BU Concert Choir performs Carrabré composition examining prairie history

November 22, 2018

This Sunday, Nov. 25, the Brandon University (BU) Concert Choir will perform Promised Land, by BU composer T. Patrick Carrabré.

Written to incorporate a soprano soloist, choir, percussion, piano and audio clips, this work combines traditional choral singing and speech, along with extended piano techniques and bell strings handmade by the choir. The text comes from a variety of sources, including the Old Testament and the journals of La Vérendrye and Anthony Henday, who were two of the first Europeans to explore the Prairies.

The concert will also welcome Debbie Huntinghawk, drum singer and traditional knowledge keeper.

“I wrote Promised Land in 2006, as a very personal response to this place that I have called home for most of my life,” said Carrabré.

“We have some very dark spots in our history and I wanted to use this piece to both celebrate this place and send out a cry for healing — what we can now call Truth and Reconciliation.”

Conductor Andrée Dagenais worked closely with Carrabré to prepare the performance.

“The choir really appreciated the chance to interact with Pat and receive feedback as we prepared the piece,” Dagenais said. “It’s wonderful to have the composer right in our building so we can ask questions and discuss interpretation.”

This concert will also feature works by Scarlatti, Fauré, Rheinberger, Gjeilo and Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer.

The concert will take place at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Brandon on Sunday at 3 p.m. Admission is $12 for adults and $8 for students.