thoughts which are the souls of thought,” the invisible power that imbues the world behind what is perceived. The poet Percy Shelley called this "the everlasting universe of things” that “flows through the mind.” The astronomer Johannes Kepler called it "the harmony of the universe". Certainly, the collaboration of orchestra, chorus, soloists and conductor that Messiah requires, if emulated, would render today's civil society more civilized, and more creative.
The Schiller Institute New York Community Chorus has now begun a Brooklyn chorus, which will take place at the Church of the Visitation. All are invited to join it, regardless of prior musical knowledge or experience. Our next program at the church is tentatively scheduled for May. Those who wish to support this "New Risorgimento" should subscribe to the Foundation For The Revival Of Classical Culture (www.fftrocc.org) and join the Schiller Institute (schillerinstitute.org). Both organizations want to take this opportunity to thank the Koinonia St. John Baptist, Father Claudio Antecini, and the music ministry headed by Sister Maire, for giving us the opportunity to present Messiah this evening.
Georg Friedrich Handel (1742)
John Sigerson, Director Gudrun Bühler, Soprano Mary Phillips, Mezzo-soprano Everett Suttle, Tenor
Philip Cutlip, Bass-baritone
On April 9, 1988, at a conference on “Music and Classical Aesthetics,” at the Casa di Verdi in Milan, Italy, the Schiller Institute launched a worldwide campaign to restore the scientific tuning pitch of the Classical composers from Bach through Verdi, of Middle C= 256 Hz (A no higher than 432 Hz). Five years later, on April 8, 1993, the famous Italian tenor Carlo Bergonzi, a participant at the earlier conference (which included Lyndon and Helga LaRouche, as well as Italian opera luminaries soprano Renata Tebaldi, and baritone Piero Capuccilli) established in a seminar held at Carnegie Hall's Weill Hall, the superiority, through demonstrations with male and female singers, of the Verdi tuning over the arbitrarily high “modern” tuning of A=440 Hz, and even higher. Bergonzi stated, "It is particularly important to raise the question of tuning in connection with bel canto technique, since today's high tuning misplaces all register shifts, and makes it very difficult for a singer to have the sound float above the breath. When an F-sharp becomes a G.... Everything is misplaced a half-step, and the technique fails.”
Today’s performance (as with all Schiller Institute musical performances) will be done at the proper scientific tuning, as mandated by Giuseppe Verdi.
Behold the Lamb of God
He was despised
Surely He hath borne our griefs
And with His stripes we are healed
All we like sheep
All they that see Him, laugh Him to scorn
He trusted in God
Recit., Air (Tenor)
Thy rebuke hath broken His heart
Behold, and see if there be any sorrow
He was cut off out of the land of the living
But Thou didst not leave His soul in hell
Lift up your heads
Unto which of the angels said He at any time
Let all the angels of God
Thou art gone up on high
The Lord gave the word
How beautiful are the feet of them
Their sound is gone out
Why do the nations so furiously rage together?
Let us break their bonds asunder
Recit., Air (Tenor)
He that dwelleth in heaven
Thou shalt break them
I know that my Redeemer liveth
Since by man came death
Recit., Air (Bass)
Behold I tell you a mystery
The trumpet shall sound
Then shall be brought to pass
Duet (Alto and Tenor)
O death, where is thy sting?
But thanks be to God
If God be for us, who can be against us?
Worthy is the Lamb
John Sigerson, Director
John Sigerson is a founding member of the Schiller Institute and currently its Music Director. He has worked for decades with Schiller Institute Chairman Helga Zepp- LaRouche and her husband Lyndon LaRouche to bring about a Renaissance of Classical musical composition and performance. His musical education includes study with contrabass soloist Gary Karr, and voice with Mexico’s José Briano and Italy’s Antonella Banaudi.
In 1992, he co-authored A Manual on the Rudiments of Tuning and Registration in which the general argument is presented why Classical music must be based on a fixed tuning of A=432 cycles per second. Sigerson has directed choruses for the Schiller Institute in Europe, Mexico, Colombia, and the United States, and enjoys singing an occasional concert of Classical German Lieder.
Diane Sare, Managing Director
Diane Sare studied music education and trombone performance at New England Conservatory in Boston, before meeting associates of Lyndon LaRouche and the Schiller Institute in the 1980’s. The message of the Schiller Institute—for a true dialogue among civilizations, and a commitment to the right of every human being to progress—resonated with her New England Quaker upbringing, and she has been a collaborator of Mr. and Mrs. LaRouche since that time.
Diane is the founder of the Schiller Institute NYC Chorus, and currently directs the New Jersey and newly established Brooklyn Choruses of the Schiller Institute.
