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MYSTIKOS:  Giving voice to the ineffable

This October, The Esoterics will delve into the realm of the mystical, and explore the ability of poetry and music to communicate beyond the scope of language, and illuminate the secret connection between our secular world and the eternal sacred.  This concert of all-new choral music will feature the most recent winners of The Esoterics’ annual POLYPHONOS competition – three formidable composers who have taken on the challenge of writing for Seattle most innovative choral ensemble with admirable skill.

These three POLYPHONOS-winning composers have each received $1000 for their 5-minute commission, and will be traveling to Seattle in order to meet the ensemble, and speak to The Esoterics’ audience about their new work in concert.  Winning in the “Young Composer” category, Zachary Wadsworth (from Calgary, Alberta) has set Three lacquer prints from Amy Lowell’s Pictures of the floating world.  Winning in the “National Composer” category, New York composer Philip Wharton’s Night rising sets verse by the Iowa poet Carol Gilbertson that describes twilight from several vantage points.  “International Composer” winner Rita Ueda (from Vancouver) has composed a haunting elegy for the victims of the 2011 Japanese tsunami entitled Hoping you hear me, setting verses by Harumi Makino.

In addition to these three world premiere commissions, The Esoterics will also be premiering An indecipherable cause by Cornish student composer David Dossett, who has set the haiku-esque verses of Wallace Stevens’ renowned poem Thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird.  The group will also premiere A child in nature by New York composer Robinson McClellan, a seven-movement cycle that captures the pre-verbal innocence of youth in poems by Australian poet Robin Muir-Miller.  The Esoterics will also sing Three mystical choruses by acclaimed Pennsylvania composer Steven Sametz – who has set ancient poetry from the Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Sikh, and Islamic faith traditions.  To complete this program, the ensemble will perform Robert Kyr’s setting of his own mystical poem, In praise of music.


Please join The Esoterics for one of these four performances of MYSTIKOS:

Saturday ∙ 6 October 2012 ∙ 8pm ∙ Tacoma
Christ Episcopal Church ∙ 310 North K Street

Sunday ∙ 7 October 2012 ∙ 3 pm ∙ Kent
St Columba Episcopal Church ∙ 26715 Military Road South

 Friday ∙ 12 October 2012 ∙ 7pm ∙ Queen Anne
Open Dress Rehearsal with the composers present for Q & A
This is an Arts Crush Featured Event (
Queen Anne Christian Church ∙ 1316 3rd Avenue West

Saturday ∙ 13 October 2012 ∙ 8 pm ∙ Seattle      (Reception to follow)
St Joseph Catholic Church ∙ 732 18th Avenue East

Sunday ∙ 14 October 2012 ∙ 2pm ∙ West Seattle
Holy Rosary Catholic Church ∙ 4142 42nd Avenue Southwest

Purchase tickets online here.