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Performance Details

  • Date Friday, December 2, 2022
  • Time 7:30 pm
  • Venue River Road Church, Baptist
  • Conductor Anthony Blake Clark

The greatest story ever told. The most majestic music ever conceived. Be there for the return of Handel’s Messiah with the Richmond Symphony and Richmond Symphony Chorus.

River Road Church, Baptist

8000 River Rd
Richmond, VA 23229
maps and directions

This concert has 2 general admission sections, the floor level and the balcony level. The main floor has pew seating. The balcony has folding chairs and can only be accessed by steps.

Messiah Program Notes

Guest Artist Bios:

Keely Bosworth Borland, Soprano:

Praised for her ‘magnificent, expressive soprano sound’ and ‘requisite emotion, physically as well as vocally’ (ShowBizRadio), Keely Bosworth Borland is thrilled to be making her Richmond Symphony Orchestra debut in Handel’s Messiah. She most recently performed in the Chorus (Edith Cover) in Virginia Opera’s The Pirates of Penzance. In the 2021/2022 season, Ms. Borland performed as Due Donne/Le nozze di Figaro with Virginia Opera and Soprano Soloist in Handel’s Messiah with Central VA Masterworks Chorale. During the pandemic, Ms. Borland supplemented her time with virtual musicals including Kathy Seldon/Singin’ in the Rain, Fiona MacLaren/Brigadoon, Carrie/Carousel, Anne Egerman/A Little Night Music, and Hodel/Fiddler on the Roof. Career highlights include Fiona MacLaren/Brigadoon (RMT), Gianetta/The Gondoliers (VLOC), Rapunzel/Into the Woods (St. Petersburg Opera), First Lady/The Magic Flute (Fargo-Moorhead Opera), Gretel/Hansel and Gretel (Opera Louisiane) as well as Soprano Soloist in Baltimore Choral Arts Society’s presentation of David Lang’s the little match girl passion, Haydn’s Die Schöpfung with Choralis, and Vivaldi’s Gloria & Handel’s Messiah, with the Westmoreland Choral Society. Ms. Borland has been a Young Artist with St. Petersburg Opera, Fargo-Moorhead Opera, Charlottesville Opera, as well as a Professional Artist at the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival, SongFest, and Opera Naples’ inaugural Renata Scotto Opera Program. A resident of Richmond, Ms. Borland is an Adjunct Voice Professor at Randolph-Macon College and works in the Film/TV industry, most notable projects include The Walking Dead: World Beyond, Dopesick, White House Plumbers, and Swagger. She is currently converting a Retired Air Force bus into a unique tiny home wheels (@WRENNAbus). www.KeelyBosworthBorland.com

Brenda Patterson, Mezzo-Soprano:

Described as “a voice you want to hear and, even more, an artist you want to follow” (-New York Times), mezzo-soprano Brenda Patterson has been at the forefront of innovation in operatic and concert performance for over 20 years, recognized as much for her artistic bravery as for the beauty and warmth of her voice. A graduate of The Juilliard School (where she was awarded the Taranow Prize in Voice and was the Winner of the Alice Tully Vocal Arts Debut Recital Competition), Brenda was in the Ensemble of the Hamburg State Opera for many years before continuing to La Scala in Milan and the Metropolitan Opera, where she was a Principal Artist for seven seasons, and at Opera Colorado, Glimmerglass Opera, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, New Orleans Opera, and Florida Grand Opera, among many others. Brenda has performed most of the major lyric mezzo operatic roles, has premiered over 30 vocal works, and has sung regularly as an oratorio soloist with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, with St. Thomas Church 5th Avenue in New York, and the Handel & Haydn Society in Boston. Patterson is on Voice Faculty at the University of Virginia, and is a co-founder of the pioneering, ensemble-based Victory Hall Opera in Charlottesville, VA, now entering its 8th Season (“the future of the field”; “continuing to push boundaries” – Washington Post).

William Ferguson, Tenor:

A native of Richmond, Virginia, tenor William Ferguson has performed with The Metropolitan Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Opera Australia, New York City Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Central City Opera, The Dallas Opera, Opéra Festival de Quebec, Opera Omaha, Opera Memphis, Virginia Opera, Opera Philadelphia, Palau de les Arts Reina Sophia in Valencia, Spain, Teatro Massimo in Palermo, Sicily, and Salzburger Landestheater in Austria.  In roles including Candide, Caliban (Tempest), Truffaldino (Love for Three Oranges), Jupiter (Semele), Male Chorus (Rape of Lucretia), George (Our Town), Mr. Snow (Carousel), Eisenstein (Fledermaus), and Louis Ironson (Angels in America). He holds both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from The Juilliard School.

A passionate concert and recital performer, Ferguson has appeared with the symphony orchestras of the BBC, Boston, City of Birmingham, Handel & Haydn Society, Houston, Milwaukee, Mostly Mozart Festival, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, as well as Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the National Symphony, the American Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, and Radio Filharmonisch Orkest (Netherlands) among others; all in repertoire including Handel’s Messiah, more than 50 Bach Cantatas as well as Christmas Oratorio, B-Minor Mass, St. Matthew and St. John Passions; Britten’s War Requiem, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Mozart’s Requiem, and Orff’s Carmina Burana. Additional concerts include Bard Music Festival, Marilyn Horne Foundation, Marlboro Music, New York Festival of Song, and Young Concert Artists.  Awards include the Alice Tully Debut Recital Award and First Place in the Oratorio Society of New York Competition.

James McClure, Baritone:

James McClure, baritone, is a native of Charlotte, NC and is a local artist currently residing in Richmond, VA. He received his Bachelor of Music from Appalachian State University and Master of Music from UNC-Greensboro. James has performed in many locales in this Richmond area, such as Capital Opera, Virginia Opera, and many church venues. Although classically trained, James can perform in my musical and he enjoys a great karaoke night out. James is also a classical Double Bass player and performed professionally through college with local Orchestras in North Carolina. He is a staff singer at St. Paul’s Episcopal and Sings in the Compline sanctuary choir with St Stephen Episcopal Church as well. He was a guest artist with Brevard Chamber Orchestra and the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra. Some of his most memorable roles include Lord Chancellor in Iolanthe, Leporello in Don Giovanni, Le Marquis in Dialogues de Carmelites, Gianni Schicchi in Gianni Schicchi, and Germont in La Traviata and many more. Recently, James joined the University of Richmond voice faculty in August 2021, and has thoroughly enjoyed teaching young singers. This performance will be a first-time collaboration with the Richmond Symphony.