© Petra Haase

20th and 21st Century Spiritual Vocal Music

The concert program ‘Eulogy’ contains the musical setting of spiritual texts and adaptations of spiritual chants. One can expect to hear pieces from various composers such as Knut Nystedt, Ola Gjeilo, Hugo Distler or Ēriks Ešenvalds. What’s more, the program is further enriched by special compositions that were put together just for us. Prolific duets with musicians such as Simon Wawer, Paul Heller, Volker Bräutigam, Gregor Meyer und David Timm are just examples of what awaits you. The compositions include psalms, antiphons, mass-texts and works of Paul Gerhardt and Martin Luther as well as spiritual poetry.

Part of this program can be heard on the 2013 classic record label querstand release ‘Eulogy’. Musical pieces may vary and the program is in constant development.

Set-list extracts:

Simon Wawer: ‘Morgengesang’
Knut Nystedt: ‘You are my brothers keeper’
Ola Gjeilo: ‘Ave generosa’
Erik Esenvalds: ‘O salutaris hostia’
Paul Heller: ‘Wir glauben all an einen Gott’

Soul searching
Soul searching
© JkF

Global works form the Renaissance, Baraoque, Impressionism and Modernity, Odes and Folk

Our secular repertoire comprises works that highlight and describe the various states of mind, conditions and longings of the human soul. One can expect more old school tunes from artists such as John Dowland or Henry Purcell, works from Claude Debussy or Maurice Ravel as well as a vast array of new composers and melodies from contemporary music makers such as Jeremy Rawson, Graham Lack or Ekkehard Meister.
Folk Music also recounts stories of the soul. We currently have songs from Germany, Scandinavia, Britain, The Baltic States as well as Israel and Palestine in our programme. That said we are in a constant search for new sounds and are always open to new influences.

Set-list extracts:

Henry Purcell: ‘I attempt from love's sickness’
Maurice Ravel: ‘Toi le coeur de la rose’ (from the Opera ‘L'enfant et les sortilèges’)
Knut Nystedt: ‘Die Sternseherin‘ (Text: Matthias Claudius)
Ekkehard Meister: ‘Bist du schon auf der Sonne gewesen?‘ (Text: Joachim Ringelnatz)
German Folk Song from Susanne Blache: ‘All' mein Gedanken, die ich hab‘
Swedish Folk Music from Simon Wawer: ‘Vem kan segla‘

© Antje Kroger

Standards und andere Songs aus Jazz und Pop

Sophisticated arrangements made up of both well-known and lesser-known jazz, pop or soul songs come together to produce a new sound. The novelty lies in the fact that we’re not really used to hearing exclusively female acapella-groups. Due to higher and more limited vocal ranges of the walking bass, solos and back-up singers we will leave you feeling lifted.
When it comes to song selection, we have focused on the most beautiful classics as well as shining a light on modern jazz singers. Melody Gardot and Jamie Cullum feature as examples.
You will also be treated to music arranged by jazz singers and musicians such as Juan Garcia, Matthias Knoche (Klangbezirk), Michael Eimann (Slixs) or Kurt Sampson (Cadence).

Set-list extracts:

Clifford Brown, arranged by: Michael Eimann: ‘Joy Spring’
Bill Withers, arranged by: Christoph Göbel: ‘Just the two of us’
Melody Gardot, arranged by: Matthias Knoche: ‘If the stars were mine’
Björk, arranged by: Tanja Pannier: ‘It's oh so quiet’
Irving Berlin, arranged by: Stefan Flügel: ‘Cheek to Cheek’

The soul travels and sings
The soul travels and sings
© Silke Winkler

Children’s program (roughly 40 mins) consisting in a story-telling complete with images and songs from around the globe

“Dear Grandpa, I would like to put the joy back into music for you. The love for music is deep within you, all you must do is discover it…”
Hannah goes off on her way and travels to all the spots where her grandparents sang together before her grandmother’s death. Through letters and general thoughts, Hannah sends her grandfather all of the music that she comes across on her travels.

