Great music. And more of it.

Announcing our 2016-2017 Season!

Chestnut Street Singers is so excited to announce our busiest season yet! This year we’ll be expanding to many new venues and adding a second performance of each of our three concert programs. That means you’ll have twice as many chances to hear eclectic choral music by Philadelphia’s only cooperative chorus.

Search for Home
On Movement and Migration

Saturday, November 12 at 7:30 PM
Friends Central School
1101 City Avenue in Wynnewood, PA

Sunday, November 13 at 3 PM
First Unitarian Church
2125 Chestnut St in Philadelphia, PA

Our first concert is less than four weeks away! In our current political climate, there’s no better time to ponder (and sing about) the immigrant experience and what it means to be a stranger in a strange land. With music by Brahms, Betinis, Smiley, Barnwell, and more, we explore the universal experience of searching for home.

Divinity Breathed Forth
The Eternal Hildegard

Saturday, March 25 at 8 PM
Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill
8855 Germantown Avenue in Philadelphia, PA

Sunday, March 26 at 3 PM
Old Saint Joseph’s Church
321 Willings Alley in Philadelphia, PA

More than 800 years after her death, Hildegard von Bingen continues to be one of the most influential figures in Christian and musical history. This concert is centered around mystical texts by Hildegard and others, and features music by contemporary composers Frank Ferko and Daniel Elder.

Mother Tongue
Kodály’s Hungary

Saturday, June 3 at 8 PM
University Lutheran Church
3637 Chestnut Street in Philadelphia, PA

Sunday, June 4 at 3 PM
First Unitarian Church
2125 Chestnut St in Philadelphia, PA

The music of Zoltán Kodály, with its blend of traditional Hungarian folk melodies and 20th-century western harmonies, created a unique image of the composer’s beloved nation. This concert will be anchored in some of Kodály’s most beloved choral music, with complementary pieces by other composers.

Announcing Our 2015–2016 Season!

fray. gather. flourish.

How do we find hope after our world is shattered? In the Chestnut Street Singers’ sixth season, we begin with the end—the end of the world, the unraveling of life and love as we know it. In the winter, we draw together and see a glimmer of hope in the Epiphany, and the promise of new life is fulfilled in verdant spring. Subscribe today.

fray | as shadows fall
Sunday, November 1 at 2 PM, First Unitarian Church
Saturday, November 7 at 7 PM, Grace Church in Haddonfield (tickets)
Composers have always been drawn to the question of what happens when the world comes apart around us. In the music of Poulenc, Whitacre, Gesualdo, and many more, we explore upheaval in all sizes, from the death of love to the apocalypse.

gather | in the stillness born
Sunday, January 10 at 2 PM, First Unitarian Church
When all seems lost and the hopeless cold of winter surrounds us, a child is born in a manger. With works by Howells, Gjeilo, Palestrina, and Pärt, our first ever Christmas concert tells the simple story of three magi finding the world’s salvation in a mother’s arms.

flourish | reckless hope rises
Sunday, May 15 at 5 PM, First Unitarian Church
The cycle completes itself in the spring: here is renewal, new life, and joy practically bursting from our lungs! Our season’s final concert centers around Bach’s Jesu, meine Freude and its promise that paradise grows from the good we sow in the darkest of times.

As One: Concert and Dinner

As One, Songs of Pride & Belonging
Sunday, June 1, 2014, at 5 PM
First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia

Our final concert of the 2013-2014 season uses folk songs and global music traditions to explore how cultural pride and a sense of belonging can be expressed through music. There’s longing, nostalgia and quite a few love songs. Works include the joik “Eatnemen Vuelie,” made famous by the movie Frozen, the salsa rhythms of Cuban favorite “Lágrimas Negras,” the Jewish folk song “El Yivneh Hagalil,” and a contemporary interpretation of the American shape-note tune “Long Time Travelin.”

Please note that this concert starts later than usual, at 5:00 p.m. Donations accepted.

ANNUAL CHESTNUTS DINNER
Join us after the concert to celebrate the end of the season with a dinner of summer favorites. We’ll be feasting on a personalized menu of local produce and handcrafted barbecue, accompanied with a few special musical selections that weren’t part of the evening’s concert program. We can think of no better way to toast the successes of this year’s season and celebrate the friends and supporters who have made such work possible. All proceeds support the work of the Chestnut Street Singers and help us to keep presenting accessible, innovative concerts. Make your reservation today!

