photography Becky Oehlers

the crossing

The Crossing is a professional chamber choir conducted by Donald Nally and dedicated to new music. It is committed to working with creative teams to make and record new, substantial works for choir that explore and expand ways of writing for choir, singing in choir, and listening to music for choir. Many of its nearly ninety commissioned premieres address social, environmental, and political issues.

 

The Crossing collaborates with some of the world’s most accomplished ensembles and artists, including the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, American Composers Orchestra, Network for New Music, Lyric Fest, Piffaro, Beth Morrison Projects, Allora & Calzadilla, Bang on a Can, and the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE). Similarly, The Crossing often collaborates with some of the world’s most prestigious venues and presenters, such as the Park Avenue Armory, Annenberg Center at the University of Pennsylvania, National Sawdust, David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center, Disney Hall in Los Angeles, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Haarlem Choral Biennale in The Netherlands, the Finnnish National Opera, The Kennedy Center in Washington, Philadelphia Art Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space in New York, Winter Garden with WNYC, and Duke, Northwestern, Colgate, and Notre Dame Universities. The Crossing holds an annual residency at the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center in Big Sky, Montana where they are working on an extensive, multi-year project with composer Michael Gordon and filmmaker Bill Morrison.

 

With a commitment to recording its commissions, The Crossing has issued 21 releases, receiving two Grammy Awards for Best Choral Performance (2018, 2019), and five Grammy nominations. The Crossing, with Donald Nally, was the American Composers Forum’s 2017 Champion of New Music. They are the recipients of the 2015 Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence, three ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming, and the Dale Warland Singers Commission Award from Chorus America.

 

www.crossingchoir.org

Donald Nally

Donald Nally conducts The Crossing, the internationally acclaimed, GRAMMY Award-winning professional choir that commissions, premieres, and records only new music. He holds the John W. Beattie Chair of Music at Northwestern University where he is director of choral organizations. Donald has served as chorus master at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Welsh National Opera, Opera Philadelphia, and for many seasons at the Spoleto Festival in Italy. He has commissioned over 120 works and, with The Crossing, has produced 20 recordings, winning two GRAMMY Awards.  He was the American Composers Forum 2017 Champion of New Music and received the 2017 Michael Korn Founders Award from Chorus America; his ensembles have twice received the Margaret Hillis Award for Excellence in Choral Music. Donald has worked closely with the artists Allora & Calzadilla and composer David Lang on projects in London, Osaka, Cleveland, Edmonton, Houston, and Philadelphia.  In recent seasons he has been a visiting resident artist at the Park Avenue Armory, music director for the world premiere of Lang’s The Mile-Long Opera – directing 1000 voices on the High Line in Manhattan – as well as chorus master at the New York Philharmonic for world premieres by Lang and Julia Wolfe.

photo: Becky Oehlers Photography

COMPOSERS

Toivo Tulev is head of the Composition Department at the Estonian Academy of Music. His teachers have included Eino Tamberg and the Swedish composer Sven-David Sandström; and during 1996 he studied electro-acoustic music at the Cologne Hochschule der Musik. But he also acknowledges the strong musical influence and encouragement of people such as Tõnu Kaljuste and Erkki-Sven Tüür, and the experience of singing in various early music vocal ensembles like Vox Clamantis, Chœur Grégorien de Paris and Heinavanker. He is the founder (1995) and artistic director of the liturgical music ensemble Scandicus. emic.ee/toivo-tulev

photo: Tonu Tormis

 

Gregory Spears is a New York-based composer whose music has been called “astonishingly beautiful” (​The New York Times​), “coolly entrancing” (The New Yorker), and “some of the most beautifully unsettling music to appear in recent memory” (The Boston Globe). In recent seasons he has been commissioned by The Lyric Opera of Chicago, Cincinnati Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Seraphic Fire, The Crossing, Volti, BMI/Concert Artists Guild, Vocal Arts DC, New York Polyphony, The New York International Piano Competition, and the JACK Quartet among others.

 

Other commissions have come from The Five Boroughs Music Festival, OPERA America, poet Tracy K. Smith, Christopher Williams Dances (Requiem), the Dalton School Orchestra, Houston Grand Opera, pianist Marika Bournaki, the Present Music Ensemble, New Vintage Baroque, the Damask Ensemble, and the Greater Princeton Youth Orchestra. He has been an artist-in-residence at Yaddo, MacDowell, the Aaron Copland House, the Rauschenberg Residency at Captiva Island, and was a participant in American Opera Projects’ Composers and the Voice program. He holds degrees in composition from Eastman School of Music (B.M.), Yale School of Music (M.M.), and Princeton (Ph.D.). He also studied as a Fulbright Scholar at the Royal Danish Academy in Copenhagen with Hans Abrahamsen. He currently teaches composition at Purchase College (SUNY). His music is published by Schott Music and Schott PSNY. gregoryspears.com

photo: Dario Acosta

 

Joel Puckett is a composer leaving both audiences and the press buzzing. His music has been described as, “soaringly lyrical” (Minneapolis Star Tribune), “Puccini-esque” (Wall Street Journal​), and “containing a density within a clarity, polyphony within the simple and—most importantly—beautiful and seemingly spiritual.” (Audiophile Audition). Parterre Box recently proclaimed, “Puckett should be a household name” and the Philadelphia Inquirer’s David Patrick Stearns mused, “if the name Joel Puckett isn’t etched into your brain, it should be.” In 2011 NPR Music listed him as one of the top 100 composers under 40 in the world.

 

Currently the Chair of Music Theory, Ear Training, and Piano Skills at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, Puckett presents workshops nationwide and frequently serves as an adjudicator at competitions for rising composers. His music is represented worldwide by Bill Holab Music. joelpuckett.com

photo: Kory Chase

 

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