Thanks to you, we have raised $ [data-A1] of our $5000 Goal from [data-A3] donors.
Donate securely through PAYPAL. You do NOT need a paypal account. Simply add your amount to our cart and check out securely with your credit card. If you wish to send a check instead, let us know it is for Esther and we will add it to our goal. Thank you for your support. Donations over $50 receive a thank you gift!
After six successful oratorio premieres (and an opera premiere!) in recent years, Dan Montez presents an important world premiere, Esther, based on the famous woman who saved the Jews from annihilation. The premiere coincides with Women’s History Month in 2020 and also with the well-known holiday of Purim, that celebrates the story of Esther and is celebrated annually by Jews around the world. This is the first complete oratorio composed on the subject in the last 300 years.
Dan Montez thoroughly researched Esther’s story in its many versions from the Septuagint to the Masoretic texts and studied famous commentaries by both Christian and Jewish scholars in creating his libretto.
The oratorio covers the important events of Esther's life, Including the stories of Vashti, Mordecai, Haman, and the King. It includes many of the Septuagint’s spiritual moments as well, including the fasts, prayers, and dreams of both Mordecai and Esther. The work is meant to be inspiring and also to portray Esther as a strong, intelligent, and spiritual woman.
Montez describes his composing style as “influenced greatly by impressionism.” It is similar to Ravel, Poulenc, Debussy, Fauré, and yet seems to have harmonic elements of Puccini, and stylistic elements of Copland and Ralph Van Williams. “Truth be told, as much as I love impressionism, it is hard to get the opera out of me. I like drama, and I love the powerful way opera singers can tell a story. I believe these Biblical stories need to be told in English and not just Latin to a modern audience in a beautiful way. Too many liturgical oratorios are either only available in early music or in ultra-modern forms. I’m not sure people are being moved by the stories this way...so I don’t apologize for not composing with any experimentalism in mind. I want to reach people with the narrative.”
The work is about an hour and ten minutes in length, and will feature the soloists, opera chorus, and full orchestra of the Taconic Opera.
Please help! This project requires paying for the large orchestra, soloists, and venues in two cities! It will be Dan Montez’s first oratorio to be performed in a Jewish synagogue and will also be performed in a large Christian church in White Plains, New York. Please help bring this work to the world for the first time. Tickets to the event are available by clicking here.
Here is part of a testimonial letter written after one of his oratorio productions:
“This is my very first fan letter!! I was fortunate enough to be present at your magnificent performance….I also had the privilege of speaking with you the week before when you discussed the creative process.… I told you I wasn’t to familiar or fond of opera—that’s changed!! I can’t express how awe-struck I was after your incredibly enjoyable premiere. Watching you conduct with such intensity, love, and passion was such a positive, fulfilling experience for me. You are truly blessed and extremely gifted. I was able to follow the entire oratorio because it was written in English. I feel so much more knowledgable…thank you…”—Jackie Copeland
Testimonials from letters sent about other oratorios by Dan Montez:
"Words cannot express the joy I felt in my heart during yesterday's final performance. Both performances were wonderful, but there was something about yesterday that rose to an even higher plane. ...it was a truly unmatched experience for me." --Mary Corda
"I love Dan's work. It's accomplished and accessible at the same time. He knows what he's doing. He makes some beautiful music." --Irene Herz
"I am saying amen!!! Thank you Dan. Those songs will be a part of my worship for the rest of my life. It was wonderful!"--Charlotte Garrison
"Congratulations on another successful premiere, Dan!! It was a pleasure to sing in in the production- It is such an inspiring piece of music!"--David Richy
“Spectacular performance”—Constanza Mueller
“We were so impressed with the wonderful performance of Job. Fantastic…Wonderful, wonderful. I know that my brother will want to have the score when it comes out. We wish you good health and determination to keep on contributing such wonderful music and opera” —David and Barbara Bender, Career Bridges
Thank you! Thank you for your support! We will send you a special thank you gift for all donations over $50. We will include a autographed CD and autographed score for donations over $300. Please help us reach our goal! All funds will go to pay for singers, orchestra, and venue costs. Thanks again!