CHESTERTOWN — Ahoy and avast and all that Jazz! The Chester River Chorale wants to welcome the public to its show. This year’s spring concert — “Desert Island Disc: Music You Can’t Live Without” — will take you to a desert isle where you are shipwrecked with only one long-play vinyl record of music and a solar-powered gramophone to play it.
There are two performances at Washington College’s Decker Theatre, Friday, April 12, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 13, at 4 p.m. Tickets are $15 at the door, and can be bought in advance at www.chesterriverchorale.org.
The Captain of this “Gilligan’s Island” knockoff, Artistic Director Doug Cox, has put together a program of his favorites for his little buddies to sing. At rehearsals, Cox said, he is reminded again and again “how very much I enjoy every song on the program, and how perfect they are for my personal desert island disc.” And, he added, “The musical menagerie we will offer is especially fitting for people like me who favor music that touches on many aesthetic interests. Perhaps it is selfish of me to program a concert in such a personal way, but truly there is something for everyone in CRC’s spring concert.”
Come, sit, lean back, and enjoy the Chorale as it sing the songs you love to hear. Among them are pieces from late 20th century composers like the haunting “Spells of Herrick” — conducted by Assistant Director Michelle Sensenig — and the joyful “The Music of Living.” There is a rousing gospel piece, “This Little Light of Mine,” and, moving back 150 years, one of Johannes Brahms’ best known choruses “How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place.”
Not to be missed are two stirring anthems of the 1970s and ’80s, “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “Let the River Run.”
Cox said the Chester Chamber Singers, an auditioned subset of the Chorale, “will offer a nice contrast with a set of a cappella songs noteworthy for their intimacy of tone and message.” He added that the set will open “with a wordless tango that’ll make you want to grab a partner and dance, and close with one of my personal favorites, Samuel Barber’s ‘To Be Sung on the Water,’ a heartrending song of love lost.”
A bonus will come from guitarist Tom Lagana with his posse of jazz players, Tom Baldwin on bass and Dominic Smith on drums. They’ll bring a couple Brazilian sambas to the mix, then join our own Stephanie King, on piano for a trio of Cole Porter show tunes. King, a Chorale soprano, will be making her debut performance with the Chorale as accompanist following the retirement of Sammy Marshall.