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About Us


Chorus of Westerly Timeline


1959-60
George Kent, a graduate student at New England Conservatory, founds the Chorus of Westerly.  Concerts are held either in Christ Church Westerly, or in the auditorium of Stonington High School (both inadequate spaces).  The orchestra is made up of New England Conservatory students.  The Chorus includes in its membership one-third children ages 8 - 16, two-thirds adults of all ages, a practice which continues to the present day.  Adults rehearse once a week for two hours.  Children rehearse twice a week for one hour and attend an 8-day Music Camp directed each August by George Kent.  During the early years of the Chorus, the camp was held at a YMCA Camp, Wind in the Pines, near Worcester, Massachusetts.

Season: 
Handel - Dettingen Te Deum
Gabrieli - In Ecclesiis
Fauré - Requiem
Pops Concert in Wilcox Park

1960-61
The Chorus includes in its membership 80 adults and 50 children.  The Chorus is officially incorporated.  The Chorus performs the full Messiah, in two parts, with dinner served in between. The Chorus performs a full-staged musical to an audience of 2500.

Season:
Vaughan Williams Hodie
Handel - Messiah
Lerner and Loewe - Brigadoon

1961-62
Season:
Britten - Ceremony of Carols
J.S. Bach - Magnificat in D, An Anthology of Sacred Music
Purcell - Come Ye Sons of Art
Thompson - Alleluia
Vaughan Williams - Toward the Unknown Region

1962-63
The Chorus holds its first Annual Fund Drive.  Donors include 371 individual donors and 146 business donors.  The Chorus stages the Menotti Opera, Amahl and the Night Visitors, at Stonington High School.  With the Beethoven concert, the Chorus begins to hire professional musicians; the long-time association with the Boston Festival Orchestra begins.

Season:
Vivaldi - Gloria
Menotti - Amahl and the Night Visitors
Beethoven - Mass in C
Vaughan Williams - Fantasia on Christmas Carols

1963-64
Season:
Honegger- Une Cantate de Noel (A Christmas Cantata)
Brahms - German Requiem

1964-65
The Annual Fund Drive raises $5,365.00

Season: 
Kodaly - Missa Brevis
Poulenc - Gloria
Vaughan Williams - Hodie

1965-66
Chorus leadership finds Camp Ogontz in Lisbon, New Hampshire,  and children attend for the first time for their week long pre-season choir camp. The Chorus brochure, designed by Malcolm Grear, wins Merit Award at Art Director's Club Competition, Providence.  Annual Drive raises $6,051.25.

Season:
Mozart - Coronation Mass
Debussy - The Blessed Damozel
Durufle - Requiem 
Bach - Christmas Oratorio
Bach - Magnificat in D

1966-67
Season:
Haydn - Mass in Time Of War,  Mass in D, "Nelson"
Bach - Christmas Oratorio,Part I

1967-68 
Season:
J.S. Bach - Christmas Oratorio, Part IV; Cantata 1 ,"Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern.": Cantata 50, "Nun ist das Heil." 
Vaughan Williams - Serenade to Music
Britten - Spring Symphony

1968-69
The Chorus begins an association with the Rhode Island Philharmonic, performing with them once each season, while continuing our own association with the Boston Festival Orchestra.   George Kent is awarded a Martha Baird Rockefeller Grant in order to study the British choral tradition.   As part of the grant, Kent's studies are carried out in Cambridge, England, at King's College Chapel, Cambridge University.  Kent studies and trains with Sir David Willcocks, director of the King's College Chapel Choir, beginning Kent and the Chorus's "British Connection" and a relationship with Britain's leading choral director that lasts to this day.

The Chorus performs its first concert in the former Immaculate Conception Church (1886), which has marvelous acoustics and which is to eventually become the Chorus's permanent performance home (today it is the George Kent Performance Hall).

Season:
Vaughan Williams - Hodie (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Beethoven - Mass in C
Faure - Requiem
Handel - Coronation Anthems: Zadok the Priest, The King Shall Rejoice
Vaughn Williams - Flos Campi
Poulenc - Secheresses

1969-70
Season:
Handel - Messiah
Honegger - Christmas Cantata
Brahms - A German Requiem

1970-71 
Chorus sings Beethoven's Ninth with R.I. Philharmonic in Providence.  Chorus children respond well to this challenge.  George Kent is awarded a Faculty Grant for Study by the University of Rhode Island and returns to Cambridge for a period to study the British choral tradition with Sir David Willcocks.

