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Two new works under consideration for possible performances in the upcoming year: Isaac, a setting of the Abraham and Isaac story, three-part women’s chorus, soloists, organ, percussion; and, Symphony, a 30-minute symphonic work.
Rejoicing (2010) for ten instruments, faculty of the University of Evansville and the Evansville Philharmonic, Wheeler Concert Hall University of Evansville, Indiana, May 2011. Who, from our Mothers’ arms, (2011), variations on the hymn “Now Thank We All Our God, ” members of the Thoms family including Chelsea Tanner, flute, Jonquil Thoms, violin (Columbus Symphony Orchestra); Jordan Winkler, trumpet (River City Brass, Pittsburgh); Sonja Winkler, oboe (Operations Manager, Pittsburgh Symphony), Jonas Thoms, horn (principal, Evansville Philharmonic and instructor, University of Evansville); Jennifer Thoms, cello; Jacqueline Thoms, soprano; Treva Foss, soprano (instructor, Concordia University NY); Dr. Jason Thoms, conductor (director of music, Concordia University NY); Joy Reigns Lutheran Church, Edgewater, MD, Nov. 2011.
Requiem for 9/11 (2003) , Dr. Jason Thoms conductor, Treva Foss, soprano, Fulbright Alumni Association’s 10th Anniversary Commemoration, Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD, Sept. 2011. Also, Metropolis Opera Project, NYC, Sept. 2011; Concordia University, Bronxville, NY, Sept. 2011. Also, visual images from tragedy accompanied by recording of Requiem, Annapolis Friends 9/11 Commemoration Day, Sept. 2011, St. Johns College, Annapolis, MD.
Hollis Thoms will have his fifth article published by PAN PIPES in this Composer Issue. It is entitled “Woodrow Wilson and The Apocalypse: A Musical Mystery.”
Hollis Thoms completed a 160-page book entitled The Art of the Thoms Family about the history of five generations of music making by the Thoms family from 1920-2010. O , Know, Sweet Love, I Always Write Of You, a 60-minute theater piece for soprano, baritone and violin, viola, cello and double bass will be premiered with Jason Thoms, baritone and Treva Foss, soprano in the summer of 2011. The work is based on Sonnets by William Shakespeare and love letters by Jacqueline Thoms written in 1968. The work was written to commemorate the composer and wife Jacqueline’s 40th wedding anniversary.
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, a 60-minute opera for 3 singers, 12 winds, string bass, and 2 percussion, with 40 Gustave Dore projected slides, based on the famous poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, was premiered at St. Johns College, Annapolis, Maryland conducted by Sonja Winkler with Jason Thoms as the Ancient Mariner and Treva Foss and David Kellett as co-narrators. The performance was preceded by a talk by Dr. Philip Allen on 2/14/10. Serenity by Jacqueline Thoms, soprano, Chelsea Tanner, flute, and Jonathan Parker, organ at Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor, Baltimore, Maryland on 8/15/10. Echoes Of A Time Gone By for soprano, crotales, flute (alto flute and piccolo) and piano and Ascend, O Lord at Concordia University Chicago, River Forest, IL on 10/10/10. Passion for 4 soloists, mixed chorus, oboe, horn, strings, amplified harpsichord and marimba by the Herb Dimmock Singers conducted by Herb Dimmock as part of the Bach Cantata Concert Series at Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor, Baltimore, Maryland on 3/27/11.
…A Blue True Dream Of Sky by Concordia University New York Concert Choir directed by Dr. Jason Thoms at Lutheran churches in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania and Canada on 4/18/10 and 5/4 – 5/17/10. Marked with the Cross of Christ by Jacqueline Thoms, soprano and Jonathan Parker, organ at two services at Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD on 8/15/10. Serenity (Psalm 23) for soprano, flute, and organ by Reverend Michael Costello, organ at Grace Lutheran Church in River Forest, IL on 10/10/10. Prepare the Way for mixed choir, two trumpets and organ based on the call of John the Baptist directed by Larry Allen at Mt. Lebanon United Lutheran Church, Mt. Lebanon, PA on 11/10.
