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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
GMChorale Media Contact: Sarah Hager Johnston
Media Inquiries: gmcmedia@gmchorale.org
Media Phone: 860-676-2228
Website: www.gmchorale.org
Twitter: https://twitter.com/gmchorale    @gmchorale
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gmchorale/
Mailing Address: GMChorale, P.O. Box 527, Middletown, CT 06457
 

CORRECTED: The GMChorale's Alchemy Ensemble opens the season with performances on October 19 in Cheshire and October 27 in Essex; the Saecula Singers youth choir joins on October 19

The 24-voice Alchemy ensemble will perform Brahms’ virtuosic “Neue Liebeslieder” waltzes, and collaborate with the young voices of the Saecula Singers in a selection of uplifting choral music

MIDDLETOWN, CONN. (October 8, 2019) — Alchemy, the vocal chamber ensemble of the GMChorale, will offer “Soirées Musicales” on two dates in October. The program features the lively, virtuosic Neue Liebeslieder waltzes by Johannes Brahms, with additional choral music by Giacchino Rossini, Randall Thompson, Edward Elgar, and others.

Led by founding Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio, the 24-voice ensemble will perform on Saturday, October 19, 2019, at 7:00 pm at First Congregational Church of Cheshire, 111 Church Drive, in Cheshire, CT. Joining Alchemy on that program is the Saecula Singers, a small, inter-generational vocal ensemble that is part of the New Haven-based Saecula Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides life-changing educational programs, performance opportunities, and scholarships for musicians of all ages

Alchemy will perform a similar program on Sunday, October 27, 2019, at 4:00pm at Essex Meadows, 30 Bokum Road, Essex, CT. Both events are free.

Called “Soirées Musicales,” the hour-long program showcases the versatility of the Alchemy ensemble in performances of accompanied and a capella choral music, and recalls the elegance of musical gatherings in earlier days.

“The tradition of the soirée musicale, or musical evening, has been almost forgotten in our modern world,” said D’Eugenio. “At a soirée, friends, family, and invited guests would gather to sing and play music together, often in a private drawing room or salon. Often, celebrated musicians were featured, and the quality of music-making rivaled that of the best concert halls. We hope this program will evoke that intimate, artistically-inspiring experience.”

The featured work on these programs is the Neue Liebeslieder waltzes by Johannes Brahms, virtuosic settings of love poems for solo voices, chorus, and piano four hands (that is, two pianists playing one piano). The GMChorale’s long-time pianist Allan Conway will be joined at the keyboard by Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio, and members of Alchemy will perform the vocal solos.

Formed in 2016 as the first expression of the GMChorale’s “Singing for a Lifetime” outreach initiative, Alchemy is a company of 24 musicians that includes music educators, professional soloists and performers, and skilled ensemble singers and instrumentalists. The ensemble performs an annual series of concerts across Connecticut, often collaborating with choirs from the communities in which it performs, especially with youth choirs, who have an opportunity to rehearse and perform with the seasoned musicians of Alchemy and their Artistic Director, Joseph D’Eugenio.

Already, Alchemy has become known for its compelling performances and significant vocal artistry. Alchemy was invited to perform at the 2018 annual convention of the American Choral Directors Association (Connecticut Chapter), where Alchemy was the featured presenter at the President’s Concert. The ensemble was also invited to perform a series of concerts in Ithaca, New York in August, 2018, collaborating with a local music school to create a significant choral experience for young singers.

The musicians of Alchemy are members of the 90-voice GMChorale, also under the direction of Joseph D'Eugenio; the GMChorale presents two main-stage concerts each season, often with orchestra.

More information about Alchemy’s 2019-2020 concert series is available at http://gmchorale.org/alchemy/

EVENT DETAILS: 

What:
Choral concert with music by Brahms, Elgar, Thompson, and others.

Who: Alchemy, the vocal chamber ensemble of the GMChorale, and the Saecula Singers, an ensemble of the Saecula Foundation. Allan Conway and Joseph D’Eugenio will play the piano and organ, and the program will be conducted by Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio.

