Isabel Voices present Flight 752: Elegies

Under the direction of Artistic Director, Darrell Christie, The Isabel Voices will perform their upcoming concert, Flight 752: Elegies, featuring acclaimed santur player, Sadaf Amini and celebrated mezzo-soprano, Colleen Renihan.  

“On January 8, 2020, the Iranian military shot down Ukrainian Air Flight 752, resulting in the loss of 176 passengers and crew, including 57 Canadian citizens and 29 Canadian permanent residents,” recounts composer, John Burge. The reverberations of this tragedy were felt deeply, including within our own community of Kingston, Ontario, where a doctoral Engineering student from Queen’s University was among those who perished.

Burge and Amini, were in the midst of preparing a composition titled “Shiraz” for santur and string quartet when news of the tragedy broke. Though the premiere was postponed due to the pandemic, Burge redirected his creative energy to compose Flight 752: Elegies, a 7-movement work lasting approximately 30 minutes.

“I could have been one of those passengers, a member of their families, or a relative,” reflects Amini. “Like them, I traveled abroad in search of better opportunities… the least I can do is express my sympathy and offer my condolences for the immense suffering that those people and their loved ones endured, by playing the mesmerizing piece ‘Flight 752 Elegies’ composed by John Burge.”

“The unifying element of this composition is a consoling chorale sung by the choir in odd-numbered movements,” explains Burge. “In each refrain, the choir’s wordless melody is accompanied by diminishing contributions from the santur, symbolizing loss in real-time.”

Indeed, “One of the things that unites us all is the (eventual, inevitable) experience of loss,” reflects Colleen Renihan. “John Burge’s stunning Elegies, and Matthew Emery’s Three Songs capture tragedy and loss so poignantly – even beautifully. I love singing these pieces because, through their incredible music, they not only bring us, but hold us together in our shared experience of loss.”

“We are honoured to present Flight 752: Elegies as a tribute to those who lost their lives in this heartbreaking tragedy,” says Christie. “Through music, we hope to offer solace and remembrance to our community.”

Event Details:

? What: Flight 752: Elegies presented by The Isabel Voices

? When: Sunday, March 17, 2024, at 2:30 pm

? Where: The Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, 390 King St W, Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 2X4

? Tickets: In-person and livestream tickets available for purchase at The Isabel Website

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