Performer Bios | O schöne Nacht – Romantic Songs of Love and Nature
David Hill has a long and distinguished career as one of the leading conductors in Europe. He has held appointments as chief conductor of the BBC Singers, musical director of the Bach Choir, chief conductor of the Southern Sinfonia, music director of Leeds Philharmonic Society, and associate guest conductor of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
In the 2019 New Year’s Honours for services to music, Hill was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE). He has also been awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Southampton, an honorary Fellowship of the Royal School of Church Music, and an honorary membership to the Royal Academy of Music. He has been Master of the Music at Winchester and Westminster Cathedrals, music director of the Waynflete Singers, artistic director of the Philharmonia Chorus, and director of music at St. John’s College, Cambridge.
Guest conducting credits include some of the leading musical ensembles of Europe: the London Philharmonic, the English Chamber Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Netherlands Radio Choir, and the RIAS Kammerchor, Berlin. Hill also maintains an active career as organist and pianist in recitals worldwide.
With over one hundred recordings to his credit, Hill has performed virtually every style and period in the choral repertoire from Gregorian chant to Renaissance polyphony, from Baroque oratorios to modern masterpieces for chorus and orchestra. He has commissioned dozens of works from leading composers of today, including Judith Bingham, Francis Pott, Patrick Gowers, Sir John Tavener, Philip Wilby, and Jonathan Dove.
At Yale University, Hill serves as principal conductor of Yale Schola Cantorum, and participates in the training of choral conducting majors with Jeffrey Douma and André Thomas.
Yale Schola Cantorum
Yale Schola Cantorum a chamber choir that performs sacred music from the sixteenth century to the present day in concert settings and choral services around the world. It is sponsored by the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and conducted by David Hill; Masaaki Suzuki is principal guest conductor. Open by audition to students from all departments and professional schools across Yale University, the choir has a special interest in historically informed performance practice, often in collaboration with instrumentalists from Juilliard415.
Schola was founded in 2003 by Simon Carrington. In recent years, the choir has also sung under the direction of internationally renowned conductors Marcus Creed, Matthew Halls, Simon Halsey, Paul Hillier, Stephen Layton, Sir Neville Marriner, Nicholas McGegan, James O’Donnell, Stefan Parkman, Krzysztof Penderecki, Helmuth Rilling, and Dale Warland. In addition to performing regularly in New Haven and New York, the ensemble records and tours nationally and internationally. Most recently, Hyperion released Schola Cantorum performing a chamber version of the Brahms Requiem and recordings of the music of Roderick Williams, Tawnie Olson, and Reena Esmail. Schola’s 2018 recording on the Hyperion label featuring Palestrina’s Missa Confitebor tibi Domine has garnered enthusiastic reviews. A live recording of Heinrich Biber’s 1693 Vesperae longiores ac breviores with Robert Mealy and Yale Collegium Musicum received international acclaim from the early music press, as have subsequent CDs of J. S. Bach’s rarely heard 1725 version of the St. John Passion and Antonio Bertali’s Missa resurrectionis. A recording on the Naxos label of Mendelssohn and Bach Magnificats was released in 2009. On tour, Schola Cantorum has given performances in England, Hungary, France, China, South Korea, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Japan, Singapore, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, India, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and Norway.
Bass-baritone Benjamin Ferriby developed an early appreciation for choral music during his boy chorister years with the Saint Thomas Choir of Men and Boys in New York City, then directed by John G. Scott. As a high school senior he sang with the Yale Camerata and the Camerata Chamber Singers under the direction of Marguerite L. Brooks. Ferriby earned a bachelor of music degree at DePauw University, where he also minored in Italian language studies. A New Haven native, Ferriby hopes that his Connecticut-located family can attend some of his performances.
