posted May 5, 2010

Hope College Chapel Choir Releases Compact Disc

The Hope College Chapel Choir has released a new compact disc.

The CD, "A Remarkable Stillness," includes 13 tracks recorded between the spring of 2007 and earlier this year at either St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church or Dimnent Memorial Chapel.

The works reflect an overall theme of peace and reconciliation.  The CD's title comes from the closing selection, "Rejoice in the Lamb," by Benjamin Britten, the text for which is excerpted from an 18th-century poem by Christopher Smart.    

The CD features five works with direct Hope ties.  The group's director, Dr. Brad Richmond, professor of music and director of choral activities at Hope, composed three of the selections:  "Prayer for Peace," sung in Latin and English; "love is more thicker than forget," based on a poem by e.e. cummings; and "Anthem for Doomed Youth (Part I)."  Alfred V. Fedak, a 1975 Hope graduate who is minister of music and arts at Westminster Presbyterian Church on Capitol Hill in Albany, N.Y., composed "L'Envoy:  King of Glory, King of Peace."  Jennifer Wolfe, who is an adjunct assistant professor of music at Hope and director of the college's Women's Chamber Choir, composed "A Hymn to God."

The CD opens with "O Magnum Mysterium" (sung in Latin), by Guy Forbes.  In addition to the pieces by Britten, Richmond, Fedak and Wolfe, the remaining selections are "Annunciation Carol" (sung in Latin and English), by Robert W. Lehman; "Minoi Minoi" (sung in Samoan), arranged by Christopher Marshall; "A Boy and a Girl," by Eric Whitacre; "Pokpok Alimpako" (sung in Filipino), by Francisco Feliciano; "Sicut cervus" (sung in Latin), by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina; and "Magnificat" (sung in Latin), by Arvo Part.

The CD cover shows Glastonbury Abbey in Somerset, England.  The inside back page and back cover include photographs taken during the choir's May 2009 tour of South Africa.  The choir performed in a variety of settings during the tour, including large urban churches, universities, small parishes in black townships, inner-city missions and AIDS clinic.

The CD's producers were Richmond and John Erskine, who with Jean-Yves Munch also served as recording engineer. The mastering engineer was Glenn Brown.

The booklet was designed by Mark Cook.  Richmond took the photographs.

Copies of "A Remarkable Stillness" are available for $10 at the Hope-Geneva Bookstore, which is located on the ground level of the DeWitt Center, on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street. The bookstore is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., but will be open on Saturday, May 8, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The bookstore can also be visited online at www.hope.edu/bookstore/ or called at (616) 395-7833 or 1-800-946-4673.