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Christmas A Cappella

Saturday December 10, 2022 at 3:00 pm

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Saturday December 10, 2022 at 3:00 pm

Want to catch a later performance? There’s another at 5PM.

Winner of the 2009 Concert Artists Guild International Competition, the German a cappella vocal ensemble Calmus is known for its charming stage presence and flawless technique. Founded in 1999, the quintet embodies the rich choral tradition of its hometown of Leipzig, the city so closely associated with Bach and Mendelssohn. As the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel characterizes the group: “The singers bring tremendous character and musical depth to their interpretations … that transcends the language of the lyrics.” Calmus’ holiday program ranges from early music to contemporary Christmas favorites. 

Select rooms of the Rosen House, splendidly decorated for the holidays, will be open for viewing one hour prior to each performance.


Anonymous, 11th Century: Sis willekommen, Herre Kerst (arr. by Günther Raphael)
Jacobus Gallus: Resonet in laudibus 
Thomas Ravenscroft: Remember, O Thou Man 
Thomas Morley: Madrigal for Christmas 
Philip Radcliffe: Mary walked through a wood of thorn 
Anonymous, 19th Century (France): Il est né, le divin Enfant 
Anonymous: God rest ye merry, Gentlemen

Anonymous: Les anges dans nos campagnes   
Alice Tegnér: Betlehems Stjärna 
Mykola Dmytrovych Leontovych: Shchedryk
Edward Hugh Martin: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas 
Anonymous: De tierra lejana venimos 
Anonymous: Ding Dong! Merrily on High 
Frederick Austin: The Twelve Days of Christmas 

About the Artists

Elisabeth Mücksch, soprano  
Maria Kalmbach, alto  
Friedrich Bracks, tenor  
Jonathan Saretz, baritone  
Friedrich Bracks, bass  

Homogeneity, precision, lightness, emotionality, humorousness — these are characteristics of the Calmus Ensemble, one of Germany’s most successful vocal groups. The wide range of tonal colors, the passionate joy the singers convey on stage, their sound culture and their varied and imaginative programs never fail to inspire. The five singers from Leipzig have won several international prizes and competitions — most recently the OPUS Klassik 2019 for “Best Choral Recording.” With over 50 concerts a year, Calmus is always a welcome guest throughout Europe and North America alike. 

The ensemble’s repertoire range is almost unlimited. Influenced by the tradition of the old masters of Leipzig, the singers are at home in the vocal music of the Renaissance, Baroque, and Romantic periods alike. Over the years, they have commissioned and premiered numerous compositions, including works by Paul Moravec, Mathew Rosenblum, Bernd Franke, Steffen Schleiermacher, Wolfram Buchenberg, Bill Dobbins, Mia Makaroff, Dan Dediu, and Harald Banter. They also enjoy singing and arranging pop, folk, and jazz, as they published numerous sheet music publications. 

Calmus is known for its many collaborations, including projects with the MDR Sinfonieorchester (Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins), the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, the Hamburg Ratsmusik, the hr-Bigband, the Capella de la Torre, amarcord (Disputation), Elke Heidenreich (Nachtgedanken), and the lautten compagney BERLIN (BachArkaden / Mitten im Leben). 

Calmus devotes a part of its time to the promotion of young talent. Lessons, workshops, and jury activities are part of the singers’ daily routine, at home in Leipzig and on the road as artists-in-residence at the STIMMEN Festival Lörrach and the Bachwoche Stuttgart. 

To learn more about Calmus, please visit their website

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