Sung for the first time, by The Paris Choral Society, in the Sainte-Chapelle on April 27, 2022
Crédit photographie Centre des monuments nationaux
is a work commissioned by the Tallis Scholars to commemorate their 40th anniversary. The work, inspired by the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, was presented for the first time in Saint Paul's Cathedral in London on March 7, 2013, under the direction of Peter Phillips.
Is an American composer of orchestral music and choral singing, he has also conducted several ensembles on the European, Asian American and Australian continents.
I was thrilled and honoured when Peter Philips approached me with an invitation to write a piece in celebration of 40 years of The Tallis Scholars. At around the time of the invitation I visited Paris and was captivated by its sheer beauty, and particularly Sainte-Chapelle, the 13th-century 'Holy' chapel. Some 6,458 square feet of tall stained glass windows lead relentlessly to an intricate rose window within this mesmerising, Gothic edifice. I turned to my long-time friend, collaborator, poet and historian, Charles Anthony Silvestri to work on the text for the piece, and he crafted the story of an innocent young girl, hearing angels in the stained glass gently singing the 'Sanctus' text.
Eric Whitacre © 2013
For more than a quarter-century, the Paris Choral Society has delighted international audiences with outstanding performances of choral masterworks acclaimed in Paris and beyond.
Lifted by one hundred voices accompanied by professional soloists and orchestras, Paris Choral Society programs draw on celebrated requiems and masses by Mozart, Handel, Beethoven, Verdi, Haydn, Brahms, Bach, Faure and Mendelssohn, to name a few, and the finest in modern choral works by Carl Orff, Leonard Bernstein, Benjamin Britten, Maurice Durufle, with occasional forays into George Gershwin and Irving Berlin, American hymns and spirituals, operatic favourites, and the recent works of women composers.
The chorale is unique in Paris, too, for its membership, which the New York Times once described as “unpaid but professional-level.” Its singers are French- and English-speaking, of all ages and backgrounds, and competition at auditions can be lively. All are committed to a spirit of musical excellence.