Video feature: 'Princeton University Chapel Choir'

May 3, 2011 noon
Chapel Choir index

The Princeton University Chapel Choir spent the intersession break performing concerts in Vienna, Budapest and Prague. In a cultural exchange, the Chapel Choir had a chance to perform with several international choirs, including the Gabrieli Choir in St. Teresa of Avila Church in Budapest.

Photos courtesy of Kenny Grayson

Video stills courtesy of Izzy Kasdin and Doug Stuart

The Princeton University Chapel Choir's recent tour of Europe started with a truly high-flying performance.

This video feature by freshmen Izzy Kasdin and Doug Stuart follows the adventures of the Chapel Choir during its Jan. 22-30 intersession tour of Prague, Vienna and Budapest. Within the first few hours of the trip, members of the choir performed for the passengers and crew on their British Airways flight, as the aisles of the Boeing 777 were packed with people listening to the choir's rendition of James Lucas' "Bright Morning Stars."

During the tour the choir held concerts in such historic venues as Prague's Bethlehem Chapel where, in the early 15th century, reform movement leader Jan Hus broke from the Latin norm and preached in Czech for the first time. In Vienna, on the 255th birthday of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the choir sang in Stephansdom, the site of Mozart's wedding and funeral. Part of the revenue from the ticket sales to the Chapel Choir's concert in Vienna will help to restore the roof on this almost 900-year-old cathedral.

The trip was inspired by the Chapel Choir's 2009 tour to Spain, which "had such a strong impact on the choir that it was important to do this as often as possible," said Penna Rose, director of chapel music and conductor of the Chapel Choir.

The choir hopes to be able to tour on a biennial basis. "Part of what happens with a choir is because they're together for so long they get to know each other better, they trust each other more and the sound of the choir changes,” Rose said.