New Haven Symphony Orchestra performs its holiday concert at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts

New Haven Symphony Orchestra performs its holiday concert at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts

The New Haven Symphony Orchestra celebrates the yuletide season with its "Holiday Pops Concert," conducted by Associate Conductor Gerald Steichen and featuring Guest Artists, soprano Amanda Borst and baritone Brian Mulligan at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts on Friday, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m. Voce, one of Connecticut's premiere new vocal ensembles, makes it's debut with NHSO.

The "Holiday Spectacular" promises a rich tapestry of new, traditional and less-often-heard sacred and festive music. The program includes the world premiere of Lisa DeSpain's "An American Nativity" with full vocal participation; "Christmas Festival" by Leroy Anderson; Ralph Vaughan Williams' "Fantasia on Christmas Carols" sung by Brian Mulligan and Voce; "Carol of the Bells" by Leontovich; "Still, Still, Still" sung by Voce; "Aria in Classic Style," a harp solo written by composer/harpist Marcel Grandjany; and the serene hymn, "O Holy Night" sung by Amanda Borst and Chorus. Rounding out the program are traditional carols and a Christmas Memories' sing-along.

The evening's conductor, Gerald Steichen, is the NHSO Associate Conductor and is recognized as one of the country's finest and most versatile musicians - keyboard artist, accompanist, composer, and arranger. In addition, he has led readings of new American operas as part of New York City Opera's American Composer's Showcase.

Mr. Steichen has conducted at the New York City Opera, both at Lincoln Center and at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center; he is Principal Guest Conductor of the Anchorage Opera, Artistic Director of Opera East Texas and a frequent guest at the Utah Opera Festival. Mr. Steichen is also in demand abroad and has appeared in Germany, Norway and Japan. He has guest conducted the Boston Pops, the Utah Symphony and Opera, the New Jersey Symphony, the Hartford Symphony and the Wheeling Symphony.

Joining Mr. Steichen are Guest Artists, soprano Amanda Borst and baritone Brian Mulligan, both burgeoning young singers who have received great critical acclaim. Opera News praised Mr. Mulligan for his "velvety, evenly and effortlessly produced baritone and nuance-rich phrasing." And the Houston Press hailed Ms. Borst as "a delicate, fine-honed" singer; the Washington Post called her a "radiant soprano." Both have sung with New York City Opera, among other prestigious opera companies.

Voce was founded in 2006 by musicians committed to the belief that music is a powerful force for change. Their mission is to promote education and philanthropy through excellence in the performing arts. They have joined forces with NHSO to help promote funding for the NHSO's concerto competition for aspiring young musicians. Members are from Connecticut and beyond and bring together years of choral ensemble work and vocal training.

Tickets are $35, $30. Discounts are available for seniors and students with valid I.D. To purchase tickets, call the Quick Center Box Office at (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396. For more information visit

Posted On: 11-17-2006 10:11 AM

Volume: 39 Number: 91