Gudrun Bühler, Soprano
Gudrun Buhler is a soprano, actress, director and dramatist. She holds a Master of Voice from Manhattan School of music and the Karlsruhe Opera School in Germany. In 2015, Gudrun was on tour in Europe and America with the critically acclaimed one-woman show “The Other Mozart.” It tells the story of Mozart’s sister “Nannerl” who also was a child prodigy (see www.theothermozart.com/home).
Gudrun was a finalist in the “Altamura/Caruso International Voice Competition” in October 2015. In the same month she sang a concert at the international Peace conference “Religions for Peace” at the Vatican in Rome, Castel Gandolfo. Recent performances with Orchestra include: R. Wagner’s “Wesendonck Lieder” and orchestral songs by Richard Strauss, under the baton of C.C. von Bettendorf; “Micaela” from Carmen, by G. Bizet at the Axelrod Theatre in New Jersey; and many more. Gudrun gives Lied Recitals in museums and other cultural centers. Her latest performance was at the Delaware Art Museum featuring a classical program with songs by W.A. Mozart, H. Wolf, and A. Schoenberg. Gudrun has sung in famous venues such as Carnegie Hall, Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, and other opera houses in Germany. She is also a successful writer and director. Her shows “Romeo and Juliet the Musical” and “Who is Afraid of the Moon?” won 3rd Prize and Best Original Play in the Thespis Theatre Festival Competition 2012 and 2015.
Upcoming performances include G. Mahler “Des Knaben Wunderhorn,” under the baton of C.C.von Bettendorf, and “Mozart’s Women,” a new one-woman show written by Gudrun, which will premiere at the Altamura Art Center in August 2016. Gudrun will direct the summer production of the Garden State Opera in New Jersey this year.
Mary Phillips, Mezzo-soprano
Internationally acclaimed mezzo-soprano Mary Phillips is in demand for opera and oratorio alike. She made her Metropolitan Opera debut in La Forza del Destino, has numerous performances of Princess Eboli in Don Carlo, with Austin, Canadian, Sarasota and Vancouver Operas. She has also been acclaimed as Azucena in Il Trovatore and Amneris in Aida. In the 2013-14 season, Ms. Phillips made her role debuts as
Jezibaba in Dvorak’s Rusalka at the Met, and Herodias in Strauss’ Salome for the Edmonton Opera. In 2015, Ms. Phillips added the role of Gertrude in Thomas’ Hamlet to her repertoire, for Opera Birmingham, as well as Third Maid for the Boston Symphony and Klytemnestra, to cover, for the Metropolitan Opera.
Concert performances included: alto soloist in Handel's Messiah with many orchestras, including the Atlanta Symphony/ Robert Shaw, Boston Baroque Orchestra/Pearlman, and most recently, in Lisbon, with Gulbenkian Orchestra; Bach's B Minor Mass with Seattle Symphony/Schwarz, and Nashville Symphony/ Rilling; Mulier Samaritana in Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the New York Philharmonic/Maazel, and Symphony No. 2 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic/Mehta, Atlanta Symphony/Levi (a performance which was recorded), and Symphonies in Honolulu, Bejing, Hong Kong, and Richmond, to name a few. She has also sung Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood, Philadelphia Orchestra, Utah Symphony, The National Symphony, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and Handel & Haydn Society. Mary recorded it & Beethoven's Opferlied with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra/McGegan in Berkeley, CA and reprised these works in early 2015 with Nic McGegan and the Baltimore Symphony. She has sung Saint-Saens’ Requiem, Verdi's Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Handel's Messiah, Strauss' Elektra, all at Carnegie.
Everett Suttle, Tenor
Everett Suttle, a native of LaFayette, Georgia, is a graduate of the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. He continued his studies at the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria and at the Brahms Haus in Baden Baden, West Germany. He has also coached with such outstanding artists as Luciano Pavarotti, Peter Pears, Martina Arroyo, Eleanor Steber and Martin Katz.
In repertoire that ranges from Baroque masterpieces of Bach and Handel, to complex 20th Century works of Britten and Tippet, Mr. Suttle has appeared internationally in opera, oratorio and recital. He has sung with such prestigious companies as La Scala in Milan, Opera Bastille in Paris, Teatro Real in Madrid, Rome Opera in, Italy and Den Norske Opera in Oslo, Norway.
Everett has performed in opera and concert with such conductors as Raymond Leppard, Sergin Commisiona and John DeMain. His most recent engagements include a debut with New York City Opera at Lincoln Center, and performances with Dayton Opera and the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, Germany. Mr. Suttle also appeared in the historic “Live from Lincoln Center” television broadcast of the Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess on PBS.
