Video: Panel Discussion: Introducing The Psalms Experience
Panel Discussion: Introducing The Psalms Experience

The Psalms Experience

150 psalms   150 composers   1,000 years of music   12 concerts

“Out of the depths I cry to you!” For nearly 3,000 years, humans have reached out to the divine through the Psalms, the Hebrew Bible’s book of hymns revealing the gratitude, fear, and longing of the human heart. In this unprecedented choral project, four world-renowned choirs traverse 1,000 years of music over the course of 12 thematic concerts featuring all 150 psalms by 150 different composers from Bach and Handel to today’s leading artists, including new commissions by Nico Muhly and David Lang, among others.  

 

All concerts are approximately one hour long and will be preceded by a brief introduction.  

 

The White Light Festival presentation of The Psalms Experience is supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This program is supported as part of the Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York.

Buy 2 or more concerts and save 20% on The Psalms Experience 

Schedule

David Rubenstein Atrium

Ahead of the special concert series The Psalms Experience, WNYC’s John Schaefer and guests explore the history of the Psalms, their many musical traditions, the challenges of translation, and their contemporary resonance in a more secular world. Panelists include scholar and Psalms translator Robert Alter, musicologist Neil W. Levin, and David Van Biema, Time magazine’s former chief religion writer.

 

Watch the Introduction to The Psalms Experience below. 

Learn More 

Rabbi Abraham Skorka, Pope Francis, and Omar Abboud at the Western Wall, Jerusalem, 2014.

Thursday, November 2 at 7:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 1: Mortal Leadership, Divine Guidance

Choir of Trinity Wall Street
Julian Wachner, conductor

St. Paul's Chapel

For the opening concert, New York’s own Choir of Trinity Wall Street explores the delicate interplay of love and fear that has long defined our leaders—both mortal and divine—in the historic St. Paul’s Chapel. Learn More 

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  • Thomas Arne: O Praise the LORD (Psalm 2)
  • Francisco Valls: Dilexisti justitiam (1742) (Psalm 45)
  • William Knight: New work (commission, world premiere) (Psalm 21) 
  • Giaches de Wert: Reges tharsis et insulae (Psalm 72)
  • Felix Draeseke: Der Herr ist König, Op. 56 (Psalm 93)
  • William Byrd: Dominem secundum multitudinem (Psalm 94)
  • Michael Praetorius: Venite exultemus Domino (Psalm 95)
  • James MacMillan: A New Song (Psalm 96)
  • Johann Heinrich Rolle: Der Herr ist König (Psalm 97)
  • Damiano Scarabelli: Jubilate Deo (Psalm 98)
  • William Boyce: The Lord is King, be the people never so impatient (Psalm 99)
  • Robert White: Exaudiat te Dominus (Psalm 20)
  • Program subject to change
Temple of the Great Awakening in Yixing, China, 2017.

Saturday, November 4 at 5:00 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 2: Faith

Choir of Trinity Wall Street
Julian Wachner, conductor

St. Paul's Chapel

The Choir of Trinity Wall Street explores the mysteries of faith through this collection of psalms set to music by Rachmaninoff, Charpentier, Pachelbel, and more, at St. Paul’s Chapel. Learn More 

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  • Georg Philip Telemann: Ein feste Burg ist uns're Gott (Psalm 46)
  • Edward Elgar: Great is the Lord (Psalm 48)
  • Nicola LeFanu: The Little Valleys (Psalm 65)
  • Giovanni Gabrieli: Plaudite, psallite, jubilate, omnes terra (Psalm 66)
  • Allesandro Grandi: Deus misereatur nostri (Psalm 67)
  • Plainchant(Psalm 76)
  • Severus Gastorius: En vänlig grønskas rika dräkt (Psalm 8)
  • Thomas Tomkins: The Heavens declare (Psalm 19)
  • Jewish Prayer: Kol Adonai (Psalm 29)
  • Sergei Rachmaninoff: Blagoslovi duche Moye, Op. 37, No. 2 (Psalm 104)
  • Giovanni Bernardino Nanino: Laudate pueri (Psalm 113)
  • Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Confitebor tibi, Domine (Psalm 111)
  • Johann Pachelbel: Jauchzet dem Herrn alle Welt (Psalm 100)
  • Program subject to change
Times Square on V-J Day, August 14, 1945.

