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World Premiere from Caroline Shaw

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw returns to debut her most ambitious project yet for Philharmonia—a cosmic reflection for the otherworldly low-register voices of operatic stars contralto Avery Amereau and bass-baritone Dashon Burton. Perfectly paired with Handel’s expansive ode Eternal Source of Light Divine, the full forces of Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale align with Nicholas McGegan at the helm as he opens his farewell season with a big bang of celestial proportions.

SHAW The Listeners
HANDEL Eternal Source of Light Divine

Nicholas McGegan, conductor
Arwen Myers, soprano
Avery Amereau, contralto
Reginald Mobley, countertenor
Dashon Burton, bass-baritone
Philharmonia Chorale, Bruce Lamott, director

Avery Amereau’s appearance is made possible with generous support from Christina & Kenneth Hecht; October 17 sponsored by Anne & Jeffrey Katz; October 20 sponsored by Elizabeth Anderson Mayer in memory of Henry Mayer


Thursday October 17 @ 8 pm | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
Friday October 18 @ 7:30 pm | First United Methodist Church, Palo Alto
Saturday October 19 @ 8 pm | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
Sunday October 20 @ 4 pm | First Congregational Church, Berkeley

Join us for the Pre-Concert Talk forty-five minutes prior to the concert start time.

CAROLINE SHAW – composer

Caroline Shaw is a New York-based musician—vocalist, violinist, composer, and producer—who performs in solo and collaborative projects. She was the youngest recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 2013 for Partita for 8 Voices, written for the Grammy-winning Roomful of Teeth, of which she is a member. Recent commissions include new works for Renée Fleming with Inon Barnatan, Dawn Upshaw with Sō Percussion and Gil Kalish, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s with John Lithgow, the Dover Quartet, TENET, The Crossing, the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia, the Calidore Quartet, Brooklyn Rider, the Baltimore Symphony, and Roomful of Teeth with A Far Cry. The 2018-19 season will see premieres by pianist Jonathan Biss with the Seattle Symphony, Anne Sofie von Otter with Philharmonia Baroque, the LA Philharmonic, and Juilliard 415. Caroline’s film scores include Erica Fae’s To Keep the Light and Josephine Decker’s Madeline’s Madeline as well as the upcoming short 8th Year of the Emergencyby Maureen Towey. She has produced for Kanye West (The Life of Pablo; Ye) and Nas (NASIR), and has contributed to records by The National, and by Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry. Once she got to sing in three part harmony with Sara Bareilles and Ben Folds at the Kennedy Center, and that was pretty much the bees’ knees and elbows. Caroline has studied at Rice, Yale, and Princeton, currently teaches at NYU, and is a Creative Associate at the Juilliard School. She has held residencies at Dumbarton Oaks, the Banff Centre, Music on Main, and the Vail Dance Festival. Caroline loves the color yellow, otters, Beethoven opus 74, Mozart opera, Kinhaven, the smell of rosemary, and the sound of a janky mandolin.

AVERY AMEREAU – contralto

“A rarity in music” and “an extraordinary American alto on the rise.” NY Times

A native of Jupiter, Florida, Avery Amereau received her Bachelor of Music degree at Mannes College, and went on to study at The Juilliard School, where she was the proud recipient of a Kovner Fellowship and the Shoshana Foundation 2017 Richard F Gold Career Grant. She has studied with Edith Wiens and Dan Marek.

She made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 2016 as the Madrigal Singer in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut and has since sung at the Glyndebourne Festival (Dryad/Ariadne), Seattle Opera (Ursula/Beatrice et Benedict), Opera Columbus (Carmen), Grand Théâtre de Genève (Cherubino/Nozze di Figaro), and at the Salzburg Festival (Page/Salome). This season, Avery will sing Eduige/Rodelinda with Emmanuelle Haïm in her house and role debut at Opera de Lille and for Opera de Lyon, and will return to the Glyndebourne Festival as Goffredo/Rinaldo. On the concert platform, she will sing Bach’s B Minor Mass with the Seattle Symphony, Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky with the Colorado Symphony and the New West Symphony, make her debut with the Early Opera Company in Dido and Aeneas at the Het Concertgebouw Amsterdam, and make her BBC debut as Ursula in Beatrice and Benedict.

Recent concerts include Vivaldi arias with the Orchestra of St Luke’s in New York, Mozart’s Requiem with the Rhode Island Philharmonic and Bramwell Tovey, and Bach’s St John Passion and Duruflé’s Requiem with the Voices of Ascension, New York, Berlioz Les Nuits D’été and Brahms Alto Rhapsody with the American Classical Orchestra, and concerts of Handel and Vivaldi with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale and Nicholas McGegan. Exceptional in baroque repertoire, she has worked with William Christie and Maasaki Suzuki, and at the Bachfest Leipzig and the Boston Early Music Festival.

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