Season:
Beethoven - Ninth Symphony (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Britten - St. Nicolas
Vaughan Williams - Sancta Civita, Five Mystical Songs, Toward the Unknown Region

1971-72
Chorus is invited to perform the Haydn Nelson Mass in Providence for the Centennial of LaSalle Academy.

Season:
Honegger - Christmas Cantata (RI Philharmonic)
J.S. Bach - Christmas Oratorio
Handel - Zadok the Priest
Haydn - Mass in D, "Nelson" (for LaSalle Academy in Providence)
Berlioz - Requiem (Performed at the University of Rhode Island)

1972-73
Chorus is informed that the former Immaculate Conception Church is to be torn down.  The Chorus leases it for one year.  Owner agrees to delay demolition until 1973.  Chorus performs first Celebration of Twelfth Night  (with Cambridge Mummers, Carol Langstaff, directing). Annual Drive raises $11,151.00.

Season:
Charpentier - Te Deum
Purcell - Come Ye Sons of Art
J.S. Bach - Cantata 82 "Ich habe genug"; Cantata 137 "Loben den Herren."
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Mahler - Symphony No. 2 (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Honegger - King David
J.S. Bach - Christmas Oratorio (with R.I. Philharmonic)

1973-74
Members of the Chorus organize the Center for the Arts to own the former Immaculate Conception Church and to become a Presenting Organization.  Center for the Arts purchases the historic church for $40,000,00.  Building is named to the National Register for Historic Places, the name of the church/hall is officially changed to The Center for the Arts.

Season:
Gabrieli - Jubilate Deo, In Ecclesiis
Allegri - Miserere
Hindemith - Apparebit Repentina Dies
Duruflé - Requiem
Debussy - The Blessed Damozel

1974-75
This was the Christmas that the Chorus performed, with the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce, its one and only indoor Christmas Pageant with large and vocal live animals (steer, sheep, donkey) and a live and lustily crying Baby Jesus. One week later, the Britten St. Nicolas was performed.

Season:
Britten - St. Nicolas
Mahler  - Symphony III (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Walton - Belshazzar's Feast

1975-76
The Rhode Island Philharmonic comes to Westerly to perform  Beethovenn's Ninth in honor of its thirtieth anniversary.  The youngest member of the Chorus is 8 years old, the oldest is 83.  The Chorus sings the giant of the choral repertoire,  the Bach B Minor Mass.  Film makers from Brown University make a film about the process of teaching this music to children and adults.  Chorus produces its first Celebration of Twelfth Night which is done without outside direction.

Season:
Beethoven - Ninth Symphony (with R.I. Philharmonic)
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
J.S. Bach - B Minor Mass
Poulenc - Secheresses, Gloria

1976-77
Season:
Colgrass - Best Wishes U.S.A. (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Poulenc - Gloria (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Vaughn Williams - Five Mystical Songs (with R.I. Philharmonic)
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Palestrina - Stabat Mater (in an a capella performance of polyphonic music entitled "Faire Musicke")
Britten - Spring Symphony, Cantata Academica

1977-78
Season: 
J.S. Bach - Cantata 130, Herr Gott dich loben alle wir, Magnificat in D
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Moussorgsky - Boris Godunov (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Handel- Dettingen Te Deum, Coronation Anthems

1978-79
The Chorus begins planning for a Tour of Britain in 1981.  Tour planners go to England to begin arrangements.  Quest Magazine February-March uses as its cover story "The Music Man", an article about George Kent and his work with the Chorus of Westerly.

Season: 
J.S. Bach - Christmas Oratorio (with R.I. Philharmonic)
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Gabrieli - In Ecclesiis
Schütz - Psalm 84, Psalm 150
Vaughan Williams - Five Tudor Portraits

1979-80
Chorus hires a part-time Business Manager, Jeff James.  The Chorus is invited to sing a Service of Evensong in Westminster Abbey on August 8, 1981.

Season: 
Mathias - Ave Rex
Resphigi - Laud to the Nativity
Vaughan Williams - Fantasia on Christmas Carols
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Brahms - German Requiem
Beethoven - Mass in C

1980-81
The New York Times includes the Chorus's 'A Celebration of Twelfth Night' in a list of their Twelve Best Things to do at Christmastime.  Chorus tours Britain with Brass Ensemble from the R.I. Philharmonic.  It comissions a new work from Virginia composer Adolphus Hailstock and he accompanies the Chorus on its Tour of Britain.  First Summer Pops is organized as Bon Voyage Concert before tour.  It is  held in Dixon Square with all traffic stopped.  5000 attend.

