The Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill, 8855 Germantown Ave., will host the Festival of Music and Art on Friday through Sunday, November 1-3, featuring musical performances by the Gallery Choir and Orchestra and the Rutgers University Collegium Musicum, and an art exhibit of works by Fresh Artists.
“It is an honor for us to once again host the popular Festival of Music and Art, and to have this opportunity to showcase creative artwork and exquisite music that reflects the life-giving gifts of our local community,” said Daniel Spratlan, Music Director of the Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill.
The first concert of the Festival will be held Friday evening in the church sanctuary at 7:30 p.m., featuring the Gallery Choir and Orchestra performing Maurice Duruflé’s Requiem and Heinrich Schütz’s groundbreaking Musikalische Exequien.
Along with Duruflé and Schütz, the program includes “A Child’s Prayer” by Scottish composer James MacMillan, written following the killing of sixteen primary school children at the Dunblane School in Scotland in 1996. This tragedy led to the passing of the Firearms Act in 1997, making private ownership of handguns illegal in the U.K.
“As artists, we have a responsibility not only to create beautiful art, but to reflect the experience of our community through our art,” Spratlan said. “While much of the community has experienced the effects of violence and its accompanying grief, the Festival presents artistic and musical works that recognize this grief and at the same time offer comfort, hope, and a recognition of the resilience of the human spirit.”
An art exhibit and reception will precede the concert on Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. in the church’s Widener Hall. Several large prints of art commissioned from local youth will be on display in an art exhibit featuring Fresh Artists, a local organization dedicated to empowering young minds with art.
Fresh Artists is a nonprofit organization committed to enabling art making to be available to all children, supplying innovative art programs and art supplies to art teachers in severely under-resourced public schools, and engaging the children being served as full philanthropic partners in the giving process.
The Festival will conclude with a Sunday concert at 1 p.m. in the church’s sanctuary featuring choral music of the Renaissance performed by the Rutgers University Collegium Musicum, a 20-voice choral ensemble comprised of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and members of the community who are dedicated to performing many genres of popular and lesser-known Renaissance music. Sunday’s program will include music of Josquin des Prez, Carlo Gesualdo, and William Byrd.
The suggested donation is a free will offering.
For more information, call the church office at 215-247-8855 or visit www.chestnuthillpres.org.