The Bagaduce Chorale will perform Dec. 14 and 15 at the First Congregational Church of Blue Hill and Dec. 16 at Ellsworth High School. PHOTO COURTESY OF RICHARD SHUTE

Bagaduce presents Rutter’s ‘Mass of the Children’



BLUE HILL — The Bagaduce Chorale’s 44th Holiday Concert will feature two choral masterworks, Mozart’s Mass in C, KV 167, “Trinitatis” in honor of the Holy Trinity, and John Rutter’s 2003 composition, “Mass of the Children.”

Concerts will be Friday, Dec. 14 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 15 at 3 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of Blue Hill. On Sunday, Dec. 16 at 3 p.m. the chorale will perform at the Ellsworth High School Auditorium. Tickets are $20 general admission. Students get in free but need tickets.

These works are presented as part of the Chorale’s ongoing GEM Concert Series and will be performed with the full 90-voice chorus, the GEM Orchestra, comprised of student musicians playing alongside their professional mentors, and the Ellsworth Community Music Institute’s Youth Chorus.

Mozart composed the “Trinitatis” during his early years in Salzburg as a missa brevis for an archbishop who treasured brevity, but did not want to quash the brilliance of the 17-year-old Mozart, a statement from the group said. “This six-movement mass is a non-stop powerhouse composition where the emotional range seems to change from measure to measure, cycling from ecstasy to dark despair, to passion and triumphant celebration. Throughout this work the dynamics modulate with dizzying speed.”

The centerpiece of this roller coaster of a composition is the Credo which, as Music Director Bronwyn Kortge has said, “is like a deck of cards, with new musical thoughts exploding with every flip of the page.”

The second half of the concert will feature the English composer John Rutter’s “Mass of the Children.” Scored for full chorus, orchestra, children’s choir and soloists, this non-liturgical missa brevis interweaves portions of the traditional Latin and Greek Mass with several English poems.

The pure sound of the children’s choir is juxtaposed with the full rich timbre of the adult chorus and both provide a stunning framework for the beautiful solo interludes throughout the score.

Baritone Isaac Bray and soprano Katelyn Parker Bray are the soloists and Rutter’s inimitable sense of melody makes for some stunning duets.

This program is the third in the Bagaduce Chorale’s GEM Concert Series, a two year project conceived by Kortge to present choral masterworks as the composers scored them.

The orchestras are made up of student players from high school and college who play alongside professional musicians. “The goal of this program is to give students opportunities that are not available to them in the classroom setting and allow them to see how professional players prepare for performances,” the statement said.

Advance tickets may be purchased at the Blue Hill Public Library, Flexit Café in Ellsworth, Sherman’s Bookstore in Bar Harbor and at the Southwest Harbor Public Library. Visit bagaducechorale.org.

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