Season:
Mahler - Symphony No. 2 (with R.I. Philharmonic)
Handel - Messiah
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Dvorak - Requiem
SUMMER POPS  '81

August 1 through August 17, 1981 
Tour of Great Britain
Works performed on tour:
Gabrieli - Jubilate Deo
Desprez - Ave, verum corpus
Victoria - O magnum mysterium
Scarlatti - Exsultate Deo
J.S. Bach - Motet I
Hailstork - Psalm 72 (a new work, commissioned by the Chorus, for chorus, brass, and organ)
Howells - Like As The Hart
Vaughan Williams - O Clap Your Hands
Gardiner - Evening Hymn
Schütz - Psalm 150
Howells - Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis (Collegium Regale)

1981-82
The Chorus Tour is featured in article in High Fidelity/Music America.  Chorus starts tradition of Christmas Pop Concerts.  Chorus sings first U.S. Premiere performance of 20th century British work for chorus and orchestra.  Quest Magazine article about George Kent is rewritten and featured in "Amerika", the magazine circulated in Russia by the U.S. State Department.

Season: 
J.S. Bach - Cantata 50
Haydn - Mass in D "Lord Nelson"
Christmas Pops (with R.I. Philharmonic)
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Hadley - The Hills (U.S. Premiere) 
Vaughan Williams - In Windsor Forest
SUMMER POPS '82

1982-83
The Edward Tarr Brass Ensemble from Europe is featured in orchestra for Vinter's "The Trumpets", the second U.S. Premiere Performance by the Chorus of Westerly.

Season: 
Vinter - The Trumpets (using 37 massed brass and percussion; U.S. Premiere.) 
Gabrieli - Jubilate Deo
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night.
Bruckner - Mass in F Minor
SUMMER POPS '83

1983-84
Summer Pops audiences outgrow Dixon Square and concert is held for the first time in Wilcox Park.  Over 15,000 attend.  The Chorus begins its tradition of sponsoring a free lecture on the music prior to concerts of classical works.  The third U.S. Premiere of a 20th century British work is presented.

C.P.E. Bach - Magnificat
J.S. Bach - Cantata 34,"O Ewiges Feuer"
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Delius - Songs of Farewell
C.V. Stanford - Songs of the Fleet (U.S. Premiere) 
SUMMER POPS '84

1984-85
The Chorus begins work on its second overseas tour - to Italy.  Meanwhile, the Annual Fund Drive raises $55,000.00  The Chorus hires a full-time Manager and opens a new office in downtown Westerly at 16 High Street thanks to a grant from the R.I. Foundation.  An Artistic Reserve is established with $88,282.  William Mathias, famous Welsh composer, comes from Britain for the first U.S. Performance of his work for chorus and orchestra, Lux Aeterna.  Mathias lectures on his music and celebrates his 50th birthday with the Chorus.

Season:
Mathias - Lux Aeterna (U.S. Premiere, with composer present)
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
J.S. Bach - B Minor Mass
SUMMER POPS '85

1985-86
The Chorus is formally invited to sing the final Piazza Concert at the Festival of Two Worlds, Spoleto, Italy, July 12, 1987.

Season:
Brahms - Nänie
Verdi Quattro Pezzi Sacri
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Howells - Hymnus Paradisi
SUMMER POPS '86

1986-87
Britain's greatest living Choral Conductor, Sir David Willcocks, comes from Britain to conduct the chorus in performaces of Sir Edward Elgar's Dream of Gerontius.  In the Summer of 1987, George Kent is awarded the Governor's Arts Award,  Rhode Island's highest honor in the arts.

Season:
Dvorák - Stabat Mater
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night (Attendance for the event exceeds 3000)
Elgar - Dream of Gerontius (Guest Conductor: Sir David Willcocks )
SUMMER POPS '87

Tour of Italy July 7 through 27, 1987
The Chorus tours with over 200 singers and members of the Boston Festival Orchestra, and sings in San Marco of Venice, The Duomo of Milan, St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican, and in several other important venues.   Huge audiences meet the Chorus at each concert, including over 13,000 people in the Duomo of Milan, and thousands of attendees as the Chorus closes the Spoleto Festival of Two Worlds with the Westminster Choir.  A remarkable tour!!

