Cathedrals of Sound
Carl St.Clair, conductor
Elissa Johnston, soprano
Mark Stone, baritone
Pacific Chorale — Robert Istad, artistic director
ALLEGRI: Miserere Mei, Deus
STRAUSS: Death and Transfiguration
MACMILLAN: Fiat Lux (World Premiere)
Doors open at 6:45 p.m.
Preview Talk with KUSC's Alan Chapman at 7 p.m.
The New York Times calls Scottish composer Sir James MacMillan as “ceaselessly inventive, evocative and penetrating.” He joins Pacific Symphony on a spiritual journey with his major commission Fiat Lux (“Let There Be Light”); a perfect pairing to Strauss’ eternal tone poem Death and Transfiguration.
All ticket holders must wear a mask AND provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of performance. Learn more.
Hailed by Musical America for "her voice pure and ethereal, her expression embracing and heartfelt," Elissa Johnston has appeared in a broad range of repertory worldwide. She has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the Pacific Symphony, the Atlanta Symphony, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Oregon Bach Festival and the San Francisco Contemporary Players. She made her Lincoln Center debut singing Brahms' Liebeslieder Waltzes with the New York City Ballet, and was invited back to premiere Morgen!, a set of ten orchestral songs by Richard Strauss choreographed by Peter Martins. Elissa has also performed at the New York Philharmonic's Copland Festival and Lincoln Center's Stravinsky Festival. She made her Carnegie Hall debut in 2018 with the Pacific Symphony, singing the role of Sarada Devi in Philips Glass' The Passion of Ramakrishna, as part of Carnegie Hall's year-long celebration of Glass' 80th birthday.
Baritone Mark Stone was born in London and studied Mathematics at King's College, Cambridge, and singing at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. In 1998 he was awarded the Decca Prize at the Kathleen Ferrier Awards.
Recent operatic engagements include his first foray into Wagner roles with acclaimed role debuts as Wotan (Die Walküre) for Grimeborn, for which he was nominated for an Offie Award for best performance in an opera, Gunther in Götterdämmerung at the Grand Théâtre de Genève and Alberich (Das Rheingold) at the Longborough Festival. He also sang White Knight (Alice's Adventures Underground) at the Royal Opera House, Papageno (Die Zauberflöte) with the Welsh National Opera and Valencia Palau de les Arts; Marcello at the Copenhagen Opera Festival, Balstrode (Peter Grimes) at Queensland Opera, Australia, the King in George Benjamin’s Lessons in Love and Violence at the Mariisnky Theatre, St Petersburg and returned to the Philadelphia Opera for Protector in Benjamin’s Written on Skin.
He made a magnificent role debut as Wozzeck in Geneva in 2017 in David McVicar’s production, and other roles include Don Giovanni for the Deutsche Oper Berlin, New Zealand Opera, English National Opera and the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra; Valmont (Francesconi’s Quartett) and Mountjoy (Britten’s Gloriana) at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; Il Conte (Le nozze di Figaro) for Welsh National Opera, ENO, Hamburg Opera and in Tampere, Finland; Eisenstein (Die Fledermaus) and Count (Elena Langer’s Figaro Gets a Divorce) for Welsh National Opera; Ned Keene (Peter Grimes) with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Vladimir Jurowski and at the Beijing International Festival, and a tour to the U.S as the Ferryman in Netia Jones’ acclaimed production of Britten’s Curlew River. His many roles at the English National Opera have included Guglielmo, Marcello (La Bohème), Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Enrico (Lucia di Lammermoor), Silvio (I Pagliacci), Chou-en-Lai (Nixon in China) and Prince Yamadori in Anthony Minghella’s production of Madama Butterfly.
In the U.S. he has appeared regularly at the Philadelphia Opera where his roles include Ford (Falstaff), Germont Pere (La Traviata), the title role in Gianni Schicchi and Papageno (Die Zauberflöte). He has also sung Guglielmo in Santa Fe.