American Shadows
A BEAUTIFUL CHORAL PORTRAIT OF AMERICA
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

Almeda Berkey conducts the singers of Nebraska's Professional Chorale, Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum, in a beautiful sampling of music from different times and places in America. From Alice Parker's setting of New England's Wondrous Love to the Civil War's Tenting Tonight and the 19th Century's Amazing Grace, the Cantorum's rich vocal timbre soars. James Erb's gently rolling Shenandoah sets the stage for the African-American Spiritual Soon-ah Will Be Done by William Dawson. Then a jump to California for the rousing Sacramento-Sis Joe and back to the Midwest for Native American Phillip White Hawk's Hold On!South Dakota Shadows opens with a beautiful love song that sets the stage for this extended choral tone poem. Berkey weaves a tapestry of words and music ranging from the Scandinavian choral tradition: Indian Summer and Evening Shadows - to Jazz: Mercy Song - Country: Turkeys and Badger's - and chorus with piano quintet: Requiem for a Pioneer Mother. As an instrumental centerpiece, Boxing with Snowflakes evokes powerful feelings. Almeda's sensitive, guiding spirit brings the Cantorum and The Cat's Meow (instrumental ensemble) to heights that surpass the hopes and aspirations of any composer. The corporate expression of the singers is far greater than any of its single parts and simply has to be heard to be fully appreciated!

SDG CD961 $15.98

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Arma Lucis
THE RECORDING THAT STARTED IT ALL!
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

The first recording from SDG Records and the premiere performance and recording from Almeda Berkey and Nebraska's Professional Chorale, Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum. Also included are five wonderful arrangements from the Berkeys' mentor, Norman Luboff. Choral masterpieces over the centuries round out this first opus from the Cantorum.

This premiere recording of Arma Lucis has served as a model for hundreds of performances of this 12-minute a cappella work that is fast establishing itself in the standard choral repertoire. The Detroit Concert Choir's July 1996 performance of Arma Lucis at the Eisteddfod Festival in Wales won them the title, Choir of the World. We at SDG Records send our heartiest congratulations to Gordon Nelson and his fine singers!

SDG CD89 $15.98

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Arvo the Magnificat
Arvo is definitely a MagnifiCAT!!
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

Yes! ARVO is the name of our Birman cat. And the CD recording does include Arvo Pärt's Magnificat. And they DO say MagnifiCAT in Canada! This mostly-classical offering from Almeda Berkey and Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum features a sampling of music over the centuries plus two works from Jackson Berkey's published catalog: God Be In My Head and the compelling Native American Ambiances for Native American Flute, Mixed Chorus, Natural Environmental Sounds and Percussion. You'll love the natural sounds of wolves and wind; birds and running water; Native American Flute and voices! Also featured, the Sacred Songs of Swedish composer August Söderman. This Walton publication, introduced in the United States by the late Norman Luboff, has been available for many years now, but the Cantorum's recording is the first! Almeda Berkey's reading includes Jackson's double string quartet setting of the original organ part.

SDG CD941 $15.98

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Cantorum Christmas!
SING THROUGHOUT THE HOLIDAY SEASON!
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

Cantorum Christmas! was just recorded during the summer of 1997 and is still in its early editing stages. Why another recording of carols? Jackson Berkey's Anniversary Carols are as unusual as they are familiar. Berkey's surprises in rhythm, meter, voicing and harmonies bring refreshing sparkle to these familiar melodies, presenting you, the listener, with songs that are at once dear and traditional, yet delightfully new again.

Almeda Berkey again draws superb singing from the voices of Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum in this Christmas work that has been compared to the Britten Ceremony of Carols. And no wonder! The instrumentation is for solo harp (with SDG Records artist Kathy Bundock Moore) with occasional tambour, finger cymbals, triangle and bass viol. Instrumental combinations highlight the voices in unexpected surprises: imagine the French carol, Il est né flavoured with the texture of a bolero. Or in keeping with the composer's diverse background, think of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen with a Mannheim Steamroller/Renaissance backbeat on the harp! Look for choral influences of Arvo Pärt in The Silent Word. Sound intriguing? Watch and listen for it during the 1998 Holiday Season!

SDG CD981 $15.98

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Gaudete the natural state of man is joy
MUSIC TO CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS AND ADVENT
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

Gaudete -The Natural State of Man is Joy features the first commercially available recording of the wonderful Gaudete by Swedish composer, Anders Ohrwall. First introduced in the United States by Norman Luboff, the Berkeys championed it through performances at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. Further readings and concerts by the Cantorum led to its being the centerpiece for this Christmas album.

Gaudete, the Cantorum's second CD for SDG Records, also includes music of Christmas and Advent and features three of Jackson's Anniversary Carols. Selections by Rachmaninoff, Victoria, Bruckner, Sweelinck, Tschesnokoff and Brent Pierce complete this holiday listening collection.

SDG CD91 $15.98

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Norman Luboff Remembered
ALL CHORAL ARRANGEMENTS BY NORMAN LUBOFF
Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum

What a joy this CD is for Jackson and me! It allows us to celebrate Norman’s universal influence and to share some of his greatness as musician. Norman would enjoy the Cantorum’s wonderful singing — their robust voices, their natural sentimentality toward the lyrics, and the depth of their passion. These are the kinds of musicians that Norman engaged: fascinating singers with great voices, differing vocal timbre and energies. The fantastic mix of solo voices comfortable in both the popular and classical worlds contributes to the unique Luboff choral sound. Almeda Berkey, former Luboff singer, Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum, Conductor

With our personal history of well over a thousand performances with Norman, we shared intimately in his world of music. The very existence of Almeda’s Soli Deo Gloria Cantorum was at his encouraging. NORMAN LUBOFF REMEMBERED is our way of bringing you the wonderful music of that personal contact and experience. Jackson Berkey, Tour pianist for Norman Luboff, Composer/Pianist

SDG CD021 $15.98

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