Saturday, November 4 at 7:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 3: Justice

Choir of Trinity Wall Street
Julian Wachner, conductor

St. Paul's Chapel

The Psalms, which give voice to an ancient quest for justice, have inspired composers from the 12th century to the 21st. Here, the Choir of Trinity Wall Street performs settings by composers from medieval plainchant to Bruckner to a premiere by Pulitzer Prize winner David Lang.

Experience Concert 3: Justice live from St. Paul’s Chapel below.

Learn More 

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  • William Billings: The Bird (Psalm 11)
  • Improvisation: (Psalm 12)
  • Anton Bruckner: Os justi meditabitur (Psalm 37)
  • Pascal de l’Estocart: Peuple oyez et l’aureilles pretez (Psalm 49)
  • Thomas Crequillon: Quid gloriaris in malitia (Psalm 52)
  • Gottfried August Homilius: Dennoch bleib ich stets an dir (Psalm 73)
  • Nicolas Gombert: Confitebimur tibi, Deus (Psalm 75)
  • Plainchant: Beatus vir qui timet Dominum (Psalm 112)
  • Ned Rorem: Mercy and Truth Are Met (Psalm 85)
  • David Lang: if i sing (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 101)
  • Michel-Richard de Lalande: Benedictus Dominus Deus meus (Psalm 144)
  • Program subject to change
Lesbos, Greece, 2015.

Sunday, November 5 at 5:00 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 4: Powerlessness and Redemption

Choir of Trinity Wall Street
Julian Wachner, conductor

St. Paul's Chapel

Humanity has long wrestled with our seeming powerlessness, especially when it comes to changing the past. From this arises a common desire for redemption. The Choir of Trinity Wall Street explores the relationship between these two states of being, as captured by composers from Josquin des Prez and Rameau to Britten and Ives. Learn More 

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  • Johannes Ockeghem: Sicut cervus, from the Missa pro defunctis: Tractus (Psalm 42)
  • John Everett (ed. East): I’ll trust God’s word (Psalm 56)
  • Robert Parsons: Deliver me from mine enemies (Psalm 59)
  • Charles Ives: Save me O God (Psalm 54)
  • François Regnard: Domine exaudi orationem meam, cum deprecor (Psalm 64)
  • Jean Philippe Rameau: Laboravi clamans (Psalm 69)
  • Benjamin Britten: Deus in adjutorium meum (Psalm 70)
  • Sigismondo d’India: Timor et tremor (Psalm 55)
  • Christoph Buel: Domine Deus, salutis meae (Psalm 88)
  • Orlande de Lassus: Custodi me, Domine (Psalm 140)
  • Sven-David Sandström: Hear my prayer, O Lord (Psalm 102)
  • William Knyvett: O God, my heart is fixed (Psalm 108)
  • Josquin des Prez: Domine, ne in furore (Psalm 38)
  • Program subject to change
Easter Island, 2006.

Thursday, November 9 at 6:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 5: State of Humankind

Netherlands Chamber Choir
Peter Dijkstra, conductor

New York Society for Ethical Culture

Tallis, Bach, Purcell, Monteverdi, Michael van der Aa: throughout the history of Western music, sublime artists have used the Psalms as a starting point for pondering our place in the universe and the state of humankind. The Netherlands Chamber Choir sounds out the texts’ existential yearnings at the New York Society for Ethical Culture. Learn More 

