St. Matthew’s Music Guild Season Will End June 7

Diana Woolner

With Beethoven’s Mass in C and a World Premiere

The final concert of the Music Guild season will be held at 8 p.m. on Friday, June 7, at St. Matthew’s Church, 1031 Bienveneda Ave. The concert will feature a world premiere by composer Diana Woolner, Beethoven’s Mass in C, composed in 1807, and Charles Ives’s ethereal tone-poem, The Unanswered Question, composed in 1908 and paired with Central Park in the Dark as “Two Contemplations.”

The Chamber Orchestra at St. Matthew’s and the choir and soloists of St. Matthew’s Parish, under the direction of Dwayne S. Milburn, will perform Woolner’s Your Voice Wanders in My Heart (for orchestra and chamber choir) commissioned by the Guild.

Woolner took inspiration from the Hindustani music of Northern India. The text, written by the renowned Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore, consists of twelve poems from his set of short poems, Stray Bird. The poems, reminiscent of haikus, were chosen and specifically ordered by Woolner to support the narrative of the work.

In Ives’ work, quiet strings represent “The Silence of the Druids” while a solo trumpet poses “The Perennial Question of Existence” to which a quartet of woodwinds represent the “Fighting Answerers.” The “Answerers” try to answer the perennial question but grow increasingly frustrated and dissonant until they ultimately give up.

Your Voice Wanders in My Heart is a musical expression of a particularly challenging personal experience for the composer: grieving the death of her brother while simultaneously celebrating a new life within, her first daughter. The twelve singers, via the text, strive to console both composer and audience, as well as aid comprehension of birth and death as they relate to one’s life.

Tickets at the door are $35. Visit: or call (310) 573-7422


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