The composer recently completed Passion, a 75-minute work for vocal soloists, mixed choir, and chamber ensemble based on the trial and death of Jesus, as seen through the eyes of Nicodemus, and on the Gospel of St. John and the Gospel of Nicodemus, that also includes religious poetry from a number of eras. He is seeking an opportunity to have it premiered. The ThomsFamilyMusic.com website is available for those who wish to receive more information about the Thoms Family music events: Hollis Thoms, composer and educator; Jacqueline Thoms, singer in the Bach Choir of Baltimore; Jason Thoms, director of music at Concordia University New York; Treva Thoms, opera singer and adjunct voice teacher at Concordia University; Sonja (Thoms) Winkler, oboist, and operations manager of the Pittsburgh Symphony; Jordan Winkler, trumpeter, River City Brass Band; or Jonas Thoms, principal horn of the Evansville Philharmonic and teacher at the University of Evansville.
And in its ashes plant the tree of peace! for women’s chorus and piano (after Whittier) was introduced by the Concordia University New York Tour Choir under the direction of Jason Thoms during its 2009 spring tour of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Connecticut, and New York. The commissioned work Celebration was first heard August 30 in a performance by the Annapolis Wind Symphony under the direction of Dr. Marc Boensel Annapolis (MD) High School. nothing can surpass the mystery of stillness for flute and string quartet, based on the hymn “Of the Father’s Love Begotten,” was presented November 15 at the Christmas concert at Concordia University, New York, under the direction of Jason Thoms. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (after Coleridge), a 53-minute work for baritone, tenor, soprano, string bass, 13 winds and percussion, was introduced February 14, 2010, at St. John’s College, in Annapolis, MD. Echoes of a time gone by, a song cycle for soprano (also playing crotales) flute (also playing piccolo and alto flute) and piano based on eleven poems by Michael Meyer will be premiered in spring of 2010.
Psalm 121, for baritone, oboe, horn, and organ, was presented August 2, 2009, by Jason Thoms, Sonja Thoms Winkler, Jonas Thoms, and Paul Davis at Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD. Nonet 2 for winds was heard February 14, in a performance directed by Sonja Winkler, St. John’s College, Annapolis, MD.
“Witnessing the Raw Power of Bach’s Creativity: Two Composing Scores of Johann Sebastian Bach,” an article on research done at the Library of Congress on composing scores of Cantata 9 and 10 of J. S. Bach, will be presented as part of a seminar presented by Thoms for choir members and tour participants in the Concordia University New York Choir Tour of Luther and Bach sites in the summer of 2009. The Moustache, a 90-minute opera for three singers, actor, and 10 instrumentalists (sponsored by the National Capital Area Chapter of the Fulbright Alumni Association), will be introduced February 15, 2009 at St. John’s College, Annapolis, to commemorate the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth. The opera brings together two assassination plots against Abraham Lincoln, Cipriano Ferrandini’s failed Baltimore Plot of 1861 and John Wilkes Booth’s assassination of 1865 in an historically possible encounter on March 24, 1865, as Booth comes to the Barnum Hotel in Baltimore to get his hair cut and moustache trimmed by barber, Ferrandini. Edward Papenfuse, Head Archivist of Maryland, will give a pre-concert lecture on “Cipriano Ferrandini and the Baltimore Plot of 1861.”
Psalm 121, for soprano, oboe, horn and organ, was first heard in a June 29, 2008 performance by soprano Jacqueline Thoms, oboist Scott Bell, hornist Jonas Thoms, and organist Larry Allen, Mt. Lebanon United Lutheran Church, Pittsburgh, PA. The Concordia University Choir under the direction of Jason Thoms, introduced And in its place plant a tree of peace (text: three poems by Whittier), for women’s voices and piano, November 23, Bronxville, NY. The commissioned work Celebration, for wind symphony, will receive its premiere in 2009 from the Annapolis Wind Symphony led by Marc Boensel in celebration of its tenth anniversary.
Psalm 98, for baritone, horn, and organ, received two performances August 10, 2008, from Jason Thoms, Jonas Thoms, and Paul Davis, Christ Lutheran Church Inner Harbor, Baltimore, MD. Trio 2 for horn, violin, and piano was performed on a September 4 recital at the University of Northern Iowa, given by Elizabeth Freimuth, principal horn of the Cincinnati Symphony. Requiem for 9/11(based on recent poems by Seuss, Day, Vigier, Mason, Barnstone, and Rilke) for soprano and string ensemble was presented twice in performances conducted by Jason Thoms, with soprano Treva Foss Thoms, on September 10 at Concordia University New York, Bronxville, and September 13 at the Church for All Nations in New York, NY. a blue true dream of sky (text by e. e. cummings) for children’s choir, hand bells, and piano, will be performed during the 2008/9 season at the Robert E. Webber Institute for Worship Studies in Orange, FL under the direction of James Hart.