The 200-voice New Dominion Chorale, under the direction of artistic director Thomas Beveridge, will close its 23rd season with a program of music by Johannes Brahms.
The concert will take place on Sunday, May 4, 2014, at 4 p.m. at the Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center, on the Alexandria campus of Northern Virginia Community College, 3001 North Beauregard St., Alexandria, Virginia.
The Chorale will perform Brahms’ “German Requiem,” with new English translations by Mr. Beveridge, and will feature vocal soloists Jennifer Casey Cabot, soprano, and Kevin Johnson, baritone.
Pianists Thomas Pandolfi and Jeffrey Chappell will provide the accompaniment for the Requiem in an arrangement for two pianos created by Brahms himself. It was this version that Brahms used when he presented the Requiem in London in 1871, four years after its first performance in Vienna.
The London premiere was sung in English; in fact, the German Requiem was rarely performed in German in America and Great Britain until after World War II.
Mr. Pandolfi and Mr. Chappell will also perform Brahms’ familiar “Variations on a Theme by Haydn” in a rarely heard rendition of the original version of the work, scored for two solo pianos.
Recent scholarship has shown that the theme upon which Brahms based his “Variations on a Theme by Haydn” was probably not written by Haydn. Haydn had used the music, called the “St. Anthony Chorale,” in a work for wind orchestra entitled “Feldpartita,” claiming that it was based on an old Austrian hymn. For this performance, the New Dominion Chorale will present the “St. Anthony Chorale” prior to the Haydn variations, in Mr. Beveridge’s restoration of the ancient Austrian hymn on which it was based.