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Oratorio Society of New York announces 2022-23 Season with performances in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall

Season Features World Premiere of A Nation of Others
by Pulitzer Prize-Winners Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell
on November 15

OSNY Presents Annual Tradition of Handel’s Messiah 
on December 19

Bach’s B Minor Mass Concludes Season on May 8

July 14, 2022, New York, NY —The Oratorio Society of New York, led by Music Director Kent Tritle, today announces its 2022-23 season with three concerts in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall. The 22-23 season includes a newly commissioned world premiere; the 148th year of its performances of Handel’s Messiah, a venerable New York holiday tradition; and Bach’s Mass in B Minor, a standout in Baroque choral works.

The season kicks off on November 15, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. with the world premiere of A Nation of Others by Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell, the Pulitzer Prize-winning team that created OSNY’s enormously successful Sanctuary Road. In a moving and dynamic score, A Nation of Others explores the individual and collective experiences of immigrants—many of whom were also refugees—as they arrive at Ellis Island on a single day in 1921. While the work examines the struggles immigrants can face, it also celebrates the fusion of diverse cultures that give our country its identity.

Rounding out the program is Robert Paterson’s Whitman’s America, a presentation of six poems from Whitman’s final version of Leaves of Grass. The selected poems demonstrate the intimate directness, colorful descriptions, and sense of optimism found in many of Whitman’s works. Paterson views each movement as a vision that Whitman may have imagined as he was nearing death and highlights various themes present in Whitman’s poetry. With instrumentation designed to be identical to Brahms’ RequiemWhitman’s America praises nature and the role humans play in it as both individuals and Americans. 

Featured soloists joining OSNY for this performance include sopranos Susanna Phillips and Maeve Höglund, mezzo-soprano Raehann Bryce-Davis, tenor Martin Bakari, baritone Steven Eddy, and bass-baritone Joseph Beutel, together with the Orchestra of the Society, led by Music Director Kent Tritle.

Continuing the season, Oratorio Society of New York presents its 148th performance of Handel’s Messiah on December 19, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. A holiday staple since 1874, this year’s performance, led by Maestro Tritle at the podium, includes soloists soprano Maria Brea, contralto Heather Petrie, tenor Joshua Blue, and baritone Jesse Blumberg, together with the Orchestra of the Society.

The season concludes with J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor on May 8, 2023 at 8:00 p.m. Bach’s remarkable and singular setting of the complete text of the mass encompasses the range of human experience, from joy to sorrow and solemnity to praise. Composed over a 25-year period, the work is divided into four sections, beginning with the Kyrie and Gloria. Written in 1733, the work is divided into five sections and is noted for its perfection of symmetry and form. Maestro Tritle leads the Orchestra of the Society and chorus, alongside soloists soprano Emily Donato, mezzo-soprano Lucia Bradford, tenor Brian Giebler, and baritone Sidney Outlaw. OSNY’s extensive history with the piece includes a 15-year stint of successive performances between 1925 to 1941.

“I am so delighted to be directing the world premiere of A Nation of Others,” said Music Director Kent Tritle upon the announcement of the 2022–23 season. “The Oratorio Society of New York has increasingly taken on new music, and this promises to be a landmark in our history of doing so. The dramatic trajectory created by Mark Campbell and Paul Moravec promises to propel this message of ‘what makes America great’ to greater appreciation and understanding. The work portrays the stories of unsung heroes- real people who risked their lives to come to America with hopes and aspirations. Handel’s Messiah and Bach’s Mass in B Minor round out our season. These two Baroque masterworks plumb the resources of this chorus; we delight in showing our constituents that yes, a large and Romantic chorus can indeed scale the heights of these monuments, eliciting transparency, litheness, and deep emotional connection from beginning to end.”

OSNY’s 2022-23 season also includes the 46th annual Lyndon Woodside Oratorio-Solo Competition on April 15, 2023 at 1:30 p.m. in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. The annual competition features eight young singers performing major oratorio arias with piano accompaniment. OSNY Music Director Kent Tritle and a panel of distinguished judges choose winners and award cash prizes. Winners have performed with OSNY and other organizations at Carnegie Hall and other major NYC locations. Founded in 1977, the competition is the only major vocal competition dedicated to oratorio singing with the goal of nurturing the careers of aspiring oratorio soloists and their commitment to the oratorio repertoire.

Subscriptions for all three concerts in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage are available at a 15% discount through September 23 by visiting osny.org. Tickets are also available via carnegiehall.org, CarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800, or at the Carnegie Hall Box Office at 57th and Seventh.

