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Dreamweaver. A Christmas Concert of Bel Canto Choir Vilnius & Friends!

Bel Canto’s Christmas program and the Lithuanian premiere of Ola Gjeilo’s latest work Dreamweaver!

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius, Lithuania’s best choir, invites listeners to celebrate upcoming Holiday season at a pair of intimate and elegant concerts at the St Catherine’s Church in Vilnius. On two consecutive nights – December 15 & 16 – Bel Canto will perform the Lithuanian premiere of Dreamweaver, composed by Ola Gjeilo, one of the world’s most popular contemporary composers. Bel Canto will also present music by other prominent contemporary composers, such as Eric Whitacre, Morten Lauridsen, Eriks Ešenvalds, as well as choral arrangements of popular songs.

The centrepiece of the concerts is the Lithuanian premiere of Dreamweaver, Ola Gjeilo’s latest composition for chorus, piano and string orchestra. Dreamweaver’s text is based on a well-known Norwegian medieval folk poem, Draumkvedet (the Dream Poem); an epic ballad that has a lot in common with Dante’s Divine Comedy.

Draumkvedet’s protagonist, Olav Åsteson, falls asleep on Christmas Eve and sleeps until the twelfth day of Christmas. After waking up, he rides to church to describe his dreams to the congregation — about his brave, beautiful, terrifying and ultimately redeeming journey through the afterlife. Draumkvedet has been playfully adapted for Dreamweaver by poet Charles Anthony Silvestri.

Bel Canto will also perform Morten Lauridsen’s wonderful piece Dirait-on. Les Chansons Des Roses, O Emmanuel by Latvian composer Eriks Ešenvalds, Eric Whitacre’s Leonardo Dreams of His Flying Machine, for which Bel Canto won the Grand Prix at Lithuania’s premier choral competition, and others. In addition, Bel Canto will explore other sounds and musical styles, performing choral arrangements of well-known pop songs like Bridge Over Troubled Water (Paul Simon, arranged by Vince Peterson), We Are the World (Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie, arranged by Arnel de Pano) and even the traditional American gospel song Down to the River to Pray.

The Dreamweaver Concerts will feature Bel Canto’s friends, Lithuania’s great young talents: soloists Lina Dambrauskaitė and Sandra Lebrikaitė, fourteen musicians of string ensemble Mikroorkéstra and saxophonist Tomas Želvys. Bel Canto’s choirmaster Raminta Gocentienė will join them on piano.

The Dreamweaver Christmas Concerts will be held 7PM on Friday, December 15, and Saturday, December 16, at St Catherine’s Church in Vilnius!