May 24, 2018
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Down East Singers to perform Mozart with soprano Suzanne Nance



CAMDEN — Down East Singers, under the direction of Anthony Antolini, will present Mozart’s “Regina coeli,” K. 108, and “Solemn Vespers,” K. 339, at 5 p.m. Monday, May 30, at the Camden Opera House, 29 Elm St. Tickets are $15, free to students younger than 18. Tickets are available in advance from members of Down East Singers, at or at the Camden Opera House box office on the day of the concert.

Mozart wrote his setting of “Regina coeli” when he was 15. It is scored for soprano soloist, chorus and orchestra. The solo parts will be sung by Suzanne Nance, music director of Maine Public Radio and host of MPBN’s weekday classical music broadcast.

The featured work on the program is Mozart’s “Solemn Vespers,” a six-movement work for soloists, chorus and orchestra. Texts are drawn from the Book of Psalms and the Song of Mary (Magnificat). Solos will be sung by Suzanne Nance and by an octet of Down East Singers in sections where a group of soloists is required.

The instrumental accompaniment will be provided by a new ensemble in its first season of  performance, The Mozart Mentors Orchestra. It is made up of string teachers from various parts of Maine who have invited their most talented students to play alongside them. The ensemble has been rehearsing since February and performed the concert with the Bowdoin College Chorus on May 5 and 6.


Also on the program is one of Mozart’s best-known short works, “Ave verum corpus,” for chorus and string orchestra. The string ensemble also will accompany the chorus in a performance of Nathan Scalzone’s “The Tide Rises, The Tide Falls,” a setting of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem of the same name. The work premiered last fall in an unaccompanied version. The composer, a New York resident and Thomaston native, has added a string accompaniment to the work.

The concert will also include two pieces from the Civil War period, “Tenting Tonight” and “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”

Down East Singers is a community chorus based in Rockport. Membership is open to all area singers. A voice placement check is required. Music reading skills are welcome but not required. For more information, call 236-8328 or email

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