BACH’S CHRISTMAS ORATORIO

Cantatas I, V, VI & Cantata BWV 91

With Christmas right around the corner, join BSM for an unforgettable experience with Bach’s Christmas Oratorio!

Soloists
Sarah Brailey, soprano
Clara Osowski, alto
Nicholas Chalmers, tenor
Jonathan Ten Brink, bass

Sarah Brailey, Soprano

Hailed by The New York Times for her “radiant, liquid tone,” and “exquisitely phrased” singing and by Opera UK for “a sound of remarkable purity,” soprano Sarah Brailey enjoys a career that resists specialization. Recent highlights include Puccini’s Suor Angelica with Lorelei Ensemble and the Boston Symphony Orchestra; Handel’s Messiah with The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra; performing with Kanye West and Roomful of Teeth at the Hollywood Bowl; Bach’s St. John Passion with St. Thomas Fifth Avenue; the role of Verveine on the premiere recording of Le Dernier Sorcier by Pauline Viardot; recording cello and vocal soundscapes for the 2018 Fog x FLO public art installation in Boston’s Emerald Necklace; Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 with the Colorado Symphony; Purcell’s The Fairy Queen with The Handel and Haydn Society; Zorn’s Madrigals at the Louvre Museum; and the premiere recording of Ethel Smyth’s The Prison with The Experiential Orchestra.

Co-founder of Just Bach, a new monthly concert series in Madison, Wisconsin, Sarah is also the Artistic Director of the Handel Aria Competition. She is a member of Beyond Artists, a coalition of artists that donates a percentage of their concert fee to organizations they care about. Learn more at www.sarahbrailey.com.

Clara Osowski, Alto

Mezzo-soprano Clara Osowski, who sings “from inside the music with unaffected purity and sincerity” (UK Telegraph), is an active soloist and chamber musician throughout the United States and Europe. Recognized for her excellence in Minnesota, Clara was a recipient of the prestigious 2018-2019 McKnight Artist Fellowships for Musicians administered by MacPhail Center for Music.

In international competition with pianist Tyler Wottrich, in March of 2017, Clara became the first ever American prize winner when she placed second at Thomas Quasthoff’s International Das Lied Competition in Heidelberg, Germany. In September, the duo was also one of four to reach the finals in the very prestigious Wigmore Hall/Kohn Foundation Song Competition in London, and Clara was awarded the Richard Tauber Prize for the best interpretation of Schubert Lieder. She was given Radio-Canada People’s Choice Award and third place in the song division at the 2018 Concours Musical International de Montréal and recently selected as a Virgina Best Adams Fellow at the 2019 Carmel Bach Festival.

In addition to performing, Clara serves as the Associate Artistic Director of Source Song Festival, a week-long art song festival in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In addition to her solo work, she participates in a number of ensembles, including Lumina Women’s Ensemble and Seraphic Fire. For more information and upcoming schedule, please see www.claraosowski.com.

Nicholas Chalmers, Tenor

Nicholas Chalmers, tenor, is thrilled to once again sing with the Bach Society of Minnesota! He has sung with The Rose Ensemble, the Minnesota Bach Ensemble, Glorious Revolution Baroque, Transept, The Singers-Minnesota Choral Artists, and the Minnesota Chorale. Recent solo engagements include the Oratorio Society, the Schubert Club, the Church Music Association of America, the St. Mark’s Cathedral Concert Series, Minnesota Center Chorale, Border CrosSing, and Lyra Baroque.

Nicholas received a B.M. in music from St. Olaf College, where he was section leader of the Saint Olaf Choir under the direction of Anton Armstrong, as well as an M.M. in Choral Conducting at the University of Minnesota, where he conducted several campus ensembles and held a Teacher’s Assistant position in the music theory department.

Nicholas is the Director of Choirs at Chesterton Academy in Edina and is Director of Music at Annunciation Church in South Minneapolis. He is also Artistic Director of the Mirandola Ensemble, which presents programs of rarely performed early music from the Medieval and Renaissance eras strategically juxtaposed with the compositions of 20th and 21st century composers. Sought after as an educator and clinician, during the 2018-2019 academic year Nicholas is piloted a high-school choral residency program in collaboration with Minnesota Public Radio’s Class Notes Artists program.  

Jonathan Ten Brink, Bass

Baritone Jonathan Ten Brink has been seen throughout the continental United States in Opera, Oratorio, Operetta, Concert, Recital, and Chamber settings. His “big voice” that “rumbles like foghorns” (Pioneer Press) is regarded as “rich” (Madison Magazine), “heartwarming” (Examiner), and “possessing considerable agility (Grand Rapids Press). He has been a featured performer with the Minnesota Orchestra, Skylark Opera, Fresco Opera Theatre, and Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. With more than 25 opera roles performed, highlights include “Hamen” in Handel’s Esther,  “Father” in Hansel and Gretel, “Scarpia” in Tosca, and “Belcore” in L’elisir d’amore.

Dr. Ten Brink is highly regarded as a performer of early music. A finalist in the debut season of the Handel Aria Competition  he has toured extensively with The Rose Ensemble, given the North American premiere as Alfesibeo in Cavalli’s resurrected Gli Amore d’Apollo e di Daphne under the musical direction of Paul O’Dette, and is well known as an interpreter of J.S. Bach, having performed and recorded both Passions, the Christmas OratorioMagnificat, and numerous cantatas.

His discography includes a multiple award-winning production of Handel’s Messiah with the Calvin College Oratorio Society, J. S. Bach’s Matthäus-Passion and Johannes-Passion, the only English version of Heinz Werner Zimmermann’s PsalmkonzertLive: Music from the Land of Three Faiths with The Rose Ensemble, and a Grammy-nominated performance of Mozart’s Grand Mass with Exultate. He holds degrees from the University of Minnesota (DMA), Bowling Green State University (MM), and Calvin College (BA). Dr. Ten Brink currently chairs the Music Department at Lansing Community College.

Dates & Locations

Friday, Dec. 6 @ 7:30 pm
Mt Olive Lutheran Church

2830 18th Ave. NW
Rochester, MN 55901

Saturday, Dec. 7 @ 7:30 pm
St. Thomas More Catholic Church

1079 Summit Ave.
St Paul, MN 55105

Sunday, Dec. 8 @ 3:00 pm
St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church

9141 County Rd. 101
Corcoran, MN 55340