August 11, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 18:  Rackham Choir – “Litanies à la Vierge noire”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir presents “Litanies à la Vierge noire” (Litany to the Black Virgin). In this sacred music composed by Francis Poulenc in 1936 for a three-part choir of women (or children) and organ, the composer set a French litany recited at the pilgrimage site Rocamadour which he visited. The subtitle, Notre-Dame de Rocamadour, refers to the venerated black sculpture of Mary. The composition is Poulenc’s first piece of sacred music. This recording comes from our Fantaisie Française (French Fantasy) concert last spring, featuring organist, Joseph Jackson.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here: http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart #Quarantunes #Rackhamchoir #singingforjustice

August 4, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 17:  Rackham Choir –”The Promise of Living”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir presents “The Promise of Living” from the opera The Tender Land by Aaron Copland.

“The Promise of Living” is the quintet that forms the finale of the opera’s first act, heard here in an arrangement for mixed chorus and piano duet accompaniment, played here by pianists Stanley Waldon and John Zadnick. The music is a song of thanksgiving transcending its particularized meaning within the opera to express in its gently flowing line the spirituality that is the basis of our land. The lyrics are transcribed below.

 This selection comes from a 1976 vinyl recording, The Promise of Living, and was brought back to life by Rackham Choir members Lori Weatherwax and Simone Bonino.

Lyrics by Horace Everett:

The promise of living with hope and thanksgiving
Is born of our loving our friends and our labor.

The promise of growing with faith and with knowing
Is born of our sharing our love with our neighbor.

The promise of loving, the promise of growing
Is born of our singing in joy and thanksgiving.

For many a year we’ve know these fields
And know all the work that makes them yield.
We’re ready to work, we’re ready to lend a hand.
By working together we’ll bring in the blessings of harvest.

We plant each row with seeds of grain,
And Providence sends us the sun and the rain.
By lending a hand, by lending an arm
Bring out the blessings of harvest.

Give thanks there was sunshine, give thanks there was rain,
Give thanks we have hands to deliver the grain.

O let us be joyful, O let us be grateful to the Lord for his blessing.

The promise of living, the promise of growing
The promise of ending is labor and sharing and loving.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here: http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart #Quarantunes #Rackhamchoir #singingforjustice

July 28, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 16:  Rackham Choir – “I Will Bow and Be Simple”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir presents “I Will Bow and Be Simple”

“I Will Bow and Be Simple” is a Shaker tune that dates from 1847. It is what is called an “action song”, its words describing the actions to be performed during the singing. In this work, as in the others arranged by Charles Heard, the piano part has been freely arranged by pianist Stanley Waldon and conducted by Heard. This selection comes from a 1976 vinyl recording, The Promise of Living, and was brought back to life by Rackham Choir members Lori Weatherwax and Simone Bonino.

The video includes the original vinyl cover art and the back provides information about the songs on the record.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart  #Quarantunes  #Rackhamchoir  #singingforjustice

July 21, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 15: Hughes, Simonson & Taylor “New Day Dawning”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir presents the music stylings of Hughes, Simonson & Taylor playing “New Day Dawning”, composed by Fred Hughes.  The musicians who comprise the group all perform annually as part of Rackham Choir’s presentation of “Too Hot to Handel, the Jazz, Gospel Messiah.” They are Fred Hughes (Hammond B 3 Organ from THTH), James Simonson (electric bass guitar from THTH.) and Dave Taylor (drums from THTH).

Fred offers concerts almost daily on his website, check out the schedule here https://www.fredhughes.com/live.htm. You can also see and hear more from James on his website https://simotunes.com, and Dave on his Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/dstaylor2004.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes#Rackhamchoir  #singingforjustice

July 14, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 14: Rackham Choir “Psalm 24” by Lili Boulanger

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir sings “Psalm 24” by Lili Boulanger. This work was performed last spring in our “Fantaisie Francaise” concert of French pieces with choir and organ. Our featured organist is Joseph Jackson, who is the head of Music Ministries at First Presbyterian Church of Royal Oak and the Rackham Choir accompanist as well as many music ventures around Michigan and beyond. 

Lili Boulanger composed “Psalm 24”, entitled La terre appartient à l’Eternel (“The earth is the Lord’s”), in 1916 while she was resident in Rome. The work is dedicated to Monsieur Jules Griset, who was the director of Choral Guillot de Saint-Brice. 

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes#Rackhamchoir  #singingforjustice

July 7, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 13: Rackham Choir, Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Agnus Dei”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir sings as part of the work Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Agnus Dei” by Paul Paray, recorded by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and released in 1957. At that time Rackham Choir was known as the “Rackham Symphony Choir”, and was the official chorus of the DSO.

The first director of Rackham Choir was Maynard Klein who prepared the chorus for this performance and led the choir for nearly 30 years. Prof. Klein joined the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Music in 1948. For the next 28 years he was chiefly responsible for the extensive program offered by the School of Music, founding and conducting such organizations as the University Choir, the Arts Chorale, the Tudor Singers, and the Rackham Symphony Choir. Maynard Klein, Professor of Music, retired from active faculty status as of May 31, 1977, after an extraordinarily successful career as conductor, teacher, and editor.

