The “Emergent Universe Oratorio,” created by Vermont composer and classical guitarist Sam Guarnaccia of Shelburne, premieres Sept. 15 at 3 pm at the historic Breeding Barn at Shelburne Farms. The Oratorio will be presented in conjunction with the painting series “Endless Spring” by visual artist Cameron Davis. The event is free and open to the public.
The Oratorio weaves together choral and orchestra with spoken readings (recitatives), telling the story of our 14 billion year evolution, as informed by recent cosmological and quantum discoveries. This “New Story” suggests that insights into the workings of the universe can support our transition to a life sustaining whole Earth community. Several Vermont writers contributed to the recitatives, including Rebecca Kneale Gould and John Elder of Middlebury College.
The Oratorio is based on the Emmy Award-winning film “Journey of the Universe,” written by evolutionary philosopher Brian Swimme and Yale Historian of religions Mary Evelyn Tucker. There will be a free screening of “Journey of the Universe” on Saturday, Sept.14 at 7 pm in the Main St. Landing Theatre on the Burlington waterfront. A discussion will follow the film, exploring the significance of the Journey as a shared story for creating a viable future for people and planet.
The Oratorio Premiere is presented in collaboration with Shelburne Farms, All Souls Interfaith Gathering, and the American Teilhard Association, with generous grants from the Argosy and Puffin Foundations.