Paul R. Judy Center Grant Recipient: Musica Nuova & The Weckmann Project present The Christmas Oratorio by Schutz

Looking for something fun to do this weekend in NYC? Check out this exciting production, funded in part by a 2014 Paul R. Judy Center Grant:

Musica Nuova and The Weckmann Project present The Christmas Oratorio by Heinrich Schütz

What: Musica Nuova and The Weckmann Project Present The Christmas Oratorio
: Satruday, December 6, 7PM and Sunday, December 7, 4PM
Where: Zion German Evangelical Lutheran Church, 125 Henry Street in Brooklyn

XMasOratorio_300x300Musica Nuova, New York’s Baroque ensemble that creates theatrical worlds from Baroque song, and The Weckmann Project present The Christmas Oratorio (Weihnachtshistorie, SWV 435) by Heinrich Schütz, in a new staged production that dramatizes the tale. Performances will be on Saturday, December 6 at 7:00PM and a family concert on Sunday, December 7 at 4:00PM, at Zion German Evangelical Lutheran Church, 125-131 Henry Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201, steps away from the Clark Street 2/3 subway stop.

Music Director Jeffrey Grossman of The Sebastians will lead the Boston-based Weckmann Project ensemble alongside Parthenia: A Consort of Viols. Starring tenor Brandon Snook as the Evangelist and under the stage direction of Walker Lewis, the singers of Musica Nuova will dramatize the Christmas story with staging and movement that brings out the coziness, theatre, and unexpected humor of the timeless tale.

Tickets are $10 with $25 reserved seating available for Saturday’s performance. On Sunday’s concert, children under 10 receive free admission and are invited to a Baroque instrument petting zoo following the show. Tickets are available at or by calling 917-412-6472.

The program is completed by three motets by Schütz, the master German Baroque composer admired by J.S. Bach: Sei Gegrüsset Maria (SWV 333), Josef Du Sohn Davids (SWV 323)and Rorate Caeli (SWV 322), In Dulci Jubilo for 8-part chorus from Musae Sioniae by Michael Praetorious (1571-1621) and Canzon V a 7 (c199) by Giovanni Gabrieli (1554-1612), the master Italian composer with whom Schütz studied. The program is performed in the original German and Latin; translations will be provided.

Schütz’s Christmas Oratorio (c.1660), a liturgical setting of the Gospels of Luke and Matthew, tells the story of Christ’s birth in a stunning musical tapestry, featuring a full host of Baroque instruments: gamba consort, cornettos, sackbuts, and dulcian. The Evangelist narrates the story, while the angels, shepherds, wise men, King Herod, and the Holy Family depict the action in a series of interludes. Written late in Schütz’s life, the Christmas Oratorio demonstrates his mastery of the dance-like and theatrical Italianate style he learned from his teacher, Claudio Monteverdi.

Tenor Brandon Snook performs the role of the Evangelist, with bass Steven Hrycelak as King Herod. The cast also includes Peter Becker, Brooke Bryant, Andrew Fuchs, Amanda Keil, Merrin Lazyan, Jeffrey Mandelbaum, Elizabeth Merrill, Sarah Moulton Faux, Kannan Vasudevan, and Christian Waugh.

Musica Nuova and The Weckmann Project just received one of the inaugural grants from the Paul R. Judy Center for Applied Research, which recognizes creative, artist-centered organizations.

For further information, press tickets, photos, and interviews, please contact Amanda Keil at 917-412-6472 or

If you are interested in supporting the crowdsource campaign for this project, click here.

About the author

Stephen Danyew
Stephen Danyew

Steve Danyew is a composer, saxophonist, teacher, and arts administrator based in Rochester, NY. Danyew composes works for chamber ensembles, large instrumental ensembles, choirs and more, and currently serves as Managing Editor of His music has been hailed as “startlingly beautiful” and “undeniably well crafted and communicative” by the Miami Herald, and has been praised as possessing “sensitivity, skill and tremendous sophistication” by the Kansas City Independent. Steve received a B.M. cum laude, Pi Kappa Lambda from the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami and holds an M.M. in Composition and Certificate in Arts Leadership from the Eastman School of Music.

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