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  • J.S. Bach: Lobet den Herren, alle Heiden (Psalm 117)
  • Mohammed Fairouz: Diversions (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 14)
  • Hans Leo Hassler: Beatus vir qui non abiit, from Cantiones sacrae 1591 (Psalm 1)
  • Thomas Tallis: Dominus quis habitabit (Psalm 15)
  • Heinrich Schütz: Wohl denen, die ohne Wandel leben (Psalm 119)
  • Ludovico Da Viadana: Exsultate iusti (Psalm 33)
  • Ralph Vaughan Williams: O praise the Lord (Psalm 148)
  • Samuel Wesley: In exitu Israel (Psalm 114)
  • Michel van der Aa: Shelter (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 5)
  • Bo Hansson: Du har varit vår tillflykt från släkte till släkte (Psalm 90)
  • Claudio Monteverdi: Lauda Jerusalem Dominum (Psalm 147)
  • Program subject to change
Cranberry harvest in Warrens, Wisconsin, 2014.

Thursday, November 9 at 8:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 6: Gratitude

Tallis Scholars
Peter Phillips,
conductor

LIMITED AVAILABILITY

New York Society for Ethical Culture

Britain’s Tallis Scholars study the many expressions of psalmic gratitude for this praiseworthy concert highlighting Haydn, Schubert, and a premiere by New York composer Nico Muhly. Learn More 

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  • Claudio Merulo: In tribulatione mea (Psalm 18)
  • Tomás Luis de Victoria: Credidi propter quod (Psalm 116)
  • Joseph Haydn: Maker of all! Be thou my guard (Psalm 41)
  • Orlando Gibbons: Sing unto the Lord (Psalm 30)
  • Philippe de Monte: Donnez au Seigneur gloire (Psalm 107)
  • Mogens Pedersøn: Min Siel nu loffue herren (Psalm 103)
  • Samuel Sebastian Wesley: Blest is the man (Psalm 32)
  • Jean Mouton: Benedicam Dominum in omni tempore (Psalm 34)
  • Francisco Guerrero: In conspectu Angelorum (Psalm 138)
  • Salamone Rossi: Odesha ki anitani (Psalm 118)
  • Franz Schubert: Tov lehodos, D. 953 (Psalm 92)
  • Nico Muhly: Marrow (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 63)
  • Pierre de la Rue: Lauda anima mea Dominum (Psalm 146)
  • Program subject to change
After flooding in Freetown, Sierra Leone, 2017.

Friday, November 10 at 6:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 7: Abandonment

Norwegian Soloists’ Choir
Grete Pedersen,
conductor

New York Society for Ethical Culture

Across continents and millennia, humans have cried out in despair, feeling abandoned by their creator. The Norwegian Soloists’ Choir presents psalms from the proverbial wilderness in Armenian, Russian, Latin, and German translation, including a new commission in Aramaic by Lebanese composer Zad Moultaka. Learn More 

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  • Arabic Traditional Chant/Norwegian Shepherds’ Song (arr. Gunnar Eriksson): (Psalm 44)
  • Zad Moultaka: Sakata (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 60)
  • John Blow: O God, wherefore art thou absent (Psalm 74)
  • Jachet de Mantua: In die tribulationes (Psalm 77)
  • Traditional Gaelic: Gaelic Chant from the Isle of Lewis (Psalm 79)
  • Krzysztof Penderecki: Song of Cherubim (Psalm 80)
  • Traditional Armenian: Trad. Armenian Orthodox Chant (Psalm 83)
  • Oliver Brownson (arr. Grete Pedersen): Think, mighty God (Psalm 89)
  • Per Nørgård: Ad te Domine Clamabo, from Four Latin Motets, No. 3 (Psalm 28)
  • Otto Olsson: Ad Dominumcum tribularer clamavi (Psalm 120)
  • Luca Marenzio: Super flumina Babylonis (Psalm 137)
  • Johann Schein: Der Herr denket an uns/Traditional (arr. Grete Pedersen): Ned i vester soli glader (Psalm 115)
  • Program subject to change
Afghanistan, 2008.

