‘Sacred and Profane: Carmina Burana’ To Be Performed on Bainbridge Island

Wesley Schulz
Wesley Schulz

Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra (BSO) and Bainbridge Chorale join forces for another extraordinary partnership on April 22 and 23. Together, they will perform iconic sacred works by Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms before turning their attention to Carl Orff’s famed “Carmina Burana.”

Led by conductors Wesley Schulz and Michael Austin Miller, this thrilling collaboration features the Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra, Bainbridge Chorale, Olympic Girls Choir, Jessica Robins Milanese (soprano) and Paul Karaitis (tenor/baritone). The BSO and the chorale last collaborated in the spring of 2014 for a production of Vaughan Williams’ “Serenade to Music” and “Verdi’s Requiem.”

In 1803, a manuscript was discovered in a Benedictine monastery in Germany. “Carmina Burana” contains beautiful poetry and songs written by wandering students and minstrels in the 12th and 13th centuries. Hardly sacred in nature, the poems satirize, celebrate, complain about and revel in all aspects of life.

First performed in 1937, this anthology of poems and songs for large orchestra, chorus, children’s choir and soloists has become a favorite of audiences all over the world.

Jessica Milanese
Jessica Milanese

Maestro Wesley Schulz made his Seattle Symphony Orchestra debut in a sold-out performance with singer and songwriter Gregory Alan Isakov in February 2015. As the 2014-2015 conducting fellow, Schulz served as cover conductor for Maestro Ludovic Morlot, led seven world premieres at the Merriman Family Young Composers Workshop, and assisted with recordings for the symphony’s Grammy-winning label, Seattle Symphony Media.

A leader of educational and family concerts, Schulz makes frequent appearances with the Austin Symphony Orchestra conducting its Halloween Family Concert as well as the Young People’s Concerts, the latter reaching over 30,000 Texas students.

In addition to serving as music director and conductor of Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra Schulz is director of Orchestras at University of Puget Sound and music director of Seattle Festival Orchestra.

The 2016 – 2017 season marks the seventh year of Michael Austin Miller’s tenure as artistic director of the Bainbridge Chorale. Under his direction, the Chorale continues to attract new singers and audience members while experiencing growth in vocal skills and exploring both contemporary and classic choral repertoire.

Michael Miller
Michael Miller

As evidence of its increasing stature in the choral community, the Bainbridge Chorale has been privileged to perform at Seattle’s St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral on three occasions and has had opportunities to perform at Benaroya Hall as well. Videos of their performance at St. Mark’s can be found on YouTube.

Jessica Robins Milanese, soprano, is critically acclaimed for the depth and sparkle she brings to her performances on the concert and opera stage. She has performed with many of the region’s leading arts organizations, such as Seattle Opera, Seattle Symphony, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Northwest Sinfonietta, Tacoma Opera, Tacoma Symphony, Vashon Opera and Orchestra Seattle.

Paul Karaitis is a versatile singer with international solo credits in oratorio, opera, concert stage and recording studio ranging from the Pacific Northwest Ballet, Eugene Ballet, the Victoria (B.C.) Symphony, the Northwest Boys Choir, Seattle Opera Association, Portland Opera, Ballet Idaho, to the Pittsburgh (PA) Ballet. He is one of a select few to sing male solos (tenor and baritone) in “Carmina Burana.”

Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra’s spring collaboration with Bainbridge Chorale will be presented off-site at Bainbridge High School Gym at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 22, and 3:30 p.m. Sunday, April 23.

Tickets are $26 for adults, $22 for seniors (age 62-plus) and $18 for students, military and teachers, and may be purchased at Brown Paper Tickets. Children (13 and under) receive free admission.

To learn more about Bainbridge Performing Arts, go to www.bainbridgeperformingarts.org.