The flavour of the month is French when the Sooke Chamber Players and Chorus present another in their series of concerts, 7:30 p.m. on Saturday March 23 at the Sooke Baptist Church, and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. March 24th, at the New St. Mary’s Church in Metchosin.
Maurice Ravel and Gabriel Fauré are the two beloved French composers featured in the programme, which will be conducted by Wade Noble.
The multi-talented Victoria harpist Josh Layne will be joined by Sooke orchestra members Alison Crone, flute; and Lawrence De La Haye, clarinet; and the Sooke Philharmonic String Quartet for a performance of Ravel’s Introduction and Allegro for Harp, Flute, Clarinet and String Quartet. The piece was commissioned by Erard, a manufacturer of pedal harps, to show off the range of its new line of harps, something Debussy had already done for a rival firm. The harp was just coming in as a solo instrument.
Three works by Fauré highlight the singing voice. The Fauré Messe Basse (short mass) for women’s chorus, will be sung by the women of the Sooke Philharmonic Chorus. The Cantique de Jean Racine for mixed chorus, is based on a paraphrase by Racine of “Word of God, one with the Most High,” a Latin hymn. Fauré’s wonderful Requiem features Andrew Greenwood, the Victoria baritone, and the Victoria Children’s Apprentice Choir, directed by David Stratkauskas. Audiences will no doubt remember the children’s choir from its performance of Brundibar in 2011.
The March 23 concert in Sooke is dedicated to the memory of Suzanne M. Manley, herself a gifted singer, and celebrates her love of music.
Tickets are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors and students, $5 for youth, and $30 for the family pack. Tickets on sale at the usual outlets.
For more information, please go to www.sookephil.ca or call 250-415-0999.