Have you ever noticed that American choirs tend to sing the same thing that other American choirs sing? In my opinion, there are very few innovators out there – conductors that bring the music of the rest of the world to our country. As for me, I count Kent Hatteberg as one of those people innovating the American choral music scene and Brady Allred as another – those guys are always on the cutting edge of great choral music. Brady and Kent program the best music and we can learn much by just paying attention to what they do.
When it comes to innovation, you need to pay attention to the music of composer Uģis Prauliņš. His music is captivating and much of it is accessible to good high school and college choirs. About a year ago, I heard Stephen Layton's CD, Baltic Exchange, and I was immediately captivated by Prauliņš work in the Missa Rigensis. It is stunning, haunting, and exciting stuff. I'm planning on singing the Kyrie from his Missa Rigensis and I may do the entire mass before I'm done!
You may have programmed your year already – but if you are still looking for that special composer and that incredible music that no one has heard of before, check out Uģis Prauliņš.
You won't be disappointed.