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Auditions
 

Men who have some music reading ability or musical or choral experience are invited to audition.

To schedule an audition, please contact the conductor, Gene Wisoff, at 212-362-8550 or email him here.

Rehearsals

We rehearse on the Upper West Side of Manhattan at the Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew, 263 West 86th St. (between Broadway and West End Ave.).

Computer sheet music with audible notes for each voice is provided  to facilitate learning at home.

Day and time: Monday from 7 to 9:15 pm. Street parking is usually available at our rehearsal hours. 

Schedule: Rehearsals for the 2016 spring season begin January 25.

 

 

 

Do You Love to Sing?
Audition Now
Be a Part of History
Perform with Us at Our 150th Anniversary Concert on May 10, 2016
Rehearsals take place Monday evenings on the Upper West Side beginning January 25. A gala anniversary performance with special guests and other festivities will take place on Tuesday evening, May 10 at Merkin Concert Hall.

For more information or to schedule an audition appointment, contact conductor Gene Wisoff at 212-362-8550 or email him here.

click here for details about our December 2015 performance, including program highlights.

 
MGC Performs at Brooklyn Cyclones Game
in Coney Island (June 2015)
 
Men Who Sing
 
Documentary Featuring MGC
click on image to view trailer
Men Who Sing: The 56-minute documentary showcases MGC's rich history since its founding in 1866 and recent resurgence.

The film follows the Club from rehearsals through performances over two years, providing glimpses of the singers and conductor at work and at play, and features interviews with both members and others connected to the chorus.

Click here to learn more about the DVD and to place an order.

It's hoped that the documentary will inspire other men who love to sing to come forth and let their voices be heard. If you would like to audition for the Club, please contact conductor Gene Wisoff at GeneWisoff@aol.com or phone 212-362-8550.
 



The Mendelssohn Glee Club of New York City was founded in 1866. Named for composer Felix Mendelssohn, the Club has offered for the enjoyment of our members and friends at least two concerts in every year of our existence. The nonprofit organization is the oldest men’s chorus in the country and the second oldest independent musical organization (after the New York Philharmonic).

Repertoire

We are always adding to our eclectic library of over 1,600 male choral pieces. Our repertoire includes art songs, ballads, spirituals, hymns, seasonal works, operatic choruses, lieder, barbershop songs, and selections from musical theater. Recent performances.

Historic highlights

The glee club received accolades from Sir Arthur Sullivan and Arturo Toscanini and sang at the dedication of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1888.  Its conductors have included Joseph Mosenthal, Edward MacDowell, Frank Damrosch, Cesare Sodero, Emerson Buckley, and John Royer Bogue. Guest soloists have included Victor Herbert, Helen Traubel, Aprile Millo, and Emily Pulley.  Detailed history

MGC on NPR

Listen to Lars Hoel's feature about MGC on National Public Radio's Weekend Edition Sunday (December 23, 2007). Click here.

Concerts
The Club gives two major performances a year, in the spring and winter.   .

2015 Winter Holiday Concert
(first performance of 150th season)

Date: Tuesday evening, December 8; 7:30 pm
Location:
Stephen Wise Free Synagogue, 30 West 68th Street
Guest artist: soprano Brandie Sutton 
Admission: free
 

Program highlights

Our program ranged from churchly works and ancient hymns (including a choral piece by Felix Mendelssohn) to a Broadway classic, two pieces inspired by Yeats poems, and two standards unfailingly associated with Frank Sinatra. The Club also paid tribute to George Gershwin’s 1934 opera Porgy and Bess in its 80th anniversary year (its groundbreaking premiere was in 1935).  

Several works of course celebrated Christmas, along with a classic--with humorous American place-name rhymes--about Hanukkah by the venerable and irrepressible Tom Lehrer. 

MGC opened with “Standing on the Corner,” written by Frank Loesser for the 1956 musical The Most Happy Fella, perhaps the best-known song ever written about the male joys of girl-watching. “New York, New York,” by John Kander and Fred Ebb, needs no introduction (we’ve all heard it sung countless times by Frank Sinatra) except to note it was composed for the 1977 Martin Scorsese film of the same title and performed in the film by Liza Minnelli. The lyrics of “My Way”, a song indelibly belonging to Sinatra, are by Paul Anka, its melody based on a French song. 

The Club performed “He, Watching Over Israel,” from Mendelssohn’s oratorio Elijah, as well as Ralph Vaughan Williams’s arrangement of an ancient hymn “Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence,” set to the tune of a medieval French folk melody. “For the Beauty of the Earth,” a Christian hymn with words by F. S. Pierpont, is a choral setting of the text by English composer John Rutter.

From Porgy and Bess, MGC sang “Oh Lawd, I’m on My Way,” Porgy’s climactic, joyful song of resolve.  

Douglas Wagner’s lovely “Lake Isle of Innisfree” has lyrics drawn from an early lyric poem by William Butler Yeats, first published in 1893. Another poem by Yeats provided the lyrics for Herbert Hughes’s “Down by the Salley Gardens.” 

In an appropriate Yuletide vein, the men of Mendelssohn sang “Fum, Fum, Fum,” a centuries-old Catalan Christmas carol; “Lirum Lirum,” a madrigal by English Renaissance composer Thomas Morley; “The Sussex Carol,” a popular British carol; satirist  Tom Lehrer’s capricious “Hanukkah in Santa Monica” (among the lyrics: “I spent Shavuos in East St. Louis”); and “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”—with the audience, as directed by Maestro Wisoff, invited to join in for the final verse.

The guest artist, soprano Brandie Sutton,  performed selections from Gershwin's Porgy and Bess and works by Puccini and Handel.
 

Past performances

For details about other performances,
click here

Click here to read a review of our spring 2013 concert by Barron's blogger Richard C. Morais.


About Felix Mendelssohn

Felix Mendelssohn was born on February 3, 1809, in Hamburg, Germany. His best-known works include A Midsummer Night's Dream (with the famous "Wedding March"); his four symphonies (especially the "Italian" and the "Scottish"); a violin concerto; piano pieces entitled Songs Without Words; and the oratorio Elias (a large-scale work for chorus, orchestra, and soloists).

Mendelssohn inspired the creation of many choral clubs -- amateur and professional -- including the Mendelssohn Glee Club of New York City, founded in 1866.

The Mendelssohn name was adopted in recognition of the composer's important role, historically, in choral music. Not the least of his contributions to European and world culture was his crusade to bring attention to the choral works, genius, and deserved preeminence of Johann Sebastian Bach. 

 

We hope that our audiences have enjoyed our performances as much as we have enjoyed singing. Please keep in mind that the ability of the Club to continue depends on financial support from friends like you. Donations.

Benefit recitals and special performances

The Club serves the community by performing at local hospitals and senior centers and singing at special events. 

Click here to read about benefit recitals.

We welcome the opportunity to share our joy of singing. If you would be interested in having the Club perform for your organization, please contact us.

Contact Us
To make an appointment for an audition, please contact the conductor at 212-362-8550 or send email to GeneWisoff@aol.com. 

For general questions about the Club or for additional information, please contact the President, John Memmolo: jamskier@aol.com.  

The Mendelssohn Glee Club would like to thank radio station WQXR for its generous support.
 
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