YORK choir Prima Vocal Ensemble are to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City this summer.

Director Ewa Salecka and her Prima singers have been invited to participate in a June 23 performance of The Music Of Martín Palmeri in the Isaac Stern Auditorium.

The Sunday event will form part of the Distinguished Concerts International New York City (DCINY) series in the United States' most celebrated concert hall in Midtown Manhattan.

"It's a thrilling prospect," says Ewa. "I'm so proud of Prima. They've become an incredible, unstoppable choir and I’m delighted many new members will be joining us on this trip.

"People join choirs for many wonderful reasons, but being in Prima is not simply about meeting each week to sing popular chart songs or a traditional classical opus.

"I've always strived to offer a fresh musical perspective of the highest quality and to give singers the most incredible experiences without having to audition. Sharing music and memories that genuinely last a lifetime is the reason I wake up in the


Prima are no strangers to Palmeri's work as Ewa conducted the Argentine composer's passionate, tango-inspired, home-city piece Misa A Buenos Aires (Misatango) in 2017.

Under the batons of Palmeri himself and Grammy-nominated conductor Saul Zaks, the June concert will feature both the Misatango and the world premiere of his new composition, Gran Misa.

"Prima will join with choristers from around the world to form the Distinguished Concerts Singers International, a choir of distinction," says Ewa. "Maestros Palmeri and Zaks will lead the performance as well as serve as the clinicians for the residency."

Dr Jonathan Griffith, DCINY's artistic director and principal conductor, explains why Prima were chosen: "Prima Vocal Ensemble received this invitation because of the quality and high level of musicianship demonstrated by the singers, as well as their stellar previous appearance on the DCINY concert series. It is quite an honour just to be invited to perform in New York. "These wonderful musicians not only represent a high quality of music and education, but they also become ambassadors for the entire community. This is an event of extreme pride for everybody and deserving of the community’s recognition and


The York singers will spend five days in New York City in preparation for the concert. "They will spend approximately nine to ten hours in rehearsals over the residency," says Griffith. "Not all of the time is spent in rehearsals. However, the performance is the primary purpose for their visit to the city."

This is the second time Prima have been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall, having first graced the iconic stage in 2014 for the world premiere of double Grammy Award winner Christopher Tin’s The Drop That Contained The Sea.

"I'm very aware of the cultural status that reflects on the city of York," says Ewa. "After performing the Tin premiere in 2014, we were delighted to welcome the composer to York Barbican in July 2016 for the European premiere of ‘The Drop’.

"It's such a privilege to receive a second invite and promote York in this manner to the outside world. Who knows what

future concert opportunities for our city may arise from this visit."

New singers, whatever their age or experience, are always welcome to join Prima and share these concert opportunities, says Ewa. "Anyone interested should get in touch and come to the main rehearsal on Tuesdays from 7.15pm at Southlands Methodist Church, on Bishopthorpe Road, and just enjoy the evening."

Ewa can be contacted on 07809 401164 or by emailing info@primachoral.com. More information on Prima's choirs can be found at primachoralartists.com.

Charles Hutchinson