Recent News & Recordings
In this highly-anticipated reprisal with Whim W’Him, The Esoterics is excited to present 'Approaching ecstasy,' a concert-length dance collaboration based on the life and poetry of the Alexandrian poet Constantine Cavafy. This “tryst ballet,” which was composed and will be conducted by Founding Director Eric Banks, will be sung by The Esoterics, accompanied by the Skyros String Quartet and harpist Melissa Achten Klausner. 'Approaching ecstasy' will be choreographed by Whim W’Him’s founding director Olivier Wevers, and will feature 7 dancers from his company, as well as Casey Curran’s set design on the stage of the Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center.
The Esoterics' recording sessions for our April INTIMAS series were a great success, and we are excited to announce that a CD of this repertoire should be available later this summer. In the four movements of his 2007 song cycle, Messages to myself, Christopher Theofanidis has given voice to verses by Rumi, Whitman, Yeats, and Amy Beth Kirsten. These words inspired Theofanidis to create a series of meditations on various aspects of community: from finding one’s own voice and hearing the voice of others, to the benefits of critical thinking, loving one’s neighbor, and the interdependence of our collective humanity. In The wheel of time, the dance (2014), Aaron Jay Kernis chose to set four poems by the environmental activist and Kentucky farmer Wendell Berry. After departing the initial bustle of the city, Berry’s verses pay homage to the cycles found in time and nature, life and love, with images of light and darkness, field and forest, land and air, water and weather. For Kernis, the wheel of time allows for “the sweet enclosure of the song,” and inspires an eternal dance with everyone – our families, friends, neighbors, and departed ancestors. Through this dance, we gain an emotional connection to our own geography and genealogy, and even after losing ourselves, we are still able to find our own way home. This disc will conclude with Eric Banks’ a cappella choral symphony, This delicate universe (2015), Banks’ 32-minute works sets poems by the Greek-Egyptian poet Constantine Cavafy that explore five different “universes,” or meditations on connectedness: the sharing of one’s art, the familiar comfort of one’s neighborhood, the inextricable link between place and memory, the most intimate interaction between lovers, and the mystical, spiritual embrace of the great unknown, in “the sacred silence of creation.”
The Esoterics is proud to be a founding member of The Greater Seattle Choral Consortium, the non-profit organization that sponsors the Seattle Sings! Choral Festival. The GSCC is comprised of over sixty choral ensembles in the Puget Sound region each of whom have a unique mission, but a common love of singing and choral music. Please visit our "neighbor" choirs and see what the GSCC is doing for advocacy and support of choral music in our community at www.seattlesings.org.