Previous Seasons

Postcards: Songs from the Four Corners

June 2, 2018

Green Lake Church of Seventh-day Adventists

Freddie Coleman, Director

Justin Hansen, Accompanist

We now live in a world where superb choral composing is happening all over the globe, and music for choirs like Ancora is rich and varied. Next spring, Ancora will expose our audience to this state of the art with a program called “Postcards: Songs from the Four Corners,” featuring songs suites of Russia, Japan, Spain, and Iran.

Baltic Centennial: 100 Years of Statehood

March 24, 2018

Saint Mark’s Cathedral

Freddie Coleman, Director

The Seattle Choral Company invited Ancora and 6 other local choirs to sing “Te Deum” by Rihards Dubra as part of a concert celebrating the centennial anniversaries of statehood and independence of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. Ancora also reprised “Northern Lights” from our Sacred Night concert, bolstered by additional singers from the Choral Company. Classical KING FM 98.1 recorded the concert, which will air later this year, perhaps in November.

Sacred Night

January 27 & 28, 2018

Green Lake Church of Seventh-day Adventists (Seattle) & Church of the Holy Cross (Redmond)

Freddie Coleman, Director

Justin Hansen, Accompanist

Ancora unveiled a seasonal program for the month of January called “Sacred Night,” featuring a Gregorian-inspired “Magnificat” and “Nunc Dimittis” by Frank La Rocca, an a cappella missa brevis by the Romanian-born Hungarian György Orbán, and the mystical “Northern Lights” written for treble voices and tuned glasses by the Latvian Ēriks Ešenvalds.

Leavenworth’s Tree Lighting Ceremony

December 2, 2017

Front Street Park, Leavenworth

Justin Hansen, Director & Accompanist

Ancora members and alums performed on stage at the gazebo on a snowy afternoon, accumulating an impressive crowd. This performance, directed by our multitalented accompanist, Justin Hansen, also featured a solo by Ginger Griffis and a dramatic reading by Jessie Burnside Clapp.

The 31st Annual Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition

December 1, 2017

Downtown Seattle, Westlake Center

Justin Hansen, Director & Accompanist

Ancora members and alums participated (but did not compete) in Figgy Pudding and raised over $1000 for the Pike Market Senior Center & Food Bank. This year we experimented with accompaniment on Oliver, our electric piano, and wore Christmas lights for some pizzazz!

MUSE

with Cantamus

June 3, 2017

Green Lake Church of Seventh-Day Adventists

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Alex Gagiu, Cantamus Conductor

Molly Knight Forde, Cantamus Accompanist

Ancora invited Cantamus to join us for songs of inspiration, music, and poetry. Featured works included American classics such as “Will the Circle be Unbroken” and “Hark, I Hear the Harps Eternal,” as well as the elegant “Les sirènes” (1911) by prodigious composer Lili Boulanger. We enjoyed this chance to sing with the girls, many of whom sang under Aimee when they were in Allegra.

Emerald City SINGS!

May 20, 2017

Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Ancora was the featured guest choir, giving a short performance in the festival’s closing concert. The festival, hosted by Sechrist Travel, gave seven choirs the chance to join together into a 250-voice Festival Chorus, which performed under the direction of Dr. Rollo Dilworth.

NW Focus LIVE

May 12, 2017

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Ancora performed live on the KING FM 98.1, Seattle’s classical radio station. We reprised some of our songs from Wild! and gave a preview of MUSE. Host Peter Newman also chatted with Aimee about our repertoire and with choristers Lisa Sparacio, Zoë Ness, and Anjali Kumar about the choir.

Wild!

February 4, 2017

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Skyros String Quartet

Skunks scurried and birds took flight as Ancora celebrated the beauty, joy, and magnificence of nature and its inhabitants. Artistic Director Aimee Mell led a program of classic and contemporary works by Randall Thompson, Ola Gjeilo, Sarah Quartel, Joan Szymko, Dan Forrest, and others. Ancora and special guests Skyros String Quartet joined for a rare performance of South Dakota Shadows Suite by acclaimed American composer Jackson Berkey.

Wintertide: A Concert Fantasy for the Holidays

Guest Performers with Seattle Choral Company

December 9 & 10, 2016

Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director of Ancora

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Freddie Coleman, Director of the Seattle Choral Company + Ancora

We gathered at Saint Mark’s Cathedral for a multi-media concert blending music and images that heightened delight in the winter season. The Seattle Choral Company sang Ola Gjeilo’s popular “Sunrise Mass” with orchestra and visual media presented by Bus No. 8 video productions. As the guest choir, Ancora joined the Choral Company for the world premiere of “Wintertide,” written for the Choral Company and Ancora by Seattle composer Donald Skirvin. Ancora also sang a few other winter-themed pieces, including “Tundra” by Ola Gjeilo.

