Internationally renowned Cappella Romana vocal ensemble celebrates Twelfth Night

January 2, 2018

The acclaimed Cappella Romana vocal ensemble will perform “12 Days of Christmas in the East” on Wednesday, Jan. 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kracum Performance Hall at Carleton College. The program commemorates the Christian Twelfth Night celebration and features early and contemporary music from the Greek Orthodox tradition, including medieval Byzantine chant (the Eastern sibling of Gregorian chant) and choral works by Ivan Moody and Sir John Tavener.

Cappella Romana’s appearance coincides with “Glimpses of Eternity: Icons in the Orthodox World,” a new exhibit in the Kaemmer Family Gallery of the Perlman Teaching Museum at Carleton. From 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., one hour prior to the performance, the public is invited to an opening reception for the exhibit.

With performances called “simply beautiful” (New York Times) and “like jeweled light flooding the space” (Los Angeles Times), Cappella Romana has astonished audiences around the world with unique programs hailed as transcendent and rich in passion and scholarship. This virtuosic choir comes to Carleton following recent appearances in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and The Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis.

Under the direction of Dr. Alexander Lingas, preeminent scholar of Eastern Orthodox Church music, Cappella Romana (Portland, Oregon) is dedicated to combining passion with scholarship in its exploration of the musical traditions of the Christian East and West, with emphasis on early and contemporary music.

Founded in 1991 by Lingas, Cappella Romana’s name refers to the medieval Greek concept of the Roman oikoumene (inhabited world), which embraced Rome and Western Europe, as well as the Byzantine Empire of Constantinople (“New Rome”) and its Slavic commonwealth.

The new exhibit “Glimpses of Eternity: Icons in the Orthodox World” brings to Carleton a fascinating selection of icons and other religious objects drawn from Russian, Greek, Ethiopian, and Coptic Orthodox traditions, offering visitors a unique opportunity to learn about Orthodox visual culture and devotion through objects seldom on view.

This performance by Cappella Romana is free and open to the public. For more information, including disability accommodations, call (507) 222-4475. The Kracum Performance Hall is located in the Weitz Center for Creativity at 320 East Third Street in Northfield.

“Glimpses of Eternity,” in the Kaemmer Family Gallery of the Perlman teaching Museum will be on display through March 12. Admission is free. Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Wednesday; 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday-Friday; and 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday-Sunday. For more information about the Perlman Teaching Museum, including disability accommodations, call (507) 222-4342.