Works performed on tour:
Dvorák - Requiem (with Westminster Choir, Closing Piazza Concert, Festival of Two Worlds, Spoleto)
J.S. Bach - Magnificat in D
Haydn - Mass in D, "Nelson"
Byrd - Haec Dies
Mozart - Ave verum corpus
Palestrina - Missa Brevis

1987-88
A Chorus Endowment is established at Washington Trust.  $135,000 is raised.  The Chorus performs two more U.S. premieres of 20th Century British works.

Season: 
Dyson - Sweet Thames Run Softly, In Honour of the City (U.S. Premieres)
Vaughan Williams - Serenade to Music
Holst - Choral Symphony
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Verdi - Requiem
SUMMER POPS '88

1988-89
1988 Annual Report of the R.I. Foundation has picture of The Chorus of Westerly on Page 1.  The national magazine, Early Americam Life, runs a feature story about A Celebration of Twelfth Night.  The Center for The Arts organization goes into receivership, the concert hall is for sale.

Season: 
Holst - Choral Symphony
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night

The Chorus a capella -
Palestrina - Missa Brevis
Barber - Agnus Dei
Walmisley - Music, all powerfull
MacFarren - Orpheus With His Lute, When Daisies Pied
Thiman - Go, Lovely Rose
Wood - Full Fathom Five
Harris - Faire is the Heaven

Brahms - A German Requiem
SUMMER POPS '89

1989-90
British composer, Paul Patterson, again journeys to Westerly from England, to lecture on his latest work, Mass of the Sea, which is given its American premiere performance in the spring of 1990.  Meanwhile, in June 1990, police estimate the attendance at SUMMER POPS to have surpassed 30,000.  Following Pops, in July, the Chorus presents its first Choral Symposium with Sir David Willcocks at Ogontz in Lisbon, New Hampshire.  66 Chorus members attend as well as musicians from around the country.  The symposia continue to the present day.

Season:
J.S. Bach - Cantata 50, "Nun ist das Heil"; Cantata 147, "Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben"; Cantata 195, "Dem Gerechten muss das licht"
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Patterson - Mass of the Sea (U.S. Premiere with Composer Present)
SUMMER POPS '90

1990-91
The second Choral Symposium with Sir David Willcocks, is held in July at Ogontz, and is well attended and enthusiastically received.

Season:
Ravel - Sheherazade (with Cynthia Munzer, mezzo soprano)
Fauré - Pavane
Duruflé - Requiem
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Dvorák - Requiem
SUMMER POPS '91

1991-92
The Chorus purchases the former Immaculate Conception Church/Center for the Arts building from the receiver for $165,000.  Money for the purchase is raised from Board members and a few other special friends of the Chorus.  The building is renamed the Chorus of Westerly Performance Hall.  The Annual Drive exceeds its $75,000 goal, with donations from 1178 individuals and 141 businesses.  In addition, 192 individuals, businesses and corporations contribute to SUMMER POPS.   George Kent is named "Citizen of the Year" by the Westerly and Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce.

Season: 
Handel - Zadok the Priest, Sing Unto God
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Walton - Belshazzar's Feast, Crown Imperial (Coronation March)
Parry - I Was Glad (with Coronation interpolations)
SUMMER POPS '92

1992-93
Chorus organizes a Capital Campaign committee and begins planning for a $1.5 million dollar campaign.  The Chorus receives grant funds through the Community Development Program for handicapped access improvements. 

Season:
Gounod - Messe Solenelle de Ste. Cecilé
Poulenc - Gloria
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Honegger - King David
SUMMER POPS '93

1993-94
Chorus received a National Endowment for the Arts Advancement Grant of $50,000 (which must be matched 3 to 1).  The match is easily reached by end of season.  Annual Fund Drive raises $102,000.  Sir David Willcocks returns for the fourth annual Choral Symposium at Ogontz.  Paula Rockwell of Nova Scotia attends for first year as an Instructor for Vocal Techniques.

