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Celebrating the American Spirit

Kelli O'Hara , Ron Raines , Hochman , Adler , Kroll-Rosenbaum , Muhly , Babbitt , Heggie , Moravec , Higdon , Judith Clurman , Essential Voices USA Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

Price: $18.65 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. The Pledge of Allegiance (arr. L. Hochman)Essential Voices USA 2:04$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. The New ColossusEssential Voices USA 2:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Reason to Be ThankfulEssential Voices USA 3:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Hymn for AmericaEssential Voices USA 3:04$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Act I: Take Care of this HouseKelli O'Hara 2:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Washington RoundEssential Voices USA 1:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. John Adam's PrayerEssential Voices USA 1:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Opinion is PowerEssential Voices USA0:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. RoundEssential Voices USA0:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. One man with Courage makes A MajorityEssential Voices USA 1:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. The Ballot is stronger than the BulletEssential Voices USA0:53$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. A Theodore Roosevelt RoundEssential Voices USA 1:13$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. I Believe in DemocracyEssential Voices USA 1:32$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Admonition of FDREssential Voices USA 1:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. TrumanEssential Voices USA 1:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. Eisenhower RoundEssential Voices USA 1:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen17. Freedom's RoadEssential Voices USA 1:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen18. Moral CourageEssential Voices USA 1:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen19. An OdeEssential Voices USA0:46$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen20. A Simple OathEssential Voices USA 1:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen21. With Hope and VirtueEssential Voices USA 1:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen22. It Gets Lonely in White House (arr. B. Test)Ron Raines 3:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen23. The Stars and Stripes Forever (arr. B. Test)Studio Pianist 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen24. 2 Paraphrases on American AnthemsStudio ensemble 2:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen25. A Seed of Grain: Theme from The American President (arr. L. Hochman)Essential Voices USA 3:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen26. A Quiet MomentEssential Voices USA 2:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen27. American DreamEssential Voices USA 4:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen28. God Bless America (arr. L. Hochman)Kelli O'Hara 3:17$0.99  Buy MP3 

Frequently Bought Together

Celebrating the American Spirit + A Season's Promise
Price for both: $35.39

Buy the selected items together
  • A Season's Promise $16.74

Product Details

  • Performer: Essential Voices USA
  • Conductor: Judith Clurman
  • Composer: Hochman, Adler, Kroll-Rosenbaum, Muhly, Babbitt, et al.
  • Audio CD (October 30, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sono Luminus
  • ASIN: B00925TA50
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #211,454 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


Clurman has rerecorded the music on a new album, Celebrating the American Spirit. Along with choral settings of words from Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, FDR and Bill Clinton, the album examines the presidency and patriotism not with boisterous pomp, but from a more quiet and thoughtful viewpoint.

John Philip Sousa's blustery 'The Stars and Stripes Forever' makes an appearance, but not in its natural full-blown band habitat. Instead, it's transformed by Billy Test into gently swinging piano jazz. --National Public Radio, Tom Huizenga, January 2013

Judith Clurman...leads her forces here with great skill, spirit, and assurance; and her soloists are outstanding. The program is very nicely recorded...Choirmasters who are planning patriotic-themed concerts, take heed: there's a lot of material here that will bring your houses down. Whether the music tickles your funnybone or brings a tear to your eye, here's a release that will reinforce your patriotism and make you prouder than ever to be an American. --American Record Guide, Lindsay Koob

Product Description

Celebrating the American Spirit, performed by Essential Voices USA (EVUSA) and conducted by Judith Clurman along with guest artists, Broadway stars Kelli O'Hara and Ron Raines and composer-arranger Larry Hochman, represents an American songbook for the 21st century. The centerpiece of this CD is Sing Out Mr. President, a song cycle of sixteen newly commissioned compositions set to quotations by American presidents from Washington to Obama. Originally performed at the Library of Congress and broadcast on National Public Radio, the cycle showcases the American composers Samuel Adler, Milton Babbitt, Robert Beaser, Jason Robert Brown, Thomas Cabaniss, Jake Heggie, Larry Hochman, Michael Gilbertson, Nora Kroll-Rosenbaum, Andrew Lippa, David Ludwig, Paul Moravec, Nico Muhly, Georgia Stitt, Zachary Wadsworth, and Jesse Wiener. The CD also includes individual new and newly arranged works by composers and writers such as Irving Berlin (It Gets Lonely In the White House & God Bless America), Leonard Bernstein (Take Care of This House), Sheldon Harnick (Reason to Be Thankful),Jennifer Higdon (A Quiet Moment), Larry Hochman (Two Paraphrases on American Anthems & American Dream) and Laurie Hochman (The Pledge of Allegiance & American Dream), David Ludwig (The New Colossus), Stephen Paulus (Hymn for America), Marc Shaiman (A Seed of Grain: Theme from The American President), and John Philip Sousa (Stars and Stripes Forever).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reason to be Thankful November 19, 2012
Format:Audio CD
I can't think of any song more fitting for Thanksgiving than the beautiful Reason to be Thankful, one of the meaningful songs of American celebration on Judith Clurman's new album. It is beautifully sung and the lyrics by Sheldon Harnick are touching. All the songs are worthy of mention, but I'll especially point to Take Care of This House, performed with pristine beauty tinged with vulnerability by national treasure Kelli O'Hara. And a new discovery for me (though it's been around since 1962, written by Irving Berlin) is It Gets Lonely in the White House, sung by Ron Raines with rueful meaning.

