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Quire of Voyces in Concert

May 10, 2015 from 3:00pm

Quire of Voyces, Santa Barbara's premier a cappella ensemble, closes its twenty-first season with "Songs of Remembrance," a concert of exquisite Renaissance music sung in the serene architecture and reverberant acoustics of St. Anthony's Chapel, Garden Street Academy. 

"Songs of Remembrance" features two rarely performed classics of the Renaissance.

Officium Defunctorum is the sublime, stirring, and sonorous masterpiece of Spanish composer Tomás Luis de Victoria. Victoria composed Officium Defunctorum—the “crowning work of a great genius”— to memorialize the Holy Roman Empress Maria of Austria after her death in 1603. Maria was his patron and he served as her personal chaplain in the convent where she spent her final years. The two shared a deep spiritual, even mystical faith, and this, Victoria’s last published work, gives voice to the inexpressible yearning of the soul.  Officium Defunctorum soothes, elevates, and ennobles the listener, and we share, even across centuries, our common human capacity for love, remembrance, and awe.

Also on the program is Gregorio Allegri’s magnificent Miserere Mei, Deus. Legend has it that the work was so beautiful that the Vatican prohibited it from being written down or performed outside its walls. The 14-year old prodigy Mozart was said to have transcribed it from memory after hearing it once in the Sistine Chapel. Charles Burney lifted the veil of secrecy when he published it in 1790, perhaps from Mozart’s copy. Miserere Mei, Deus has become one of the world’s most beloved choral pieces. Written for two spatially separated choirs (a full-choir quintet and solo quartet), the interplay of simple chant and elegant embellishment manifests some of the finest part writing of all time. Listeners are captivated by the soprano soloist’s repeated leaps to a haunting, yet angelic, high C.

“Songs of Remembrance” will be performed at 7pm, Saturday, May 9, and 3pm, Sunday, May 10, in St. Anthony’s Chapel, located on the grounds of the recently renovated and wheelchair-accessible Garden Street Academy, 2300 Garden Street, Santa Barbara.

To purchase tickets in advance, contact SBCC’s Garvin Theater Box Office at 805-965-5935. Tickets will also be available at the door.


Event Details

  • Organizer/Sponsor: SBCC Music Department, Quire of Voyces
  • Starts: May 10, 2015 3:00pm
  • Price: $15-20
  • Location: St. Anthony's Chapel, Garden Street Academy, 2300 Garden Street, Santa Barbara
  • Website: http://quireofvoyces.org/concert-season-2014-2015/
  • Sponsors: SBCC Music Department, Quire of Voyces