May 5 & 6 – Mozart & Beyond concerts: The framework of this magnificent program, performed with chamber orchestra and University of Michigan-affiliated guest artists, is the Mozart Vespers (Vesperae solennes de Confessore, KV339), a sublime, moving work that the CCD presented interspersed with contemporary, thematically related works by John Rutter, Randall Thompson, Eric Whitacre, Morten Lauridsen, Kurt Bestor, and renowned Detroit composer Stacey Gibbs.
December 9 & 10 – This Starry Night concerts – featuring the Bach Christmas Oratorio, with contemporary music interspersed among the movements. Contemporary composers included Brandon Spencer, Ysaye Barnwell, John Rutter, Marten Lauridsen, and others.
May 6 & 7 – We were delighted to be able to resume our Spring 2022 semester after a two-year hiatus on account of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our May 2022 concert of Brahms’ Requiem was dedicated to those who lost their lives during the pandemic. In addition to this masterwork, complete with orchestra and soloists, we also performed John Rutter’s “A Ukrainian Prayer” in solidarity with the people of Ukraine. This concert is a powerful example of how the Community Chorus of Detroit is active in working for justice and peace in our community through meaningful musical performances. Lastly, from January ’22 to February ’23, our President, Diane Linn, and a large contingent of the chorus worked with Samaritas to help relocate a three-generation family of refugees from Afghanistan to the US. Two of the men in the family worked with the US military for a total of 25+ years, including one who is permanently disabled from a suicide-bomber explosion. A group of 100+ choristers and friends of the chorus contributed their time, money, and talents to helping this 18-member family create a safe and healthy home in Detroit, learn to speak English (with eight ESL volunteer teachers), find legal employment, access pro bono legal and tax services, procure their drivers’ licenses, and in a multitude of ways adapt to their new life in the US. The chorus volunteer group collected $23,000 from the larger community to help the family buy two used cars and insurance, purchase furnishings (in addition to two moving vans of donated items), rent moving vans, hire translator services, assist with bills, and pay medical expenses.
These were the two years of the Covid shutdown, and we were unable to present our usual concert seasons. However, during this time, the CCD produced several virtual performances, “Hold On,” “A Christmas Greeting” (with trumpets and organ), and “Renewal of Light” (with chorus, chamber choir, and orchestra). The chorus also hosted several outdoor “Sunday Sings, which were well attended. Additionally, our CCD Board President, Diane Linn, wrote a podcast script, “The Story of the Community Chorus of Detroit,” for Encore Tours in Boston. The podcast was professionally produced and nationally distributed, with an original musical score and professional narrators. See “About Us,” then “The Story of the CCD” to view the script. During this time, we also planned for our German Cultural Tour in fall, 2022 and our next international performance tour of northern Italy in fall, 2023.
December 13 & 14 – Spiritual Peace and Joy concerts – Handel’s Messiah punctuated with text-related spirituals and contemporary works, in addition to A Ceremony of Spirituals by Maurice Draughn, who accompanied the chorus on harp for his composition. Additional composers included Judy Rose, Eric Whitacre, Joan Szymko, Stacey Gibbs (arr.), and Ola Gjeilo.
Early October – Our third international tour, this time to southern Spain and Portugal, for 11 days in early October, 2019, including Madrid, Seville, Granada, Lisbon, and other stops in the Iberian Peninsula.
August – Messiah Community Sing.
May 10 & 11 – Giving Voice to Verse concerts – a program that enlivens and ennobles the meaning of language when set to music, including the words of the Bible, Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, and Sarah Teasdale, among others. Composers included Ralph Vaughan Williams, Ola Gjeilo, Eriks Esenvalds, and Craig Hella Johnson, as well as a selection of spirituals.
December 7 & 8 – Gloria: A Concert for Peace concerts – with Vivaldi’s Gloria punctuated by African-American spirituals, illuminating each of these contemporaneous musical genres, focused on the theme of peace for the holidays.
November 3 – Chorus master class with the members of the Voces 8 ensemble from England.
August 18 – The CCD was the featured choir in the Detroit Choral Festival for a community sing at Christ Church Detroit, performing excerpts from Handel’s Messiah.
May 18 & 19 – The Hope of Loving concerts – with a concert theme inviting reflection on the range of human emotion from despair to “the hope of loving” – finding hope and meaning in our lives through the beauty of nature, music, faith and, most of all, the many ways we love – and are loved by others.
March 31 – Chorus vocal technique workshop with guest artist, Deborah Frontzcak.
