Generations of Vocalists Perform 21st Century Classical Masterpieces

Berkshire Lyric presents first local performance of Karl Jenkins' "Requiem"

Berkshire Lyric
Berkshire Lyric

Contacts: Jaclyn Stevenson, 413.209.0500; Jaclyn@winstanley.com / @writerjax

Jack Brown, Berkshire Lyric Artistic Director, 413.298.5365 jjbrown3@verizon.net

PITTSFIELD, Mass. – Berkshire Lyric, a choral performance and education organization with a 49-year history, will present Karl Jenkins’ iconic choral powerhouse Requiem at 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 20, at St. Joseph’s Church on North Street.

Requiem is one of the 21st century’s most recognizable choral pieces, and also one of its most unique. In addition to traditional Latin commonly encountered in a Requiem Mass, the piece also incorporates movements featuring Japanese haiku poetry and the sounds of Oriental instruments. Requiem was written in 2005 by Jenkins, a composer with a background in film music. It is a very popular work in Britain, and this will be its first performance in western Massachusetts.

Berkshire Lyric’s performance will include full orchestration with strings, harp, flute, French horn and percussion, as well as the talents of both the Berkshire Lyric Chorus and the Blafield Children’s Chorus, an addition not commonly seen in performances of Requiem.

Timothy Passetto, baritone, Miles Herr, tenor, and Deborah Rentz-Moore, mezzo-soprano, will be featured soloists. Passetto and Herr are both past winners of the Berkshire Lyric Young Singers competition; Passetto recently graduated from the North Carolina School for the Arts and is attending the Boston Conservatory of Music this fall. Herr is currently a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Rentz-Moore, a frequent soloist in the Northeast, will be returning to her native Berkshires to perform.

The program will be rounded off with shorter English masterpieces by Tallis, Purcell and Hoist. Tickets are $25, and children may attend free with adult.

In addition to presenting concerts, Berkshire Lyric supports a wide range of music education projects in Berkshire County including the annual Young Musician’s Scholarship Program, the Berkshire Lyric Choral Scholars Program and a tuition-free summer Choral Camp for children. For further information on Berkshire Lyric, please visit berkshirelyricinfo.org.

Photographs courtesy Joseph Wilk (Winstanley Partners) and Berkshire Lyric

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About Berkshire Lyric

Berkshire Lyric has been a fixture in the Berkshire musical landscape for 49 years. Berkshire Lyric started as a lyric theatre performance group and has since grown to be the only multi-generational performance and educational group in the Berkshires, providing scholarships, tuition-free education, and quality performance opportunities to Berkshire residents of all ages. As a non-profit, federally tax exempt charitable organization, Berkshire Lyric is supported in part by grants from local Massachusetts Cultural Councils, local corporations and gifts from individual contributors.