Crossroads of Three Faiths
March 5March 11, 2020


“O Jerusalem!” on Tour:

Saturday, March 7, 2020 – New York, NY
Metropolitan Museum of Art (MetLive Arts)

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Thursday, March 12, 2020 – Chicago (Evanston), IL
Northwestern University
Galvin Recital Hall, Bienen School of Music
For more information contact Apollo’s Fire at 800.314.2535 or 216.320.0012

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[/box]“The place where brothers and strangers are one…”
– Jalal al-Din Rumi, 13th-c. Persian poet
Premiered last year to sold-out crowds, Jeannette Sorrell’s evocation of Old Jerusalem blends music and poetry from the Jewish, Christian, Arab, and Armenian quarters of the Old City. Selections from Monteverdi’s great Vespers of 1610 echo with Arabic love songs and rapturous singing of Jewish cantors. The performers, including musicians of Jewish, Muslim, and Christian backgrounds, join together in a celebration of brotherhood and sisterhood.

A voyage of faith for the 21st century… The entire evening was delivered with urgency, polish, and flair. An ensemble at the peak of their powers.

Captivating… a ravishing musical landscape. A high level of artistry and passionate music-making… gorgeous and stylish. Sorrell should be proud of this enjoyable and unity-striving evening in a time when human divisions are stoked to achieve dangerous ends.”

At a time of ever-increasing tensions in the Middle East, 25 unique artists from Jewish, Palestinian, Muslim, and Christian backgrounds come together. The sounds of oud, theorbo, medieval harp, vielle, qanoon, strings, wooden flutes, and exotic percussion join with human voices in a celebration of love and shared humanity.

PRE-CONCERT TALK with musician Daphna Mor, 1 hour before each concert.

Join the musicians in the lobby for baklava and other Middle Eastern treats.FREE!

Watch Video



Meet the Artists

    oud & qanoon
    ney & recorder

Northern Trust
Thursday, March 5, 2020, 7:30PM
AVON LAKE United Church of Christ
Monday, March 9, 2020, 7:30PM
FREE Afterglow!
Tuesday, March 10, 2020, 7:30PM
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, CLEVELAND HEIGHTS
Wednesday, March 11, 2020, 7:30PM
CLEVELAND Museum of Art (Gartner Auditorium)
Jeannette Sorrell,conductor
Amanda Powell,soprano
Zafer Tawil,oud & qanoon
Sorab Wadia & Jacob Perry,tenors
Jeffrey Strauss,baritone
Daphna Mor,winds
Projected images by Camilla Tassi (3/5 & 3/11)

These concerts are made possible by the generous support of Marilyn and Tom McLaughlin,
The National Endowment for the Arts and Northern Trust.

View of Damascus Gate with Camel Drivers, Jerusalem, c.1844 (oil on board), Caffi, Ippolito (1809-66) / Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna, Ca’ Pesaro, Venice, Italy / © Mondadori Electa / Bridgeman Images

“The U.S.A.’s hottest baroque band.” –CLASSICAL MUSIC MAGAZINE (UK)


has been praised as “the star of the evening” (Seen and Heard International, UK) and “charismatic and theatrically arresting” (San Francisco Chronicle). A highly versatile musician, she is at home in repertoire from Monteverdi to Mozart to Ravel, and has toured internationally as soloist in baroque opera, oratorio, and crossover folk programs. Her tour performances with GRAMMY®-winning baroque orchestra Apollo’s Fire (Jeannette Sorrell) include such venues as the National Concert Hall of Ireland in Dublin, the Irish National Opera House, the Aldeburgh Festival (UK), the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the National Gallery in Washington, and Zellerbach Hall in San Francisco, among others. Her 2019 debut as Messiah soloist with the Calgary Symphony won kudos as “the soloist of the night… singing to perfection.”

As a recording artist, Ms Powell has been featured on several Apollo’s Fire albums including Sugarloaf Mountain, Sephardic Journey, and Christmas on Sugarloaf Mountain, all of which received rave reviews on both sides of the Atlantic and debuted in the top ten on the BILLBOARD Classical Chart. Her 2015 solo debut album, Beyond Boundaries, is an intimate program of folk, jazz, and global music. She is a fluent improvisor and has collaborated with such artists as Bobby McFerrin and Sheila Jordan.


oud & qanoon

is an accomplished Palestinian musician and a virtuoso on ‘oud, qanun, violin, and Arab percussion. He performs across the U.S. and in the Middle East with such musicians as Sting as well as celebrated world music artists. He was a featured composer and performer in acclaimed director Jonathan Demme’s Oscar-nominated film “Rachel Getting Married” and is composing and performing for Demme’s next film project, Zeitoun. Zafer is continuously exploring the boundaries of Arab music, and often performs collaborative concerts involving classical Indian and Persian music, as well as Jazz fusion. He has been a guest teacher at workshops on Arab music at many institutions and universities across the United States. A native of Jerusalem, he resides in New York City.