The centerpiece of this CD is a series of new pieces by well known contemporary composers, each utilizing a quote from the most important Presidents set to music. The Essential Voices perform this material, often very complex, with superb musicality and perfect diction. The liner notes are detailed and informative, very helpful in understanding the background of the pieces.

Judith Clurman has produced a masterpiece of Americana which distills the essence of our country.

As we've been whiplashed between hurricane and a bruising national election, the calm and poise of this music are soothing, patriotic, yet never sentimental. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars American Music at it's FINEST November 12, 2012
By Renee
Format:Audio CD
This CD is exceptional. It has beautiful artistry in every note with the highest level of expertise. The names on this CD (Clurman, O'Hara, Raines, Frost, Hochman, Harnick, JRB, Stitt, Babitt to name a few) are proof that this is a quality CD. It captures the American spirit so beautifully and has so much variety. It profiles many great composers and some exciting up and coming ones. Judith Clurman's brilliant conducting captivates me as I listen to the singers use beautiful phrasing with great sensitivity to the lyric. I have never appreciated a CD as much as this one. Sitting back and just giving into the musical lines and messages of the songs bring so much joy to me. I hum the tunes and really think about the lyrics and their connection to the Presidents and to the history of America. Celebrating the American Spirit has it all and at the highest level of craft and creativity. As a singer, I can appreciate and learn from the musicality on this CD. Your soul will be grateful for purchasing this. Every American should own it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential CD by Essential Voices November 12, 2012
By Beth P
Format:Audio CD
A must-have for every record collection! The music is exquisite, the singing unsurpassed. This is a reflection of the true American spirit. Terrific holiday gift for your family and friends.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful CD November 11, 2012
Format:Audio CD
This is a wonderful CD with a gorgeous cover and booklet containing 15 pages of detailed liner notes and pictures. The chorus does exquisite work, and Kelli O'Hara and Ron Raines are, as always, brilliant. I listened to the whole thing in one sitting--stunning.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful American Music February 25, 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Judith Clurman captures American music as we have not heard before. It is an amazing assemblage of wonderful music and musicians.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting January 3, 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
A very interesting piece. Most of it is a choral. Love the Ron Raines cut of "It's Lonely in the White House." He and Kelli O'Hara are among two of Broadways best.
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5.0 out of 5 stars American music at its finest! November 16, 2012
By Harbs
Format:Audio CD
Judith Clurman has put together one of the most entertaining and enlightening musical experiences with Celebrating the American Spirit. Every song inspires a love of our great country with the standout being Reason to be Thankful. The CD features a veritable who's who of great american composers as well as featuring the words of many of our countries presidents. Whatever your personal politics are you will put them aside and take pride in America through the joy of superbly directed and performed music!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Finally - A 21st Century Americana CD November 16, 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This CD lives up to its name! Judith Clurman's Essential Voices USA are proudly "Celebrating the American Spirit" with this new CD. This CD is worth purchasing on Kelli O'Hara's "God Bless America" alone!! This Irving Berlin standard, orginally recorded by Kate Smith to express the hopes and dreams of an America on the verge of Word War II, is refreshingly presented on this CD to reflect the hopes and dreams in our post-9/11 America.

Many of the other selections on this CD bring a fresh, bright, comtemporary look at our 21st century America. This CD makes you feel great to be an American again!!

Bravo to Judith Clurman, Essential Voices USA and all those involved with this CD.

Looking forward to more CD's by Essential Voices USA in the future!!
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