When and Where: TWO DATES, TWO LOCATIONS

Saturday, October 19, 2019, at 7:00pm at First Congregational Church, 111 Church Drive, Cheshire, CT. A free will donation will be accepted.

Sunday, October 27, 2019, at 4:00pm at Essex Meadows, 30 Bokum Road, Essex, CT. The concert is free; registration is required at 860-581-4660 or https://www.essexmeadows.com/event/alchemy-vocal-chamber-performance

For more info:  http://gmchorale.org/alchemy/ or gmcmedia@gmchorale.org 

# # #

Interviews: For more information, or to schedule an interview with Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio, please contact Sarah Hager Johnston, Director of Marketing and Communications at gmcmedia@gmchorale.org or 860-676-2228.

About Alchemy —Alchemy, the vocal chamber ensemble of the GMChorale, was established in 2016 as a company of musicians comprising music educators, professional soloists and performers, and skilled ensemble singers and instrumentalists. Alchemy’s mission is to advance and support the GMChorale's vision of “Singing for a Lifetime” through concert tours, collaborations, musical leadership, education, and community engagement. Led by founding Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio, the ensemble, known for its ability to adapt its sound to a broad variety of repertoire, took the name “Alchemy” in recognition of the ancient, mystical art of creating gold through a process of transformation and refinement. Already recognized for its vocal beauty, richness, and subtlety, this ensemble brings a touch of gold to concerts and collaborations of the highest musical quality. The musicians of Alchemy are also members of the 80-voice GMChorale, which performs a wide range of choral music from several centuries, from beloved masterworks to newly commissioned pieces. In its annual state-wide concert series, Alchemy frequently collaborates with local ensembles and performers, especially youth choirs. The ensemble is often invited to perform across the region in collaborative projects and special concerts, and has been invited to give the President’s Concert Performance at the 2018 convention of the Connecticut Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association.

About Alchemy’s Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio – Recognized as one of Southern New England’s most engaging musicians, Joseph D’Eugenio has been bringing music to life across the region for more than twenty-five years. As a conductor, artistic director, music director, educator, pianist, vocal and conducting coach, and organist, D’Eugenio combines imaginative programming, skilled conducting, and deeply-informed musical versatility to bring freshly-conceived, captivating performances of choral, chamber, keyboard, and orchestral music to audiences across the region. Known for his passion and dedication in preparing and presenting the great choral masterworks, for the past twenty years D’Eugenio has led several performances each season of major choral-orchestral works, most often with the GMChorale, where he has served as Artistic Director since 1998. Under D’Eugenio’s leadership, the GMChorale, an auditioned symphonic choir of 80 voices that performs a wide range of choral music from several centuries, has become known as one of New England’s finest choruses, celebrated for its innovative choral presentations, appealing programming, and engaging performances. In 2009, D’Eugenio was named Conductor of the Year by the Connecticut Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association. He earned the Bachelor of Music (cum laude) in piano performance from The Hartt School, University of Hartford, and the Master of Music in choral conducting from the University of Connecticut.

About the Saecula Singers — Saecula Singers is a small, inter-generational vocal ensemble, which performs both independently and, on some occasions, as a subset of the Saecula Women’s Choir. In January, 2017, the Saecula Singers appeared in a benefit concert for IRIS, along with 12 other distinguished ensembles, including the Yale Glee Club, Yale Schola Cantorum, Redhot and Blue, and The Duke’s Men of Yale. During the summer of 2017, members of the group participated in a project entitled, “Waging Peace through Song,” in which they led a series of choral workshops aimed at fostering peace, tolerance, and empathy among people of diverse backgrounds.

 
Alchemy, the vocal chamber ensemble of the GMChorale (Photo by John Tyler)
Alchemy's Artistic Director Joseph D'Eugenio (Photo by John Marchand)
The Saecula Singers (Photo courtesy of Saecula Foundation)
The GMChorale is partially funded by generous grants from many individual donors and from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County; the Middletown Commission On The Arts; The Marjorie Jolidon Fund of the Greater Hartford Chapter, American Guild of Organists; and Connecticut’s Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
Copyright © 2019 Greater Middletown Chorale, All rights reserved.


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