Contemplate the meaning of the Virgin Mary in this luminous concert offering three composers’ takes on this sacred icon of motherhood and mercy.

The figure of the Virgin Mary is central to this program of choral music spanning more than three centuries. The lyricism and expressive power of Charpentier’s final mass, Missa Assumpta est Maria, is juxtaposed with lustrous a cappella works by the 20th-century composer Poulenc. Canadian composer Tawnie Olson, whose music is described as “especially glorious and ethereal” (The Wholenote), brings our musical reflection into the present day with a newly commissioned setting of a Marian text.

All three composers offer an exploration of their own spirituality and of what this enigmatic woman has represented through the ages. As the holiday season approaches, join us for this uplifting program that promises to renew the soul.

Box Office
Jeanne Lamon Hall
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Running Time
About 110 minutes
Style of Music

Jeanne Lamon Hall, Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre

November 25, 2022 8:00 pm
November 26, 2022 2:00 pm

Tawnie Olson


Described as “taut, focused… colourful” by Gramophone, “mesmerizing,” by critic Tim Smith, and “especially glorious… ethereal” by Whole Note, the music of Canadian composer Tawnie Olson draws inspiration from politics, spirituality, the natural world, and the musicians for whom she composes. Her opera Sanctuary and Storm (libretto by Roberta Barker) is the winner of the 2021-2023 National Opera Association Dominick Argento Chamber Opera Competition. Olson is also the winner of the 2018 Barlow Prize, a consortium commission for the BYU Singers, The Crossing, and Seraphic Fire, and of a 2019 Copland House Residency Award. She was the Composer-in-Residence of the 2018 Women Composers Festival of Hartford. Her scores are available from the Canadian Music Centre, E.C. Schirmer, Galaxy Music, Hal Leonard’s BandQuest and Mark Foster series, and Oxford University Press.


Directed by Ivars Taurins
Tafelmusik Chamber Choir


Charpentier Prélude pour le Salve Regina

Charpentier Salve regina à 3 choeurs

Poulenc Salve regina

Poulenc Petites prières de S Francis d’Assise

Poulenc O magnum mysterium

Charpentier Prelude & Miseremini mei

Poulenc Ave verum corpus

Charpentier Regina caeli

Tawnie Olson Salve Mater (2022; world premiere)

Charpentier Missa assumpta est Maria (tutti; 35:00)

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