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For Immediate Release: September 26, 2011

Contact: Jen Rogers, 480-204-0101
Box Office: 602-253-2224


 (Phoenix, AZ) – The Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale’s 2011/12 Season opens with an exploration of some monumental figures – both real and fictitious on October 8 & 9. These concerts feature Herbert Howells’s tribute to John F. Kennedy with his Take Him Earth, for Cherishing, Bob Chilcott’s stunning arrangement of MLK by U2, and three creative stories of Sirens, written by Mason Bates. The Chorale will also sing spirituals by Moses Hogan, some favorites by the Beatles, and present the world premiere of a new composition written especially for the Phoenix Chorale by Shawn Crouch.

Take Him, Earth, for Cherishing
by Herbert Howells, first performed in Washington in 1964, was commissioned to honor the memory of John F. Kennedy. Howells had lost his son to a debilitating neurological disease a few years earlier and was sensitive to the pained state the audience would be in at the premiere; therefore, the music’s setting begins with quiet reverence. It then quickly becomes thicker and the mood more agitated till an all-embracing climax at the words, “Take, O take him, mighty Leader, Take again thy servant’s soul.”

Mason Bates is a visionary existing in two worlds simultaneously. Along with serving as the composer in residence for the Chicago Symphony, he spends his nights spinning music in some of the world’s most exclusive dance clubs. His musical works consist of orchestral, chamber, vocal, theatrical, electronic, and fusions of orchestral and electronic music. Sirens is an entrancing mosaic of a jazz-infused madrigal inspired by a 17thCentury Italian sonnet. First premiered by San Francisco’s Chanticleer, this piece is a six-movement journey through siren poetry from various cultures in four different languages.

Bob Chilcott’s arrangement of MLK by U2 is the final song on their 1984 album, The Unforgettable Fire.  Written to honor Martin Luther King Jr., the short pensive lullaby contains simple lyrics and features a soloist and chorus accompaniment of simple harmonious chords.

Moses Hogan is best known for his popular and accessible settings of spirituals. These spirituals along with original compositions and other works have been revered by audiences and praised by critics. His works are a staple in the repertoires of high school, college, church, community, and professional choirs worldwide. The Phoenix Chorale presents Elijah Rock and Jericho, two well-known spirituals that Moses Hogan made famous.

The Phoenix Chorale presents the world premiere of Marshland Elegy by Shawn Crouch which was commissioned by Frank Skinner in memory of his mother and written for the Phoenix Chorale.  A composer, conductor, and educator, Crouch’s works have been performed by multiple professional choirs all over America. His music often features recognizable classical and baroque elements and The New York Times describes his work as having “gnarling energy.” Currently, he is the director of the Miami Choral Academy, an initiative that seeks “to create positive social change through music.” This program reaches youth in underserved communities in Miami-Dade County through choral instruction.

Shawn Crouch will be the featured guest for the KBAQ 89.5 FM “Talks at Trinity” on Saturday night at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral. Hosted and moderated by KBAQ 89.5 FM’s Sterling Beeaff, these talks offer an up-close and personal interview and in-depth look at the music. “Talks at Trinity” begin at 6:30 pm and take place in Atwood Hall at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral.

Interviews and press tickets can be arranged by contacting Jen Rogers, at 480-204-0101 or

HOW TO BUY TICKETS Subscriptions and all tickets are on sale now and can be purchased through the Phoenix Chorale’s website: or by calling 602-253-2224.

25 & UNDER Rush Tickets New this season! Starting 15 minutes before concert time, anyone 25 years old and younger (with ID) can purchase Rush Tickets for just $5. Rush Tickets are subject to availability, cannot be reserved in advance, and are not guaranteed.

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“Heroes and Legends”
Charles Bruffy,

October 8, 2011 – Saturday afternoon at 3:00 pm
Christ Church of the Ascension
4015 East Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley

October 8, 2011 –  Saturday evening at 7:30 pm
Trinity Episcopal Cathedral
100 W. Roosevelt St., Phoenix
*KBAQ 89.5 FM Talks at Trinity starts at 6:30 pm

October 9, 2011 – Sunday afternoon at 3:00 pm
American Lutheran Church
17200 Del Webb Blvd., Sun City

Advance Tickets:
$28 General Admission
$12 Students
Seniors & Military receive $5 off General Admission; all tickets are an additional $5 at the door

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About the Phoenix Chorale: The Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale is regarded as one of the finest professional choral ensembles in America. The Chorale has developed that reputation through live performances across the U.S. and in Canada, along with a series of recordings treasured by music lovers and played by radio stations around the globe. The newest addition to this collection, Northern Lights, features music composed by Ola Gjeilo, the Chorale’s 2009-10 composer-in-residence, and will be released in early 2012.

The Phoenix Chorale was the first North American choir to release an album on Chandos Records – one of the largest independents classical record labels in the world – in a continuing partnership that began with the 2004 album Shakespeare in Song. The Chorale’s Spotless Rose was released on Chandos in 2008 and received two Grammy Award nominations, including “Best Classical Album,” and won a Grammy for “Best Small Ensemble Performance.” Also in 2008, Rheinberger: Sacred Choral Works, the Phoenix Chorale’s third joint-recording with the Kansas City Chorale, received Grammy nominations for “Best Choral Performance” and “Best Surround Sound.”

The first joint-recording for the two chorales, Eternal Rest, was released in 2005. The second, Grechaninov: Passion Week, came out in 2007 and received four Grammy nominations, including “Best Classical Album,” “Best Choral Performance,” and “Best Surround Sound Album,” and won a Grammy Award for “Best Engineered Album, Classical.”

In its 53-year history, the Phoenix Chorale’s conductors have included Millicent Wesley (the Chorale’s first conductor from 1958), Wallace Hornibrook, Dan Durand, Vance George, Anders Öhrwall, Jon Washburn, and Charles Bruffy. The Phoenix Chorale, ensemble-in-residence at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Phoenix, is sponsored in part through grants and funding from Cathedral Arts, Sundome Performing Arts Association, Arizona Commission on the Arts, City of Phoenix Office of Cultural Affairs, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Quail Distributing. More information is available at