December 8 & 9 – Peace on Earth concerts – Featuring music ranging from stunning contemporary works to the Swahili adaptation of “The Lord’s Prayer,” and from Jenkins’ magnificent “The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace,” to Beethoven’s spectacular “Ode to Joy,” and beyond, the concert celebrated the spirit of peace for the holiday season.
November 11 – The CCD performs at the spectacular, multi-million-dollar Annual Gala at the Detroit Institute of Arts
October 2 – 12 – The CCD makes its second international tour with concerts at some of the greatest venues in England, including St. Paul’s Cathedral in London and other world-famous venues including Christ Church Cathedral at Oxford, Coventry Cathedral, the 12th C. Fountains Abbey, Canterbury Cathedral, and more.
August 19 – Welcome Event: This community sing includes music from the great choral masses to form a compilation in the traditional choral mass format, in addition to a pizza-buffet supper for prospective members.
May 19 & 20 – Crown Jewels: Music Beyond Borders concerts – Featuring music from across the centuries by British composers ranging from Handel to Vaughan Williams and Rutter, including Rutter’s stunning interpretations of American spirituals, the concerts celebrated the historic influences of British music, with exciting references to cultural links across the Atlantic – in history, genre, and geography.
May 4, 6 & 7 – DSO Defiant Requiem concerts – These concerts, featuring the Verdi Requiem as written, punctuated with powerful narration, video clips, and sound effects, commemorated the 16 performances of the Requiem at the Terezin concentration camp in WWII. The CCD gratefully acknowledges the privilege of performing with the DSO and Maestro Murry Sidlin in this monumental production.
December 9 & 10 – Holiday Classics concerts – The concerts features beloved Christmas music;by Rutter, Biebl, Lauridsen, Rachmaninoff, and Vaughan Williams.
August 21 – Welcome Reception at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church for returning and prospective choristers.
August 4 – The CCD was the featured choir in the Detroit Choral Festival for a community sing of the Mozart Requiem.
May 20 & 21 – Dream Keepers concerts. From a viewpoint of compassion, hope, and courage, and in collaboration with the Capuchin Soup Kitchen Choir, the concerts focused on the social issue of homelessness – both those who are homeless on our streets as well as refugees. The concerts featured the moving new work Street Requiem, with soloists Freda Herseth and Carlos Enrique Santelli, from the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance. The CCD partnered with 11 community organizations serving homeless people and refugees in preparation for the concerts.
December 11 and 12: Spiritual Messiah concerts – These moving concerts juxtaposed two contemporaneous musical genres by punctuating the movements of the Christmas portion of Handel’s Messiah, as written, with text-related African-American spirituals, giving greater meaning to each musical form. While separated by an ocean not only geographically, but by the life experience of those who originated these works, both genres described the same events.
October – The CCD made its European debut with concerts at some of the most magnificent venues in northern France, including the Cathedrals of Notre Dame in both Paris and Chartres, Chateau d’Amboise, the American Cemetery Museum on the Normandy beaches, and others.
August – Welcome Dinner for returning and prospective choristers.
July 11, 2015 – The CCD sponsored Detroit Sings: A Choral Music Conference, for choral musicians, featuring Maestro Leonard Slatkin and Jason Harris, with 25 presentations by the premier choral conductors and musicians from throughout our region.
May 15 and 16 – The concerts included music from the mass of Josquin de Prez, to Louis Vierne’s elegant mass interpretation, to the house-rocking Gospel Mass by Robert Ray, as well as exquisite music linking these works, including songs of Americana, Rachmaninoff’sVocalise, and spirituals.
December 12 and 13 – A Jubliant Song concerts. Our program featured music from across the ages, from Poulenc to Pentatonix, and Elgar to Billy Joel, with great soloists and the CCD orchestra, and with Dr. Edward Maki-Schramm conducting, at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church. We partnered with Gleaners Community Food Bank, and the purchase of every ticket provided three meals for our hungry neighbors in Metro Detroit.
August – Welcome Dinner for returning and prospective choristers.
August – “The FANTASTIC Choir: Making Choral Excellence Happen,” Saturday, August 23, 10:00-3:45, was a one-day workshop featuring world-renowned choral conductor, Jerry Blackstone at Central United Methodist Church in downtown Detroit, and with a talk entitled “The FANTASTIC Choir: Nuts & Bolts” by Dr. Edward Maki-Schramm and Diane Linn. The program also included a community-sing performance of the Brahms Requiem. This program was designed for choir members, conductors, and choral ensembles at all levels, from throughout SE Michigan.
