Donald Nally

This Sunday on WRTI, The Crossing Choir performs the American premiere of a major work from the composer John Luther Adams. Canticles of the Holy Wind is a multi-movement, concert-length work of breadth and depth.

The Crossing, Philadelphia’s foremost contemporary music chorus, begins a newly expanded season this Sunday, September 15th. The choir will now perform throughout the year. WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports that though the group is growing its output, its artistic vision will not change.

Philadelphia-area native Donald Nally has had a varied and storied career. In addition to  a term as artistic director of the Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia, Nally has also been chorus master of the Opera Company of Philadelphia, The Spoleto Festival, Welsh National Opera, and Lyric Opera of Chicago. Nally stepped down from Lyric at the end of the 2010-2011 season to fully dedicate himself to what he acknowledges as his greatest passion: The Crossing. The Philadelphia-based chamber choir is dedicated to performing new and contemporary choral music; its popularity with audiences is growing and growing...

The Crossing’s season begins this Sunday at the Icebox at Crane Arts Center in Philadelphia’s Northern Liberties with the American premiere of Canticles of the Holy Wind by John Luther Adams.

Donald Nally conducts the first in a three-concert series recorded live in June. The Gulf (between you and me), a major project that has taken years of planning, brings together composers, a poet, an artist, and a variety of musicians from Japan and America to join The Crossing in exploring a particular theme: how we seem to hear what the earth is saying to us with the same, sad inability with which we often listen to those we most love. 

Tune in on Sunday, July 14 at 4 pm to hear the first concert in the series, recorded June 15th at the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral.

And did you catch The Crossing's performance with The Rolling Stones on June 23rd?

July 14 Program:
Gene Coleman: Water of the Last Moment (world premiere)
Santa Ratniece: Chu Dal (Silent Water, 2008)
Tamar Diesendruck: Other Floods (2010)

With special guests Toshimaru Nakamura & Ko Ishikawa

Philadelphia composer Gene Coleman’s musical language is at times experimental, at other times minimal, often drawing on Japanese influences, improvisation, extended techniques, and Gene’s interest in architecture and structure to create a rich and unique sound world.

Composer Santa Ratniece has recently become one of the most important female composers in Latvia, creating some of the richest landscapes in choral music. Her works describe the deepest lakes, the bluest skies, the quietest plains in a kaleidoscope of sounds that both connects us to the subject and magnifies our distance from it.

Composer Tamar Diesendruck offers a transparent view of deconstructionism. Her setting of Giuseppe Ungaretti’s brief words moves from a fragmented landscape to a lush harmonic fullness as the words themselves fall together to reveal, ”I am illumined by immensity."

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The Crossing Choir regularly finds itself on cutting edges that many people don't know exist. But the latest gift to Donald Nally's modern music choir is a 36-year-old Latvian composer, named...Santa.

Listen on Sunday, April 14th, 4 to 6 pm, as The Crossing chamber choir sings the broadcast premiere of Thomas Lloyd's concert-length work, Bonhoeffer. The concert was recorded at the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral this past March.

The Crossing, conducted by Donald Nally and known for their innovation and commitment to new music, premiere's a work by composer Francis Pott commissioned for the opening concert of the National Conference of the Association of Anglican Musicians.

This is the second broadcast in The Crossing's Month of Moderns series, featuring a world-premiere collaboration with Network for New Music. The 2000 Pulitzer Prize-winner Lewis Spratlan composed a concert-length work for The Crossing; Hesperus is Phosphorus loosely takes the form of a kind of secular vespers – a passage, or crossing, through the philosophical and spiritual canyons of our time. Drawing on the words of American poets, playwrights, and physicists, Spratlan’s music explores growth and loss in our ever-expanding world of discovery.

On Sunday, May 27th, from 3 to 5 pm, THE CROSSING choir will be on the air - bringing you the first concert in their 2012 Month of Moderns summer festival.

Donald Nally leads the acclaimed virtuoso choir in Vermillion Vespers, a new work by Haverford College Professor of Music Curt Cacioppo. It's a significant addition to the limited repertoire of concert-length works for choir and organ.

Complete Program:

The Crossing Choir: Works by Kile Smith

Jan 18, 2012

Be sure to join us from 3 to 5 pm on Sunday, January 22nd for a special treat - concert broadcasts of the 24-voice chamber choir The Crossing, led by Donald Nally. This month, you'll hear performances of Kile Smith's Vespers (with Piffaro, the Renaissance wind band), Where Flames a Word, and The Waking Sun (with Tempesta di Mare).

All three of these performances were recorded at the Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia.

More Information about The Crossing Here

The Philadelphia Inquirer's David Patrick Stearns profiles the late Italian-American composer Gian Carlo Menotti.

Susan Lewis considers 20th-century Pennsylvania sculptor and furniture maker, Wharton Esherick.

Donald Nally, artistic director of The Crossing, talks with Jim Cotter about some ambitious new plans for the internationally renowned Philadelphia-based chamber choir.

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