Cordus Mundi Creates Fund for New Music
With generous local support, Cordus Mundi has announced the Cordus Mundi Commission Fund, an ambitious project designed to add several pieces of new music to the male choral repertoire. Over a ten year period, Cordus Mundi plans to commission and perform five exciting new choral pieces, composed especially for the group.
Contracts have been signed for the first two pieces from the Commission Fund. The series will begin in the 2017-2018 season with music from from venerated composer & arranger Alice Parker. A new composition from internationally acclaimed modern composer Ola Geilo is scheduled for the 2019 - 2020 season.
Seed funding for Cordus Mundi Commission Fund comes as the result of a partnership between Cordus Mundi and the Andersen family of Bucks County. "The musical appreciation and generosity of the Andersen family will enable us to get the commissioning project off the ground and flying," notes Cordus Mundi founder/artistic director Rick Rosen. "As we expand beyond the first couple of commissions, we'll be looking to develop the supporter base for the project - the idea is to just keep commissioning and introducing new music well into the future."
You can help to support us by making a tax-deductible specific contribution to the Cordus Mundi Commissioning Fund. For more information, please click here...
About the Composers
Composer, conductor and teacher Alice Parker was born in Boston, MA in 1925. She began composing early, and wrote her first orchestral score while still in high school. She graduated from Smith College with a major in music performance and composition, then receiving her master's degree from the Juilliard School where she studied choral conducting with Robert Shaw.
Her life-work has been in choral and vocal music, combining composing, conducting and teaching in a creative balance. Her arrangements with Robert Shaw of folk songs, hymns and spirituals form an enduring repertoire for choruses all around the world. She continues composing in many forms, from operas to cantatas, sacred anthems to secular dances, song cycles to string quartets. She has been commissioned by such groups as the Vancouver Chamber Chorus, the Atlanta Symphony Chorus and Chanticleer. Her many conducting and teaching engagements keep her traveling around the United States and Canada.
In 1985, she founded Melodious Accord, Inc., a non-profit group which presents choral concerts, sponsors workshops, symposia, and her many professional appearances. The Fellows programs have provided unique training for composers, conductors and song leaders. Her techniques have encouraged a generation of music teachers and choral conductors to think about music and the act of conducting in new ways. No less an authority than Robert Shaw himself has said of Parker that "…she possesses a rare and creative musical intelligence."
She has made thirteen acclaimed recordings, most with the Musicians of Melodious Accord, a sixteen-voice professional chorus. Recent releases include O Sing the Glories; The Family Reunion; Angels and Challengers; the remastered for CD, Songs for Eve; Singers Glen; Saints Bound for Heaven; And Glory Shone and Where Heart and Heaven Meet, the companion to the popular Melodious Accord Hymnal . The organization has received generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Copland Foundation, and the New York State Council for the Arts.
Now a resident of western Massachusetts, Ms. Parker has published books on melodic styles, choral improvisation and 'Good Singing in Church'. Her detailed analysis, The Anatomy of Melody, was released in 2006. In 2010, as a part of the Melodious Accord 25th Anniversary celebration, The Alice Parker Melodious Accord Hymnal was introduced. Five videos have appeared, showing her work with hymns and folk songs. She has been recognized by Chorus America, the American Guild of Organists, the American Choral Directors Association, The Hymn Society and Choral Arts New England for her lifetime contributions to choral music. She is the recipient of six honorary doctorates and the Smith College Medal.
The music of Manhattan-based Norwegian composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo (b. 1978) has been performed and recorded in more than 30 countries worldwide in venues such as New York's Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall and Alice Tully Hall, Los Angeles' Disney Hall, Philadelphia's Kimmel Center, The Arsht Center in Miami, Washington DC's Kennedy Center and National Gallery, as well as the Copenhagen and Oslo Opera Houses. His music has been featured on PBS and radio stations across the US.
'09-'10 season Composer-in-Residence for the 2008 and 2009 Grammy winning Phoenix Chorale, Gjeilo (pronounced Yay-lo) has been commissioned by several notable artists and organizations, such as Barbara Bonney, Solveig Kringelborn, Philip Brunelle, the Edvard Grieg Society, St. Olaf College, Luther College, Choral Arts Ensemble, Taipei Male Choir, Oslo Church Music Festival, and the ACDA Women's Choir Concortium. His choral music has also been performed by elite choirs such as the Kansas City Chorale, Conspirare, World Youth Choir, VocalEssence, BYU Singers, and the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation's Radiokoren.
Ola's debut piano CD, Stone Rose, featuring his own lyrical pieces in the crossroads between classical, jazz and popular music, was released in 2007 by the multiple Grammy nominated label 2L and is available on amazon.com and iTunes.
After studying for his Bachelor's Degree at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo, the Royal College of Music in London and the Juilliard School in New York, he completed his Master's Degree in composition at Juilliard in 2006.