July – CCD Annual Hydroplane-Race Benefit Party
May 14 – Verdi Requiem. For this once-in-a-lifetime performance of the great Verdi Requiem, the CCD joined forces with members of three outstanding regional choirs, totaling 175 singers, with full orchestra and Metropolitan Opera soloists. This tour-de-force concert commemorated the 16 performances of the Requiem by the prisoners at the Terezin concentration camp in WWII, with special guests – including the Consul General of Israel and the Deputy Consul General of the Czech Republic, and moving programmatic elements.
Friday, December 13, 7:30 and Saturday, December 13, 4:00 – Home for the Holidays concerts. These concerts, at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church, with music from Bach to Britten, traditional carols to contemporary arrangements, and holiday highlights from many cultures, celebrated the season in two spectacular concerts with the chorus, orchestra, and outstanding soloists.
Saturday, December 21, 4:00 – CCD-sponsored Messiah Community-Sing at Central United Methodist Church on Grand Circus Park in downtown Detroit. This was our second annual Messiah Community-Sing, where the audience was the choir, this year conducted by Dr. Jerry Blackstone – Grammy® Award-winning conductor and Director of Choirs and Chair of the internationally acclaimed conducting department at the University of Michigan, and with world-class, renowned organist and conductor of the CCD, Dr. Edward Maki-Schramm, accompanying on the stunning Skinner organ, along with top soloists.
August – Welcome Dinner for returning and prospective choristers: Wednesday, August 28 at 6:30 near Indian Village in Detroit.
August – “Creating a FANTASTIC Choir: Practical Tips for Choral Excellence,” Saturday, August 24, 10:00-3:00, was a one-day workshop with world-renowned choral conductor, Jerry Blackstone at Central United Methodist Church in downtown Detroit. This program was designed for choir members, conductors, and choral ensembles at all levels, from throughout SE Michigan.
July – CCD Hydroplane-Race Benefit Party
May – Detroit: A Metamorphosis – A Place of Hope for All People: These concerts, at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church, featured the CCD, the CCD Orchestra, and outstanding guest artists performing music from Mozart to Gorecki and Rutter to Armstrong. The program lifted up for reflection a representation of peoples who, over history, have suffered egregious acts at the hands of others, and it moved powerfully, both musically and topically, to offer a new vision for our city and for the world – one of hope, prayer, love, peace, and gratitude, for our earthly home and for all people.
December – Detroit’s Community-Sing Messiah at Central United Methodist Church on Grand Circus Park in downtown Detroit, and two performances of Christmas Joy! at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church. This CCD concert featured the CCD Orchestra, The Central United Methodist Church Handbell Choir, and soloists, as well as special guests, the renowned Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church Chancel Choir.
December – CCD caroled at Detroit’s fabulous Midtown Noel Night.
October – CCD participated in a PBS TV special, “Celebrate America Southeast Michigan 2013,” which will be broadcast in March, 2013.
September – CCD participated in the “Pure Michigan” TV ad for Michigan tourism, at the Detroit Institute of Arts, along with other prominent Metro Detroit choirs.
August – CCD participated in the “Ode to Joy” flash mob “Random Act of Culture” at Detroit’s Compuware Building , along with 25 premier Metro Detroit Choirs, sponsored by the Sphinx Organization and funded by the Knight Foundation.
August – Welcome reception for returning and prospective choristers: Saturday, August 11 at 5:00 in the Indian Village area.
July – CCD Hydroplane-Race Benefit Party
May – A Detroit Panorama: Music of a Great American City: This concert featured a documentary film about the history of Detroit, narrated by Sen. Carl Levin, which provided the framework for great choral music exemplifying each era. The program featured U-M soloists, the CCD Chamber Players, and many Detroit luminaries, who offered autobiographical vignettes.
December – Messiah: The CCD performed this legendary work with orchestra and soloists, with special guests, the Detroit Children’s Choir’s Touring Choir performing Holiday Treats, at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church.
September – Random Acts of Culture in Detroit in collaboration with the Sphinx Organization: Saturday, September 3, at 25 Detroit locations.
September – Welcome Reception for Returning & Prospective CCD Choristers: Friday, September 9, near Indian Village.
July – CCD Hydroplane-Race Benefit Party
May – Serenade to Music: A celebration of the beauty and joy of music in a concert program entitled Serenade to Music, including works by Handel, Brahms, Vaughan Williams, Copland, Barber, Lauridsen, and others, at the Detroit Waldorf School.
December – Holiday Classics: A seasonal musical gala, with some of the most beautiful holiday music ever written, including works by Handel, Praetorius, Berlioz, Mendelssohn, Rutter, and others, at the Detroit Waldorf School.