Season: 
Gabrieli - Jubilate Deo
Schütz - Psalm 150
Hindemith - Apparebit Repentina Dies
Hailstork - Psalm 72
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Walton - Christopher Columbus Suite
Britten - Spring Symphony
SUMMER POPS '94

1994-95
Chorus hires NEA consultant, David Bury of New York and Brattleboro, Vermont as Development Advisor.  Annual Fund Drive sets goal at $110,000; by mid-November over $100,000 has been received.  Chorus raises sufficient funds to accomplish its second tour to Great Britain (July 23 through August 7, 1995). 147 singers, 38 members of the Boston Festival Orchestra, and four soloists make the tour.  As part of the tour the Chorus sings all services at Westminster Abbey August 5th and 6th.  The Chorus's concert at St Alban's Cathedral is recorded live by Classic FM of Britain and, in November, is broadcast in Britain nationwide with introductory comments by John Julius Norwich.  Over 130 people from 14 states attend fifth annual Choral Symposium at Ogontz with Sir David Willcocks, Paula Rockwell and George Kent.  Renovations begin at the Performance Hall.  Outside renovations and painting are completed.

Season: 
J.S. Bach - Christmas Oratorio
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
SUMMER POPS '95

May 1995 Westerly Concert and Tour repertoire:
Handel - Sing Unto God (Wedding Anthem, 1736)
Brahms - Alto Rhapsody
Beethoven - Mass in C

Service Music at Bristol Cathedral and Westminster Abbey included:
Sowerby - Introit (Eternal Light)
Walsh - Preces and Responses
Wood - O Most Merciful
Willan - Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis
Duruflé - Ubi Caritas
Howells - Mass, Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis (setting for both: Collegium Regale)
West - Venite
Parry - I Was Glad
Dyson - Lauds
Gardiner - Evening Hymn
Elgar - Ave verum corpus

1995-96
The Chorus is awarded the Jabez Gorham Prize by the Business Volunteers for the Arts.  Two awards are made to arts organizations each year;  this is a major honor in the state of Rhode Island.  In May, 1996, George Kent is awarded an honorary doctorate from General Theological Seminary in New York, the institution's highest possible honor. 

Season:
Rutter - Gloria
Vaughan Williams - Hodie
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night

The Chorus a cappella:
Rutter - Birthday Madrigals (U.S. Premiere)
Byrd - Mass for Four Voices
Works of Scarlatti, Stravinsky, Sowerby, Wesley, and Jongen

Fauré - Requiem
Kodaly - Missa Brevis
SUMMER POPS '96

1996-97
The Chorus hires a new Manager, Aurea Barnes, and a new Assistant to the Manager and Box Office Manager, Sheila Murphy.  Both are received with great enthusiasm.  For the first time, the Chorus presents three performances of Christmas Pops on the same day, with a rehearsal also on that day. 

Rutter - When Icicles Hang
Honegger- Une Cantate de Noel (A Christmas Cantata)
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Bach - Cantata 50, Nun ist das Heil; Cantata 140, Wachet auf, Magnificat in D
SUMMER POPS '97

1997-98
The Chorus purchases new vastly-improved computer system.  Another major acquisition this year is a second-hand, extremely fine Allen Digital Computer Organ ADC 6300 with 52 speaking stops, 3 61-note Manuals, and a 32-note concave radiating pedalboard.  The annual Fund Drive achieves over $117,000, a record amount.  Once again, the Chorus performs three Christmas Pops concerts in one day, with capacity attendance. The annual spring fund-raising auctions, this year entitled "Flights of Fancy", gross a record amount of $66,200. The ninth annual Willcocks Symposium is a sell-out; Paula Rockwell, our spectacular voice teacher from Nova Scotia, attends for her fifth season, this time accompanied by her second child, Marina, 8-months old.

Season:
Britten - St. Nicolas
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night 
Brahms - A German Requiem
SUMMER POPS '98

1998-99
The Chorus celebrates its 40th Anniversary Year with various activities in celebration, including, in June, a run-out concert of the Stanford Stabat Mater at the Providence, R.I., Roman Catholic Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul, presented in association with the Providence Preservation Society. A new staff position is created - Director of Development.  After years of painstaking study, work begins on a historic renovation of the nave.  The kiosk in front of the building is replaced by a new lighted structure combining metalwork donated by M and M Welding of Glastonbury and masonry work done by Eric Dunham of Westerly.  George Kent is honored with an Award of Excellence from the South County Center for the Arts, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from Choral Arts New England (the Alfred Nash Patterson Foundation) for distinguished service to the choral arts in New England.

