San Francisco Lyric Chorus Fall 2018 Auditions: Magnificat

San Francisco Lyric Chorus
Trinity+St. Peter's Episcopal Church
1620 Gough Street, San Francisco, between Austin Alley and Bush Streets
Event date: 
10 Sep 2018 to 08 Oct 2018
Start Time: 
7:15 p.m.
Conductor / Keynote Speaker: 
Robert Gurney


Our Fall 2018 concert, Magnificat, gives singers a chance to explore some of the texts of the season.  The Magnificat is a hymn expressing joy and thanksgiving, sung by the Virgin Mary.  We sing settings of this beautiful song of Mary by four different composers, each creating a work reflective of his era and culture.   In addition, we will sing other works appropriate for this joyous time of year.


The San Francisco Lyric Chorus invites singers to join us for our Fall 2018 Season, Magnificat.




Herbert Howells:  Magnificat Collegium Regale

Robert Lucas Pearsall:  In Dulci Jubilo

Arvo Pärt:  Magnificat

Will ToddChristus Est Stella  *  The Christ Child

George Dyson:  Magnificat in D

Bryan Kelly:  Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in C

Philip Stopford:  Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day  *  Lully, Lulla, Lullay *  Ave Maria

Chrysogonus Waddell:  Rosa Mystica

Bernard Dewagtere, arr.:  Suo Gan

Randol Alan Bass:  Gloria


Rehearsals and auditions begin: Monday, September 10, 2018. 


Rehearsals are on Mondays, 7:15-9:45 pm, at:

St. Peter’s Hall

Trinity+St. Peter’s Episcopal Church

1620 Gough Street

San Francisco (between Bush Street and Austin Alley).


Concert dates are Saturday, December 8, 2018, 7 pm and Sunday, December 9, 2018, 5 pm at Trinity+St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, open again for performances after nine years.


For audition and other information, call Music Director Robert Gurney at 415-721-4077 or email  Website:



English composer Herbert Howells (1892-1983) is well known for his sacred works in the soaring English cathedral style.  His passionate Magnificat Collegium Regale, written for Cambridge University’s King’s College, contains those ethereal sounds, as well as forceful, driving passages.


Robert Lucas Pearsall (1795-1896) probably is best known for his wonderful part song, Lay A Garland, as well as his arrangement of the carol we will sing, In Dulci Jubilo, which is No. 2 on BBC Music Magazine’s 2008 list of the top 50 carols and Christmas works as chosen by major English and American choir directors.


Composed in 1989, contemporary Estonian composer Arvo Pärt’s (1935- ) Magnificat is a spare, mystical composition of long, flowing lines and pure tone.  A beautiful example of Pärt’s tintinnabuli style, its apparent simplicity makes it all the more difficult to execute.


English classical composer and jazz pianist Will Todd (1970- ) is probably best known for his choral jazz work, Mass in Blue.  We sing two of his sacred compositions, Christus Est Stella, a setting of the words of the Venerable Bede, written on the wall above his tomb in Durham Cathedral, and The Christ Child, a lovely setting of G.K. Chesterton’s gentle holiday words.


George Dyson (1883-1964), Yorkshire-born composer, teacher, conductor, and organist, studied at the Royal College of Music with C. Hubert Parry and Charles Villiers Stanford.  Known for both his melodic sacred works, as well as beautiful part songs, Dyson’s Magnificat in D alternates between soaring cathedral sounds and quiet, contemplative sections.


Oxford-born composer Bryan Kelly’s (1934-  ) Latin-American/calypso-rhythmed Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in C for chorus and keyboard is a real crowd pleaser in English cathedral style.


We also sing three works set by the contemporary English composer, conductor and organist Philip Stopford (1977- )Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day is a joyous, dance-rhythm setting of this familiar carol.  Lully, Lulla, Lullay is a gentle, lullaby-style setting of the 16th century Coventry Carol text.  Ave Maria is a lyrical, meditative prayer.


Composer and Trappist monk Chrysogonus Waddell’s (1930-2008) composition Rosa Mystica (There Is No Rose) was used in the film, Lady Bird.


French composer Bernard Dewagtere (1958- ) has created a beautiful arrangement of the Welsh lullaby Suo Gan, a composition used in the film Empire of the Sun, about the Japanese invasion of China in World War II.


Texas-born composer/arranger/singer/conductor Randol Bass (1953- ) has created a number of works during his impressive career.  His Gloria is a lyrical, yet powerful and dramatic presentation of the Gloria text.




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