The Joyce Saxon Music Director Chair

In recognition of Joyce’s extraordinary commitment
and love of Camerata Chicago and with gratitude for the
first legacy gift bequeathed to Camerata Chicago, we henceforth
dedicate the Music Director Chair to

JOYCE SAXON

The dedication took place at the Saxon Series: Complete Bach Brandenburg Concerti performance in Chicago on September 20, 2019. Joyce’s generous legacy gift provides for an annual concert series – The Saxon Series.

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Jonathan Johnson, Tenor

This season, American tenor Jonathan Johnson makes his debut as The Prince in The Love for Three Oranges at Opera Philadelphia’s Festival O19, as Beppe in I Pagliacci at Opera Colorado, and Matthew Gurney in Emmeline at Tulsa Opera. In concert, Johnson appears as a soloist with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in Schumann’s Das Paradies und die Peri as the Young Man, with the Detroit Symphony for Messiah, and in recital with the Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago. Johnson is also an Emerging Artist for Opera Philadelphia, where he will be singing in community recitals and special events throughout the 2019-2020 Season.

A graduate of the Patrick G. & Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center, the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s professional artist-development program, he appeared in the house’s main productions of Les Troyens, Lucia di Lammermoor, The Merry Widow, Der Rosenkavalier, Capriccio, The Magic Victrola and Mieczysław Weinberg’s Holocaust opera The Passenger. Other recent engagements have included his debut of the title role of Bernstein’s Candide with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Utah Symphony Orchestra, and Des Moines Metro Opera. He made his debut at Canadian Opera Company’s production of Anna Bolena, Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance and Lensky in Eugene Onegin at the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Fenton in Falstaff at San Diego Opera, Lindoro in L’italiana in Algeri at the Portland Opera, La Damnation de Faust at the Grant Park Music Festival, Le Fils in Les mamelles de Tirésias with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Beethoven Symphony No. 9 and concert version of Don Giovanni with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, a performance of Schumann’s Dichterliebe as part of a Liederabend in Chicago, and various appearances in the Harris Theater’s Beyond the Aria series, the 125th Anniversary Gala for the Auditorium Theater, and on WFMT radio as part of the Ryan Opera Center Recital Series. He also enjoys a touring relationship with Chris Botti, which has taken him through many cities in the US and abroad.

Hailing from Macon, GA, Mr. Johnson holds a Master’s degree and Professional Artist Certificate from the A.J. Fletcher Institute of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Bachelor’s degree in music from Mercer University’s Townsend School of Music.

Academy

Camerata Chicago Academy

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The Camerata Chicago Academy was founded in 2014 and there are two orchestras comprising advanced students.

The Academy Orchestra: Advanced high-school students play as a string orchestra.

The Junior Academy: Students aged 8 – 12 playing as a small chamber ensemble.

Camerata Chicago Academy provides a marvelous opportunity for young musicians to perform in a professional atmosphere under the direction of an internationally known conductor, Drostan Hall, Camerata Chicago’s Music Director, who has 25 years of experience of training aspiring young musicians. The objective of the Academy orchestra is to achieve a very high level of music making to produce a disciplined and professional sound, allowing young musicians to learn to work together.

For ten years Maestro Hall conducted the Baroque Festival Orchestra, an accomplished training orchestra for students. Known for its high level, the orchestra garnered two invitations to perform on the WFMT radio show Introductions.

The Academy orchestra is very similar in size and scope to the BFO (see photo below). I invite you to listen to this live broadcast from WFMT’s Introductions of the BFO performing Frolicksome Finale from Benjamin Britten’s Simple Symphony. This broadcast illustrates the experience you will receive in the Camerata Chicago Academy.

Academy Schedule

Download the Academy 2019 Fall Semester Schedule

The Academy Orchestra

Location: Gary Methodist Church, 224 North Main Street, Wheaton, IL 60187
Dates: 2019 Fall Semester start date September 7, 2019 and subsequent Saturdays
Rehearsal Times: All rehearsals take place on Saturdays 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Junior Academy

Location: St. John Lutheran Church, Wheaton, IL 60187
Dates: September 6, 2019 and subsequent Fridays.
Rehearsal Times: All rehearsals take place on Fridays 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Concert Details

The Academy works towards high quality performances each Fall and Spring. The 2019 Fall Semester Concert for the Academy Orchestra and the Junior Academy ensemble takes place on December 7, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church, Wheaton.