Season:
Mozart - Mass in C Minor
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Stanford - Stabat Mater
SUMMER POPS '99

1999-2000
Season:
Handel - The King Shall Rejoice (Coronation Anthem), Dettingen Te Deum
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Vivaldi - Gloria
Patterson - Millennium Mass (U.S. Premiere with composer present)
SUMMER POPS 2000

2000-2001
The Rhode Island Historical Society salutes George Kent with an "History Maker" Award.

Season:
Lauridsen - Lux Aeterna
Vaughan Williams - An Oxford Elegy
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night 2001
Handel - Messiah

2001-2002:
Season:
Brahms - Nänie
Verdi - Quattro Pezzi Sacri
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Debussy - La Damoiselle élue
Duruflé - Messe "cum Jubilo"
Fauré - Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2002

2002-2003
The Chorus hires its first Executive Director, Emma Palzere Rae.  George Kent is named a Distinguished Alumni and his work with the Chorus is celebrated at the New England Conservatory of Music, the institution that provided many of the orchestral musicians who performed with the Chorus in its inaugural season.

Season:
Bach - Christmas Oratorio
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night 2003
Dvorák- Stabat Mater
SUMMER POPS 2003

2003-2004
George Kent receives an Individual Achievement in the Arts Award for his work with the Chorus of Westerly by the Arts and Business Council of Rhode Island.

Season:
J.S. Bach - Cantata 34, "O Ewiges Feuer"; Cantata 137, "Lobe den Herren"; Cantata 195, "Dem Gerechten muss das Licht"
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Verdi - Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2004

2004-2005
Renovation of the Chorus hall continues, and the long planned expansion of the hall (creating new offices, meeting rooms, dressing rooms, a box office, library, restrooms, and new back stage access) begins in earnest.  Work on a new HVAC and air handling unit begins.  When complete the Chorus's facility is to become a more full-service center and hub for artistic activity.  At the 25th annual Summer Pops, the Grucci company salutes the Chorus with an extended fireworks show.

Season:
Rutter - Mass of the Children
Vaughan Williams - Five Mystical Songs
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Mozart - Dixit Dominus,  Magnificat, Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2005  (Twenty-fifth anniversary celebration)

2005-2006
The 47th season is a remarkable one for the Chorus and its director, George Kent.  In the fall, after over ten years of fundraising and renovating, the performance hall's major expansion and renovation work is completed.   A celebration is held in the hall to begin the season complete with brass and organ (and singing, of course!).  The Chorus of Westerly Performance Hall is rededicated the George Kent Performance Hall.

In the spring, George Kent is awarded the prestigious National Pell Award for Distinguished Achievement in the Arts and is celebrated in Providence.  Kent remains one of only 32 New Englanders to have won the award.  Kent and the Chorus are featured on WJAR, the Rhode Island NBC Affiliate, while rehearsing the Brahms Requiem.

Season:
Bach - Magnificat in D
Haydn - Mass in D, "Nelson"
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Brahms - A German Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2006

2006-2007
Season:
Handel - Dixit Dominus, Coronation Anthems
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night 2007
Dvorák - Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2007

2007-2008
The 49th season is headlined by three major events.  In October, the highly acclaimed ensemble Chanticleer performs as guests of the Chorus to a full house.  In November, the Chorus presents Beethoven's Mass in C, the organization's 500th performance also to sold out houses.   The Chorus also presents its a special March concert, Music of the English Cathedrals, celebrating the organization's British connection and exploring some of the great anthems for Chorus.

Season:
Beethoven - Mass in C Major
Handel - Sing Unto God (Wedding Anthem, 1736)
Christmas Pops  2007
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Music of the English Cathedrals: Works by Tallis, Parry, Vaughan Williams and others
Honegger - King David
SUMMER POPS 2008

2008-2009
The 50th season of the Chorus of Westerly.  The Governor of Rhode Island comes to the March Musica Sacra Italiana concert to present a proclamation of celebration to the Chorus of Westerly on its 50th season.  A Celebration of Twelfth NIght begins a five-year story arc created by playwright Harvey Blanchette.