Event Information

November 15, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. 
Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall
Link:
 https://www.carnegiehall.org/Calendar/2022/11/15/Oratorio-Society-of-New-York-0800PM

Kent Tritle, conductor
Susanna Phillips, soprano
Maeve Höglund, soprano
Raehann Bryce-Davis, mezzo-soprano
Martin Bakari, tenor
Steven Eddy, baritone
Joseph Beutel, bass-baritone 
Orchestra of the Society

MORAVEC / CAMPBELL: A Nation of Others 
PATERSON: Whitman’s America


December 19, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. 
Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall
Link:
 https://www.carnegiehall.org/Calendar/2022/12/19/Oratorio-Society-of-New-York-0800PM

Kent Tritle, conductor
Maria Brea, soprano
Heather Petrie, contralto 
Joshua Blue, tenor
Jesse Blumberg, baritone
Orchestra of the Society

HANDEL: Messiah 


May 8, 2023, at 8:00 p.m.
Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall
Link:
 https://www.carnegiehall.org/Calendar/2023/05/08/Oratorio-Society-of-New-York-0800PM

Kent Tritle, conductor
Emily Donato, soprano
Lucia Bradford, mezzo-soprano
Brian Giebler, tenor
Sidney Outlaw, baritone
Orchestra of the Society

J.S. BACH: Mass in B Minor


About the Oratorio Society of New York
The Oratorio Society of New York (OSNY.ORG) is one of the oldest musical organizations in the United States and has become New York City’s standard for grand choral performance. Founded in 1873 by Leopold Damrosch, the Society has played an integral role in the musical life of the city. In its early years, the Society established a fund to finance the building of a new concert hall, a cause taken up in earnest by the Society’s fifth president, Andrew Carnegie. In 1891, and under the direction of Pyotr Tchaikovsky, the Society helped inaugurate this new Music Hall, which would be renamed Carnegie Hall several years later.

The Society continues to perform several times each season at Carnegie Hall. Its annual performances of Handel’s Messiah, a New York holiday tradition unbroken since 1874, have become a holiday favorite with New York audiences. In addition to its collaborations with the New York Philharmonic and Orchestra of St. Luke’s, as well as other performing arts institutions, the Society performs internationally every few years – including recent concerts in Japan, Uruguay, Germany, Italy, and Brazil.

The Society is also committed to commissioning and championing new works, including most recently Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Paul Moravec and Grammy Award-winning librettist, Mark Campbell’s Grammy-nominated recording Sanctuary Road, available from Naxos Records. Link: https://naxos.lnk.to/SanctuaryRoad

The OSNY membership consists of avocational and professionally trained singers as well as non-singing members. Auditions are held twice annually at the beginning of the fall and winter terms. OSNY is a not-for-profit 501c3 corporation governed by a volunteer board of directors with a professional music staff.

About Kent Tritle
Kent Tritle is one of the leading choral conductors in the United States. During his tenure with the Oratorio Society of New York, he has led it in a wide variety of works, including the world premieres of the Paul Moravec/Mark Campbell oratorio Sanctuary Road and Juraj Filas’s Song of Solomon, and the New York premieres of Paul Moravec’s The Blizzard Voices and Marjorie Merryman’s Jonah. Under his direction, members of the chorus have also performed in Europe, Japan, and South America and in concerts presented by the New York Philharmonic.

Mr. Tritle is also Director of Cathedral Music and Organist at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, where he directs the Great Music in a Great Space concert series, and is Music Director of Musica Sacra.

Kent Tritle led the Sacred Music in a Sacred Space series at the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola from 1989 to 2011, and from 1996 to 2004 he was Music Director of the Emmy-nominated Dessoff Choirs. Kent hosted “The Choral Mix with Kent Tritle,” a weekly program devoted to the vibrant world of choral music, on New York’s WQXR from 2010 to 2014.

Kent Tritle’s discography features more than 20 recordings on the Telarc, Naxos, AMDG, Epiphany, Gothic, VAI, and MSR Classics labels. Recent releases include the Grammy-nominated 2018 world premiere performance of the Paul Moravec/Mark Campbell oratorio Sanctuary Road with the Oratorio Society of New York; the 2016 performance of Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, David Briggs’s organ-choral version, and Eternal Reflections: Choral Music of Robert Paterson with Musica Sacra.

An acclaimed organ virtuoso, Mr. Tritle is the organist of the New York Philharmonic and the American Symphony Orchestra. He performs regularly in Europe and throughout the United States. Recital venues have included the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Zurich Tonhalle, the Church of St. Sulpice, Dresden’s Hofkirche, King’s College at Cambridge, and Westminster Abbey.

Mr. Tritle is on the graduate faculty of The Juilliard School and is Director of Choral Activities at the Manhattan School of Music, where he established a doctoral program in choral conducting and is on the faculty of the organ department. Tritle is renowned as a master clinician, giving workshops on conducting and repertoire; he was a featured conductor at Berkshire Choral International on several occasions, and currently leads the annual choral workshop at the Amherst Early Music Festival. In recent years he has also led workshops at Summer@Eastman and at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He was featured in the first season of the WIRED video series “Masterminds,” an installment titled, “What Conductors Are Really Doing.” His website is kenttritle.com.

Photo at top of release by Brian Hatton