The Cathedral is pleased to welcome ICantori of Walla Walla University to our Sundays at 4 music series.

The select choir of Walla Walla University, an auditioned group chosen from the 1800-member student body, enjoys a history of touring that began in 1929. Renamed ICantori (Italian: “the singers”) in 1979, the ensemble has traveled extensively in the Pacific Northwest and western United States and appeared also in Canada, Russia, and Romania. Since 2011 they have performed in venues such as the Cathedral of Christ the Light (Oakland), St. Ignatius Church (San Francisco), Grace Cathedral (San Francisco), St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral (Seattle), St. James Cathedral (Seattle), Trinity Episcopal Cathedral (Portland), the Co-Cathedral of Saint Theresa (Honolulu), the historic Kawaiaho’o Church (Honolulu), Peachtree Road United Methodist Church (Atlanta), Forest Lake SDA Church, (Apopka, FL) and, in southern California, at St. Cyril of Jerusalem Church, Loma Linda University church, and the Vallejo Drive Seventh-day Adventist Church. Their repertoire focuses on classical music but includes a wide variety of mostly sacred styles. The choir regularly performs for the 2,000-member Walla Walla University Church of Seventh-day Adventists and offers a major concert each quarter on campus. Every two years, in conjunction with the University Drama Department, the choir presents a musical. Recent productions have included Little Women; You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown; A Year with Frog and Toad; and the opera Amahl and the Night Visitors.


The western Christian church observes a solemn, penitential season between the joyful celebrations of Christmas and Easter. This soul-searching time of preparation, called Lent, lasts forty days in solidarity with the time Christ spent fasting in the wilderness of temptation (Matthew chapter 4). Neither the Hebrew word “Hallelujah” nor the Latin word “Alleluia” is used during Lent which, this year, began on 2 March (Ash Wednesday) and concluded on 16 April (Holy Saturday). Each year, beginning on Easter Sunday, we must re-learn how to incorporate “Alleluia” into the liturgy, into our lives, into our consciousness. During the darkness of Holy Week, we plumb the depths of loss as we contemplate the passion of Christ. Following such trauma, the “Alleluia” of Easter takes on new significance. Far from naïve celebration or jovial triumph, it communicates wisdom, resolve, and strength.

Over the past two years our world has experienced its own solemn, penitential season. As we emerge from this soul-searching period of isolation, we must all learn how to reclaim joy. After two years of quarantine and loss, our choir is grateful to be together in person rather than on screen, grateful to be singing without masks, grateful to be on tour. Reclaiming joy is not automatic, however, and we are still learning as we go, learning to cope with what was lost even as we rejoice.

We are especially grateful to welcome esteemed organist and composer David Briggs who joins us in Manhattan. Mr. Briggs performed a brilliant organ recital in Walla Walla on 9 April 2022, including his monumental Messe pour Notre-Dame. It is a great joy to sing this work again with him at the organ.

Thank you for joining us in reclaiming Alleluia.