Vaughan Williams -  Hodie
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Musica Sacra Italiana - Works of Palestrina, Gabrieli, and others
Gounod - Messe Solennelle de Sainte-Cécile
SUMMER POPS 2009

2009-2010
The 51st season begins with the appointment of Ryan Saunders, a former treble of the Chorus of Westerly, as the organization's new Executive Director.  The first ever "Founders' Weekend" (a reunion, gala, and singing weekend) is held in November.  Hundreds of former and current singers, friends, donors, and other guests attend.  The Compaq Big Band performs at the concluding black-tie gala event.  The first Chorus Legacy Award winners are announced at the Gala (Marion Palm, Nora Spens, Marie McGlory, George and Lynn Kent).  The Chorus of Westerly is invited to sing at the Community Grand Opening of the newly restored Ocean House in May.

Mozart - Mass in C Minor
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Ave: All Hail - Masterful Choral Settings of Texts Featuring the Word Ave
including music of Mathias, Josquin, Byrd, Mozart,
Elgar, Rachmaninoff, Stavinsky, Wood, Busto
Duruflé - Requiem
Vaughan Williams - Toward the Unknown Region
Ocean House Performance: Works of Gabrieli and others
SUMMER POPS 2010

2010-11
The 52nd season of the Chorus of Westerly. Thanks to a significant grant from the Champlin Foundation, the Chorus of Westerly is able to begin the second phase of a preservation and renovation project for the George Kent Performance Hall's priceless stained glass windows. This phase, which put a protective storm window/glazing on 50 plus windows along the main nave.

During the course of the season, the Chorus launches several new fundraising and alumni activities including a Collegiate Concert Series - headlined by the Yale Whiffenpoofs, Family Events (including an Oktoberfest and St. Patrick's Day Celebration), a new Charitable Gala, and an Alumni "Piano Duel" featuring former trebles Bill Quirk and Michael Chicoria (with cameo by fellow former treble Andrew Howell). The season ends with the historic announcement by George Kent that he will be stepping down from his post as music director and retiring from the Chorus at the end of the 2011-12 season.

Handel - Messiah
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Stanford - Songs of the Fleet
Poulenc - Gloria
SUMMER POPS 2011

2011-12
George Kent's Final Season as Music Director

George Kent's final season is marked by great music and a series of tributes throughout the year. For the November concert of Bach, Handel, and Purcell, the Chorus features a program with two countertenors for the first time. In addition, the Alumni of the Chorus of Westerly raised nearly $10,000 to support the concert in honor of George Kent and present him with a special award following each performance. Greetings and thanks from the Alumni are presented to Mr. Kent by former treble Benjamin Dunham. For Mr. Kent's birthday in mid-December, the Chorus celebrates him by singing the "Old 100th" as tons of new lobster pots (donated by the singers and staff) are carried down the hall's main aisle in a grand procession of Chorus parents. At Christmas Pops, "Santa" presents George and Lynn Kent with lifetime season tickets to all Chorus of Westerly events with standing ovations for Mr. Kent in the middle of each show (including the orchestra!). At Twelfth Night, Production Stage Manager Aimee Blanchette and Director Derron Wood "retire" in a grand celebration Mr. Kent's famous Twelfth Night jacket and hat after the sold out Sunday at 8 pm performance. At the May performance of Brahms, prior to each performance, Lynn Kent is saluted and thanked by Ryan Saunders for her years of service and the audience responds with two huge standing ovations. After the emotional performances, current teenage soprano Grace Dunham and treble John Santini as thanks for Mr. Kent's 53 years of service. Lynn Kent is saluted prior to each performance by Executive Director Ryan Saunders. Mr. Kent receives a standing ovation for at least 8 minutes after the 6 pm performance. At Summer Pops, seven special presentations are made to thunderous applause. A grand farewell party is held on June 30.

In March, after a national search that yielded over three dozen qualified applicants and three very qualified finalists (all of whom came in for a weekend of audition with the Chorus membership), Andrew Howell of the University of Rhode Island (and a former Chorus child) is appointed the second music director of the Chorus of Westerly to begin July 1, 2012.

Bach - Cantata 191, Gloria in Excelsis Deo; Cantata 50, Nun ist das Heil
Purcell - Come Ye Sons of Art
Handel - Zadok the Priest
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
Brahms - Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2012

2012-13
Andrew Howell's First Season as Music Director

Britten – Rejoice in the Lamb, St. Nicolas
Christmas Pops
A Celebration of Twelfth Night
American Choral Sound: Featuring Peter Niedmann's Five New England Songs*
* World premiere performance
Mozart – Requiem
SUMMER POPS 2013








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