The 30th Annual Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition

December 2, 2016

Westlake Center, Downtown Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Ancora members and alums raised over $1700 for the Pike Market Senior Center & Food Bank, and we had a tremendously fun time dressing up festively and singing carols.

Women In Song

with Mägi Ensemble

May 19, 2016

Resonance at SOMA Towers, Bellevue

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

At this joint concert with the Mägi Ensemble, another of our area’s finest women’s chamber choirs, Ancora highlighted pieces from Tempus, a diverse program including madrigals, spirituals, traditional and contemporary choral music, and rousing world music selections. The Mägi Ensemble sang selections from their “Baltic Sounds” CD of choral works and folk songs from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in an evening of sublime song.

Tempus

May 14, 2016

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Ancora ventured into the realms of Time: human, musical, ephemeral and eternal, in a diverse program of works by Paulus, Clausen, Tavener, Parker, Papoulis, and others.

Guest Performers with Illumni Men’s Chorale

December 19, 2015

Icicle Creek Music Center, Leavenworth

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Voices in the Snow

December 13, 2015

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

Ancora presented its 12th annual holiday concert, featuring the American premiere of “Voices in the Snow” by Flemish composer Rudi Tas. Also on the program: Elgar, Whitacre, Wessman, Schafer, and seasonal songs in Swedish, Finnish, and Latvian. Ancora was joined by special guests Illumni Men’s Chorale.

Seattle Sings! festival

October 10, 2015

St. Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Janelle Murray, Accompanist

I Will Arise

June 20, 2015

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Justin Hansen, Accompanist

From earthy to ethereal, Ancora celebrated the music of the British Isles, including works by Holst, Vaughan Wiliams, Stanford, Daley, Szymko, and Whitacre. The program presented traditional renditions of “waulking” songs, ballads, reels, and favorites such as “Scarborough Fair,” as well as more contemporary settings of texts by St. Patrick, W.B. Yeats, and James Joyce.

Sip & Sing

April 9, 2015

Alki Arts, Seattle

Aimee Mell, Artistic Director

Justin Hansen, Accompanist

Brooke Borcherding, a talented local artist and member of Ancora, donated three painting for us to raffle off at Aimee’s first performance as Ancora’s new director! We sang several pieces from our upcoming concert during this fun evening of art and wine.

Guest Performers with Illumni Men’s Chorale

December 20, 2014

Icicle Creek Music Center, Leavenworth

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Leavenworth’s Christmas Lighting Ceremony – Headliner Performance

December 20, 2014

Front Street Park, Leavenworth

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Walking in the Air

December 13, 2014

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Guest Conductor

Justin Hansen, Accompanist

For her bon voyage concert, our longtime director, Tess Orozco, focused on the simple magic of winter. “Walking in the Air” featured a selection of beautiful arrangements for women’s voices, including “Walking in the Air” from the 1982 film The Snowman and the world premiere of Jeremiah Oliver’s “Ring Out, Wild Bells.”

10th Anniversary Concert

June 14, 2014

Seattle First Baptist Church

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Guest Conductor

Kristina Lee, Accompanist

We celebrated our tenth anniversary by singing Ancora’s greatest hits: one or two favorite pieces from each of our previous concerts, plus the world premiere of Jeremiah Oliver’s “Circuitous,” with text by former Ancora singer and cancer thriver, Tályaa Liera.

Waiting for Angels

December 14, 2013

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Kristina Lee, Accompanist

Our holiday concert, Waiting for Angels, struck a beautiful balance between traditional and innovative choral music. The program, taken from our brand-new CD, evoked hope and holy mystery in the dark nights of winter. Repertoire included “Song of the Angels” with singing bowls and bells, “Silent Night” with harp, and many more delightful pieces, both accompanied and a capella.

East West Bookshop

December 5, 2013

East West Bookshop, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Kristina Lee, Accompanist

The 27th Annual Great Figgy Pudding Street Corner Caroling Competition

December 6, 2013

Downtown Seattle, Westlake Center

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Northwest Folklife Festival

May 25, 2012

Center House Theatre, Seattle Center

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Answer Them with Spring

April 13, 2013

The Great Hall at Green Lake, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Jenny Healy, Accompanist

“Love and loss of winter’s melancholy ask the question, and we answer them with spring.”

The women of Ancora heralded in the springtime season with an enchanting evening that featured music by Thomas Morley, John Dowland, and Aulis Sallinen, and a dessert auction with treats from local vendors.

Apocalypse: A Lifting of the Veil

November 30 & December 1, 2012

Fremont Abbey, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

– with special guest –

Paul Che oke’ ten Wagner, Narration and Native American Flute

Apocalypse: A Lifting of the Veil incorporated songs from around the globe as well as new suite “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse” by local composer Jeremiah Oliver. Ancora’s intent was to educate our audiences about the powerful time in which we are living, and “lift the veil” to show that 2012 is not about the world ending – it’s about the world changing.

