Clips from Live Performances

May 6, 2016 at St. Columba's Episcopal Church, Washington, DC

Thomas Weelkes brief life coincided with the Elizabethan era, a time when the wounds of religious and civil strife were fresh in the minds of the British people. During this time, English composers wrote several motets telling Old Testament tales of war between members of the house of David, with Weelkes's When David Heard becoming one of the most popular. Here, King David laments the news that his second-born son, Absalom, has just been killed while raising civil war within Israel. Weelkes's meditation on all-encompassing grief captures both the depth and complexity of the situation, growing into an unexpected and impassioned appeal: "Would God I had died for thee."

April 23, 2016 at the Horning Theater of Mount St. Mary's University, Emmitsburg, MD

Tawnie Olson composed No Capacity to Consent, a daring half-hour chamber oratorio, for Third Practice to perform in the spring of 2016. The work sets the legal complaint filed by a pregnant woman which recounts how, after being stopped for a minor traffic violation in an American town infamous for police abuse, she was raped by a corrections officer. The above excerpt is taken from the oratorio's closing passage, which, in the tradition of the baroque passions, broadens the story's scope by connecting the preceding events to the larger issues of our society.

October 18, 2014 at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, Winchester, VA

The madrigal La vita caduca, with its expressive word-painting and shifts in texture, timbre and meter, displays the full compass of Antonio Lotti's compositional prowess. Its fusion of older and newer compositional elements reflects Third Practice's mission: the work begins with conservative Renaissance textures, augmented by adventurous harmonies; at its close, Lotti launches into a forward-looking three subject fugue, a nod to the budding late Baroque.

November 15, 2014 at Holy Comforter - St. Cyprian Catholic Church, Washington, DC

Third Practice commissioned Joshua Bornfield in 2014 to compose a work to be performed alongside Monteverdi Vespers of 1610. His piece replaced the penultimate movement, firmly embedding itself within the larger early Baroque work. The resulting product, Beatis videamus, gives a strong nod to both the form and language of the Monteverdi while carving a distinct and unified musical language.

April 21, 2013 at Washington National Cathedral, Washington, DC

Third Practice was honored to serve as the echo choir for the City Choir of Washington's world premiere of John Tavener's Three Poems of George Herbert. Its opening movement 'Heaven' sets an echo poem, a poetic form in which a series of questions are answered by their own 'echo' - that is, a portion of the final word or words that takes on a new meaning when placed in a new context.

October 20, 2012 at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, Winchester, VA

Violinist Fiona Hughes of Three Notch'd Road was a fantastic collaborator for our appearance at the 2012 Winchester Bach-Handel Festival. During her stunningly musical rendition of Bach's D minor Violin Chaconne, a solo quartet sang a number of German chorales which musicologist Helga Thoene argues are embedded throughout the work. Whatever one's stance on the academic discussion, the musical product is a fascinating new approach to this time-honored masterpiece.

March 25, 2012 at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, Alexandria, VA

For our premiere concerts, Third Practice chose David Lang's the little match girl passion, a stunning re-imagining of Bach's great Christian tome, the St. Matthew Passion. Each of the singers accompanies themselves with a small battery of percussion instruments, creating a truly unique performance experience. The little match girl passion lives in a world of sparse textures that build a frail, intimate environment in which its message of care for the least among us shines forward.