Friday, May 31, 2013

Keystone State Boychoir Welcomes 10 New Members Of The Aleph Class

Philadelphia – The entering Aleph class was beaming with pride as they donned their coveted green Keystone State Boychoir jackets. These boys are the newest members of the Keystone State Boychoir, joining other boys from Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs. They received their jackets during the Keystone State Boychoir’s sold-out performance of Rejoice in The Lamb with renowned organist Wesley Parrott on May 19. The standing room only concert was performed at The First Presbyterian Church of Germantown, 35 W. Chelten Avenue, home of the historic McLean Memorial Organ.  It is the largest church organ in Philadelphia.

The concert was part of an ongoing, worldwide celebration of the 100th birthday of Benjamin Britten, one of the 20th century’s greatest composers. The boys worked hard for sixteen weeks to earn their jackets and perform as bona fide members of KSB.

KSB is the only choir in the world to have toured all seven continents.  In 2009, KSB made history as the first choir to perform in Antarctica.  More recently, KSB sang at a ceremony in Oslo, Norway for Nobel Peace Prize-winner Aung San Suu Kyi and presented her with a Liberty Bell.  Internationally, KSB has performed in the world’s major concert halls, including the Manaus Opera House in Brazil, the Petronas Philharmonik Hall in Malaysia, and the Hanoi Opera House in Vietnam, as well as in venues throughout Canada, Brazil, Chile, South Africa, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Australia, Monaco, France, Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and Norway.

For information about these concerts and other KSB events email Martha Platt or call 215-287-3142 or visit the website at  KSB brings together 170 boys, ages 8-18, under the direction of Joseph P. Fitzmartin and Steven M. Fisher.  The Keystone State Boychoir encourages and welcomes boys of all experience levels to audition for the choir.

For media inquiries, contact:
Lori Flynn
Phone: 215-287-7039 
E-mail: Lmt0831(at)

More information can be found on KSB's social media channels:
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Thursday, May 30, 2013

2013 KSBoychoir Festival

On Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at the First Presbyterian Church in Germantown, KSB hosted the 2013 KSBoychoir Festival, a one-time festival for boy who like to sing.  The festival began at 10am and culminated in a concert with the full KSB choir at 6:15. The concert was live-tweeted on the @KSBoychoir account:

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Carnegie Hall Trip 2013: Slideshow

Dispatches from the Big Apple during the Carnegie Hall trip and a slide show:

E-mail #1

Hi All -
We are safe and sound at our New York home, Hosteling International, and wouldn't you know it, there's a Ben and Jerry's right around the corner! Once we checked in and had our hostel orientation, Fitz was ready for some ice cream, so we all had to accompany him!

The weather looks like it is going to be perfect for this trip, after last week's rain, so we will make the best of being outdoors in New York.

From Steve, Fitz and me, thank you all for sending your sons on this little adventure to Carnegie Hall. There are already new friendships forming, and seasoned KSB travelers taking the new guys under their wings, though it doesn't seem too long ago that a couple of the oldest guys were the "little boys" in this same hostel.

Tour magic happening already!

Good night!

E-mail #2

Good Morning!

If you are getting this, then the Hostel wifi is more cooperative this morning.

A little later start today, after a good old New York City hike yesterday. Best part of the day? Hands down, riding the subway from the Battery to Times Square, with the boys singing South African songs, Da Pacem Domine, even We are the Boys, all with some of the oldest trebles breaking in their new grad notes.

We took the boys to the 911 Memorial, also my first visit since the Memorial was opened, though I've been to Ground Zero with several groups of students and KSB boys. Interesting being there with a group of boys,  the oldest of whom has only a vague memory of the day, and the youngest of whom weren't born yet. The boys were respectful and curious, but clearly experiencing something that is history.

Final rehearsal at the hostel is now underway for the Carnegie Hall.

See you lots of you tonight! We will meet you in the lobby after the concert.


E-mail #3

Carnegie Hall.

Your son now joins the list of the most illustrious musicians of the last century or more because like them, he has performed in Carnegie Hall. I suspect it won't be his last time.

We've had a great trip. Every boy has been expended by the experience, whether learning the ropes on his first overnight KSB road trip, being a great example to the new guys, or becoming a leader, and getting his first taste of being a grad, they have all grown, and we are really proud of all of them. Just the sheer will power to sit up straight with their hands on their knees for a two hour concert rivals some legendary appearances from the early years of KSB.

The guys who are staying for the night had another trip to Times Square for some ice cream. They felt like celebrities when people wanted to take their pictures, some having just come from the concert in Carnegie Hall! We ran into some great street musicians while waiting for the subway, and the boys sang What a Wonderful World with them, and then the opening of Rejoice in the Lamb for them. Lots of fun.

Your son has had a fantastic trip, and is very happy!
Good night,

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

KSB's Own Graeme Brown Sings In International Opera Theater’s Production Of Jago

Youngest Member of IOT’s Jago Cast Already Has Impressive Background

April, 2013, Philadelphia:  Thirteen-year-old Graeme Brown of Chestnut Hill, soloist with a key role in International Opera Theater’s current production of Jago  May 30, 31 and June 1 at the Media Theatre in Media, PA, will also travel with the cast to its presentation June 7 in Citta di Saluzzo, Italy.

Graeme comes to IOT with impressive chops.    He has been with Keystone State Boychoir (KSB) since he was seven years old and is presently part of its well-known octet “The Eight Sopranos.”   He is a frequent soloist and performed with other members of KSB in Oliver on Broadway with Irish Repertory Theatre. KSB is the official boy choir of Opera Philadelphia (formerly Opera Company of Philadelphia). Graeme has performed four of its operas including Tosca, Carmen, La Boheme and – as a fitting prelude to Jago –  Otello.

Jago (ee-YAH-go) had its world premiere in Italy in 2009.  Media is hosting its American premiere, the first Italian-composed opera to premiere in the U.S.A. in 100 years.  In recognition, Media declared the first week in May to be International Opera Theater Week.

The opera is IOT’s homage to Verdi on the great composer’s 200th birthday, and its plot begins where Verdi’s Otello ends.  Jago awaits execution in a dank prison cell, encased in his own 15-year vow of silence.  A child, Kasim, son of Jago’s prison guard, makes his way to the cell, and a relationship develops between the two which will forever change both lives.  Graeme is Kasim. 

Graeme is in the seventh grade at J.R. Masterman, a magnet school visited by President Obama in 2010 for his “back to School” speech.   Graeme is currently a Tenderfoot Boy Scout and, following in his father’s footsteps, aspires to the rank of Eagle.  He’s in the chess club at Masterman, which came in first nationally for the middle school chess team.  He looks forward to joining the robotics club and also loves playing baseball and swimming in the ocean.

International Opera Theater, now in its tenth year, is based in both Philadelphia and Italy and has presented 10 world premieres.  Jago, written by IOT founder and artistic director Karen Saillant, is composed by Carlo Pedini with a libretto by Lucio Lironi, and will be conducted by Maestro Gianmaria Griglio.  All but American Karen are Italian.
Jago tickets $45-$75, Media Theatre, 104 E. State Street, Media, PA 19063.  For tickets or information Contact 610-891-0100 or e-mail or  
Contact:  Janis O’Connor, IOT Jago Committee Marketing Chair      215-970-1730

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