With his ethnically ambiguous looks and his nearly three-octave range Sorab Wadia has sung music from the 11th century to pop and rock via oratorio and opera and taken on an array of characters from – in alphabetical order – Algeria, Afghanistan, Brunei, France, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Norway, Pakistan, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Turkey, and the United States. He relishes resisting the clutches of typecasting.

Most recently he played CL Chawla in the world premier of Mira Nair’s new musical, Monsoon Wedding at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, and reprised his role of Shylock #1/Gratiano in Karin Coonrod’s critically acclaimed production of The Merchant Of Venice at Peak Performances in Montclair, New Jersey.

The 2014-2016 seasons brought two wonderful collaborations with Karin Coonrod, her production of The Merchant of Venice in Venice, Italy, commemorating the 500th anniversary of the Ghetto, and The Tempest at LaMama, an appearance on Madame Secretary, a guest spot on Blacklist: Redemption, and a leading role in the film The Spectacular Jihad of Taz Rahim.

Nothing thrills Sorab more than collaborating with writers and composers to create new roles in fresh-off-the-press plays and musicals. He’s been lucky to have birthed some deliciously colorful characters: The Sultan of Nubai, the world’s richest man, in Niko Tsakalakos and Janet Allard’s Pool Boy, at Barrington Stage; Hussein al-Mansour, the beleaguered middle-management terrorist in Benjamin Scheuer and Zoe Samuels’ Jihad! The Musical on London’s West End; and Raj Dhawan, the grandiose, if sadly over-the-hill, Bollywood hero in Ayub Khan Din and Paul Bogaev’s Bunty Berman Presents… off-Broadway with The New Group.

Some of the new plays he has premiered recently include: The American premiere of the English translation of Évelyne de la Chenelière’s Bashir Lazhar, a haunting story of an Algerian immigrant to Quebec, at Barrington Stage; Stephanie Liss’s Faces of War with BIMA, NY; Fear Up: Stories from Bagdad and Guantanamo at the NY Fringe; Big Shoot by Koffi Kwahulé at The Lark, and Anuvab Pal’s Chaos Theory with Pulse Ensemble Theater off-Broadway.

Sorab performs a one-man play of Khaled Hosseini’s novel, The Kite Runner, which has been touring the U.S. for the past seven seasons, with international hops to Canada and India. The novel was adapted by Wynn Handman, a veritable guru of New York theater, for his company, American Place Theater.

He is relieved to announce that he has popped his Law & Order cherry on SVU and done the requisite guest spots on 30 Rock and Chappelle’s Show. He dreams of being the lead on a sitcom – something he believes he was put on earth to do – so, feel free to make him offers!

Born in Bombay, India, to a pair of highly talented and artistic people, Sorab has never known life without music, drama, and art. His mother, Coomi, a graphic artist and conductor of the globetrotting Paranjoti Chorus, was prepping and conducting Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony up until nine days before he was born. His father, Nariman, was a maverick: jewelry designer, electronics engineer, composer…did pretty much whatever he set his mind to.

Sorab went to the United States to study piano at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, got his Masters there. After the briefest of careers as a classical pianist he began to pursue opera and theater at the University of Tennessee, where he got a second Masters. Two degrees not satisfying him, he went on to study the Meisner technique with master-teacher Maggie Flanigan at her studio in NYC; two years of intense study with Ms. Flanigan have profoundly changed his approach to acting. He is now based back home in Bombay, but will jump on a plane for a gig at the drop of a hat. In show business, home is where the laptop is.

Infected with an unquenchable case of wanderlust, he travels whenever he can – 62 countries and counting – and prefers couchsurfing and hostels to hotels when he’s on holiday. Besides English, he speaks – in order of proficiency – Italian, Gujarati, Hindi, German, French, with smatterings of Marathi, Spanish and Urdu. Other hobbies include: photography, painting, hiking, gardening, knitting, and dreaming about having a dog and a small farm.