Enjoy this video and make sure to check out the full mass as part of Rackham Choir singing for Detroit for over 70 years!

Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Agnus Dei” by Paul Paray

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes#Rackhamchoir#singingforjustice

June 30, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 12: Rackham Choir, Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Kyrie

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir sings as part of the work Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Kyrie” by Paul Paray, recorded by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and released in 1957. At that time Rackham Choir was known as the “Rackham Symphony Choir”, and was the official chorus of the DSO. The first director of Rackham Choir was Maynard Klein who prepared the chorus for this performance and led the choir for nearly 30 years.  Enjoy this video as part of Rackham Choir singing for Detroit for over 70 years.

Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc – “Kyrie” by Paul Paray

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes#Rackhamchoir  #singingforjustice

June 23, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 11: Rackham Choir Interns

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir features alumni from our high school intern program who are now singing professionally. The first recording is from Erik Hernandez, who is from Royal Oak, MI and was recently seen in the touring production of Aladdin. In this video Erik is singing “Go Back Home” from the musical The Scottsborrow Boys. 

Our second musical selection features tenor Joseph Leppek, who is from Novi, MI and most recently sang a role at the Lyric Opera of Kansas. In this video Joey is singing “Maria” from West Side Story. You can find more information about Joseph Leppek at https://www.josephleppek.com/

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here:  https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes#Rackhamchoir  ##singingforjustice

June 16, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 10: Dear Mrs. Parks

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir sings as part of the work Dear Mrs. Parks, composed by Hannibal Lokumbe. The recordings feature the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Brazeal Dennard Chorale, Rackham Choir and soloists. It is a moving work that pays homage to Rosa Parks and the civil rights movement. We are sharing three movements that continue to radiate so strongly at this time; “For We Have Walked the Streets of Babylon, Forty Thousand Strong” , “A Prayer for the World” and “Giving Their Children the Will to Continue”.  We offer these selections as solace at this time,  and hope that you will listen to the work.

“For We Have Walked the Streets of Babylon, Forty Thousand Strong” – click here.

“Giving Their Children the Will to Continue” – click here.

“A Prayer for the World” – click here.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here: https://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart. #Quarantunes. #Rackhamchoir  #blacklivesmatter #singingforjustice

June 9, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 9: Rackham Choir sings “Music, Spread Thy Voice Around”

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other. In this installment, Rackham Choir sings “Music, Spread Thy Voice Around” from the oratorio Solomon, by Handel. The video features pictures from various concerts, providing a view of us coming together to create music. Rackham Choir stands strong with the movement against racism towards Black Americans. We lift up our voices in song in unity and support! Click here for the video.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click herehttps://rackhamchoir.org. To donate in support of the choir, click here:  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart. #Quarantunes. #Rackhamchoir  #blacklivesmatter #singingforjustice

June 2, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 8: Tenors Cook, Dixon & Young

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes, and as we as a society contemplate and try to nurture our relationships with each other.

In this installment, Rackham Choir shares two recordings featuring tenors Rod Dixon, Victor Trent Cook, and Thomas Young—known as  “Cook, Dixon, and Young”—who joined us for an exciting Evening With Alvin Waddles and Friends early last season. 

The first selection—from their CD Cook, Dixon & Young Volume 1—is a medley of traditional spirituals arranged by Waddles and sung by all three tenors. Click here to view. The second is the pleading “Make Them Hear You,” from Ragtime, featuring Rod Dixon from the cast recording of Three Mo’ Tenors. Click here to view.

Click here to view the entire playlist.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click herehttps://rackhamchoir.org

To donate in support of the choir, click here.  http://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart. #Quarantunes. #Rackhamchoir.

May 25, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 7: Rackham Choir Sings The National Anthem

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes. In this installment, Rackham Choir sings The National Anthem. This recording was originally used as an audition piece to sing at the Detroit Tigers baseball game. Rackham Choir offers it this Memorial Day in remembrance of our U.S. military personnel that passed away in service. We sing this anthem with pride as we remember those that we have lost, salute their comrades in arms, and thank their families for the sacrifices they have made on our behalf. To view, click here.

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here. To donate in support of the choir, click here.

#TogetherApart #Quarantunes

May 19, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 6 – Rackham Choir Sings “Va Pensiero”, virtually

This week we continue our effort to bring some light as we wait out the virus in our homes. In this installment, 33 singers of our chorus with conductor Suzanne Mallare Acton are taking you to their homes with their first ever virtual performance: “Va Pensiero” from the third act of the opera Nabucco. Rackham Choir singer Simone Bonino compiled all the singers’ videos and created our virtual chorus for you all to see and hear. Rackham Choir has performed this song at various concerts and special events in the past, and we share it today as a message of hope and peace during this pandemic. Click here to watch the video. See the English text below:

Fly, my thoughts, on wings of gold;
go settle upon the slopes and the hills,
where, soft and mild, the sweet airs
of my native land smell fragrant!

