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Old North Festival Chorus

Our traditional Old North Festival Holiday Concerts will be modified this season – due to ongoing concerns about Covid-19 and our commitment to maintaining a safe and responsible environment for all.  Under the direction of Maria vanKalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church – and celebrating her 33rd season as Director of the Festival Chorus – on Saturday and Sunday, December 4 and 5, 2021, audiences will be treated to a selection of seasonal works for solo voices by J.S. Bach, Purcell, Handel, and Mendelssohn, as well as favorite carols with audience participation.  Festival Chorus members are enthusiastically invited to attend – seated in the audience – in order to lend their magnificent voices to the sing-along portion of the program.  These two reduced-capacity, 75-minute concerts – with no intermission – will feature our superb ensemble of Festival Soloists accompanied by the Festival Orchestra, in the sanctuary of Old North Church in Marblehead.  Festival Soloists include: Holly CameronsopranoGabriela Fagen mezzo-sopranoKevin HaydentenorDaniel Fridleybass; and Michael Galvinbass.  Festival Holiday Concerts will also include an appearance by the Old North Bell Choir, under the leadership of Liz Smith.  Our upcoming Old North Festival Holiday Concerts promise to provide a glorious musical opening to the Christmas season which you have come to love and cherish!

Tickets: $30 (*)

Available in person at: Arnould Gallery and Crosby’s Marketplace

Available on-line here

 

(*) all patrons are required to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination at the door, and wear properly-fitted face masks.

For more details please visit the Old North Festival Chorus website: www.oldnorthfestivalchorus.org

Please direct any questions or concerns to Kathy at 781.608-2782

Old North Church Marblehead MA

The Old North Festival Chorus gathers Old North’s Senior Choir together with enthusiastic singers – amateur to professional – from many neighboring communities in Marblehead. 

 

Each season, the Festival Chorus welcomes new voices while maintaining a devoted ensemble from previous years. 

Encouraged by a love for music and a reputation as one of the North Shore’s most spirited and talented volunteer choirs, the Festival Chorus & Orchestra has been lauded for its outstanding performances of major choral works each year.

A magnificent tradition – which started in the early 1980’s at Old North and was initially conceived as a gift to the Marblehead community – the Old North Festival Chorus has grown to include a record-breaking one hundred (100) voices.  Following tradition, two holiday concerts are presented as part of Marblehead’s Christmas Walk, in addition to a Spring Concert on the evening of Palm Sunday. Each section of the chorus is led by one of the four professional soloists from Old North Church. The chorus is accompanied by some of the Boston area’s finest orchestral players, all led by director, Maria vanKalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church.

Rehearsals are on Wednesday evenings from 7:30-9:30 starting in late September or early October. Rehearsals for the Spring Concert begin in February. Members of the chorus are required to purchase their own music -available at registration/first rehearsal - and pay a nominal registration fee. Singers are not asked to audition, but prior experience is preferred.

 

For more details please visit the website: www.oldnorthfestivalchorus.org

Festival Youth Chorus

The Old North Festival Chorus gathers Old North’s Senior Choir together with enthusiastic singers – amateur to professional – from many neighboring communities in Marblehead.  Each season, the Festival Chorus welcomes new voices while maintaining a devoted ensemble from previous years. Encouraged by a love for music and a reputation as one of the North Shore’s most spirited and talented volunteer choirs, the Festival Chorus & Orchestra has been lauded for its outstanding performances of major choral works each year.

A magnificent tradition – which started in the early 1980’s at Old North and was initially conceived as a gift to the Marblehead community – the Old North Festival Chorus has grown to include a record-breaking one hundred (100) voices.  Following tradition, two holiday concerts are presented as part of Marblehead’s Christmas Walk, in addition to a Spring Concert on the evening of Palm Sunday. Each section of the chorus is led by one of the four professional soloists from Old North Church. The chorus is accompanied by some of the Boston area’s finest orchestral players, all led by director, Maria vanKalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church.

Rehearsals are on Wednesday evenings from 7:30-9:30 starting in late September or early October. Rehearsals for the Spring Concert begin in February. Members of the chorus are required to purchase their own music -available at registration/first rehearsal - and pay a nominal registration fee. Singers are not asked to audition, but prior experience is preferred.

 

For more details please visit the website: www.oldnorthfestivalchorus.org

Maria van Kalken, Director of Music

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Maria van Kalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church and Director of the Festival Chorus, celebrates her thirtieth (30th) season in charge of Old North’s flourishing music program. Maria earned the degree of Bachelor of Music in Organ Performance from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music (Oberlin, Ohio) and Master of Music from the New England Conservatory of Music (Boston, MA). Her studies abroad have included pipe organ performance at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, under the patronage of the Rotary International Scholarship Fund, and the completion of an historical organ performance program in Pistoia, Italy. 

In addition to her work as Minister of Music – playing organ and directing the Senior Choir – Maria is Artistic Director of Concerts at Old North, presenting between two and six chamber music concerts annually, in the acoustically-glorious Old North Church in Marblehead. 

 

Maria is a senior staff member of the Boston Early Music Festival (www.bemf.org); as Assistant to the Executive Director, Maria is liaison to musicians from all over the world for the Festival’s biennial Baroque opera project, as well as the annual Chamber Opera Series, the Boston and New York Concert Series (at the Morgan Library & Museum), and opera touring and recording projects. 