See current concerts on our ticket system. Tickets for Academy concerts are only $15 and concertgoers aged 16 and under are admitted free with a paying adult.

Repertoire: Featured repertoire includes music from the Baroque and classical periods and the string orchestra literature. On occasion, sectional rehearsals will be coached by a member of Camerata Chicago. Additionally, solo opportunities will be given to the most outstanding members of the ensemble and outside guest artists may be invited to solo with the orchestra.

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To audition for the Academy, please contact us here, or call 630-221-5555.

Location

The Camerata Chicago Academy Orchestra is the official
Ensemble in Residence at Gary Methodist Church, Wheaton:

Gary Methodist Church
224 North Main Street
Wheaton, IL60187

Sacred Music 2019

HANDEL’S MESSIAH and HALLELUJAH CHORUS

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Enjoy the outstanding musical artistry of Camerata Chicago and its new choir performing the Messiah (Part I – Christmas) by Handel with the Hallalujah Chorus. At the heart of our elite choir are some of the top choristers in Chicago. We have four wonderful soloists all conducted by Maestro Drostan Hall:

Robin Wiper, Soprano
Asher Moses, Boy Soprano
Sarah Holman, Mezzo-soprano
Jonathan Johnson, Tenor
Gerard Sundberg, Baritone

Baritone Gerard Sundberg, Soprano Robin Wiper, Tenor Jonathan Johnson, Mezzo-soprano Sarah Holman, Boy Soprano Asher Moses and Conductor Drostan Hall

The Angel: You will be treated to a special appearance of boy soprano Asher Moses who will sing the part of The Angel.

Hallelujah Chorus: At these concerts the Camerata Chicago Orchestra and Choir will perform the famous and celebrated Hallelujah Chorus. We’ll perform it twice – the second time giving you the opportunity to join in for a truly rousing finale to this fabulous sacred music performance.

Preconcert Talk: Renowned musicologist Professor Jonathan Saylor will give a fascinating talk about Handel and The Messiah before each concert. Entry is free for all wishing to attend his 30 minute talk.

November 1 Preconcert Talk: 6:45 pm Chicago
November 2 Preconcert Talk: 2:15 pm Wheaton


We are very grateful to the Tyndale House Foundation and the Savegnago Family Partnership
for their generous support of this sacred music series.

Sponsored by Tyndale House Foundation

Purchase Tickets for Sacred Music Concerts-0730x0050

We have a range of ticket types on our ticket system – select the front rows with a VIP ticket or choose tickets for children. All concertgoers of age 16 and under can go for free with a paying adult! Discounts are available online only, not at the door, so if you have a coupon code please buy tickets online! Click here for details of how to use a discount coupon code.

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Tickets Price
Adult
Enjoy the concert! Unassigned seats.
$50
Senior
Enjoy the concert! Unassigned seats.
$40
Student with ID
A low cost ticket for students with relevant ID.
$10
16 & Under
For concertgoers of 16 & Under attending with a paying adult.
Free
VIP
Front rows are reserved for VIP ticket holders.
$75

 

The concert at College Church is presented by Camerata Chicago. It is not sponsored by or a function of College Church and its events.

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Preconcert Talk on Handel’s Messiah

Renowned musicologist Professor Jonathan Saylor will give a fascinating talk about Handel and his famous work The Messiah before each concert.

Entry is free for all wishing to attend his 30 minute talk.

November 1 Preconcert Talk: 6:45 pm Chicago
November 2 Preconcert Talk: 2:15 pm Wheaton

This fascinating talk will provide some interesting historical context, and Professor Saylor will share his insights into the background of this work and its composer and then suggest some specific things concertgoers can listen for during the performances themselves.


Professor Saylor also performs with Camerata Chicago as Principal Bassoon and will take part in performances of The Messiah.