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Four Saints in Three Acts

About this Album

Four Saints in Three Acts caused a sensation when it was premiered on Broadway in 1934, with its all-black cast, fanciful set designs, and “deftly simple score” (New York Times), all set to a libretto by American novelist Gertrude Stein. The groundbreaking American opera is featured here in its entirety, conducted by Grammy Award winner Joel Thome.


Joel Thome, Conductor
Betty Allen, Commère
Benjamin Matthews, Compère
Arthur Thompson, St. Ignatius
Clamma Dale, St. Teresa I
Florence Quivar, St. Teresa II
William Brown, St. Chavez
Gwendolyn Bradley, St. Settlement
William Penn, St. Plan
Joseph de Vaughn, St. Stephen
Ella Eure-Eaton, St. Sara
Denise Lock, St. Cecelia
Maeretha Stewart, St. Celestine
Lloyd Thompkins, St. Lawrence
Clifford Townsend, St. Jan & St. Placide
Leon Wheeler, St. Absalon
Kevin Elliot, St. Eustace
Linda Childs, St. Genevieve
Cheryl Kirk, St. Anne
Louis Tucker, St. Answers
Orchestra of Our Time
Violin: Jean Ingraham (Concertmaster), Katsuko Esaki, Robert Chausow, Andrew Schaw, Diane Bruce, Suzzane Ornstein (Principal Second), Richard Henrickson, Lisa Lyons, Fumiko Wellington
Viola: Valerie Heywood (Principal), Ronald E. Carbone, Louise Schulman
Cello: Gary Fitzgerald (Principal), Loretta O’Sullivan
Bass: Lewis J. Paer
Harmonium: Romulus Franceschini
Accordion: Guy Klucevsek
Flute: Susan Palma
Oboe: Charles Kuskin
Clarinet: William Blount
Bassoon: Jeffery Winter
Horn: Julie Landsman, Scott Temple
Trumpet: Ralph Schwartz
Trombone: Richard Clard
Percussion: Jeffery Kraus, Glen Velez
Lawrence Weller, chorus master
Sopranos: Marilyn Andry, Ella Eure-Eaton, Iris Harris, Denis Lock, Judith Otten, Maeretha Stewart, Diane Wilson
Altos: Linda Childs, Cheryl Kirk, Patricia McDermott, Lisa Polite, Gloria Turner, Deborah Young
Tenors: Harold Beasley, Joseph de Vaughn, Richard Jasper, Clifford Terry, Louis Tucker, Leon Wheeler
Baritones/basses: Kevin Elliot, Earl Grandison, Theodore Hodges, William Penn, Lloyd Thompkins, Clifford Townsend
Production and musical supervision: Marc J. Aubort and Joanna Nickrenz, Elite Recordings, Inc.
Recorded November 1981 at Rutgers Church, New York
Production coordinator: Elise Keen
Mastered by Michele Stone, Elektra Sound Recorders
Recording made possible in part by grants from the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music, Inc., Betty Freeman, Priscilla Goodrich Rea and the R.H. and Esther F. Goodrich Foundation, and Louise Crane
Design: Denise Minobe
Cover painting: Portrait of Virgil Thomson (1930) by Florine Stettheimer, Collection of the Art Institute of Chicago
Director: Keith Holzman

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