Since its founding in 2003 by its conductor, James Jordan, the 40-voice Westminster Williamson Voices has quickly established itself as a voice of composers of our time and has been acclaimed for its creative programming and collaborations with other art forms. Most notable was the ensemble’s performance at The Philadelphia Cathedral of Eric Whitacre’s Leonardo Dreams of His Flying Machine with the renowned Spiral Q Puppet Theater and the premiere of James Whitbourn’s Luminosity with The ArcheDream Blacklight Dance Theater Company of Philadelphia. Grammophone magazine has described the Westminster Williamson Voices as an ensemble of “intimate and forceful choral artistry,” with tone that is “controlled and silken in sustained phrases as they are vibrantly sonorous in extroverted material.” The American Record Guide in described the ensemble as “without peer.”
The choir has premiered more than 30 choral works, several early performances and North American premieres by noted composers Jackson Hill, Roger Ames, Blake Henson, Jaakko Mäntyjärvi, Ugis Praulins and Gerald Custer. The choir has premiered three major works by British composer James Whitbourn that have attracted international attention. In 2007, the choir performed the world premiere of the chamber version of Annelies, the first major choral setting of The Diary of Anne Frank.. In 2008, the choir shared in a commission of Luminosity, a work for triple choir, dancers, viola solo, organ and tanpura. Recent seasons have included the premiere of Whitbourn’s Requiem Canticorum and performances of Mozart’s Requiem in D Minor with an orchestra composed of students from The Curtis Institute conducted by Daniel Stewart and Debussy’s Nocturnes with The Princeton Symphony Orchestra conducted by Rossen Milanov.
In its short existence, the choir has assembled an impressive recorded discography. It has recorded more than 30 choral masterworks on the Teaching Music through Performance CD that is used by conductors throughout the country. The choir can also be seen and heard in the DVD The Empowered Choral Rehearsal: Choral Masterclasses with Simon Carrington. Members of the choir can be heard on the recording Angels in the Architecture: The Voices of Anam Cara on the GIAChoralworks label. Its newest recording, Living Voices, features music of James Whitbourn. Released on the Naxos label, it debuted at 22 on the Billboard Classical Music chart. Its second recording of James Whitbourn's music, Annelies, the first major choral setting of The Diary of Anne Frank, with Arianna Zukerman, the Lincoln Trio and Barat Chandra, was released on the Naxos label in January 2013.
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