Sarah Del Dotto, Youth Choirs Director

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Sarah Del Dotto is a graduate of the prestigious, world renowned Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York.  While working towards her Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education at Eastman, Sarah was invited to work with the early childhood music program in the Community Education Division.  Through this program, Sarah taught children ages 6 months to 4 years old in the Greater Rochester Area.  Upon graduation, Sarah worked as choral director in Rush-Henrietta and Greece Central School Districts and was sought out as conductor for various choral music festivals and concerts throughout New York. 

Sarah held the position as head of the choral department at Johnstown High School before moving to Boston to pursue her Master’s Degree in Piano Performance at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA.  Sarah graduated with honors from Longy in 2009.  She was also the recipient of the distinguished Mary Ellis Smith Prize for Excellence in Piano Pedagogy and Performance.  Besides being a dedicated choral director and teacher, Sarah has performed as a collaborative and solo artist throughout Massachusetts and New York.  Sarah served as a teaching artist for the Metropolitan Opera Guild for 3 years, bringing music education to underserved schools in Massachusetts.  She currently works as the middle school choral director and music teacher for the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, MA.  Sarah also maintains a piano studio in Salem with her husband, Josh (www.deldottopianoschool.com).  She currently lives in Salem with her husband and twin daughters.

Liz Smith, Bell Choir Director

Lizb.jpg

Liz Smith of Swampscott, MA has been joyfully ringing handbells since 2008, when she joined her church’s bell choir.  She soon began ringing with New England Ringers, one of New England’s finest audition handbell choirs.  Liz has loved making music since childhood, when she studied piano and played clarinet, saxophone, and oboe in many school and community music ensembles.  She is thrilled to be with the Old North Church Hand Bell Choir.  Liz is also a math tutor at Hadley Elementary School in Swampscott.  When she is not taking pictures of the sunset or collecting sea glass, Liz spends her free time with her husband, their daughter, and their three grown sons.

Holly Cameron

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Holly Cameron, soprano, is thrilled to sing with the Festival Chorus and Orchestra for her eleventh season! She has been hailed a “marvelous femme fatale” (Boston Musical Intelligencer) with “rip-roaring high notes” (The Boston Globe). Some of her favorite operatic roles include Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Musetta (La bohème), and Abigail (The Crucible), among others. On the concert stage, Ms. Cameron has appeared as a soloist in works such as Carmina Burana, Brahms’ Requiem, Poulenc’s Gloria, Mozart’s Requiem, Fauré’s Requiem, Verdi’s Requiem, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, and Bach’s St. John’s Passion and St. Matthew’s Passion. A recipient of numerous honors, Ms. Cameron was a New England Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has won awards in the Shreveport Opera Competition, Sarasota Artist Series competition and the National Orpheus Vocal Competition, among others.

She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Voice Performance from New England Conservatory and a Master’s Degree in Voice Performance from Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Holly also has a growing reputation for her interpretation of the blues and soul genres and can be regularly heard with the Chris Fitz “Bigger Soul” Band.  For more information and other upcoming performances, please visit: www.hollycameronsoprano.com.

Gabriela Fagen

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Mezzo-soprano Gabriela Fagen is a graduate of the Indiana University Jacobs School of
Music, having received her Master of Music studying under the tutelage of Mary Ann Hart in 2019, and her Bachelor of Music as a student of Costanza Cuccaro in 2017. Ms. Fagen made her debut with Teatro Nuovo in the summer of 2021 as a chorus member and cover for Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Additionally, she was contracted as the cover for Alceo in Il vero omaggio with Teatro Nuovo (cancelled due to COVID-19). Other recent role credits include Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus with the Lyric Opera Studio Weimar,  Sesto in Handel’s Giulio Cesare, Dryade in R. Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos, Unulfo in Handel’s Rodelinda and Ethel Toffelmeier in The Music Man with Indiana University Opera Theatre; Third Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with the Prague Summer Nights Festival; Dame Hannah in Ruddigore with the University Gilbert and Sullivan Society; and Third Spirit in Die Zauberflöte with the Savannah Voice Festival. She is also a recipient of the Joshi International Fellowship, and the Viola Wheeler Arts Award. Ms. Fagen is currently based in Brookline, MA, and is a student of Constance Fee.

Daniel Fridley

Daniel Fridley, bass, received his Doctorate of Musical Arts in 2021 from the Case Western Reserve University Historical Performance Practice program, studying with Ellen Hargis and Jesse Blumberg. His “spotless, resonant bass” (Cleveland Classical) lends itself well to both early music and opera.

Performance credits from recent seasons include Ensemble/Monstro in Francesca Caccini’s Laliberazione di Ruggiero dall’isola d’Alcina (Boston Early Music Festival); Pretore in Rossini’s La gazza ladra (Teatro Nuovo); Contrabass Soloist in Emilio Rautavaara’s Vigilia (Chicago Chorale); Bass Soloist in J.S. Bach’s Coffee Cantata (Wyoming Baroque); Dottore Grenvil in Verdi’s La traviata (The Cleveland Opera); Dangerous Love, a concert of fiery 17th century Italian music (Newberry Consort); Jesus in J.S. Bach’s St. John Passion (Atlanta Baroque); and Polyphemus in Handel’s Acis and Galatea (CWRU).

 

He is thrilled to be joining Old North and the Festival Chorus after having moved to Boston this summer.

Old North Church Marblehead MA