Friday, November 10 at 8:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 8: Lamentation

Netherlands Chamber Choir
Peter Dijkstra,
conductor

New York Society for Ethical Culture

Psalms of mourning need no translation, whether composed during the Dutch Renaissance, Mendelssohn’s Germany, or 20th-century America. The Netherlands Chamber Choir gives voice to human suffering through multilingual expressions of lamentation and the balm of miraculous music. Learn More 

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  • Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Mein Gott, warum hast Du mich verlassen, Op. 79, No. 3 (Psalm 22)
  • Philibert Jambe de Fer: A toi, mon dieu, mon coeur monte (Psalm 25)
  • Adriaen Willaert: Domine quid multiplicati sunt (Psalm 3)
  • Jean Berger: The eyes of all wait upon Thee (Psalm 145)
  • Isaac Albéniz: Domine in furore tuo (Psalm 6)
  • Otto Nicolai: Herr auf Dich traue ich (Psalm 31)
  • Cipriano de Rore: Usquequo, Domine (Psalm 13)
  • Claudin de Sermisy: Dont vient cela Seigneur (Psalm 10)
  • Constantijn Huygens: Dilataverunt super me (Psalm 35)
  • Costanzo Porta: Voce mea ad Dominum clamavi (Psalm 142)
  • Albert Becker: Die Toren sprechen in ihrem Herzen, Op. 83, No. 4 (Psalm 53)
  • Hubert Parry: Lord, let me know mine end, from Songs of Farewell, No. 6 (Psalm 39)
  • Program subject to change
New York City park, 2014.

Saturday, November 11 at 1:00 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 9: Security and Trust

Tallis Scholars
Peter Phillips,
conductor

LIMITED AVAILABILITY

James Memorial Chapel, Union Theological Seminary

Perhaps there is no more recognizable psalm text than “The Lord is my shepherd.” Twentieth-century Danish composer Carl Nielsen gives this psalm new life, and a collection of early music explores trust in that which is greater than the self—all sung by the Tallis Scholars at Union Seminary’s James Memorial Chapel. Learn More 

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  • Tiburtio Massaino: Conserva me, Domine (Psalm 16)
  • Thomas Ravenscroft: O God, that art my righteousness (Psalm 4)
  • Ferdinand di Lasso: Sperate in Domino (Psalm 62)
  • Melchior Franck: Quantas ostendisti (Psalm 71)
  • Herbert Howells: One thing I have desired (Psalm 27)
  • Marcin Leopolita: Mihi autem (Psalm 139)
  • Giovanni Croce: Miserere mei (Psalm 51)
  • Paul Schoenfeld: Hateih hashem (Psalm 86)
  • Gesualdo da Venosa: Exaudi, Deus, deprecationem meam (Psalm 61)
  • Alexander Horologius: Miserere mei, Deus (Psalm 57)
  • Caspar Othmayr: Wer in dem Schutz des Höchsten ist (Psalm 91)
  • Carl Nielsen: Dominus regit me, from Three Motets, Op. 55, No. 2 (Psalm 23)
  • Program subject to change
Migrants in Dobova, Slovenia, 2015.

Saturday, November 11 at 3:00 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 10: Pilgrimage of Life

Norwegian Soloists’ Choir
Grete Pedersen,
conductor

LIMITED AVAILABILITY

James Memorial Chapel, Union Theological Seminary

Join the Norwegian Soloists’ Choir in this sojourn through the generations from the Spanish Renaissance to today featuring contemporary works by Palestrina, Brahms, Arvo Pärt, and a premiere by Estonian composer Evelin Seppar. Learn More 

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  • Fartein Valen: Ich hebe meine Augen (Psalm 121)
  • Arvo Pärt: Peace upon you, Jerusalem (Psalm 122)
  • Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina: Ad te levavi oculos meos (Psalm 123)
  • Scottish Tune (arr. Peter Maxwell Davies): Psalm 124, from Three Organ Voluntaries (Psalm 124)
  • Heinrich Isaac: Qui confidunt in Domino (Psalm 125)
  • Johannes Brahms: Selig sind die da Leid tragen, from Ein deutsches Requiem (Psalm 126)
  • Heinrich Ignaz von Biber: Nisi Dominus (Psalm 127)
  • Cristóbal de Morales: Beati omnes (Psalm 128)
  • Evelin Seppar: Psalm 129 (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 129)
  • Ingvar Lidholm: De profundis, from A Dreamplay (Psalm 130)
  • William Mundy: Domine, non est exaltatum (Psalm 131)
  • Guillaume Bouzignac: In pace, in idipsum. Si dedero somnum (Psalm 132)
  • Jean Richafort: Ecce quam bonum (Psalm 133)
  • Karin Rehnquist: När natten skänker frid (Psalm 134)
  • Program subject to change
New York City, 2012.

