Radiant Dawn – December 2017


Join us for holiday choral classics by Tallis, Holst, Britten and Bruckner, in addition to new music by Gabriel Jackson, James MacMillan and Will Todd. Experience a vast range of musical energy – from robust rhythm to the timeless tranquility of hovering sound – that reflects the universal spirit of the season.

Listen to selections from our December concerts. For more information on these pieces and our entire concert program, read the Concert Program Notes.

O Radiant Dawn by James MacMillan (b. 1959)

A Hymn to the Virgin by Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)

Nowell Sing We by Gabriel Jackson (b. 1962)

Deck the Hall arranged by John Rutter

Photo by: Abraham Karam

7:30 p.m. Friday, December 9
Christ the King Episcopal Church
2800 W. Ina Road

3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Sunday, December 11
Benedictine Monastery
800 N. Country Club

7:00 p.m. Friday, December 16
Benedictine Monastery
800 N. Country Club

Enthusiastic Standing Ovation at Last Holiday Concert

Here’s what our audiences said about Radiant Dawn

“The choices of music, variety, and quality of the singing were gorgeous!”
“It just doesn’t get any better than this!”
“When the choir surrounded the audience, their singing uplifted my spirit!”
“Wonderful waves of harmony.”
“The musical leadership of Dr. Elliot Jones is an asset.”

Of Earth, Water, and Sky – April 2016


Experience the life-giving connections Of Earth, Water, and Sky reflected in choral landscapes that parallel the depth of our human emotions, the awe-inspiring beauty of nature, and the power of the Divine.

Our program features a variety of styles and genres with selections by the great choral composers Palestrina, Handel, and Brahms as well as contemporary works by Barnum, Ticheli, and Whitacre.

What did our audience say about our first concert on April 10th? “Just amazing!” “Extraordinary concert and programming.”

Listen to sound ‘bytes’ from our April concerts. Read our Concert Program Notes for more information on these pieces and our entire concert program.

Earth Song, Music and words by Frank Ticheli (b. 1958)

The Seal Lullaby, by Eric Whitacre (b. 1970), Words by Rudyard Kipling

As Torrents in Summer, by Edward Elgar (1857-1934), Words by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

No Time, traditional Camp Meeting Song, arr. Susan Brumfield

Listen to Tom’s interview on AZPM’s Extempore
Conductor’s Corner | Program Notes
Earth Water Sky Lyrics

3:00 p.m. Sunday, April 10, 2016
Catalina United Methodist Church
2700 E. Speedway Blvd.

7:30 p.m. Friday, April 15, 2016
Christ the King Episcopal Church
2800 W. Ina Road

3:00 p.m. Sunday, April 17, 2016
Fountain of Life Lutheran Church
710 S. Kolb Road

The life-giving connections between earth, water, and sky

Thomas E. Lerew, DMA
Interim Music Director

As the Arizona Repertory Singers conclude their 2015-16 season of transition, we reflect on the life-giving connections between earth, water, and sky – life sources that connect us as human beings.

EARTH provides:
~ Sustenance
~ Recreational and personal enjoyment
~ Hope inspired by nature’s beauty
~ A mutual call to stewardship and respect
… and the ever-evolving cycle of life reflected in the seasons.

WATER brings:
~ Restoration as we sing “asleep in the arms of the slow-swinging seas” ~ Purification, healing and sanctification
~ The ‘spring’ of life
… and suggestions of our connection to the Divine.

SKY evokes:
~ The predictability of sunset followed by the inspiration of sunrise
~ The parallels of life’s struggles and triumphs to the fury of nature’s storms that
dissolve into bright sunshine
… and the awestruck wonder of the celestial through “a music of stillness.”

Together, each of these concepts forms the broad choral landscape, expressive texts and stirring musical settings of our program.

It has been my truest honor and pleasure to work with the singers and ARS leadership this year. In my holiday Conductor’s Corner I wrote, “we look up to the light reflecting on a past of which we can be proud and a future in which we can be confident.”

“But music and singing have been my refuge, and music and singing shall be my light.”

Songs of Sweet Starlight – December 2015


Stars … beacons in the dark sky that spark our imagination. They reflect the abiding hope of the human spirit and beckon us all to strive for a brighter future.

Join us for Songs of Sweet Starlight – featuring a variety of inspirational choral pieces by well-known composers from Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy to contemporary compositions by Eric Barnum, René Clausen and John Rutter.

Download program: Songs-of-Sweet-Starlight-ARS-Dec-2015-Program
Download the Program Notes.
Read Thomas Lerew’s thoughts in Conductor’s Corner

2:00 p.m. Sunday, December 6th
St. Thomas The Apostle Parish
5150 N. Valley View Road
This concert: students 18 and under, free admission.

3:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Sunday, December 13th
Benedictine Monastery
800 N. Country Club
Early arrival recommended.

7:30 p.m. Friday, December 18th
Benedictine Monastery
800 N. Country Club
Early arrival recommended.

Tickets are available online. Tickets are also available at the door or from an ARS member. All sales are final.

Contact us for group ticket discounts – $13 each for groups of 10 or more.

Download the flyer for our December concerts and share it!

Conductor’s Corner: Songs of Sweet Starlight

December 2015
Thomas E. Lerew
Interim Music Director

Stars embody many different meanings and heartfelt emotions for different people. Their mysticism connects people with a sense of wonder as they gaze up at the vast universe we all share. It’s difficult for us to realize that stars shine with infinite light twenty-four hours a day, but they are only visible because of the darkness that night brings. It’s a relationship: light can only glow when darkness is present to contrast light.

Similarly, human kind is fascinated by the patterns that stars make in the night sky. Constellations are points of brilliant starlight that form distinct patterns if we can but imagine the lines that connect them. Hundreds of them have been recorded — Aquarius, Canis Major, Leo, Orion, Scorpius, to name but a few. When we look heavenward, let us consider our own connections to people and life experiences that mean the most to each of us, day-by-day, moment-by-moment. This is the eternity that constellations symbolize – inspiration ignited by the partnership of imagination and hope.

As ARS embarks on this year of transition, we look up to the light reflecting on a past of which we can be proud and a future in which we can be confident. Stars shine through the darkness and ARS has certainly experienced darkness in the last several months. Today’s program is intended to allow singers and audience alike, to ‘explore’ the gamut of human emotions from fear, darkness and the bleakness that all humans experience — such as sorrow, loss and grief, isolation — to triumph, hope, joy, resolution, and a bright future. It is my desire that as you listen to, and experience, Songs of Sweet Starlight, you will leave with the infinite hope that stars represent when we look up to the Starry Heavens, and see the loving twinkle in God’s eyes as He blesses us.

I would like to thank our Operations Manager, Jan Sturges, for her assistance in clarifying my thoughts on the correlation between “stars” and the music we are thrilled to share with you today.