ChoRuss Vocal Ensemble Returns in Concert at St. Michael’s

provided to Santiva Chronicle

ChoRuss, a widely acclaimed Russian vocal ensemble, returns by popular demand to St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church for its fourth appearance, 6 p.m., Friday, Nov. 15, in the church Sanctuary. The ensemble consists of professional musicians, singing Russian traditional and spiritual music.

According to Dmitri Petrov, the group’s director and tenor, ChoRuss specializes in sacred repertoire of the 19th and 20th centuries that accompanies worship in the Russian Orthodox Church. “Many important Russian composers were inspired by the Orthodox tradition,” he said. “We are delighted to bring this repertory to Sanibel and St. Michael’s once more. We hope to tell our audiences, through music, about Russia and its cultural heritage.”

The repertoire is sung a cappella in the ancient Orthodox style. The program features music by Rachmaninoff, as well as Russian composers little known in the west, including Bortniansky, Popov, Chesnikov and Ippolitov-Ivanov. The program also includes Byzantine chant, Russian folk songs and Christmas carols.

Founded in 2012, ChoRuss has performed extensively in France, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. It is currently on a concert tour in America, with performances in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. The singers, conducted by Petrov, are all conservatory-trained, professional soloists.

St. Michael’s priest-in-charge Alan Kelmereit is enthusiastic about the group. “The singers are amazingly talented. We are so glad to have them back with us again. Their sacred music is deeply inspiring, the folk music is filled of joy, and Dmitry’s sense of humor is ever present,” he said.

The concert is free and open to the public. Tickets are not required. Freewill donations are gratefully accepted. A Meet-the-Artists reception, with light refreshments, follows the concert in the church’s Parish Hall. ChoRuss’s compact disc, “Russian Spiritual and Folk Songs,” will be available for purchase during the reception.

For more information on the Music Ministry at St. Michael’s, contact Alan Kelmereit, St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church, 2304 Periwinkle Way, 472-2173/saintmichaels-sanibel.org.

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