Greet the banks of the Jordan
and Zion’s toppled towers.
Oh, my homeland, so lovely and so lost!
Oh memory, so dear and so dead!

Golden harp of the prophets of old,
why do you now hang silent upon the willow?
Rekindle the memories in our hearts,
and speak of times gone by!

Mindful of the fate of Solomon’s temple,
Let me cry out with sad lamentation,
or else may the Lord strengthen me
to bear these sufferings!

For more information about the Rackham Choir and how to audition, click here, https://rackhamchoir.org. To donate in support of the choir, click here, https://rackhamchoir.org/donate

#TogetherApart #Quarantunes

May 12, 2020 –

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 5a – Rodrick Dixon

This week we continue our effort to bring some light and hope to all as we wait out the virus in our homes. In this installment, we feature song selections from two of our Too Hot to Handel soloists. The first is tenor Rodrick Dixon singing Somewhere from West Side Story. This recording is from the special, “Hallelujah Broadway” that showcases inspirational songs from your favorite Broadway musicals.  Enjoy the beauty and expression that Rod creates in this song. To view the video, click here.

For more information about the Rackham choir and how to audition, click here https://rackhamchoir.org To donate in support of the choir, click here https://rackhamchoir.org/donate/

#TogetherApart#Quarantunes

Together In Song, Together In Hope: Episode 5b – Alfreda Burke 

In this installment we feature song selections from our Too Hot to Handel soloist soprano, Alfreda Burke singing “Climb Every Mountain” from The Sound of Music. This recording is also from the special “Hallelujah Broadway” that showcases inspirational songs from your favorite Broadway musicals.  Enjoy the expression and hope that Alfreda relays in this song. To view the video click here.

For more information about the Rackham choir and how to audition, click here https://rackhamchoir.org. To donate in support of the choir, click here https://rackhamchoir.org/donate/ 
#TogetherApart #Quarantunes

May 5, 2020 –

This week we continue our effort to bring some light and hope to all as we wait out the virus in our homes. (Watch the videos after 7p.m. Tuesdays.)

Episode #4a video features one of our senior high school singers, baritone Ben Ward, singing “I’ll Sail Upon the Dog Star”. Ben plans to attend Western Michigan University as a Music Therapy Major. Rackham choir wishes him much success in his future music endeavors. To view the video, click here.

Episode #4b video features one of our junior high school singers, soprano Lacey Cooper singing “My Heart’s Delight”. Lacey will be a senior in high school starting this fall and will be auditioning for colleges in early 2021. Rackham choir wishes her much success in her future music endeavors. To view the video, click here.

For more information about the Rackham choir internship program and how to audition, click here. To donate in support of the high school intern program, click here #TogetherApart #Quarantunes

April 28, 2020 –

In this two-video installment, we feature 2 of our 2019-2020 Rackham Choir interns presenting songs from their postponed Voices of Tomorrow Concert. Today’s video features two of our senior high school singers; tenor Jarrett Hazelton singing “O del mio dolce ardor” and mezzo-soprano Margaret Piazzon singing “Steal Away“. These song selections were used as part of their audition process earlier this year. Jarrett plans to attend the University of Cincinnati as a vocal performance major and Margaret plans to attend Michigan State University as a vocal performance major. Rackham choir wishes them much success on their future music endeavors. To view Jarrett’s performance, click here. To view Margaret’s performance, click here.

For more information about the Rackham choir internship program and how to audition, click here. To donate in support of the high school intern program, click here. #TogetherApart #Quarantunes

April 21, 2019 –

This week we continue our effort to bring some light and hope to all as we wait out the virus in our homes. We present “Together in Song, Together in Hope” Episode 2, Pie Jesu. This video comes from our 2019 intern concert “Rising to the Top” at First presbyterian Church of Royal Oak. The performance of Pie Jesu, from “Requiem” by Andrew Lloyd Weber, features soprano Rachel Miltimore and mezzo-soprano Natalie Corrigan. These singers were part of the Rackham Choir high school intern program for two years until graduating high school. Rachel Miltimore is currently studying at Brigham Young University as a vocal performance major. Natalie Corrigan is currently studying at the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music and is a double major of voice and biology. You can find more information about the Rackham choir internship program and how to audition here https://rackhamchoir.org/education/ To view the performance video, click here #TogetherApart #Quarantunes

April 14, 2019 –

Due to the Corona Virus, events for the remainder of our 2019-2020 season have been cancelled. Instead, we are launching “Together in Song, Together in Hope” — weekly musical performances from Rackham Choir and its members, posted on our social media pages. “We have been singing for Detroit for 70 years, and we are committed to staying connected to our musical community. We’re so excited to share these music selections with you.” – Suzanne Mallare Acton, artistic director. First up, Sanctus From Mass in Blue. Performed at the Alvin Waddles and Friends concert October 2019. To view, CLICK HERE #TogetherApart #Quarantunes