On Sunday, March 10, the critically acclaimed premiere performance of Associate Professor of Music Thomas Lloyd's concert-length choral-theater piece, Bonhoeffer, by the professional Crossing Choir under the direction of Donald Nally, was held at the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral.
music reviewer David Patrick Stearns called it "an important work" that was "a breakthrough for all concerned... Harmonically, the piece didn't play by the usual major key/minor key rules but explored a more emotionally neutral world... that kept the dramatic content safe from cinematic sentimentality... While it effectively airs many philosophical questions that keep your mind busy long after the performance, it is never weighed down by them, and is rich in musical substance." (Read the full review here
In the Broad Street Review
, Kile Smith wrote, "Bonhoeffer is not a performance. It's a liturgy. In the same way that clergy, musicians and congregants enact a public work (the literal meaning of 'liturgy'), so does Lloyd arrange the singers, dancers and instrumentalists in Bonhoeffer. Watching it is to watch an elaborate church service play out... in one stunning moment, they diffuse and aggregate into facing duets, confessing to, and absolving, each other... [creating] a sacred space set apart from any normal concert performance." (Read the full review here