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A Tenor In Winter: Benefit Concert & World Premiere

January 30, 2011, 5pm

Calvary Presbyterian Church, 2515 Fillmore St at Jackson, SF 94115 (Map)

Tickets: Pay-what-you-can (sliding scale) at the door the evening of the performance

Brian Thorsett, tenor

Showcasing music for tenor, strings, and winds by Arthur Bliss, Bohuslav Martinu, Monteverdi, Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesSchubert, and a world-premiere by Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesDavid Conte, internationally recognized Professor of Composition at SF Conservatory of Music.

The performance features Brian Thorsett, tenor, graduate of SF Opera's Merola Opera Program, who has performed over 50 operatic roles and 60 concert works. Brian is principal tenor at Calvary Presbyterian Church of SF. BARS chamber ensembles join Brian for this event (click here for artist info and bios).

Benefit Concert: All ticket sales and proceeds benefit Larkin Street Youth Services, whose Castro Youth Housing Initiative and services for HIV+ youth serve the LGBTQ community, and BARS Drum Drive for Timpani and Percussion, matched dollar-for-dollar by the Jon Sims Endowment Fund for the Performing Arts.

A free reception with wine and hors d'œuvres will follow the performance. This concert is part of the Calvary Connect Concerts series.


Program: Haydn-String quartet movement; Arthur Bliss-Elegiac Sonnet; Monteverdi-Madrigals; Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesSchubert-5 songs from Winterreise (Winter Journey) transcribed for tenor and woodwind quintet; Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesSchubert-Octet mvt. 6; Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesDavid Conte-World Premiere piece for Tenor and String Quartet; Bohuslav Martinu-Nonet mvts. 1 and 3

Parking at CPMC Hospital garage (Clay between Fillmore & Webster) | MUNI 3, 22, 24

About Brian Thorsett, tenor

Since taking to the operatic stage in 2001, tenor Brian Thorsett has been seen and heard in over 70 diverse operatic roles, ranging from Monteverdi to Britten, back to Rameau and ahead again to works composed especially for his talents. During the 2010-11 season, he returns to the roles Jupiter and Apollo in Semele, Acis in Acis & Galatea and adds the role of Beppe in I Pagliacci.

As a concert singer Brian fosters a stylistically diversified repertoire of nearly 100 works, which has taken him to concert halls across the US and Europe. Future engagements include Evangelist and soloist in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion and Mass in B Minor, the Seasons and Creation of Haydn, Handel’s Messiah, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, Purcell’s Hail, Birght Cecilia, Beethoven’s Christus am Ölberge, Choral Fantasy and Mass in C, Mendelssohn’s Christus, Elijah and Lobgesang (Symphony No. 2), the Requiem of Mozart, Schubert’s Intende Voci Orationis, Psalm 92 and Mass in E-Flat, Finzi’s Dies Natalis, Dvorak’s Stabat Mater, Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn & Strings and a rare performance as Ishmael in Bernard Hermann’s Moby Dick.

An avid recitalist and principal tenor at Calvary Presbyterian Church, Brian will be featured in recitals in San Francisco, San Jose and Half Moon Bay, CA presenting the music of Monteverdi, Grieg, Rossini, Enescu, Coates, Ginastera, Turina, Britten, and premieres of Nicholas Carlozzi. He is a graduate of San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, Glimmerglass Opera’s Young American Artist program and spent two summers at the Music Academy of the West.

This is Brian's second performance with BARS.

David Conte, composer

About Part of the BARS LGBTQ Composer & Performing Artist seriesDavid Conte, composer

David Conte is currently Professor of Composition and Conductor of the Conservatory Chorus at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He has received commissions from Chanticleer, the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus, the Dayton, Oakland and Stockton Symphonies, the American Guild of Organists, Sonoma City Opera and the Gerbode Foundation. Conte has composed five operas: The Dreamers; The Gift of the Magi; Firebird Motel; and America Tropical; (these last two commissioned by San Francisco theater company Thick Description, for whom Conte has been Composer-In-Residence since 1991); and Famous, based on the book Famous for 15 Minutes - My Years with Andy Warhol by Ultra Violet. He is also the composer of a musical The Passion of Rita St. James produced at the SF Conservatory in 2003. The Gift of the Magi has been produced by the Asheville Lyric Opera, Winnipeg Opera, Muddy River Opera Company, Greenburg American Opera, and Opera South. He has also composed songs for singers Barbara Bonney, Thomas Hampson and Phyllis Bryn-Julson. His work is represented on many commercial CD recordings.

A Fulbright Scholar in Paris with Nadia Boulanger, a Ralph Vaughan Williams Fellow and an Aspen Music Festival Conducting Fellow, Conte earned his Bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University, where he studied with Ruth Inglefield and Wallace DePue, and his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from Cornell University where he studied with Karel Husa, Robert Palmer, Steven Stucky and Thomas Sokol. In 1982, Conte worked with Aaron Copland preparing a study of the composer’s sketches. He has taught at Cornell University, Keuka College, Colgate University and Interlochen. With composer Todd Boekelheide, Conte co-wrote the film score for the documentary Ballets Russes, shown at the Sundance and Toronto Film Festivals in 2005, (now available on DVD), and composed the music for the PBS documentary, Orozco: Man of Fire in 2006, shown on the American Masters series in the fall of 2007. His composition The Nine Muses was commissioned by the American Choral Director's Association for their National Convention and was premiered on March 8th, 2007, in Miami. For more info see davidconte.net

Additional BARS Musicians

Thomas Alexander, violin, Russ Bartoli, cello, Clayton Bullock, violin, Hans Brightbill, cello, Michael Cook, piano, David Latulippe, flute, Fred Fox, oboe, Thomas Hill, bassoon, Mark Hodgson, violin, Don Hubert, viola, Jeff Johnson, horn, Gene Nakajima, clarinet, and Steve Willis, bass, led by Jessica Bejarano, conductor.

About Calvary Presbyterian Church

San Francisco's largest Presbyterian church, located in Pacific Heights at the corner of Jackson and Fillmore Streets. Constructed in 1854, its building is on the national registry of historic landmarks. Calvary's music programs include performances from its renowned chancel choir, chamber music and full orchestral performances, professional touring groups from around the world, and Calvary ConcertConnect series. For more info see calvarypresbyterian.org/