Saturday, November 11 at 5:00 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 11: Celebration of Life

Netherlands Chamber Choir
Peter Dijkstra, conductor

LIMITED AVAILABILITY

James Memorial Chapel, Union Theological Seminary

Even in times of trial, the Psalms provide joyful poems of celebration. The Netherlands Chamber Choir performs euphoric settings by Poulenc and Purcell, among others. Learn More 

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  • Andreas Hammerschmidt: Machet die Tore weit (Psalm 24)
  • Caroline Shaw: and the swallow (commission, world premiere) (Psalm 84)
  • Chiara Maria Cozzolani: Dixit dominus (Psalm 110)
  • George Kirbye: Praise ye the Lord, for he is good (Psalm 136)
  • Adriano Banchieri: Omnes gentes plaudit (Psalm 47)
  • Thomas Attwood Walmisley: O give thanks unto the Lord (Psalm 105)
  • Samuel Holyoke: The Lord, the Sovereign, sends his summons forth (Psalm 50)
  • Vic Nees: Fundamenta ejus (Psalm 87)
  • Henry Purcell: O give thanks unto the Lord, Z 33 (Psalm 106)
  • Jakob Handl (Jacobus Gallus): Laudate Dominum (Psalm 150)
  • Ruggiero Giovannelli: Cantate Domino (Psalm 149)
  • Jan Tollius: Sicut fluit cera (Psalm 68)
  • Isidora Žebeljan: Psalm 78 (commission, U.S. premiere) (Psalm 78)
  • Alexander Grechaninov: Praise the name of the Lord, Op. 34 (Psalm 135)
  • Francis Poulenc: Exultate Deo (Psalm 81)
  • Program subject to change
Costa Rica’s Arenal Volcano , 2012.

Saturday, November 11 at 8:30 pm

THE PSALMS EXPERIENCE

Concert 12: Consequences of Power

Tallis Scholars
Peter Phillips,
conductor
With members of the Choir of Trinity Wall Street, Netherlands Chamber Choir, and Norwegian Soloists’ Choir

Alice Tully Hall

Woven throughout the Psalms are pleas to shift the earthly balance between those in power and the powerless. In this concluding concert, the Tallis Scholars explore settings by Handel, Gabrieli, and others. All the themes of The Psalms Experience then culminate in the Renaissance splendor of Thomas Tallis’s Spem in alium, with members of all four choirs joining forces to offer up an ecstatic expression of praise. Learn More 

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  • Plainchant: Psalm 58, according to the Church of Rome (Psalm 58)
  • Sigmund Hemmel: Deus stetit in synagoga (Psalm 82)
  • Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck: Du malin le meschant vouloir (Psalm 36)
  • Claude LeJeune: Après avoir constamment attendu (Psalm 40)
  • George Frideric Handel: In the Lord I put my trust (Psalm 9)
  • Scottish Metrical Psalm: O Lord give ear to my just cause (Psalm 17)
  • Andrea Gabrieli: Domine Deus meus, in te speravi (Psalm 7)
  • Guglielmo Arnoni: Judica me Domine (Psalm 26)
  • Orazio Vecchi: Velociter exaudi me (Psalm 143)
  • Gavin Bryars: Lord, I cry upon thee (Psalm 141)
  • Jan van Dijk: Dieu de ma louange, ne te tais point (Psalm 109)
  • Samuel Scheidt: Richte mich, Gott, und führe (Psalm 43)
  • Thomas Tallis: Spem in Alium
  • Program subject to change

Buy 2 or more concerts and save 20% on The Psalms Experience