University of South Florida

College of The Arts

University of South Florida

Pablo Neruda: The Poet Sings Nominated for Grammy

Thursday, February 04, 2016

The Harmonia Mundi recording Pablo Neruda: The Poet Sings, featuring USF Choral Director James Bass as a soloist, has been nominated for the 2016 Best Choral Performance Grammy. Recorded in 2014 at Sauder Concert Hall at Goshen College, the recording features Conspirare Chamber Players, talented vocal and instrumental soloists, and never before recorded music of Cary Ratcliff, Shawn Kirchner, and Donald Grantham. The recording is a spirited tribute to Chilean poet and politician Pablo Neruda with the leadership of Conspirare director Craig Hella Johnson.

The Poet Sings is an ongoing project to explore notable poets and their creations. The emotion, rhythm, and sounds of poetry naturally inspire music. In the words of Craig Hella Johnson, "Neruda's personal universe and the many realms of feeling, color and texture he envisaged with his words have inspired many artists to respond with new creations." The Poet Sings: Emily Dickinson was released in September 2015. Future releases will explore the works of Walt Whitman, Wallace Stevens, Rumi, Mary Oliver, and many more renowned poets.

James Bass currently serves as a bass soloist and chorus master for Seraphic Fire, a Miami-based professional choir. In 2012, the ensemble's recordings were nominated for two 2012 Grammy awards for recordings Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem and A Seraphic Fire Christmas, making Seraphic Fire the only classical ensemble in the world to be nominated for two projects. Bass also works as the artistic director of The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay, the premier choral ensemble of Tampa Bay.

The 58th Grammy Awards Ceremony will be held on February 15th, 2016 and be broadcast on CBS.