A few days ago, the local Star-Advertiser newspaper ran an editorial which caught my eye. The headline was “This town needs symphony” and decried the loss of this precious cultural asset in our community. I can’t tell you how dependent we at the Lutheran Church of Honolulu have been over these many years on professional musicians in this community. In an earlier post (“Honolulu Symphony Musicians and LCH”) I wrote about the numerous instrumentalists who have attended services in our church, become members and have been active in our parish musical life. We are so grateful that we have been able to use professional musicians for our special services and concerts, keeping the quality of our music-making at absolutely the highest level.
There were probably two sides to the sad Honolulu Symphony story, but we know that sometimes when doors shut, others open. I know that after Carl retires from LCH he has expressed an interest in lending both his business and musical expertise to possibly rebuilding another symphonic organization. It will take leaders with real vision to imagine all the possibilities, and I am hopeful that a phoenix will arise from the ashes.
In the meantime, there are FOUR opportunities to hear live symphonic music at LCH, just in the next several weeks. They are:
December 24, 10:30 pm. Bach’s joyous Christmas Oratorio, Part I, will be performed with soloists, full chorus, strings, winds, brass and timpani. Vocal soloists are Maya Hoover, Les Ceballos, and Keane Ishii. At 11:00 pm, Michael Praetorius’ Missa ganz Teudsch (Christmas Mass) will highlight 10 vocal soloists, 2 organs, 2 harpsichords, full Baroque Orchestra and brass choir, truly a “surround sound” experience. You will be absolutely dazzled by several phenomenal “episodes” of both vocal and instrumental virtuosity in this work.
December 26, 7:00 pm, Solemn Vespers for St. Stephen’s Day. Bach wrote an absolutely sublime dialog Cantata 57 Selig ist der Mann for this day in his third year at Leipzig. We will present it with a beautiful Magnificat for solo soprano, flute and strings (long attributed to Bach but now known to be by a predecessor in Leipzig, Melchior Hoffmann). Chandra Peters, Georgine Stark and Keane Ishii are soloists with the LCH Choir and Bach Chamber Orchestra.
January 2, 4:00 pm, the Lutheran Church of Honolulu Choir, soloists and the Bach Chamber Orchestra will present Bach’s Cantata Nr 28 Gottlob! nun geht das Jahr zu Ende and Johann Kuhnau’s Magnificat in C with added Christmas interpolations. Vocal soloists are Georgine Stark, Rachel Lentz, Naomi Castro, Carl Crosier, Ian Capps, and Keane Ishii.
January 15, 7:30 pm and January 16, 4:00 pm, The Starks Go Baroque. Few Baroque works have enjoyed the popularity of the four violin concerti by Vivaldi known as “The Four Seasons.” This work will be the centerpiece of a concert that will also feature two brilliant works for soprano and chamber orchestra. The Handel Gloria was discovered fairly recently, but Bach’s Cantata 51 has become a perennial favorite. Darel and Georgine Stark are veteran performers of this repertoire, and bring their brilliant technical prowess and stylistic knowledge to illuminate this wonderful music.
Our program at LCH simply would not be what it is or has been without our Honolulu Symphony musicians.