Most recently Everett appeared at the Teatro Colon in Argentina in a production of The Firery Angel by Prokofiev as well as the Passe ton Bach d'Abord Festival in Toulouse, France. Upcoming dates include performances at the Semper Oper in Dresden, Hamburg State Opera, and the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, Germany.
Philip Cutlip, Bass-baritone
Philip Cutlip has garnered consistent critical acclaim for his performances across North America and Europe. Established on both concert and opera stages, he has performed with a distinguished list of conductors that includes Nicholas McGegan, Yves Abel, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Gerard Schwarz, and Donald Runnicles. His appearance as Joseph De Rocher in Heg gie’s Dead Man Walking,with Joyce DiDonato and Frederica von Stade for Houston Grand Opera, has been released on Virgin Records.
Throughout his career Mr. Cutlip has portrayed many of opera's most well-known baritone roles including: Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with New York City Opera and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; Harlequin in Ariadne auf Naxos with Seattle Opera; the title roles in both Don Giovanni and Il barbiere di Siviglia with Opera Birmingham; Malatesta in Don Pasquale with Fort Worth Opera; and Guglielmo in Così fan tutte with Arizona Opera.
Mr. Cutlip has also appeared as soloist with nearly every major North American orchestra. His extensive list of concert credits include performances with New York Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, Houston Symphony Orchestra, Oratorio Society of New York at Carnegie Hall, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, North Carolina Symphony, and the Minnesota Orchestra. He has performed such works as Bach's Christmas Orato rio with the Handel and Haydn Society under Grant Llewellyn; Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Charles Dutoit; Brahms' Requiem with the Portland Symphony Orchestra; Carmina Burana with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra; and Haydn's The Seasons with Philadelphia Baroque. He also performed Handel arias written for Mantagnana with La Stagione Frankfurt ensemble, as well as Handel's Belshazzar at the Göttingen Festival in Germany.
Cheryl Berard, Harpsichord
Pianist Cheryl Berard grew up in Miami, Florida. While in high school she performed as piano soloist with the Hollywood Philharmonic and the Greater Miami Youth Symphony. She continued her musical studies at Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, where her areas of concentration were piano and harpsichord performance, music history, and music theory. After receiving her B.M. from Peabody, she completed a master’s degree in musicology at Florida State, followed by a Doctor of Musical Arts at Boston University. Cheryl has given recitals at the Goethe Institute, Boston University Concert Hall, Swedenborg Chapel, and the Smithsonian Institution. She has performed at the Boston Early Music Festival, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, and Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute. Cheryl counts some exceptional artists among her teachers, notably Karyl Louwenaar-Luke (piano), Peter Sykes (early pianos), and Webb Wiggins (harpsichord). She enjoys performing diverse styles of solo and ensemble repertoire; her areas of specialization include Elizabethan keyboard music, cantatas of J.S. Bach and Dietrich Buxtehude, and the piano music of Schubert and Chopin.
The Schiller Institute NYC Chorus was founded in December of 2014 with a sing-along performance of Handel’s Messiah dedicated to unifying the City of New York in the wake of the Staten Island Grand Jury decision on the suffocating death of Eric Garner. The program of that first concert quoted from Friedrich Schiller’s essay, “On the Sublime,” “…nothing is so unworthy of man as to suffer violence. Who does it to us disputes nothing less than our humanity…”
This question of “our humanity” is the most important question facing the American population today. If you were to presume that the current pack of presidential candidates and the quality of their debates were representative of “humanity,” you might place an urgent call to China and request to board the nearest spacecraft in search of a superior species in some other galaxy!
Happily, it is the view of Friedrich Schiller, that such low points in our history do not define our species, but that we are capable of better, and that the role of the artist is to inspire us to act in a truly human, as distinct from bestial, manner.
It is to this end that in October 2014, Lyndon LaRouche launched his “Manhattan Project” of which this chorus is a part. LaRouche maintained that the legacy of Alexander Hamilton and his extraordinary efforts, from Manhattan, to unify our young nation through the American Revolution leading into the Constitutional Convention and the creation of an American System of economy based on the creativity of our citizens, is the crucial source of identity of the United States.
Our chorus always rehearses and performs at the Verdi scientific tuning of A = (no higher than) 432 Hz. We also strive for an Italian Bel Canto approach in our singing, which allows us to unify our many diverse voices into a chorus which is greater by far than the sum of its parts. Join us!
JOIN THE CHORUS AS WE
BEGIN OUR NEW SEASON!
