|Members||Craig Hella Johnson|
Conspirare is a choral ensemble based out of Austin, Texas. They were formed in 1991 by conductor and musical director Craig Hella Johnson as New Texas Festival but did not begin to regularly perform until 1999. They have released four albums and one DVD and have been nominated for five Grammy Awards.
Conspirare, originally New Texas Festival, was formed in 1991 as a week-long series of vocal performances every summer in Austin, Texas. They did not begin having a fuller schedule of concerts until 1999. They regularly play music festivals in the area including specials for Christmas and in celebration of the music of Bach. They have also played such renowned venues as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Their music was featured in the 2006 documentary The Mystery of Love.
Through the Green Fuse
Their first release was 2004's Through the Green Fuse on Clarion Records. It was recorded in early August 2004 over two days at the Skywalker Ranch. Robert Faires of The Austin Chronicle described the album's qualities as "sensitivity to text, purity of vocal tone, and, of course, those long, lush harmonies, with voices melding seamlessly into sounds that are achingly lovely". Tracks include "Deep River" and "Sleep".
Requiem, their second offering, was also on Clarion in 2006 and re-released on Harmonia Mundi Records in 2009. It was recorded at the Troy Music Hall, Troy, New York. The album has a "somber theme of death and loss", with Requiem Masses by Herbert Howells and Ildebrando Pizzetti and a memorial for tsunami victims by Eliza Gilkyson. The album received two Grammy nominations for Best Engineered Album, Classical and Best Choral Performance. In 2010, it received an Edison Award, the Dutch equivalent on a Grammy.
Threshold of Night
Tarik O'Regan: Threshold of Night is Conspirare's third release. It is a collection of compositions by Tarik O'Regan. The chorus is accompanied by the Company of Strings. It was released by Harmonia Mundi Records in 2008. The album was recorded in October 2007, and like Requiem, at the Troy Music Hall. The tracks are based on the works of Edgar Allan Poe, Pablo Neruda, Kathleen Raine and Emily Dickinson. The album debuted at number ten on the Billboard Top Classical Album chart and received two Grammy nominations for Best Classical Album and Best Choral Performance.
A Company of Voices
Their fourth recording, A Company of Voices - Conspirare in Concert, was released in 2009 by Harmonia Mundi Records on both CD and DVD. It was recorded live at the Long Center for the Performing Arts in Austin in October 2008. The show was recorded by the local PBS station, KLRU. It received a Grammy nomination for Best Classical Crossover Album.
Sudden Light: Christmas at the Carillon
In 2010 Craig Hella Johnson invited Patrice Pike to join with Conspirare on a live recording with the Company of Voices, featuring Pike on three solo songs: a cover of Annie Lennox's "Why", plus original compositions "Volcanoes" and "The Calling".
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