Songs of Faith, Love and Delight!

You were invited...
On a musical journey to a world of choral music almost completely unknown to most Americans - a concert featuring a rich potpourri of folk songs and sacred hymns by renowned women composers from Russia, Serbia, Ukraine, and Bulgaria.

Songs of faith, songs of love and its burdens, and songs of just pure fun – everything from Orthodox chants to soul-stirring Slavic folk songs.

Whether you were a seasoned enthusiast of Slavic music or looking for a new cultural experience, thank you. We hope came away with a deeper appreciation for the extraordinary depth and beauty of Slavic music and for the ways these contemporary women are adding their distinct voices to its ancient traditions. We are currently planning our next series of concerts. Stay tuned!

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Irina Denisova
A prominent choral conductor and composer in Belarus, now a nun at the St. Elizabeth Monastery in Minsk - Nun Juliania (Denisova). When asked about how music is born, nun Juliania answers quite simply. She taught children for 30 years, explained to them what a melody consists of, how to break it down into components and put it back together, “just like a construction kit”. But only when talent is applied music becomes an expression of something “transcendent, unearthly” and communicates unity, so that every listener thinks this particular composition is about him. Simply creating a melody is easy for nun Juliania due to her higher musical education and a wealth of experience. She doesn’t even consider such unfinished compositions worth attention. Only the ones constantly recurring, the ones which she loves dearly deserve to be embodied in a fully-finished structure of a chant.

Dragana Velickovic
composer known for her contributions to religious music, has left an indelible mark through her work on Troparion. In the realm of Byzantine music and Eastern Orthodox Christianity, a troparion is a short hymn, often organized into stanzas. Its earliest function was as a refrain during the recitation of biblical odes and psalms. 

Iryna Aleksiychuk
, pianist and organist, associate professor of composition at the National Academy of Music of Ukraine, Laureate of international competitions and National Creative Awards, Honored Art Worker of Ukraine, member of the National Union of Composers of Ukraine. 

Dobrinka Tabakova
A compose
r of  ‘exciting, deeply moving’ music (Washington Times), with ‘glowing tonal harmonies and grand, sweeping gestures [which] convey a huge emotional depth’ (The Strad).
She has been commissioned by the Royal Philharmonic Society, BBC Radio 3 and the European Broadcasting Union. Her debut profile album String Paths, on ECM Records, was nominated for a Grammy in 2014. In 2017 she was appointed composer-in-residence with the BBC Concert Orchestra. An album of her orchestral works, recorded by the Halle Orchestra is released in October 2023.

Ljubica Marić (Љубица Марић)
18 March 1909 – 17 September 2003)

A composer from Yugoslavia. She was a pupil of Josip Štolcer-Slavenski. She was known for being inspired by Byzantine Orthodox church music. She was professor at the Faculty of Music in Belgrade and a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Ljubica Marić is considered to be the most original Serbian composer of the twentieth century and musically the most influential one.