We are planning a June 2016 concert of traditional Negro Spirituals and Irish Songs, which will be followed in September with a performance of Mozart’s Requiem to be performed and dedicated to observing the 15th anniversary of September 11, 2001.
All rehearsals are at the Verdi tuning. Suggested donation of $5 per rehearsal, plus costs of purchasing music scores and practice recordings. Call Margaret at 646-509-5451, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to join.
Brooklyn Schiller Institute Chorus
Manhattan Schiller Institute Chorus
The Foundation For The
Revival Of Classical Culture
The Foundation For The Revival Of Classical Culture has as its mission the reintroduction of classical principles of musical, artistic, and scientific practice and performance to the everyday lives of American, and other citizens, especially youth. This is to be accomplished by inspiring what is often erroneously called "the average citizen” to participate in forms of "re-creation" that differ from mere "entertainment". This includes the performance of significant and challenging works of the classical repertoire, both instrumental and vocal, by amateur and semi-professional individuals and small groups. The Foundation promotes the idea that the music of thinkers such as Bach, Mozart, Haydn, Handel, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Mendelssohn, Dvorak, Verdi and many others, is the natural medium for developing the minds of young people.
This concert is the latest of a series of musical events sponsored by the Foundation, in response to the take down of classical music education in the public schools and to combat the growing ugliness, divisiveness and banality of the culture, as evidenced by the growing rates of suicides, drug use, and violence, especially among our youth. Since just January of this year, the Foundation has given musical presentations at more than 30 schools in the New York City area, touching the lives of more than 6000 students by exposing them, many for the first time, to classical music. It has held summer school classes for youth 12-18 in music and science, and, in collaboration with the Schiller Institute, formed a community chorus in Manhattan, which has just expanded to Brooklyn. Our objective is to create a Renaissance or "risorgimento" movement which can unify the nation, uplifting people through a choral process of 1,500 or more persons, as it both develops and celebrates what is truly human in all of us.
In December, the Foundation co-sponsored two highly successful performances of Handel's Messiah at nearby Sacred Hearts and St. Stephen Church in Brooklyn and also in Manhattan, with over 1,000 people attending the two performances.
Concerts such as this performance of Handel's Messiah provide our students an incentive to discover the inner life of music that may well otherwise remain inaccessible to them. By demonstrating that neither poverty, nor unfamiliarity with repertoire, nor lack of language skills, need be construed as an excuse not to become familiar with the musical discoveries of some of the greatest minds in history, we free the student to not merely dream, but to know that "nothing is impossible."
Our Foundation has conducted experiments over the past four years which prove that there is a potentially very large audience for Classical music and Classical culture among young people in America. This cannot be a passive audience, however, but must be an audience of music participants. Perhaps the greatest damage done by the last one hundred years in the American educational system, and cultural experience, has been the removal of most people from the creative practice of making music themselves. To solve this problem, we urge you to support the work of the Foundation by subscribing to its Monthly Concert Series.
Financial contributions are much appreciated. Please give as generously as you can! Subscribing, however, is different. You can subscribe for $10/month, $25/ month, $50/month, or more. Why should you become a subscriber, as well as a financial contributor, and how does subscribing benefit you?
Subscribers can attend our bi-monthly Foundation Musikabends ("music evenings") which will feature performances of German Lieder (art songs), chamber music, Italian operatic arias, choral pieces and solo instrumental performances. These will be available to all subscribers for free. All subscribers will also have automatic access to our weekly choral rehearsals, which we encourage you to join.
You will receive our Foundation Newsletter, which is published six times a year.
Subscribers are also offered regular tours of the various museums and special exhibit sites in New York City, done by Foundation volunteers as well as educators that provide their knowledge and expertise for that purpose. Sites visited include the Metropolitan Museum, the New York Historical Society, the Brooklyn Museum, and others.
By becoming a subscriber, and by encouraging others to also become subscribers, you can establish our Foundation as the central catalyst in creating a new audience for Classical music in New York City. We are determined to reach the hundreds of thousands of young people that have now never heard the works of Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, and Bach. That effort costs money.
It is the re-establishment of a participatory cultural process—making great music, as well as listening to it—that is expression of the best of the human soul, and that constitutes the efficient pre-condition for creating a "great and noble" musical audience in New York City, and throughout the United States.
TO SUBSCRIBE, go to: www.fftrocc.org, and click on the DONATE/SUBSCRIBE BUTTON on the top right. Please make checks payable to:
Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture, Inc. or FFTROCC, Inc.
Mailing address: 58 Oak Ridge Street, Greenwich, CT 06830
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