Moving Forward: Cantate’s 2021-2022 Concert Season

A Note from the Music Director

Friends, I don’t know where to begin. On our last concert before the pandemic silenced us, we sang a piece called “Your Voice is Gone.” And indeed, our voice has been gone. Our world has changed in so many ways since we were last brought together by our love for music, so I’ve put together a season that gives a musical voice to the intensity of what we’ve been through and the hope we share for a better tomorrow.

We proudly introduce a second, larger Concert Choir to the Cantate family that will welcome the holiday season in early December with music of hope. Cantate Chamber Singers returns in January with two powerful world premieres exploring our experiences in the pandemic and in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd. Our season has something for everyone: multiple newly commissioned works, a touch of jazz in March, and a diverse array of composers from Carlos Simon and Rosephanye Powell to Johannes Brahms. In May, we’ll perform Joseph Haydn’s beloved Lord Nelson Mass, capping a program featuring hopeful texts written by youth.

Our voice has returned and we long to share it with you! Come join with us in MOVING FORWARD!

Victoria Gau,
Music Director


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Songs of Winter and Hope

December 5, 2021, at 5:00 p.m.
Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church
6601 Bradley Blvd., Bethesda, Md.

Cantate Concert Choir makes its debut in a concert of music for the holiday season. The program, featuring works by John Rutter, Elaine Hagenberg, Carlos Simon, Ola Gjeilo, and Rosephanye Powell, will be complemented by additional music for string quartet.


Coming to Terms

January 9, 2022, at 5:00 p.m.
Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church
6601 Bradley Blvd., Bethesda, Md.

Cantate Chamber Singers returns to the stage with a program reflecting on our shared experience since we were last together. True to form, we present two world premieres: I Hold Your Name, with music by Charlie Barnett and text by Adrianna Smith, considers the separation brought on by the pandemic and is paired with evocative choreography by Lucy Bowen McCauley; and Just One, with music by Andrew Earle Simpson and text by Bert Ifill, explores our emotional journey following the murder of George Floyd. The concert also includes haunting music by Karen P. Thomas and James Lee III and ends with Leonard Bernstein’s “Make Our Garden Grow.”


Arms Outstretched

March 6, 2022, at 5:00 p.m.
Bethesda Presbyterian Church
7611 Clarendon Rd., Bethesda, Md.

Cantate Chamber Singers swings out with Bob Chilcott’s A Little Jazz Mass and David N. Baker’s Images, Shadows and Dreams, with a jazz combo to spice up the mood. The program also includes Gwyneth Walker’s An Hour to Dance, a song cycle tracing the life of poet Virginia Hamilton Adair in her own words. Music of Undine Smith Moore and Jennifer Higdon round out the evening.


Songs of Spring and Love

April 3, 2022, at 5:00 p.m.
Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church
6601 Bradley Blvd., Bethesda, Md.

Cantate Concert Choir brings a breath of fresh spring air to this concert, with jubilant music to make the heart sing. Johannes Brahms’ glorious Liebeslieder Waltzes (Love-Song Waltzes) anchor this program with additional works by Ola Gjeilo, Elaine Hagenberg, Morten Lauridsen, and Marques L. A. Garrett. The choir will also premiere a new commission by the winner of our 13th biennial Young Composers’ Competition, Emily C. Mason.


Dreams of Peace

May 8, 2022, at 5:00 p.m.
Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church
6601 Bradley Blvd., Bethesda, Md.

Cantate Chamber Singers is joined with orchestra in a program addressing themes of war, peace, and hope for a better life. The chorus performs works by Jan Sandström, Joel Thompson, Libby Larsen, and Jake Runestad, all setting words by youth grappling with these themes. In the second half of the concert, members of Cantate Concert Choir join for a performance of Joseph Haydn’s beloved Lord Nelson Mass, a work written in troubled times that finds its way to a joyous conclusion.


VACCINATION AND MASK POLICY: To reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19, Cantate requires that all audience members provide proof of vaccination at the door. Children under 12 and any unvaccinated patrons must provide proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test (administered within 72 hours). Masks are required at all times for all patrons, including children above age 2, regardless of vaccination status. Social distancing is encouraged. Ticket holders who do not comply with this policy will not be admitted and refunds will not be offered. (NOTE: We require that our performers be vaccinated, though they may sing without masks.) This policy is subject to change as we continue to monitor local and state guidelines.


Cantate seeks to maintain an equitable, safe and welcoming environment for all who participate in its various activities and functions, both in-person and virtually. We welcome musicians and volunteers of diverse backgrounds, abilities, and creeds, and strive to create an inclusive and creatively stimulating community. Therefore, discrimination and harassment of any nature will not be tolerated.

Cantate, a nonprofit corporation under §501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, is supported in part by funding from the Montgomery County government and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Maryland State Arts Council, and The Dallas Morse Coors Foundation for the Performing Arts.
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