The Water Gap Singers were invited to perform with the “Passion of Italy Festival” in July 2019. The festival was organized by KI Concerts and took place in Rome. Our members taking part were joined by the 7 Hills Gospel Choir from Rome, the Pentagono Children’s Choir of Sao Paulo, Brazil, members of the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County NJ, and the RHS and VHS Singers from high schools in Florida. The performances were led by Artistic Director, Janet Galvan, Director of Choral Activities at Ithaca College.
The first performance took place at Chiesa di Sant’Ignazio di Loyola in Campo Marzio, a beautiful Baroque style church built in the 1600s, adorned with frescoes and artwork. Each choir was asked to perform a piece representing their home country. The Water Gap Singers’ director, Joseph Mello, chose a version of Shenandoah for this performance. In addition to the regional pieces, the choirs sang Franck’s Panis Angelicus, Mozart’s Veni Sancte Spiritus, Cherubini’s Veni Jesu, a Brazilian folk song, Na Bahia Tem, performed in Portuguese, and Elbert’s Agnus Dei.
The highlight of the trip was singing the 5 pm Mass on Wednesday, July 10 at St. Peter’s Basilica, which included the sacred music previously performed at Chiesa di Sant’Ignazio with Kathleen Decker, accompanist to the Water Gap Singers, joining the choirs on the Basilica’s organ.
Throughout the week, our members toured major attractions in Rome including the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, the Colosseum and Roman Forum, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums.
Surely, a trip our travelers will never forget! Scroll down for the photo gallery: