Houston Chamber Choir Performs MASS IN EXILE in March

The performance is on Saturday, March 9, 2024, at 7:30 p.m. CT.

By: Feb. 27, 2024
Houston Chamber Choir Performs MASS IN EXILE in March
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Houston Chamber Choir will present the world premiere of their commission “Mass in Exile,” composed by Mark Buller with libretto by Leah Lax. The performance is set for Saturday, March 9, at 7:30 p.m. at South Main Baptist Church 

Mass in Exile is a new work commissioned by the Grammy® Award-winning Houston Chamber Choir. Under the direction of founder and artistic director Robert Simpson. The Houston Chamber Choir will present this moving work for chorus, solo baritone, guitar, percussion, and strings written by composer Mark Buller and librettist Leah Lax. In Mass in Exile, Mark and Leah embark on a gripping, personal exploration of their strict religious pasts, and together offer a glimpse of the possibility of a different faith within an ailing world.

Buller and Lax were inspired to write Mass after an exciting conversation on social media during the pandemic that concluded with Buller exclaiming, “Leah, let’s write a mass!.” The instrumentalists joining the Houston Chamber Choir for the performance are the Apollo Chamber Players and friends and noted baritone soloist Dr. Timothy Jones from the University of Houston. The evening’s program also includes Overboard, another work by Buller and Lax commissioned by Houston Grand Opera in 2017 to honor Houston veterans, as well as The Passion of St. Cecilia, a 2021 Buller work also commissioned by the Houston Chamber Choir.

Mass in Exile will be the third world premiere presented by the choir this season. Robert Simpson graciously reflects, “The Houston Chamber musicians and I are honored to present the world premiere of yet another major work by Mark Buller. Librettist Leah Lax has provided a deeply personal story of her struggle for freedom of thought and action that parallels a similar experience in Mark's life. In "Mass in Exile" they have created a powerful work that we are privileged to have commissioned."

  The Houston Chamber Choir is made up of 24 professional musicians of diverse backgrounds who hail from some of the finest music programs in the country, including Cleveland Institute of Music, New England Conservatory in Boston, Moores School of Music at the University of Houston, College Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati and the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Members of the Choir have performed professionally across the United States and internationally, singing in festivals, operas, concerts, church choirs, and in musical theater.


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