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Gerald Carpenter: Quire of Voyces to Debut Michael Eglin’s ‘Requiem’

Santa Barbara City College’s heavenly choral ensemble, the Quire of Voyces, under the direction of founder Nathan Kreitzer, will offer a concert in the celestial acoustics of St. Anthony’s Chapel in the Garden Street Academy, 2300 Garden St. in Santa Barbara, at 7 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday.

Composer Michael Eglin will premiere his new Requiem in St. Anthony’s Chapel this weekend.
Composer Michael Eglin will premiere his new Requiem in St. Anthony’s Chapel this weekend.

The centerpiece of the program will be the world premiere of Quire composer-in-residence Michael Eglin’s Requiem and Hubert Parry’s Songs of Farewell.

“The perfection of youth depends on work,” Madame Germaine de Staël wrote, “as the perfection of maturity depends on sorrow: it is doubtless desired that parents and fate do not abuse this double secret too much; but in all ages of life only that which acts upon the very center of existence is important, and too often we consider the moral being piece by piece.”

The theme of the program is loss — or, at least, separation — and the sorrow that follows. We are at work, perfecting our maturity.

In his public career, Parry (1848-1918) was a very successful musician and music educator, ending up as president of the Royal College of Music — and a baronet. Nevertheless, with three of his five siblings dying as children, and their mother dying two days after giving birth to Hubert, he knew something about loss.

I hasten to add, however, that weighty though the subject may be, the music is graceful, melodious and translucent.

Tickets to see the Quire of Voyces are $20 for general admission and $15 for students and seniors. They are available at the door before each performance, and through the Garvin Theater box office by calling 805.965.5935.

— Gerald Carpenter covers the arts as a Noozhawk contributing writer. He can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). The opinions expressed are his own.

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