World & LA Premieres Set for LA Children's Chorus Spring Concerts in May
Children's voices raised in glorious song may just be the ultimate Mother's Day gift. The Los Angeles Children's Chorus (LACC), considered one of the world's preeminent children's choirs, presents the world premiere of Peter Knell's The Vowel Owl (Roger) set to John Hollander's poem, and the Los Angeles premiere of composer/sound engineer Mark Grey's The Plentiful Peach, based on a beloved Persian children's story with libretto by Niloufar Talebi, at its annual Spring Concert on Sunday, May 3, and Mother's Day, Sunday, May 10, 7 pm, at Pasadena Presbyterian Church. Both works were commissioned by LACC, which is noted for its key role in championing new works for treble choir. The program also features a vibrant mix of mostly American songs both contemporary and traditional, including Stephen Sametz's I Cannot Dance, O Lord; David Lang's i want to live; Kelley Lange's Llamame Cuando Puedas; Randall Thompson's antiphonal a capella work Pueri Hebraeorum; and the Korean folksong Nodle Kangbyon.
LACC premiered The Plentiful Peach just two weeks prior to the concert at its Bing Concert Hall debut at Stanford University in April. The work is adapted from a story by the noted Iranian writer Samad Behrangi (1939-1968). The Plentiful Peach is the coming of age story of a peach and the brave children who secretly grow her. Grey's music has been hailed as "addictive" (Los Angeles Times), "revelatory" (All Music) and "full of energy" (Sequenza 21).
Knell, noted for his "splashy" (Class Act) "rhythmic minimalism" (Los Angeles Times), is a Fullbright scholar based in Los Angeles who has earned numerous prizes, including First Prize in the New Music Festival of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Indiana State University Contemporary Music Festival/Louisville Orchestra, and the Omaha Symphony Guild competitions, among others.
The concert showcases five of LACC's choirs. Artistic Director Anne Tomlinson conducts the chorus' renowned Concert Choir and Chamber Singers. Brigham leads the Intermediate Choir, Diana Landis leads the Apprentice Choir, and Dr. Steven Kronauer conducts the Young Men's Ensemble. The choirs will perform separately and combined.
Tickets are $26, $38 and $44; children 17 and under are half price. For tickets and information, please call (626) 793-4231 or visit www.lachildrenschorus.org. Pasadena Presbyterian Church is located at 585 East Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101.