Music of Russia CD – Illumni Men’s Chorale
Some 5.75 years ago Chris McCafferty and I began trading comments back and forth on mondo deep bass parts in Choral music. We listened to the many examples on Youtube and said, “What if?”
That winter the Concert hall Lagerquist was available the week before Christmas with no Christmas Concert scheduled. A few hundred phone calls by Chris later, the Illumni Men’s Chorale was born. One of the pieces we sang was from the Standard Russian Choral repertoire (It’s on this CD), Chesnokov’s “Spaseniye” This made the conversation switch from “What if?” to “What would it take?”
Thousands of hours of research, arranging, composing, transliterating, making contacts, networking, raising support and 2 years later the Illumni dared to present a concert of Russian Music, some pieces in their original key with their original ending for the first time in concert on the west coast of the USA (this claim can probably be expanded upon, but that research of earlier concerts has not been completed). A section of Bassi Profundi, some of whom could be Octavists, was developed, and the Basso Profundo Glenn Miller was engaged. After many hours of learning music that was mostly in a language that few of the men of the Illumni had spoken or sung in, the Concert was put on.
To give you a sense of what this took physically from the singers, the week after the concert, most of them complained to me that the muscles they use to support their breathing were sore.
After two years of trying to find someone to Master the CD, we finally came upon Seraphim Hanisch of Little Spot Productions, who had recorded the PaTRAM Institute with Vladimir Gorbik, (one of the top Russian Sacred Music Conductors). Seraphim Hanisch did a masterful job of mastering.
Here is the CD. You can follow the link to order your own copy as well as hear a couple of short preview tracks.
I will not provide a review of this; it would be a conflict of interest since so much of my own work has gone into this.
Thank you Chris, for being the glue that brought all this together. Thank you Sean Haley and Scott Kovacs for conducting most of the concert. Thank you Glenn Miller for coming in and putting us over the top, especially with your solo. And thank you to the men of the Illumni Men’s Chorale for all the hard work you did to put this concert together.
Link to order the CD: http://musicofrussia.com/