This program is directed towards children between 5 and 13 years of age. That said, it is also much enjoyed by adults too!

Hugo Distler

Spiritual choir pieces by Hugo Distler with the Nobiles Ensemble (Leipzig)

We have collaborated for many years now with the male quintet, Nobiles, from Leipzig. We produced a CD together in 2012 with musical pieces from Hugo Distler and this was released under the Leipzig Classic Label, Rondeau. Bang at the centre of this program is the well-known “Totentanz” (speaker: Heinz-Martin Benecke). Distler’s “Geistlicher Chormusik” can be seen as a framing tool for this production in which contemporary pieces from artists such as Johannes Weihrauch feature.

Set-list extracts:

‘Fürwahr, er trug unsere Krankheit‘
‘Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied‘
‘Ich wollt', dass ich daheime wär‘
Johannes Weihrauch: ‘Herr Christ, der einig Gotts Sohn‘

Dear God, in our Days (Working Title)
Dear God, in our Days (Working Title)

Project with the male ensemble, Quartonal, Choir Music from the 20th and 21st Century on the Theme of “War and Peace”

This program is currently under production and will be released in Autumn of 2017.

Set-list extracts:

Benjamin Britten: ‘Advance Democracy’
Thomas Jennefelt: ‘Warning to the rich’
Rudolf Mauersberger: ‘Wie liegt die Stadt so wüst‘
Eric Whitacre: ’Hope, faith, life, love’
Georg Christoph Biller: ‘Verleih uns Frieden gnädiglich‘

Saludos Navideños (Christmas Greetings)

Christmas trips to South-America and in other regions of the Earth with Bolivar soloists

During the Christmas period of 2016 we collaborated for the first time with the Bolivar Soloists from Venezuela (Echo prize winners in 2011) to stage our own concert. We put together a diversified program for the occasion; one we went on to continue offering. As the centrepiece of this particular program one can expect South American songs in wonderfully put-together arrangements from flutist Efrain Oscher. In addition, you will also hear Jazz and Pop Christmas songs, instrumental pieces from Piazzolla as well as traditional Christmas songs from Europe – all put together with a nice dose of Christmas joy and spirit.

Set-list extracts:

Blanca de Mescoli, arranged by Efrain Oscher: ‘Cantico de Navidad’
Manuel Yañez, arranged by Efrain Oscher: ‘Viajera del río’
Traditional Classic, arranged by Efrain Oscher: ‘Niño lindo’
Bob Wells/Mel Torme, arranged by Efrain Oscher: ‘The Christmas Song’
G. F. Händel, arranged by Efrain Oscher: ‘Tochter Zion’

WORKSHOP ’Individual yet uniform: the perfect common sound’
the perfect common sound
© Chorverband e.V. /Chor@Berlin 2016

In the course of this workshop we tackle the question: what is a homogenous sound actually comprised of and what elements come together to actually achieve this? Managing to converge truly individual voices into one impeccable, pure common sound is no act of witchcraft! How one actually manages this feat forms the basis of this particular workshop. The central focus looks at, going beyond voice leading, the ability to intuitively listen in on one another and to really immerse oneself as a fellow singer.

The workshop is geared towards choir leaders and singers from vocal emsembles and choirs.

Children’s WORKSHOP
Children’s WORKSHOP
© Goethe-Institut Amman/Mustafa Irshaid

Self-discovery through producing sounds with your voice and body can be a truly magical experience. Such an experience breaks down barriers and inhibitions but more than that, is simply a fun way to pass a few hours.

We want to create beautiful moments, precisely with children and that’s why we developed an interactive, group activity based workshop. The games focus on trusting oneself to be able to simultaneously listen and create musical background sounds, rhythms and melodies.

As part of our work for SOS Children's Villages Worldwide we already put on such workshops in Israel and Palestine as well as in Jordan with refugee families and orphans.

The workshop itself is easily put together and is geared towards children from 5 to 16 years of age. Previous musical experience is welcomed but not expected or necessary.