Learn more about our Apocalypse project!

Christmas Caroling with Seattle Gitls’ Choir Alumnae, pub-style

December 17, 2012

A Terrible Beauty Irish Pub & Restaurant, Renton, WA

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Ancora, Erin McNamee, and SGC Alumnae sang our old favorites. SGC alums were invited to bring their red carol books and chime in on all 45 verses of every Christmas song we’ve ever done.

Angelic Quodlibet

December 10, 2011

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

Ancora’s angelic holiday celebration! With sweet cherubim, introspective seraphim, and jubilant gospel, our voices covered all the realms of the season, however it pleases.

* Quodlibet: A group of well-known tunes. From the Latin, meaning “what pleases.”

Incantations CD Release Party

October 15, 2011

Wine World Warehouse, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

Friends and fans celebrated the release of Ancora’s Incantations CD. We enjoyed local wines, had a bite to eat, socialized, and won door prizes! Ancora sang selections from the CD live.

C² Concert at the Columns

August 19, 2011

The Columns by Pike & Boren, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Ancora performed a wide range of material at this summer’s C² Concert at the Columns series, including hyped madrigals, some Ancora classics, and a sprinkle of jazz.

National Anthem (Seattle Storm)

August 13, 2011

Key Arena, Seattle

Seattle Storm vs. Atlanta Dream

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Ancora sang the national anthem for the 3rd year a row. This year we sang before the Seattle Storm game against the Atlanta Dream. It has been a privilege to work with the only winning professional sports organization in the Pacific Northwest. We look forward to our continued partnership with the Seattle Storm.

Incantations

October 22 & 23, 2010

Good Shepherd Center, Seattle

Tess Orozco, Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

Ancora performed two sold-out showings of our Incantations production. The wild sound of these exquisite women’s voices was presented in the intimacy of the historic Good Shepherd Center, an appropriately haunted setting for this entrancing collection of music. The repertoire, selected by director Tess Orozco, was simultaneously spooky and spiritual, and featured the “Witches Chorus” from Giuseppe Verdi’s Macbeth, Franz Schubert’s “The Erlking,” and “Double Trouble” from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, by American cinematic composer John Williams.

A Festival of Carols

December 11, 2008

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Artistic Director

Tess Orozco, Assistant Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

This festival of carols provided a broad repertoire of holiday favorites spanning multiple generations. From favorites like “Winter Wonderland” and “Carol of the Bells” to the more traditional “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day” by John Rutter, this concert provided something for everyone. The “Apple Tree Wassail” carol has since become a favorite for Ancora fans!

Scandinavia: Songs of the Sea

June 8, 2008

Nordic Heritage Museum, Seattle

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Artistic Director

Tess Orozco, Assistant Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

This spring 2008 concert was a collaboration between Ancora and the Nordic Heritage Museum in Seattle. The beautiful museum played stage to Ancora’s collection of Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Danish, and Estonian pieces, featuring works from Zoltán Kodály, Jean Sibelius, Daniel E. Gawthrop, and Henrik Colding-Jorgensen. A reception followed the performance, comprised of Scandinavian delicacies prepared by members of the Nordic Heritage Museum.

Songs of Our Lady

December 16, 2007

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Artistic Director

Tess Orozco, Assistant Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

Songs of Our Lady presented a reverent collection of pieces honoring the Virgin Mary. This concert featured two premiere performances of original compositions specifically for Ancora. William Butler Yeats’ poem “Mother of God” was set to music by Seattle Girls’ Choir alum Deborah Kelley. “Ave Maria, Amen” was composed by Ancora’s own accompanist, Jeremiah Oliver. This piece quickly became a crowd and Ancora favorite.

Garden of Songs

June 9, 2007

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Artistic Director

Tess Orozco, Assistant Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

This evening concert showcased music celebrating the pleasures of early summer, including works by Randall Thompson, Zoltán Kodály, Elizabeth Posten, and Pyotr Tchaikovsky. The program was presented in four brief segments: Spring Planting & Growing; Storms & Reflections; Roses & Thorns; and Trees, Nature & the Divine.

Co-Dependent Love Songs

June 10, 2006

Trinity Lutheran Church, Seattle

Dr. Jerome L. Wright, Artistic Director

Tess Orozco, Assistant Artistic Director

Jeremiah Oliver, Accompanist

Ancora’s premiere performance featured songs of women scorned throughout the centuries and across the globe. The performance began with Alice Parker’s Appalachian folk song “I Am In Love, I Dare Not Own It,” portraying the pain of betrayal in both the harmony and the lyrics. “An Chloe” by W.A. Mozart, “Fire, Fire” by Thomas Morley, and “O mio babbino caro” by Giacomo Puccini rounded out the feelings of co-dependence, and J.S. Bach’s “Bist du bei mir” concluded the program with lush, tender loving sentiments.