Chestnut Street Singers presents As One

ABOUT “AS ONE”

Composers: Betinis, Estevez, Fjellheim, Holst, Istre, Kodály, Matamoros, McGlynn, Pahor, Sozio, Tormis, and Vaughan Williams.

Countries Represented: Cuba, England, Estonia, Hungary, Israel, Ireland, Norway, Slovenia, United States of America, and Venezuela.

Languages: English, Estonian, Hebrew, Hungarian, Irish, Slovenian, and Spanish.

Chestnut Street Singers: Michael Blaakman, Elizabeth Chegezy, Josh Dearing, Nate Gibney, Amy Hochstetler, Michael Johnson, Elissa Kranzler, Kurt Marsden, Ken Olin, Rebekah Reddi, Patrick Ressler, Jordan Rock, Lizzy Schwartz, Dan Sprague, Melinda Steffy, and Caroline Winschel.

To Arms

To Arms, Songs of Strife & Reconciliation
Sunday, March 16, 2014, at 2 PM
First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia

Our next concert takes on themes of conflict and trauma with an eye toward peace and healing. From the dramatic French Renaissance song “La Guerre” to the lament-filled Shaker hymn “We will walk with mother and mourn,” from Benjamin Britten’s World War II manifesto “Advance Democracy” to contemporary Haitian composer Sydney Guillaume’s “Twa Tanbou,” each selection attempts to make sense of our chaotic world.

We’ll be performing at First Unitarian Church at 2:00 PM. A reception will follow the performance.

Donations accepted. Become a subscriber today and support our entire season!

Chestnut Street Singers presents To Arms

Composers: Britten, Byrd, Gilbert, Guillaume, Janequin, Mechem, Parker, Pärt, Ressler, Scriven, and Shank.

Conflicts/Struggles Represented: Battle of Agincourt (1415), Battle of Marignano (1515), Kandyan Wars (1796–1818), English Reformation (1529–1688), Jim Crow era (1876–1965), World War II (1939–1945), Vietnam War (1956–1975), September 11 attacks (2001), and Madrid train bombings (2004).

Languages: Creole, drum language, English, French, and Middle French.

Major Poets: Paul Laurence Dunbar, Thich Nhat Hanh, Ryan Newstrom, Rumi, Randall Swingler, and Walt Whitman.

Chestnut Street Singers: Michael Blaakman, Josh Dearing, Nate Gibney, Rachel Haimovich, Amy Hochstetler, Michael Johnson, Elissa Kranzler, Kurt Marsden, Ken Olin, Rebekah Reddi, Patrick Ressler, Jordan Rock, Lizzy Schwartz, Dan Sprague, Melinda Steffy, and Caroline Winschel.

For Keeps

For Keeps, Songs of Comfort and Grace
Sunday, November 17, 2013, at 2 PM
First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia

Looking for some extra warmth this fall? Join us on Sunday, November 17 for a soothing lullaby by Brahms, a joyous shout by Nystedt, a contemplative hymn by Christiansen — a whole program full of songs about comfort and grace.

We’ll be performing at our home base of First Unitarian Church at 2:00 PM. A reception will follow the performance.

Donations accepted. Become a subscriber today and support our entire season!

Chestnut Street Singers presents For Keeps

Composers: Betinis, Chilcott, Christiansen, Chydenius, Dawson, des Prez, Duménigo, Hrušovský, Nystedt, Palestrina, Rachmaninoff, Schütz, Tallis, and Tippett.

Works Composed by a Chestnut: “The Lake Isle of Innisfree” by our own Jordan Rock.

Languages: English, French, German, Latin, Slavonic, and Spanish.

Chestnut Street Singers: Josh Dearing, Nate Gibney, Ben Guez, Rachel Haimovich, Lucy Harlow, Amy Hochstetler, Michael Johnson, Elissa Kranzler, Ken Olin, Rebekah Reddi, Patrick Ressler, Jordan Rock, Lizzy Schwartz, Melinda Steffy, and Caroline Winschel.