University and Alumni Choruses UC Davis Symphony OrchestraUniversity and Alumni Choruses | Jeffrey Thomas, conductor UC Davis Symphony Orchestra | Christian Baldini, music director and conductor
UC Davis Department of Music
The Dream of Gerontius, op. 38
University Chorus and Alumni Chorus
Sacramento Opera Chorus
UC Davis Symphony Orchestra
D. Kern Holoman, conductor emeritus
Cardinal Newman’s radiant poetry opens unseen worlds—the passage from life to death, a soul’s instant in the presence of God, the blissful wait for eternal afterlife. Elgar’s setting is to be understood in the context of English Catholicism in the Victorian era, a minority position shared by both poet and composer. Many think The Dream of Gerontius his masterpiece, and certainly it is the work of an assured, unique voice at the peak of its powers. In English choral circles, Gerontius is thought one of the big four, with Messiah, The Creation, and Elijah.
—D. Kern Holoman, in Ninteenth-Century Choral Music, ed. Donna M. Di Grazia (Routeldge, 2013).
Gerontius / Soul of Gerontius
Wesley Rogers, tenor
Kendall Gladen, mezzo-soprano
The Priest / Angel of Agony
Kevin Deas, bass-baritone
UC Davis Symphony Orchestra emeritus conductor D. Kern Holoman leads nearly 200 performers: internationally noted soloists (including Kendall Gladen, whose 2006 debut as Carmen was with the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra at the Mondavi Center), large chorus and semi-chorus, full orchestra, and organ (played by Jeffrey Thomas). The Dream of Gerontius is presented in loving memory of Marya Welch (1916–2012), legendary pioneer in women's athletics, and longtime patron and benefactor of the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra.