Cappella Romana on Tour in Romania at the Iași Byzantine Music Festival


The Iași Byzantine Music Festival in Romania will present Cappella Romana, the world’s leading proponent of scholarship and performance of Medieval Byzantine Chant, in a concert on September 28, 2017, at 7:00 p.m., in the “Vasile Alecsandri” National Theatre. More information .

Music director Dr. Alexander Lingas will lead a mixed ensemble of men and women in medieval Byzantine chant from Hagia Sophia, music heard for the first time by modern audiences only last autumn, during the ensemble’s residency at Stanford University.

The program will feature medieval Byzantine chant from the nearly forgotten Cathedral Rite of Hagia Sophia, sung from performing editions prepared by Dr. Lingas and the Byzantine musicologists Drs. Ioannis Arvanitis and Spyridon Antonopoulos.

According to the festival website, for five days from September 27 to October 1, 2017, the capital of Byzantine chant will be the city of Iași, where some of the world’s most renowned performers of Byzantine music will perform concerts and religious services.

In addition to Cappella Romana, specializing in medieval Byzantine chant, the festival will also present the Greek Byzantine Choir, Greece; the Choir of the Nea Skiti Monastery, Mount Athos, Greece; the Choir of the Hamatoura Monastery, Lebanon; the “St John Damascene” Choir, Serbia; and multiple choirs and Byzantine chanters from Romania.

“We are thrilled to be invited to this prestigious event,” said Mark Powell, executive director of Cappella Romana. “We are grateful to His Eminence, Teofan, Archbishop of Iași and Metropolitan Bishop of Moldavia and Bukovina, and to Adrian Sîrbu and Ștefan Mihalcea (artistic and executive directors) for their support of Cappella Romana’s tour to the region.”

This is Cappella Romana’s first appearance in Romania.

About Cappella Romana

Its performances “like jeweled light flooding the space” (Los Angeles Times), Cappella Romana is a professional vocal chamber ensemble dedicated to combining passion with scholarship in its exploration of the musical traditions of the Christian East and West, with emphasis on early and contemporary music. Cappella Romana’s name refers to the medieval Greek concept of the Roman oikoumene (inhabited world), which embraced Rome and Western Europe, as well as the Byzantine Empire of Constantinople (“New Rome”) and its Slavic commonwealth.
 
Music Director and Founder Alexander Lingas and Cappella Romana have established themselves as global leaders in the music of the Christian East and West. A presentation by Cappella Romana is an experience unlike any other vocal music concert. Some programs feature ancient music never before heard by modern audiences; on other occasions new or rediscovered works based on ancient models are brought to audiences from leading contemporary composers.

Gramophone Review of The Akáthistos Hymn

Akathistos Hymn Cappella RomanaLooking forward to our March performances of Ivan Moody’s Akáthistos Hymn in Seattle and Portland, we’re looking back at Gramophone Magazine’s 2003 review of our recording of the work:

“The Byzantine Akáthistos Hymn probably dates from the early 6th century and comprises 24 stanzas, one for each letter of the Greek alphabet. Moody’s is believed to be the first complete setting of the hymn, a meditation on the Virgin Mary, since medieval times.

Moody has combined authentic Byzantine melodies … [and produced] music of such purity and radiance that, to modern sensibilities at least, the beauty of the sound is a sensuous pleasure which is its own justification, regardless of the intention of the text. Moody’s realisation is sinfully lovely. Cappella Romana specialises in the Slavic and Byzantine traditions, so the excellence of this performance is no surprise…

As if 96 gorgeous minutes of the Akáthistos Hymn were not value for money, the album is rounded off with a shimmering performance of O Tebe Raduetsya, Moody’s 1990 setting of another hymn to the Virgin, this time from the Russian Orthodox tradition.” —B. Witherden, Gramophone

Full Review on gramophone.co.uk

2018 Performances

Cappella Romana at the Portland Middle East Festival

Sunday, August 27th, Cappella Romana will present selections of Orthodox Music from the upcoming season at 2 and 4pm during the 40th Annual Middle East Festival at the St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church in Portland!

See Event Details on Facebook

Preview the 2017-2018 Season on Spotify!

Explore The 2017-2018 Season

Seattle Subscriptions Portland Subscriptions

American Record Guide Review for Cyprus

Cyprus: Between Greek East and Latin West

“Alexander Lingas is one of today’s leading experts on Byzantine music, but he has also developed a vocal group, the Cappella Romana, that has been building an impressive catalog of recordings ranging through the span of Greek Orthodox music, including contemporaneous practice both abroad and in the USA. The present program is an exploration of inter-cultural liturgical life of which Byzantine music was a part. … Lingas and his 11 singers are perfectly in their element.” —John Barker, American Record Guide

Christmas in July!

Enjoy a 20% Off discount for Section A and B tickets to our Christmas programs when you use the promo code “ChristmasInJuly” before July 31st!

Byzantine Christmas: The Sun of Justice


Cappella’s Associate Music Director John Michael Boyer directs exhilarating Byzantine chants for Christmastide in Greek, Arabic, and English. Featuring Lebanon-born guest soloist, Rev’d Deacon John (Rassem) El Massih, and the release of a new CD of the program.

The 12 Days of Christmas in the East


Music director Alexander Lingas leads Cappella Romana in a program of early and contemporary music from the Greek Orthodox tradition for the 12 Days of Christmas. Medieval Byzantine chant, choral works by Greek-Americans Frank Desby, Tikey Zes, and Peter MIchaelides, and by Michael Adamis and Sir John Tavener. Originally performed in the Twelfth Night Festival at Trinity Church Wall Street, New York.

