Cantemus Welcomes New Music Director,
Jane Ring Frank
(June 18, 2011) — As they prepare to launch their 29th season, Cantemus welcomes a musical star to the chamber chorus: Jane Ring Frank takes the baton effective July 1 as the 40-singer group’s new music director. The seventh conductor to hold the position, she is replacing Dr. Gary Wood, who ended his 7-year stewardship of Cantemus after their May concerts so that he can devote more time to teaching, composing and performing as a jazz pianist and vocalist.
Jane Ring Frank is best known in Boston as the Founder/Artistic Director of Boston Secession, a critically-acclaimed professional chorus that broke musical barriers from 1996 -2010, when it ended its 13-year run. That 25-member ensemble was conceived as a laboratory for modernizing professional vocal performance. Ring Frank’s goal was to bring the audience more deeply into the music, helping them to, as she said, “hear the music, not the chorus” by creating a uniquely transparent sound, achieved through application of typically orchestral techniques to the ensemble. The Boston Globe called Secession an “extraordinary chorus, notable for its beautiful balance, musical surety, and English-styled straight-toned singing” (March, 2008), while Tom Garvey of the Hub Review praised the ensemble for its “lushly transparent singing conducted with intelligence and wit” (February, 2007).
Ring Frank said, “I believe that vocal music is a uniquely powerful way to share intellectual ideas and has the power, above all arts, to create community. My aim is to create, through superlative performances, a deeper connection between the singers and their audience. I know that Cantemus is solidly connected to its audience and I look forward to helping to deepen and expand that relationship.”
Sister Pat Rolinger, the president of Cantemus’ board of directors (who are all singers in the group), said there were16 applicants for the Cantemus directorship and, “while we met with many wonderful musicians, Jane was the one that fit us best. She met all our search committee’s and board’s criteria and she aced her audition with the full chorus, held last March. She is ‘a conductor’s conductor,’ with superb musicianship — and a great sense of humor. We’re sure our audiences will be thrilled!”
With degrees in accompanying as well as conducting, Ring Frank is a Resident Scholar at the Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University, Minister of Music at the First Congregational Church in Winchester, and Artistic Director of the Concord Women’s Chorus, a 50-voice women’s chorus. Previously, she was a faculty member at Emerson College for 12 years, and the Conductor of Philovox, publishing house E.C. Schirmer’s resident professional recording chorus.
For her first concert program with Cantemus, Ring Frank has selected “a rich combination” of secular and Christmas and Chanukah music. The cornerstones will be contemporary American composer Byron Adams’ impressionistic “Trois Illuminations,” with texts by the 19th-century French symbolist poet Arthur Rimbaud; and a Christmas “Midnight Mass” by 17th-century French composer Marc-Antoine Charpentier, plus many other seasonal works.
The concerts will be the first weekend of December in Newburyport and another North Shore venue, and on December 11 at Castle Hill in Ipswich.
To download photos, please visit Jane Ring Frank's website
For more information contact:
Susan Nash, Publicity