The Israeli Vocal Ensemble: Sing Unto the Lord a New Song – Psalms by the Great Composers

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The Israeli Vocal Ensemble/Photo: Lior Shustov
The Israeli Vocal Ensemble/Photo: Lior Shustov

The Israeli Vocal Ensemble is a small chorus with a big sound. With Yuval Ben-Ozer at the helm, they perform a wide-ranging repertoire of choral works both medieval and modern. The Ensemble will be opening the 2013-2014 season with a special program consisting of ten works all based on the book of Psalms, which will bring together composers of yesterday and today.

One of the greatest sources of inspiration for musicians was and is the Book of Psalms. In recreating psalms as musical works, they give us a spiritual as well as an artistic experience. The concert will demonstrate the way these composers were all influenced by one another in some way. Bach’s Singet dem herrn ein neues lied, the centerpiece of this program and a rare pleasure to hear performed live, inspired Brahms’ later motet Schaffe in mir, Gott. Bach himself was inspired by Claudio Monteverdi and Heinrich Schütz, whose works will also be performed.

Today’s composers continue the tradition of setting psalms to music. The program will explore the works of several celebrated composers from all over the world: from Jaakko Mäntyjärvi (Finland) and Vytautas Miškinis (Lithuania) to Eric Whitacre (USA), and to our own Tzvi Avni, whose 1965 work Psalm Canticles is an important example of the mid-century Israeli musical style.

The contact details for each venue are listed below. Prices range between 75 NIS and 110 NIS. The concert in Tel Aviv will be preceded by a lecture by Yuval Ben-Ozer, 18:30-19:30.

Full program:
Eric Whitaker Alleluia
Claudio Monteverdi Confitebor tibi Domine, Cantate Domino
JS Bach Singet dem herrn ein neues lied   (BWV 225)
Johannes Brahms Schaffe in mir, Gott (Opus 29 No. 2)
Heinrich Schütz Die mit Tranen saen werden
Vytautas Miškinis Cantate Domino (women’s choir)
Jaakko Mäntyjärvi Canticum Calamitatis Maritimae (Song of Maritime Calamity)
Felix Mendelssohn Richte mich, Gott
Tzvi Avni Psalm Canticles

Performance schedule:
Thu     Nov-21-2013 | 20:30 | Einan auditorium, Modi’in | 08-9737333
Tue     Nov-26-2013 | 20:30 | Performing Arts Center, Ra’anana | 09-7464036
Sat     Nov-30-2013 | 12:00 | St. John Church, Haifa | 04-8363804
Sun    Dec-1-2013 | 20:30 | Tel Aviv Museum of Art (Recanati Hall) | 03-6077020