Dear music lovers, friends and family,
Musica Sacra, a world-class professional choir based in New York City, led by Kent Tritle, is on a mission to expand and modernize the world of choral music by recording music by living composers, and we need your help to record an album by award-winning composer Robert Paterson.
We are scheduled to record at the Academy of Arts and Letters in New York City this June, with Grammy® Award-winning recording producer Adam Abeshouse. It will be released under the American Modern Recordings label distributed by NAXOS.
"I strongly believe in working with musicians in my community. Kent and I first met in my neighborhood in NYC over ten years ago when he lived here. Since then, we have become great friends. We are really excited to finally have this opportunity to work together, and especially with his choir, which consists of musicians we both know personally here in our community in New York."
Here are the works on the album:
- Lux Aeterna: will be premiered by Musica Sacra on a future program
- Eternal Reflections: commissioned by Volti Choir of San Francisco, winner of Cincinnati Camerata Composition Competition; texts by Czeslaw Milosz, Mary E. Frye and Paul Lawrence Dunbar
- The Essence of Gravity: also commissioned by Volti
- A Dream within a Dream: commissioned by the Chamber Choir of Europe; text by Edgar Alan Poe
- Life is But A Dream: also commissioned by CCE, based on Row, Row, Row Your Boat, incorporating multiple translations of this famous round in different languages
- Suite from A New Eaarth (for orchestra, chorus and narrator): written for the VYOA Choir during a Music Alive! New Music USA residency, this piece touches on environmental issues and global warming; text by Wendell Barry, James Joyce, Percy Bysshe Shelly and William Wordsworth
- Did You Hear?: addresses the life of teens and the consequences of rumors and gossip; text by David Cote
- Snow Day: commissioned in 2014 by Pelham Memorial High School Choir, expresses the joy of having a day off from school; text by David Cote
Live Recordings of Works on The Album:
A project of this scope needs support. All of the works have been commissioned, but none have been professionally recorded. All that exist are live recordings, which are uneven in quality and sound.
WHAT DO WE NEED TO DO IT? We need to raise $24,000 in order to cover our costs for hiring 24 singers, the recording, editing, mixing, production and cover art.
TIMELINE FOR RAISING MONEY: 30 days... No big deal! We know we can do it with your help.
WHAT HAPPENS IF WE DON'T MEET OUR GOAL OF $24,000? You don't have to pay and don't get your rewards in return. More importantly, the project will not get funded and this exciting recording will not get made.
WHAT IF WE MEET OUR GOAL? We immediately get started on the recording process. The album will be released by April 2015 at the latest so if we are fully funded, you can expect to be enjoying your copy of the CD by then. Musica Sacra's impact and audience base is gigantic. Their houses are packed, in venues including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall and St. John the Divine. The album will be promoted to hundreds of choirs and radio stations. and highlighted and featured at an upcoming Chorus America conference.
WHAT IF WE EXCEED OUR GOAL? Funding we receive above and beyond the goal will be used to help pay for promotional materials, ads in choral magazines and other publications which are critical for spreading the word, mailing the physical CDs, attending the Chorus America conference, and paying the staff of AMR, who all work for very little.
WHY SHOULD YOU HELP? By helping you will become part of this project. No donation will be overseen. Your generosity is greatly appreciated, and we promise you will not regret helping.
IS MY DONATION TAX-DEDUCTIBLE? Absolutely! Musica Sacra via American Modern Ensemble (American Modern Recordings house ensemble) is a 501(c)3 non-profit and as such, your donations are tax deductible.
More about Kent Tritle
Kent Tritle is a world-renowned choral conductor and organist in New York City. He is the current director of the professional chorus Musica Sacra and of the Oratorio Society of New York, and director of cathedral music and organist at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine. In addition to his work as a choral director, he is a concert organist with the New York Philharmonic and the American Symphony Orchestra. He is Director of Choral Activities at the Manhattan School of Music, and on the graduate faculty of the Juilliard School.
More about Robert Paterson
Robert Paterson was named Composer of The Year at Carnegie Hall by the Classical Recording Foundation. Works from The Book of Goddesses, Duo Scorpio, Wood and Forest, and Six Mallet Marimba have all been on the Grammy® nomination ballot for Best Contemporary Classical Album. The New York Times states, “There’s Schumannian drama and melancholy in the song cycle CAPTCHA that opens this beautiful, witty and sometimes utterly desolate collection of vocal works by Robert Paterson, and it’s all in the music.” “Robert Paterson’s terrific recent recording, Winter Songs, made for one of the best releases of 2013. His small ensemble orchestrations are colorful and clear, and he values lyricism and beauty. CAPTCHA is utterly brilliant... it needs to be a standard choice in the repertoire” (Sequenza 21). His works have been played by the Louisville Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Albany Symphony and the American Composers Orchestra. Upcoming engagements include his opera Safe Word with Fort Worth Opera’s Frontiers Showcase, Dark Mountains with the Austin Symphony and Hell's Kitchen for the Utah Arts Festival. Paterson resides in New York City with his wife, Victoria, and their son, Dylan.
More about Musica Sacra
Musica Sacra was founded by Richard Westenburg at Central Presbyterian Church in 1964. It was the first all-professional, paid admission choral series ever undertaken by a church. By the early seventies, the popularity of its concerts caused it to become independent and move to larger venues, including Carnegie Hall and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. For many years, concerts were given at Lincoln Center, and it was there that Dr. Westenburg founded Musica Sacra’s Basically Bach Festival, and led its main concerts from 1979-89. The Festival was reinstituted in March, 2006.
Many renowned choral organizations have gone out of existence upon the death of their founder. It was Dr. Westenburg’s hope that this would not happen in the case of Musica Sacra, and in the early 2000’s the organization began to plan for an orderly transition to a new music director at such time that Dr. Westenburg would choose to scale back his conducting. In early 2006, Musica Sacra named Kent Tritle to be its associate conductor and eventual successor to Dr. Westenburg. A highly acclaimed choral conductor in his own right, Mr. Tritle years before was a student of Dr. Westenburg’s at Juilliard. He was Dr. Westenburg’s personal choice to take over the reins of Musica Sacra.
In addition, to its acknowledged affinity for Baroque music, Musica Sacra has performed in all styles, from the chant of Hildegard to commissioned works and first performances of leading contemporary composers, such as Diamond, Britten, Khatchaturian, Convery and Rorem. They have recorded on RCA, BMG and Deutsche Grammophon music ranging from Handel (the first complete all-digital Messiah, in 1981, and still available), to Schoenberg, Bruckner and Meredith Monk.
With this recording, we hope to take listeners on a unique, exciting musical journey within the choral genre. Most importantly, we hope to bring joy to people through our music and artistry. We are very passionate about this project, but we need your help. Any amount helps!
Thank you all for your generosity and support!
- Robert Paterson and Kent Tritle
Risks and challenges
After the project is successfully funded, the recording will definitely happen. In the event that for some unseen reason (an act of Nature, for example, or Kent Tritle falls ill), the entire production will be rescheduled. This production will be under contract with both Local 802 in NYC and AGMA, so once we disperse the funds, the project will definitely go forward, no matter what.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)