Regional Spotlight: St. Olaf Choir and Abbie Betinis
April 1, 2010
St. Paul, Minn. —
The new and the traditional always find a home in the programs given by the St Olaf Choir.
The audience sat silently, transfixed by the beauty and creativity of the piece and granted the composer a prolonged ovation. At intermission she was besieged by admirers.
- Worcester (Massachusetts) Telegram
Led by Anton Armstrong, the ensemble recently performed works from this - the 21st - century as well as works from the very beginnings of the St Olaf choral tradition.
Twin cities composer Abbie Betinis' "Bar Xizam" - Upward, I Rise - was one of the highlights of the most recent St Olaf Choir winter tour.
The work celebrates "a longing to be with God." Betinis said, "For me the poem called to mind whole crowds of people, across continents, through the centuries, rising up -- whether in the name of religion, social justice, economic relief, personal healing-- all longing for something better."
Bar xizam (Upward I rise) - Abbie Betinas
Dilexi, quoniam exaudiet Dominus - Robert Caamano
Praise to the Lord - arr: F. Melius Christiansen