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For Immediate Release: March 8, 2010

Contact: Jen Rogers, 480-204-0101
Email: jen@phoenixchorale.org

NORWEGIAN COMPOSER OLA GJEILO
TOURS NORTHWEST WITH GRAMMY-AWARD WINNING

PHOENIX CHORALE MARCH 12-13, 2010
Tour includes two different concert programs with Ola Gjeilo on piano;
March 12 at the Northwest Division ACDA Convention
And March 13 at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral

Norwegian composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo makes his Washington state debut this week in Seattle on March 12-13, performing his newest work titled Dark Night of the Soul with the Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale, led by Artistic Director Charles Bruffy. Mr. Gjeilo is the Composer-in-Residence for the Phoenix Chorale’s 2009-10 Season and has been featured on concerts throughout the year.

Gjeilo’s family is from Geilo, Norway, the famous ski resort in the mountains between Oslo and Bergen—originally Ustedalen before it was renamed after his great-great-grandfather when the town became a stop on a new railway.  “This is the place that feels the most like home to me when I’m in Norway,” Gjeilo said.

Gjeilo grew up in Skui, Norway just outside of Oslo.  He attended Rud Videregående Skole near Skui before studying for his Bachelor’s Degree at the Norwegian Academy College of Music in Oslo, the Royal College of Music in London, and the Juilliard School in New York.  He completed his Master’s Degree in composition at Juilliard in 2006.

The March 12 “Grammy Night” is part of the Northwest Division American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Convention and also features the Soweto Gospel Choir. The March 13 concert, titled “Darkness & Light,” is the inaugural concert in a new series at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral. Both concerts include performances of the Gjeilo’s newly commissioned work titled Dark Night of the Soul, written for choir, string quartet and piano – with Mr. Gjeilo on piano.

Two other choirs will perform Gjeilo’s music at this week’s Northwest ACDA Convention in Seattle.  The Central Washington University Chamber Choir, under the direction of Gary Weidenaar, will perform Contrition on Thursday, March 11 at 11:45 AM in the Town Hall. The ACDA High School Women’s Honor Choir, under the direction of Sandra Peter, will perform Ubi Caritas on Saturday, March 13 at 3:30 PM at First Presbyterian Church.

Gjeilo’s music has been performed and recorded in more than 30 countries worldwide. His music has been featured on PBS in America, and on all the major Scandinavian TV channels.

Several ensembles, musicians, and others worldwide have commissioned Gjeilo, including St. Olaf College and Luther College—two Norwegian colleges in the U.S.  Gjeilo still receives commissions from Norway and goes back for premieres about twice a year.

His publishers include Walton Music (US), Gehrmans (Sweden), and Musikk-Huset (Norway).  Walton Music became the exclusive publisher of his choral music in 2007.  Gjeilo’s first solo piano recording, Stone Rose, was released in 2007 and is available in stores worldwide. Ola Gjeilo is the Phoenix Chorale’s first composer-in-residence and his music has been featured throughout the 2009-10 Season.

March 12, 2010 – “Grammy Night” of the Northwest Division ACDA Convention
PHOENIX CHORALE with special guest Ola Gjeilo

This concert is part of the Northwest Division American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Convention and also features the Soweto Gospel Choir. The Phoenix Chorale’s “Grammy Night” program includes music from their recording “Eternal Rest” with Finnish composer Jaakko Mäntyjärvi’s Canticum Calamitatis Maritimae. The concert also features music by Whitacre, Gabriel Jackson, Morten Lauridsen, Arvo Pärt and Phoenix Chorale Composer-in-Residence Ola Gjeilo’s newest work, Dark Night of the Soul (written for string quartet, choir and piano, with Mr. Gjeilo on piano). The concert starts at 8:00 pm and takes place at Seattle First Presbyterian Church (1013 8th Ave., Seattle, WA 98104). Tickets for this concert can be purchased by calling 253-854-8125 or by sending an email to Twyla Brunson at tbrunson@clearwire.com.  More information can be found at www.nwacda.org.

March 13, 2010 – “Darkness & Light” at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral
PHOENIX CHORALE with special guest Ola Gjeilo

The Phoenix Chorale’s “Darkness & Light” program is the inaugural concert in a new series at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral. From darkness to light, the Phoenix Chorale explores the spectrum of emotions evoked in today’s choral music – love, loss, spirituality, innocence, joy and beyond.  These candlelit concerts include performances of music by Eric Whitacre, John Tavener, Carlos Surinach, Morten Lauridsen, James MacMillan, Shawn Crouch, and U2. The concert also features Phoenix Chorale Composer-in-Residence Ola Gjeilo’s newest work, Dark Night of the Soul, written for string quartet, choir and piano – with Mr. Gjeilo on piano.  The concert starts at 7:30 pm and takes place at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral (1245 10th Ave. E, Seattle, WA 98102). Tickets for this concert can be purchased by calling the St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral Book Store at 206-323-1040.

