Voices of Light /
The Passion of Joan of Arc
An oratorio with silent film
Thursday June 9 at 8:30pm
Princeton University Chapel
Princeton, NJ 08544
Tickets: $50 Preferred | $35 General | $15 students
General admission seating by section
Approximate End Time: 10pm
Student tickets may only be purchased by contacting the McCarter Theatre Ticket Office by phone at 609.258.2787 or in person.
Jessica Beebe, soprano
Eve Gigliotti, mezzo
Casey Finnigan, tenor
Christopher Job, bass
Notre Dame Vocale
The Princeton Festival Chorus
The Princeton Symphony Orchestra
Carmen-Helena Téllez, Conductor
Free Pre-Performance Talk
Join us on Thursday June 9 at 5pm at The Garden Theatre for a free Conversation on Voices of Light / The Passion of Joan of Arc with composer Richard Einhorn, Andrew Lovett of Princeton University and Daniel Hobbins of The University of Notre Dame.
The Princeton Festival, in partnership with the Princeton Symphony Orchestra and the Princeton Garden Theatre, presents the legendary silent film masterpiece The Passion of Joan of Arc, widely considered to be one of the greatest films ever made, with a live performance of a ravishing score by award-winning composer Richard Einhorn.
Carl Theodor Dreyer’s film – a haunting and powerful depiction of the trial of Joan of Arc – is enhanced with a live performance of Einhorn’s superb score for orchestra, chorus and soloists for a deeply moving and unforgettable experience. The visual intensity of the performances – actress Renée Falconetti’s role as Joan is by itself extraordinary – is brilliantly supported by Einhorn’s skillful use of vocal parts inspired by Medieval song and instrumental writing based on layered minimalist note-patterns
The soaring Gothic spaces of the Princeton University Chapel, one of the great religious edifices in the United States, is an inspirational venue for this stunning multi-media experience.
The Story Behind the Music
Richard Einhorn’s unique music has been described as “hauntingly beautiful,” “sensational,” and “overwhelming in its emotional power.” In particular, his Voices of Light oratorio combined with Danish director Carl Theodor Dreyer’s 1928 classic silent film The Passion of Joan of Arc has been hailed in reviews as “a great masterpiece of contemporary music” and “a work of meticulous genius.” The libretto of Voices of Light is drawn from a variety of ancient texts, and its music is influenced by plainchant and Medieval troubadors. The Sony Classical CD recording featuring Anonymous 4 as the voice of Joan of Arc was a Billboard classical bestseller upon its release.
“A rapturous, overwhelming performance … inspired” – L.A. Times
The Story Behind The Film
Carl Theodor Dreyer’s The Passion of Joan of Arc has achieved a reputation as one of the greatest films of all time, regularly making the top ten list of major film critics around the world. The story behind the movie is itself a dramatic one. The director created the film during the 1920’s, the same decade in which Saint Joan was canonized, focusing on Joan’s trial and execution, and using transcripts from the original 15th century trial. Shortly after the film’s successful premiere, a fire destroyed what was then thought to be all existing prints. When Dreyer created a new print from outtakes, it too was lost to fire, and Dreyer abandoned the project. In 1981, a mental institution in Oslo found a pristine print of the original film within its walls — apparently, it had been shown to inmates decades earlier and never returned. Since then, the film, though rarely shown, has garnered a reputation as one of the great films of all time. Einhorn viewed the film in 1988 at the Museum of Modern Art’s Film Archive and was so deeply moved that he was inspired to begin work immediately on a musical score, which became Voices of Light.
The Story Behind the Performers
Jessica Beebe, soprano – “sealed the deal with her honey-colored tone” – Opera News
THE STORY BEHIND THE SCREENING
The Princeton Garden Theatre is a member-supported nonprofit movie theater in the heart of downtown Princeton. With a focus on arthouse and independent titles, the theater is also a home for family films, local filmmakers, classic Hollywood cinema, and community events. Dedicated to the celebration of the community film-going experience, the Garden Theatre is pleased to provide projection equipment and screen for this event in the Princeton University Chapel.