Every Sunday evening at First Church in Cambridge
11 Garden Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts
November through April at 7:00pm, a cappella with improvisations by piano and jazz musicians
May through October at 8:30pm, unaccompanied
Night Song's womens ensemble, Viriditas, directed by Cristi Catt, is joined by Eden MacAdam Somer and students from the Contemporary Improvisation (CI) Department at the New England Conservatory for "Visions of Hildegard von Bingen".
Excerpts from her play, Ordo Virtutum, mingle with new works of Patricia Van Ness and Caroline Kuhn; a traditional Korean Exorcism Dance; Shape Note Hymn: Bridgewater; a traditional Begdashi Chant; and instrumental improvisations on viola and violin.
This special Night Song brings together two unique imaginings of Hildegard's work. Eden MacAdam Somer, Assistant Chair of CI, produced Order of the Virtues, a concert inspired by Hildegard's play at Jordan Hall last winter with faculty (including Catt) and students. Catt directed a new adaptation of Ordo Virtutum with Viriditas and Tapestry as part of the Boston Early Music Festival Fringe Series in June.
Admission is free, donations appreciated.
Picture Credit - Evan Ingersoll
The music is a unique fusion of contemplative instrumental jazz with ancient and modern chant, as well as sacred motets from the Renaissance, and is offered within the framework of the monastic office of compline. To some Night Song is experienced as a spiritual journey, letting their prayers and hopes rise with those of others as incense, the lifting up of hearts and hands as an evening sacrifice. Some simply receive a sense of comfort and strength. Others use the music to transport and transform, to escape for moments of peace and clarity.
While Christian in nature, Night Song is open to all. Simply take from it what meets your needs and what expresses your hopes and concerns for others.