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Raising Voices: finding comfort in sacred choral music

Photo: David Beale

Recently, CKUA’s Orest Soltykevych shared a a few words with us.

Paul McCartney recently said, “I love to hear a choir. I love the humanity – to see the faces of real people devoting themselves to a piece of music. I like the teamwork. It makes me feel optimistic about the human race when I see them cooperating like that.”

It’s been over two years since my program Raising Voices first aired on CKUA. Since that time, many of you have expressed your appreciation for the music that you hear on the program. In fact, I have even featured choral music written by Paul McCartney himself! What is even more gratifying is that so many of you are pleased that there is a program on CKUA dedicated entirely to the celebration of the beauty of the human voice, especially through choral music.

When I choose music for my program, I try to ensure a diversity of music to appeal to listeners with varied tastes and interests, and from various periods through the centuries. I focus on music written by and performed by Canadians, and I get a great deal of satisfaction in presenting music recorded by choristers and singers from Alberta!

These days, we are experiencing heartfelt emotions because of Russia’s attack on Ukraine. As a result, many of us in the Ukrainian community and beyond are finding comfort and consolation in listening to choral music—especially sacred choral music. In fact, many of you have suggested and requested music by Ukrainian composers, which I will be delighted to play. In that way, for a period of time on Sunday evenings, we can share in the beauty of choral music from the Ukrainian tradition, keep the people of Ukraine in our thoughts, and hope and pray that the war in Ukraine comes to an end very soon.

Tune in to Raising Voices on March 20, to hear choral selections from a variety of traditions and composers, including the Ukrainian tradition. The program will feature The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace, by Karl Jenkins.