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Yale Russian Chorus and Slavyanka Joint Concert

This "East Meets West" concert will feature a repertoire that spans over 1,000 years - from ancient Orthodox chants to soulful folk tunes, from haunting laments to soldier's marching songs.


On November 13, over 70 men, alumni of the Yale Russian Chorus and members of Slavyanka (the Bay Area men's Slavic chorus), will join forces in a rousing performance of music from folk traditions of Russia and Eastern Europe and sacred music of the Russian Orthodox Church. Although these two choruses have shared history, repertoire and some singers over the past three decades, this concert will be the first time the two groups join to perform as a large ensemble.  This “East Meets West” concert will feature ethereal high tenors and ultra-low basses singing from a repertoire that spans over 1,000 years – from ancient Orthodox chants to soulful folk tunes, from haunting laments to soldier’s marching songs. 

WHEN: Saturday, November 13, 2010 at 7:30pm – one night only!

WHERE: San Francisco First Unitarian Church (1187 Franklin Street, at Geary)

TICKETS:  $25 front rows (reserved); $18 general; $15 students & seniors. Add $10 for post-concert reception.More information and ticket sales at http://www.east-meets-west.org/ or call 415-332-3255.

CONCERT LOCATION:  San Francisco’s historic First Unitarian Universalist Church (1187 Franklin Street at Geary) has great acoustics and is wheelchair accessible. There is limited street parking and several parking garages nearby. The church is just one block from Van Ness Avenue, which has two Muni bus lines connecting with the Market Street subway (Muni Metro) and BART.



The Yale Russian Chorus (YRC) was founded by Denis Mickiewicz at Yale University in 1953. The Chorus was one of the very first American choirs to visit the Soviet Union in a program of cultural exchange. Gathering in public parks or on street corners on its first tour in 1958, chorus members drew curious crowds by singing American songs – and then astonished their listeners with long-suppressed Russian hymns and folk songs, delighting grateful audiences long into the night—or until the authorities broke up the gatherings. From this beginning over fifty years ago, the YRC has presented its Russian and Eastern European repertory in countless concerts throughout America and Europe. Since the 1980’s, alumni of the YRC have been singing as their own chorus at a variety of concert venues, including recently at Duke University’s Rockefeller Chapel and as part of a larger ensemble at Carnegie Hall for a presentation of “The Tsar’s Bride,” an opera by Rimsky-Korsakoff. For more information, see http://yrcalums.org.


Slavyanka, the Bay Area Men’s Russian Chorus, takes its name from California’s Russian River, called the “Slavyanka River” by early Russian explorers. The group was formed in 1979 by alumni of the Yale Russian Chorus and other Bay Area singers interested in the choral traditions of Russia and Eastern Europe. Slavyanka has made three musical tours to Russia and other republics of the former Soviet Union, and was the first American group ever invited to sing at Russia’s historic M. I. Glinka Kapella Hall, where it received a standing ovation from over 900 Russian choral directors. Slavyanka was also featured on Russian national radio and television, has been honored by the American Choral Directors Association, has released six recordings, and has performed on the sound tracks of three major movies. For more information, see http://slavyanka.org.

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Yale Photographs courtesy of Michael Marsland/Yale University
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