Season 2017-18

The Ember Ensemble of Schola Cantorum on Hudson

Deborah Simpkin King, PhD, Artistic Director and Founder

November 2017 – November 2018

A full-year’s exploration of the many implications of military conflict

When the War Is Over

In every concert throughout the season veterans will be recognized and honored.

Where Poppies Grow

Music and poetry from the nations involved in the WWI conflict.
Saturday, March 3rd, 7PM
St. John’s Lutheran Church
81 Christopher Street, NYC
Sunday, March 4th, 5PM
Church of the Immaculate Conception
30 N Fullerton Ave, Montclair, NJ

Settings of the popular WWI poem In Flanders Field will punctuate dreams of peace and expressions of devastation from all the nations involved in The Great War. Where Poppies Grow metaphorically signifies all the homelands from which soldiers were lost. The program will include the pre-war (1907) statement of innocent belief in peace on earth (soon to be shattered), Schoenberg’s Friede auf Erden, along with additional selections by Michael McGlynn of Anuna, Bradley Nelson, C.G. Walden, and others.

Safe for Democracy

Disenfranchised Americans as soldiers for democracy
Saturday, May 19th, 7PM
St. John’s in the Village Episcopal Church
218 W 11th Street (at Waverly Pl), NYC
Sunday, May 20th, 5PM
Church of the Immaculate Conception
30 N Fullerton Ave, Montclair, NJ

Falling between the Civil War (1861-65) and the Civil Rights Movement (mid-1950s through 1960s), WWI provided a poignant context for Woodrow Wilson’s statement on behalf of declaring war against Germany: that the world “be made safe for democracy.” Thousands of men of African-American descent, and thousands of Native Americans responded to the call to serve in the army of a country that still denied them basic rights of citizenship. Meanwhile, American citizens of German descent were being interred on American soil. Upon returning from the war, W.E.B. DuBois declared: “We saved [democracy] in France and, by the Great Jehovah, we will save it in the United States of America, or know the reason why.” Safe for Democracy looks at this continuing societal conundrum, exploring poetry and music from the Harlem Renaissance (Langston Hughes, William Grant Still, Duke Ellington, and others) through the 21st century.

Glancing ahead to Next Season

Coming of Age

The first set of concerts both inaugurates this new season’s theme of ageing, and also closes
our previous season with the observance of the Armistice centennial, Nov 10, 2018.

Listen to our Stories

The Veterans Writing Project
November 10 (NYC) and 11 (Montclair, NJ)

Focusing on the stories of elderly veterans — many from WWI, the program draws upon such resources as The Veterans Writing Project.