Yale Schola Cantorum "Breath of Earth"

Event time: 
Sunday, February 19, 2023 - 5:00pm
Woolsey Hall See map
500 College
New Haven, CT 06520
Open to: 
General Public
Event description: 

Join us on Sunday, February 19 at 5 p.m. for “Breath of Earth” performed by Yale Schola Cantorum and conducted by David Hill. The program will include:

  • Canticle of the Sun by Amy Beach, a choral and orchestral work with text by St. Francis of Assisi
  • Solemn Prelude by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor
  • The world premiere performance of Edensongs composed by Aaron Jay Kernis with Peter Cole as librettist. Focusing on themes of care for the earth, this oratorio was specially commissioned for Yale Schola Cantorum. View the full program here. It will also be livestreamed here.

Yale Schola Cantorum is a chamber choir that performs sacred music from the sixteenth century to the present day in concert settings and choral services around the world. The choir is directed and conducted by David Hill.

Aaron Jay Kernis, the composer of Edensongs, is a Pulitzer Prize and Grammy-Award winning composer who draws artistic inspiration from a vast and often surprising palette of sources, among them the limitless color spectrum and immense emotional tangle of the orchestra, cantorial music in its beauty and dark intensity, the roiling drama of world events, and the energy and drive of jazz and popular music.  Read more about Aaron here.

Peter Cole, the librettist of Edensongs, is a poet and translator whose many honors and awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, and a genius grant from the MacArthur Foundation. He is the recipient of a National Jewish Book Award for Poetry, the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation, a TLS Translation Prize, the American Library Association’s Sophie Brody Medal for outstanding Jewish literature, and the 2010 Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Cole divides his time between Jerusalem and New Haven, Connecticut, where he teaches each spring at Yale University. Read more about Peter here.

Roundtable: Prior to the concert, join us at 3:30 p.m. in Sudler Hall (entrance through Harkness Hall, 100 College Street) for “ ‘Wanting Song, In the Beginning’: A Roundtable on Images of Eden in History, Culture, and the Environmental Crisis”, a roundtable discussion on the theme of the enduring image of Eden and the garden. Drawing on their expertise in history, literature, architecture, art, and religion, a distinguished panel of Yale scholars and writers will reflect on the image of Eden and the garden, whether as a site of hope or loss, promise or peril, crisis or sustenance. The roundtable, moderated by Ryan Darr,  will begin with brief presentations by the panelists and move quickly to a free-flowing discussion among panelists and audience members. Speakers include:

  • Peter Cole, poet and translator; Horace W. Goldsmith Senior Lecturer in Judaic Studies and Comparative Literature, Yale; librettist of Edensongs
  • Clifton Granby, assistant professor of Ethics and Philosophy, Yale Divinity School
  • Feisal Mohamed, professor of English, Yale 
  • Kishwar Rizvi, Robert Lehman Professor in the History of Art, Islamic Art and Architecture, Yale

Photo: Yale Schola Cantorum conducted by David Hill, by Harold Shapiro