Excelsis: Stabat Mater – Karl Jenkins

Excelsis with Tom BuchananUnder the direction of Tom Buchanan, Excelsis will present Karl Jenkins’ Stabat Mater with full orchestra in the exquisite surrounds of Melbourne’s St Patrick’s Cathedral on Friday 23 June 2017.

First performed at Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral in 2008, Stabat Mater has quickly become one of the world’s most performed contemporary oratorios. The work is divided into twelve movements and incorporates additional texts including Ave verum corpus (originally composed for Bryn Terfel), Lament by Carol Barratt, and English texts derived from ancient Babylonian and medieval Persian sources.

Sydney-based Soprano, Ayse Göknur Shanal, will join Excelsis in presenting this work, and will also perform Dvorak’s Song to the Moon, from the opera Rusalka. An orchestra has been formed specifically to play for this performance and includes many of Melbourne’s finest professional musicians led by Marianne Rothschild.

This concert will also feature a selection of shorter contemporary works, presented by choir and orchestra including: Moments of Falling (Stuart Greenbaum); O Salutaris Hostia (Horváth Márton Levente); A Litany (Robin John King); Prayer of the Children (Kurt Bestor, arr. Andrea Klouse); and Ave Verum Corpus (Tom Buchanan)

Tom Buchanan completed a Bachelor of Music (Honours) at the School of Music – Conservatorium of Monash University in 2006. During his studies Tom was the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, most notably the Joan Earle Prize for excellence in piano studies, both in 2002 and 2004, and the first prize in the Monash University Concerto Competition, both in 2002 and 2006.

Since completing his studies Tom has worked as a conductor, accompanist, concert pianist and chamber musician, performing throughout Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia and the United Kingdom. He is currently the Musical Director of the Australian Welsh Male Choir, the Mornington Peninsula Chorale and Excelsis. In addition to these roles, Tom also regularly performs as a pianist in a number of different chamber ensembles.

Excelsis is a Melbourne-based Catholic choir which sings primarily for liturgical events and also gives occasional concert performances. The choir sings a varied repertoire of sacred music from numerous Christian traditions, incorporating classical European works, traditional African pieces, Gospel songs, Welsh hymnody and contemporary Asian church music. Excelsis takes its name from the Latin word, meaning ‘highest’.

Stabat Mater – Karl Jenkins
St Patrick’s Cathedral, 1 Cathedral Place, East Melbourne
Performance: Friday 23 June 2017 – 8.00pm
Bookings: www.trybooking.com

Image: Excelsis with Musical Director Tom Buchanan (centre) – photo courtesy of Excelsis