Interviews and press tickets can be arranged by contacting Jen Rogers, at 480-204-0101 or jen@phoenixchorale.org.

 

About Composer-in-Residence Ola Gjeilo: The music of Manhattan-based Norwegian composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo (b. 1978) has been performed and recorded in more than 30 countries worldwide. His music has been featured on PBS in America, and on all the major Scandinavian TV channels. Mr. Gjeilo (pronounced Yay-lo) has been commissioned by several ensembles, musicians and others worldwide, including Barbara Bonney, Solveig Kringelborn, Atle Sponberg, Philip Brunelle, the Edvard Grieg Society, St. Olaf College, Luther College, Ensemble Mendelssohn, and Chorale Arts Ensemble. Elite choirs including the Kansas City Chorale, Conspirare, World Youth Choir, VocalEssence, Mogens Dahl Chamber Choir, BYU Singers, Norwegian Soloists’ Choir, and the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation’s Radiokoren have also performed his choral music. After studying for his Bachelor’s Degree at the Norwegian Academy College of Music in Oslo, the Royal College of Music in London, and the Juilliard School in New York, he completed his Master’s Degree in composition at Juilliard in 2006.  His publishers include Walton Music (US), Gehrmans (Sweden), and Musikk-Huset (Norway).  Walton Music became the exclusive publisher of his choral music in 2007.  Mr. Gjeilo’s first solo piano recording, Stone Rose, was released in 2007 and is available in stores worldwide. Ola Gjeilo is the Phoenix Chorale’s first composer-in-residence and his music will be featured throughout the 2009-10 Season.

 

About the Phoenix Chorale: The Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale is regarded as one of the finest professional choral ensembles in America and is equally dedicated to the creation and performance of new music, which it intermingles with more traditional concert literature. Audiences around the world have been treated to the sounds of the Chorale through live performances across the United States and in Canada, and in live broadcasts and recordings on radio stations across the globe. In 2004, the Phoenix Chorale became the first North American choir to release an album on Chandos Records, one of the largest independent classical record labels in the world.  The Phoenix Chorale’s newest solo recording, Spotless Rose, was released in September 2008, and received a Grammy Award nomination for ‘Best Classical Album,’ and won a Grammy for ‘Best Small Ensemble Performance.’ Rheinberger: Sacred Choral Works is the Phoenix Chorale’s third joint-recording in a series of albums on the Chandos Record label with the Kansas City Chorale and received two Grammy Award nominations including ‘Best Choral Performance’ and ‘Best Surround Sound.’ Two other joint-recordings have been released on Chandos Records, the first in the series is Eternal Rest (2005) followed by Grechaninov: Passion Week which received Grammy Award nominations in 2007 including ‘Best Classical Album,’ ‘Best Choral Performance,’ ‘Best Surround Sound Album,’ and won a Grammy Award for ‘Best Engineered Album, Classical.’ The Phoenix Chorale is sponsored in part through grants and funding from Cathedral Arts, Arizona Commission on the Arts, the City of Phoenix’s Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Quail Distributing. More information is available at www.phoenixchorale.org.

 

About Artistic Director Charles Bruffy: Charles Bruffy is one of the most admired choral conductors at work in America today. He has been Artistic Director of the Phoenix Chorale since 1999 and Artistic Director of the Kansas City Chorale since 1988. In addition, he became the Artistic Director of the Kansas City Symphony Chorus at the start of the 2008-09 Season. A champion of new music, he has commissioned and premiered works by several of America’s greatest composers. Mr. Bruffy performed with the Robert Shaw Festival Singers from 1992-99 in recordings and concerts in France, and in concerts at Carnegie Hall. In May 1996, Mr. Bruffy was featured in the New York Times as one of Robert Shaw’s successors. In 2005, Fanfare magazine called him “one of the next big things in American choral music.” Under his supervision, the Roger Dean Company publishes a choral series specializing in music for sophisticated high school choirs, college choirs, and professional ensembles.

About the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA): Founded in 1959, the ACDA is a nonprofit music-education organization whose central purpose is to promote excellence in choral music through performance, composition, publication, research, and teaching. The ACDA also strives through arts advocacy to elevate choral music’s position in American society.  ACDA membership consists of choral directors who represent more than one million singers across the United States.

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