Melodia Women’s Choir in Manhattan with Becca Schack World Premier

The Melodia Women’s Choir will present an all female performance of Vivaldi’s Gloria in D Major and contemporary works, including the world premiere of Becca Schack‘s new commissioned piece “In My end is My Beginning” based on a text by T. S. Eliot.
The concert is being held
Saturday November 17 at 8 PM, and
Sunday, November 18 at 3 PM at
St. Peter’s Church,
346 West 20th Street, New York City, New York.
Melodia will be joined by an all-women
instrumental chamber ensemble.

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door.
For information, call (212) 252-4134, or visit

Melodia Women s Choir, the 32-voice ensemble
praised by Margaret Juntwait for their ringing
tones, will perform baroque and contemporary
works, plus the world premiere of Becca Shack s
new commissioned work In My End Is My Beginning.
The centerpiece of the program, conducted by
Cynthia Powell, will be Antonio Vivaldi s Gloria
in D Major
, RV589. Many scholars believe that
Vivaldi originally composed his Gloria for the
women and girls of the 18th century Ospedale
della Pietà (hospital/orphanage), where he was
working at the time as composer and music
teacher. Melodia will be giving a rare
performance of the Gloria as it would have been
performed in Vivaldi s time.

Becca Schack s In My End Is My Beginning is a
piece in four movements based on excerpts from
T.S. Eliot s Four Quartets, and contemplates the
fragility of life. The composer has written
numerous classically-driven pieces for full
orchestra and chamber groups. She was a finalist
in the 2004 John Lennon Songwriting Contest
(Electronic Category) and she received honorable
mention in two ASCAP Young Composers
competitions, the first one at age eleven. Her
compositions have been played by members of the
New York Philharmonic and she has performed at
the Apollo Theater and Lincoln Center in New
York, as well as in Boston, Los Angeles, San
Francisco, and London.

The balance of the program will include:
Wir Eilen Mit Schwachen from Cantata 78, by J.S. Bach;
Five Hebrew Love Songs, by Eric Whitacre (poem by Hila Plitmann)
She Weeps Over Rahoon, by Eric Whitacre (poem by James Joyce)
Lift Thine Eyes from Elijah by Felix Mendelssohn

Melodia Women s Choir creates, discovers and performs works for women s voices, and
the repertory of the ensemble includes an eclectic mix of rarely performed classical
and contemporary works. It has rediscovered numerous neglected works, presenting
U.S. and New York premiere performances of pieces by Peter Warlock, E.J. Moeran, and
Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel in celebration of her 200th birthday. Their Spring 2007
concert, Shout Sister Shout! celebrated female composers and ensembles from 12th to
21st centuries, and their November 2006 concert featured the World Premiere of
Allison Sniffin s new commissioned work: Hear Me With Your Eyes, based on love poems
of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. The group was founded in 2003 by Jennifer Clarke, an
arts consultant who has worked with London s Royal Festival Hall, Royal Court
Theatre, and companies in New York including Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana and
Dancing in the Streets. The ensemble appeared last year in the Symphony Space Wall
to Wall Stravinsky marathon.

Cynthia Powell, Melodia s Artistic Director and conductor since its inception, also
serves as Artistic Director of Stonewall Chorale, has directed the choral program of
Sarah Lawrence College and was a guest conductor at the Festival Internacional de
Coros in Havana, Cuba. Equally at home as a pianist and organist, she has toured
with Meredith Monk’s opera, Atlas and Celebration Service in Europe, at the Spoleto
USA Festival, the Walker Arts Center and Lincoln Center 2000 Festival and performed
at the Spoleto, USA Festival in a revival of Monk’s opera, Quarry.

An accomplished composer, conductor and lecturer, Eric Whitacre s works have entered
the standard choral and symphonic repertories. Most recently, Whitacre has received
acclaim for Paradise Lost, a cutting edge musical combining trance, ambient and
techno electronica with choral, cinematic and operatic traditions. Winner of the
ASCAP Harold Arlen award, this musical also won Whitacre the prestigious Richard
Rodgers Award for most promising musical theater composer. He has received
composition awards from the Barlow International Composition Competition, the
American Choral Directors Association and the American Composers Forum. The first
recording of his music was hailed by The American Record Guide as one of the top ten
classical albums of 1997. In 2001, he became the youngest recipient ever awarded the
coveted Raymond C. Brock commission by the American Choral Directors Association