SEATTLE

Fri 5 Jan, 8:00pm
St. James Cathedral
TICKETS

PORTLAND

Sat 6 Jan, 8:00pm
St. Mary’s Cathedral
TICKETS

From The Desk of Mark Powell

Mark Powell, Executive Director

Dear friend,

Your very own Cappella Romana has had a very good 25th Anniversary year: three European tours (including visits to the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany), a week-long residency at Stanford University in the Bay Area with recording sessions of medieval chant from Hagia Sophia, the Arvo Pärt Festival, and the group’s most ambitious Northwest concert series to date, just to name a few highlights.

A highlight for me this year had to have been during our Arvo Pärt Festival. You may not know that I wrote my master’s thesis many years ago on Pärt’s Kanon Pokajanen, and it was the “Prayer after the Kanon” that still somehow caught me completely off-guard. As Cappella Romana sang the final two “Amens,” it was difficult to imagine in that moment any art more piercing to the heart, more perceptive of the human condition. This unspeakably beautiful music ringing out in the cathedral seemed as if it were only for me.

I’m sure you also could share your own Cappella Romana highlight, whether from a recording or live in concert, and I hope you’ll tell us your stories.

Cappella Romana’s work is not an end in itself, but rather serves a higher purpose: to create beautiful, historically informed, transcendent experiences for you through the music of the Christian East and West. And all of this wouldn’t be possible without your support.

Would you make a new gift to the annual fund by June 30th?

Cappella Romana is reaching more audiences than ever before, providing free access through singing liturgical services, local festivals, radio broadcasts, and other outreach. Your giving now provides the base of support that is critical for taking new risks, making new recordings, and accepting invitations to perform all over the world.

Please make your contribution to our annual fund by June 30th and be part of our next chapter, too.

You can make your gift online or by mailing in the reply card enclosed, or by phone (503-236-8202). Monthly giving is also easy to set up. Thank you.

Yours always,

Mark Powell
Executive Director

P.S. Make a gift today to your Cappella Romana. Please also let us know your favorite memory of Cappella Romana when you make your gift. Thank you for your support.

Make a Gift Today to Cappella Romana’s Annual Fund

Cappella Romana Logo

Dear friend,

Your very own Cappella Romana has had a very good 25th Anniversary year: three European tours (including visits to the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany), a week-long residency at Stanford University in the Bay Area with recording sessions of medieval chant from Hagia Sophia, the Arvo Pärt Festival, and the group’s most ambitious Northwest concert series to date, just to name a few highlights.

A highlight for me this year had to have been during our Arvo Pärt Festival. You may not know that I wrote my master’s thesis many years ago on Pärt’s Kanon Pokajanen, and it was the “Prayer after the Kanon” that still somehow caught me completely off-guard. As Cappella Romana sang the final two “Amens,” it was difficult to imagine in that moment any art more piercing to the heart, more perceptive of the human condition. This unspeakably beautiful music ringing out in the cathedral seemed as if it were only for me.

I’m sure you also could share your own Cappella Romana highlight, whether from a recording or live in concert, and I hope you’ll tell us your stories.

Cappella Romana’s work is not an end in itself, but rather serves a higher purpose: to create beautiful, historically informed, transcendent experiences for you through the music of the Christian East and West. And all of this wouldn’t be possible without your support.

Would you make a new gift to the annual fund by June 30th?

With your giving several years ago, Cappella Romana was able to reach more audiences than ever before, providing free access through singing liturgical services, local festivals, radio broadcasts, and other outreach. Your giving now provides the base of support that is critical for taking new risks, making new recordings, and accepting invitations to perform all over the world.

Please make your contribution to our annual fund by June 30th and be part of our next chapter, too.
You can make your gift by going online to cappellaromana.org/give or by mailing in the reply card enclosed, or by phone (503-236-8202). Monthly giving is also easy to set up. Thank you.

Yours always,

       Mark

Mark Powell
Executive Director

P.S. Make a gift today to your Cappella Romana. Please also let us know your favorite memory of Cappella Romana when you make your gift. Thank you for your support.

Spyridon Antonopoulos on Medieval Church Acoustics

Dr. Spyridon Antonopoulos

Dr. Spyridon AntonopoulosThe Red Bull Music Academy features an interview with Cappella Romana’s own Dr. Spyridon Antonopoulos and Emma Warren for an exploration of the transcendent impact and contemporary relevance of medieval acoustics:

“‘Kalophonic music was more embellished and abstract,’ explains Antonopoulos. ‘There are entire compositions of just syllables. It’s an evolution where music seems to usurp text for the first time. To me, that demonstrates humans trying to reach this ineffable place, where speech failed. They had to use music.’ This, he says, is an example of humans trying to unify themselves to the cosmos, when speech is no longer sufficient. It’s what devotional music is all about. ‘This change happens when the massive urban basilicas of Late Antiquity begin to yield to smaller domed churches. Did these spaces respond? Did the music respond? We know there’s a relationship.’”

See the full feature and interview on RedBullMusicAcademy.com

Alexander Lingas on BBC Radio 3

A clip from the BBC Radio 3 program “Private Passions” with celebrated historian Bettany Hughes (author of Istanbul: A Tale of Three Cities), who is a great fan of Alexander Lingas and Cappella Romana. This clip features the ensemble singing the Hymn for Holy Wednesday by Kassia.