Grounded in New York?

Grounded in New York?


norman lebrecht

April 20, 2010

The American Classical Orchestra is offering free – or rather 2-for-1 – tickets to Europeans who can’t catch a flight home by Saturday night. You will need to show a passport to gain entry.

The program is an all-singing, all-dancing Beethoven 9th with Handel Coronation anthems, conducted by Thomas Crawford (details below). Whether it will be improved by a bunch of castaways checking their blackberrys between movements for signs of life in the skies is a matter of conjecture. Anyway, if you make it to St John’s, enjoy!


Beethoven’s 9th is the FINAle of the American Classical Orchestra‘s Silver Anniversary season; Program to feature 250 musicians and dancers AT st. john the divine

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: All European-nationals who are stranded in the NYC area are invited by the American Classical Orchestra (“ACO”) to be their guest at the finale concert of their 25th anniversary season on Saturday, April 24 (8 PM). Bring your European-country passports and you’ll receive 1 (one) free ticket per person. The music director Thomas Crawford statedSome of our musicians are stranded in Europe. We are re-enacting a European coronation in a stunning cathedral (help them feel at home!). Beethoven Ninth is a people-uniter, prompts people to want to reach out with gestures of love and humanity. It refers to the power of nature (not volcanoes but the starry firmament). This is an overwhelmingly ‘happy’ concert, thrilling, uplifting, so it will bring joy and familiar ground to those stuck here.”

The American Classical Orchestra will also feature Handel’s Coronation Anthems with 60 dancers, and for the Beethoven 9th, four soloists will be joined by three different choirs, totaling 150 singers. The Coronation Anthems were written for Westminster Abbey, on the occasion of the coronation of King George II in 1727. The performance at St. John the Divine will feature dancers from the Purchase Dance Corps from the Conservatory of Dance at Purchase College, SUNY, and students from the Ballet Hispanico School. Beethoven’s 9th Symphony will feature 150 choristers from Trinity Princeton, Trinity New Haven, and the Cathedral Choir (of St. John the Divine), joined by soloists Arianna Zukerman (soprano), Heather Johnson (alto), Choong Lee (tenor) and Camille Reno (bass). For more information, please visit

About the church: The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine contains the largest nave in the world, and has been the site of some of New York City‘s most breathtaking concerts. Its recent renovation was completed in November 2009, restoring the Cathedral to its original glory, following substantial damage from a fire in 2001.

About ACO: Founded by Mr. Crawford in 1985, the ACO performs classical music on authentic period instruments, specializing in repertoire from the 17th to 19th centuries. The orchestra’s mission is to render music faithful to the Baroque, Classical, and early Romantic eras.

Tickets are $75, $50, $35, Student $15 and can be purchased through the website at or please call (212) 362-2727.

St. John the Divine: 1047 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10025