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Simon's Rock Vocal Ensembles to Perform Sacred Music in Stockbridge and Pittsfield Churches

Alice Myers
Events Editor and Publicist
Bard College at Simon’s Rock

GREAT BARRINGTON, MA—Two Bard College at Simon’s Rock vocal groups will hit the road in April. Anonymous 6, the women’s a cappella group, and the Simon’s Rock Chorus will both perform off-campus concerts.

On Sunday, April 15, 2012, Anonymous 6, directed by music faculty Jack Brown, will sing at the 10 a.m. worship service at the First Congregational Church in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. They will sing a number of old American sacred selections from the shape-note and southern gospel traditions. Selections will include “Wondrous Love,” “Angel Band,” and “Sweet Hour of Prayer.”

“Much of the music dates from the same period as the historic church’s current building,” said Brown. “They will be accompanied on a few pieces by fellow Simon's Rock student Jake Schwartz on mandolin and hammer dulcimer.”

Brown founded Anonymous four years ago at the College, “to give a select group of young women an introduction to Renaissance and medieval a cappella choral music.” Each year, the group ranges from 6 to 10 singers and regularly performs off campus at churches in the region. Every December they present the acclaimed Renaissance Christmas concert along with the Simon's Rock Collegium.

Free Admission. For more information call 413-298-5365.

On Sunday, April 29 at 3 p.m., the Simon’s Rock Chorus will perform at the new St. Nicholas Orthodox Church on North Street in Pittsfield. The Chorus joins with the MCLA Chamber Chorus to present a program of Russian Orthodox choral music in honor of the opening.

Director Brown arranged this concert after getting to know Father Barnabas Fravel. Brown’s Berkshire Lyric Chorus was preparing to perform the Rachmaninoff Liturgy of St. John Chrysostem in 2011, when the two met. “It is very unusual to see a new church being built in the Berkshires,” he explained. “I thought it would be a wonderful opportunity to honor the occasion through a concert of music involving two local college choruses.”

He also believed it would be a good thing for the many young people involved to become aware of the rich and beautiful orthodox choral tradition. The choruses will also join in a few American spirituals. Anonymous will be singing early American hymns from the sacred harp tradition. The entire concert will be a cappella in keeping with the tradition of the Orthodox church.

Free admission. For more information call 413-298- 5365.

For a complete listing of events or more information please visit: Event dates, times, and locations are subject to change. Visit the website for the most up-to-date information.
Bard College at Simon’s Rock ( has been a leader in the early college movement for more than 40 years and continues to distinguish itself as the only residential college in the country specifically designed to provide bright, highly motivated students with the opportunity to begin college immediately after the 10th or 11th grade. At Simon’s Rock, students experience a transformative education in the liberal arts and sciences in the company of smart, independent, creative peers who share their excitement about learning and their desire to be part of a vibrant intellectual community. Students who successfully complete the requirements receive the Associate in Arts (AA) degree after two years of study and the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree after four.