Bel Canto Choir Vilnius presents: CineMass in Concert

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius & Friends performed a concert including the most beautiful cinematic music and a very special Sunrise Mass by Ola Gjeilo at the Lithuanian National Philharmonic Hall on January 29, 2016.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius, which captivated local audiences at the end of 2014 with the Lithuanian premier of Sunrise Mass by Ola Gjeilo, one of the most popular contemporary Norwegian composers, returned to the Lithuanian National Philharmonic Hall on January 29, 2016 for another performance of this modern, cinematically inspired composition. Bel Canto Choir Vilnius also presented Ola Gjeilo’s Serenity. The rest of the program featured the Choir’s beloved cinematic music.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius (artistic director Artūras Dambrauskas) was aided by the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra (artistic director Sergej Krylov), soloists Ieva Prudnikovaitė, Lina Dambrauskaitė and Jeronimas Milius, and pianist Artūras Anusauskas.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ passion for cinematic scores

The concert began with cinematic music and featured a special accent – the main theme from the movie Schindler’s List, whose music was composed by John Williams. This renowned American composer and conductor has won 22 Grammys, five Oscars and dozens of other prestigious music awards. He has composed music for movies like the Star Wars series, Home Alone, Saving Private Ryan, War Horse, the first three Harry Potter movies and many more.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ artistic director, Artūras Dambrauskas, enriched the main theme from the Schindler’s List with a gentle choral part that he composed. The piece blended harmoniously with a very special choral piece, Jerusalem of Gold, written by the famous Israeli composer Naomi Shemer.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius also performed songs from the movie Modigliani, composed by composer Guy Farley. The Choir presented two pieces – Ave Maria and My Reason – from this wonderful movie about the Italian painter Amadeo Modigliani.

The first part of the CineMass concert ended with music from Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s and Tim Rice’s rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar, which has not been performed in Lithuania in quite a while. Bel Canto Choir Vilnius, aided by soloists Ieva Prudnikovaitė and Jeronimas Milius, performed three songs from this cult rock opera, which inspired the musical and the movie of the same title.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ very special love – Ola Gjeilo’s Sunrise Mass

The cornerstone of Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ concert was the Sunrise Mass – a four-part piece for choir and strings written by Ola Gjeilo, one of the world’s most popular Norwegian contemporary composers. This exceptionally light, moving and uplifting work is a different, original, and modern take of the young composer – currently residing and working in New York – on the centuries-old genre of Mass in church music.

Gjeilo says he had aimed for a different approach to the traditional Latin text of the Mass. The transparent and spacey music of the work evolves into earthy and grounded sounds, while nebulous and pristine feelings are gradually replaced with more emotional, dramatic ones. Even the traditional parts of the Mass are given new and vivid names, such as The Spheres (Kyrie), Sunrise (Gloria), The City (Credo), Identity & The Ground (Sanctus / Benedictus and Agnus Dei). Gjeilo says that his entire oeuvre, including the Sunrise Mass, has been heavily influenced by film scores, while his favorite authors are American film composers.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius also presented another composition by Ola Gjeilo – Serenity (O Magnum Mysterium), a piece written for choir and violin.

Artūras Dambrauskas is the Bel Canto Choir’s artistic director and chief conductor, and Raminta Gocentienė, Milda Zapolskaitė and Alfredas Celiešius are its choirmasters. Concert producer – Audrius Valatkevičius.

CineMass Concert in photos

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Concert Program. 1st part of the Concert

Intro: main theme of 20th Century Fox

Dies Irae from Requiem
Karl Jenkins

Ave Maria from motion picture Modigliani
Guy Farley

My Reason from motion picture Modigliani
Guy Farley

Jerusalem of Gold
Naomi Shemer

Schindler’s List
John Williams

Once Upon the Time in the West
Ennio Morricone

Moon River from the motion picture Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Music by Henry Mancini; Lyrics by Johnny Mercer

Music from Jesus Christ Superstar:




Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice

Concert Program. 2nd part of the Concert

Serenity (O Magnum Mysterium)
Ola Gjeilo

Sunrise Mass
Ola Gjeilo

Artists & Performers

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius
Artistic Director & Conductor Artūras Dambrauskas

Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra
Artistic director Sergej Krylov

Ieva Prudnikovaitė, Lina Dambrauskaitė and Jeronimas Milius

Artūras Anusauskas

Audrius Valatkevičius

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