The Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra was established in 1957 and consists of approximately 90 men and women from 27 different towns in Rhode Island and Southern Massachusetts. The orchestra that accompanies the chorale is made up of professional musicians, including members of the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra. Soloists who perform with the chorale are highly respected professionals in the world of opera and classical music. The Chorale's mission is to provide artistic enrichment to the public and the singers through presentation of at least three concerts of major choral works per year. The 2006 - 2007 season celebrated the Chorale's 50th anniversary season with works by Handel, Verbalov (World Premiere) and Brahms. The upcoming 2008-2009 season will be the 52nd for the Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra. It also marks the 22nd year the organization is privileged to have Maestro Edward Markward as its Music Director. As in the past, an exciting and ambitious season is planned. The Chorales season begins on Saturday, November 29 at 7:30 at St. Josephs Church, 92 Hope Street,Providence, with Handels signature piece, Messiah. Soloists will be Diana McVey, Soprano, Hillary Nicholson, Mezzo-soprano, Brian Cheney, Tenor, and Donald Wilkinson, Baritone. This concert will also be performed the following day, November 30, at 2:30 at the St. Ann Art and Cultural, Center, 84 Cumberland Street,Woonsocket. The Chorale will next perform Saturday, March 28 at 8:00 PM at St. Josephs, Providence. This concert will be dedicated to internationally renowned composer and long-time member of the Civic Chorale, the late Paul Nelson. Selections will include Benjamin Brittens Rejoice in the Lamb, John Rutters Requiem, andDaniel Pinkhams Three Lenten Poems of Richard Crashaw. Soloists for this concert will be selected from the Rhode IslandCollegiate Vocal Competition. The seasons final concert, on May 30 at 8:00 PM, will feature Mozarts "Jupiter Symphony No. 41 and his Great Mass in C Minor. Joining the Civic Chorale and Orchestra for this concert will be the Chorus of the Community College of Rhode Island, Dr. Joseph Amante y Zapata, Conductor. Soloists for this performance are Julia Turner Cooke, Soprano, Jane Shivick, Soprano, Fredric Scheff, Tenor, and Rene de la Garza, Baritone.