Tenor Jacob Perry Jr., based in the Washington Metro Area, receives praise for his “gorgeous and stylish” interpretations of Renaissance and Baroque repertoire (ClevelandClassical.com). He has been featured as a soloist with Apollo’s Fire, Handel Choir of Baltimore, Mountainside Baroque, Tempesta di Mare, The Thirteen, Washington Bach Consort, and The City Choir of Washington. Jacob has been selected as the tenor participant of the Virginia Best Adams Masterclass of the 2020 Carmel Bach Festival.

Deeply immersed in vocal chamber music, Jacob enjoys active membership in Les Canards Chantants, a soloist-ensemble based in Philadelphia, as well as engagements with ensembles such as The Thirteen, the Art of Early Keyboard (ARTEK), New Consort, and Cathedra. Additionally, he can be heard singing with larger choirs such as Yale Choral Artists, The Clarion Choir, Washington Bach Consort, and the Choir of Washington National Cathedral. He has explored the vocal works by contemporary composers through engagements with Third Practice, hexaCollective, and Great Noise Ensemble. In his newly assumed role as Co-Director of Bridge, a genre-defying vocal ensemble based in Washington, he draws on his instincts for theatricality and story-telling, as the group explores the connections between early masterpieces and ground-breaking new works.

Career highlights include multiple tours performing in Roman Basilicas with the choir of the Basilica of the National Shrine, headlining the inaugural festival of Western Early Music at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music with Les Canards Chantants, his Kennedy Center debut as a featured soloist in Monteverdi’s Vespro della Beata Vergine with The Thirteen, and a recital celebrating the anniversary of Monteverdi’s 450th birthday with theorbists Richard Stone and William Simms.

Since 2013, Jacob has served as a cantor and professional chorister of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. He earned his B.A. in Vocal Performance from University of Maryland, Baltimore County.



Praised as “an authoritative artist” (Cleveland Plain Dealer) and “an elegant and energetic singer” (Seen and Heard International), baritone Jeffrey Strauss has performed with leading period music ensembles including Tafelmusik, the Consort of Musicke with Emma Kirkby and Anthony Rooley, the Taverner Consort under Andrew Parrott, The Handel & Haydn Society, Seattle Baroque, The Newberry Consort, and Tempesta di Mare, among many others. Trained at an early age in Jewish liturgical music by Cantor Daniel Gildar, he later studied voice and art song in London with Yvonne Rodd-Marling and Martin Penny, and in Paris with Gérard Souzay. He has been a regular soloist with Apollo’s Fire since 1995, and is especially known for his appearances in Handel’s Messiah, the Bach St. John and St. Matthew Passions, Sephardic Journey, O Jerusalem!, and music of Monteverdi including the 1610 Vespers, Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda, and the title role in L’Orfeo. A longstanding proponent of contemporary music, he has collaborated with Ralph Shapey and the Contemporary Chamber Players of the University of Chicago (Contempo), the Chicago Chamber Musicians, the Pacifica Quartet, and Eighth Blackbird, and has premiered works by Babbitt, Bernstein, Axelrod, and Shapey. He has appeared twice with the Omaha Symphony, and performed the role of Mephistopheles in Berlioz’s Damnation of Faust. An accomplished stage actor, his 2014 performance as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof at the Lancaster Opera House—reprising a role he first played at age 17—was hailed as “masterful” (Buffalo News).

ney & recorder

has performed throughout Europe and the United States as both a soloist and ensemble player. Mor’s “astonishing virtuosity” (Chicago Tribune) has been heard in solo recitals in the United States, Croatia, Germany and Switzerland. She has performed as a soloist with the New York Collegium, the New York Early Music Ensemble and Little Orchestra Society, and as a member of the orchestra with the New York Philharmonic, New York City Opera and Orchestra of St. Luke’s. Mor was awarded First Prize in the Settimane Musicali di Lugano Solo Competition and the Boston Conservatory Concerto Competition, and has appeared in a duo with Joyce DiDonato on the singer’s promotional tour for the album In War and Peace. Devoted to new music, Mor has recorded on John Zorn’s Tzadik label, and has performed the world premiere of David Bruce’s Tears, Puffes, Jumps, and Galliard with the Metropolis Ensemble. Also active in the world music community, Mor has performed in festivals and on stages worldwide, including New York’s Summer Stage and Munich’s Gasteig. She can also be heard on Sting’s album If On A Winter’s Night for Deutsche Grammophon. Mor serves as the Music Director of Beineinu, a New York initiative dedicated to the modern cultivation of Jewish culture, and is a performer and teacher of liturgical music of the Jewish diaspora. She leads programs for the Education Department of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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