Christina “C” Han
Christina “C” Han is a Korean-American soprano, keyboardist, and researcher specializing in early Western art music and the music of living, “global” composers. Born and raised in Queens, New York, they attended Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts in Manhattan. They earned a bachelor of music in vocal performance from Westminster Choir College, studying with Margaret Cusack. A chorister and a creative recitalist, Han is at Yale to actively move the classical music scene away from its white supremacist and capitalist ideologies toward a safer space for people of color and other marginalized individuals, specifically, queer, non-Christian, transgender, neurodivergent, disabled, and unhoused people.
Pianist Salmone Jordania is a native of Tbilisi, Georgia. She earned her undergraduate degree at the Juilliard School and is currently an MMA student at the Yale School of Music, studying with Boris Berman. She has played solo concerts as well as chamber and orchestral performances around the world. In 2021, Jordania won multiple prizes at the José Iturbi International competition in Spain and the Georges Cziffra Award in Austria. Most recently, she won the New York Concert Artists Worldwide Debut competition, which will result in a debut recital at the Berlin Philharmonie in 2022.
American tenor Patrick McGill has been hailed as having a “clear, round intonation” and “a gorgeous sound” (Chronicle Journal). He has been a summer fellow at Tanglewood and Banff, and has sung at the Montreal Symphony House, Salle Bourgie and Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier in Montreal, the National Arts Centre in Ottowa, Palais Montcalm in Québec, and Carnegie Hall. Although his focus has been early music, McGill’s performance career has encompassed opera, art song, oratorio, and chamber music. Past performances include Lurcanio in Handel’s Ariodante, Candide in Bernstein’s Candide, Normanno in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, tenor soloist in Handel’s Messiah and Israel in Egypt, Torquemada in Ravel’s L’heure espagnole, and Gabriel von Eisenstein in Johann Strauss’s Die Fledermaus. McGill received his BM in vocal performance from the Boston Conservatory and his MM in early music performance from McGill University, where he studied with Ben Heppner and John Mac Master.
Hailing from Bellingham, Washington, mezzo-soprano Molly McGuire is an enthusiastic performer of all styles of classical voice repertoire. As a recent resident of Boston she has performed regularly with et al., the Cantata Singers, and the Choir of King’s Chapel as both a chorus member and soloist. Outside of Boston, McGuire has performed with the VOCES8 Foundation, Bach Akademie Charlotte, Quintessence Choral Festival in Albuquerque, and the Des Moines Choral Festival. Recent performances include a staged production of The Play of Daniel with the Boston Camerata and Handel’s Solomon with Cantata Singers.
Tenor Matthew Newhouse recently debuted at Carnegie Hall as winner of the Semper Pro Musica competition. He was also winner of the 2019 Texoma NATS regional competition. Newhouse participated in the VOCES8 USA Scholar Programme and served as a teaching artist at the 2019 Quintessence Summer Choral Festival. He performed Bach’s Magnificat with the Baylor Symphony Orchestra and Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy with the New Mexico Philharmonic. Newhouse is inspired by Icelandic and Danish art song and strives to incorporate the repertoire into the classical music canon. Originally from Conroe, Texas, he earned his bachelor’s degree from Baylor University.
Anthony Ratinov began playing piano at the age of four under the teaching of his grandmother, Edit Ratinova, who taught at the renowned Gnessin Music School in Moscow. He recently earned first prize at the 2021 Canada International Artists Piano Competition and the Pianists’ Award at the Austrian International Summer Academy. He is currently a master’s student at the Yale School of Music, studying with Boris Berman. Ratinov earned a bachelor’s degree from Yale College, where he majored in chemical engineering and studied piano with Wei-Yi Yang.
Deborah Stephens, soprano, performs with professional choral ensemles such as Kinnara, Coro Vocati, and the Lake Junaluska Singers, and is a sought-after freelance soloist. In 2017 she founded and directed VERITAS Vocal Ensemble, a small group of students at the University of Georgia who are passionate about choral singing. VERITAS has performed on the UGA Student Spotlight Concert and at faculty student recitals, and hosted a joint-ensemble benefit concert to support music education. Stephens earned a bachelor of music degree in voice performance from the University of Georgia.