Performance

 

John A. Graham enjoys performing a cappella polyphonic music, especially from repertories of Georgian and Western medieval sacred music. Graham is an amateur singer, but has sought out various unique performance opportunities over the years. He has also directed choirs at Wesleyan, Princeton, and Yale, and continues a life long tradition of Christmas caroling during the advent season.

 

Below, please find a selection of videos of his performances, many of them informal. Countless other performances were not recorded, but such as is the life of music: it must be performed to be appreciated! At the bottom of the page is a list of some of John's earlier choral singing and directing experiences, as well as instrumental performance experiences. For more on John's ensemble directing, see the Ensembles and Workshops pages. For a playlist of all performances, follow this link.

 

 

Troparion to St. George, sung in the studio with the Ranina ensemble (2019)

 

 

Singing on the trail in the Racha highlands with Tornike and Dato (2019)

 

 

Singing the emotional "Tsmindao ghmerto" (Holy God) by Zakaria Paliashvili, with the Capitol Hill Chorale in the Samtavisi Cathedral (2019)

 

 

"Mravalzhamier" (C-dur variant) sung with the Ranina Ensemble in Ananuri Church (2019)

 

 

"Mravalzhamier" by the Aghsavali Ensemble, sung in the Samtavisi Church (2019)

 

 

"Ver Shemdzlebel vart" (9th heirmos for the feast of St. John Baptist), performed with members of the Aghsavali Ensemble at the Tbilisi Conservatory (2019)

 

 

"Shen khar venakhi" (You are the Vineyard), this variant from the Gelati monastery, sung in the Gelati monastery with my good friends from Kutaisi (2018)

 

 

"Shatilis Asulo" with Giorgi and Gela from the Urmuli Ensemble (2018)

 

 

Performing "Apkhazura" with the Aghsavali Ensemble outdoors in the ruin of the Augustinian monastery in Old Goa, India (2018)

 

 

"Shen khar venakhi" (You are the vineyard), performed with the Aghsavali Ensemble in Goa, India (2018)

 

 

"Sulo chemo" (My soul, my soul) sung with the Aghsavali Ensemble in the fantastic acoustics of one of the cathedrals in Old Goa, India (2018)

 

 

Singing on the trail with Gio and Tornike (2018)

 

 

Live on television: the rare ornamental variant of the hymn for St. George from Gelati monastery (this unpublished musical variant I copied from a rough draft manuscript dating to 1885).

 

 

Singing the paraklesis service for the saints of Betania monastery (2017)

 

 

Easter chants with the monks of Bana monastery. Here singing in Kintsvisi monastery (2017)

 

 

Performing "Raodenta kristes mier" (As Many as are Baptized into Christ), a hymn for St. John the Baptist day, and every baptism. Performed antiphonally by the Aghsavali Ensemble and Kashweti St. George Church Choir at the Tbilisi Conservatory (2017)

 

Performing "Ghmerti khar" (You are the Lord), 5th heirmos of Nativity, Aghsavali Ensemble (2017)

 

"Kriste aghdga" (Christ is Risen!), sung with the monks of Bana Monastery (2017)

 

Performing the troparion for St. Ekvtime Kereselidze, with the Aghsavali Ensemble (2017). St. Ekvtime (1865-1944) was personally responsible for saving the majority of Georgian chant transcriptions in the fraught early decades of the twentieth century. He was canonized only in 2003, when his efforts were realized through the discovery of his private memoir and other sources.

 

 

Singing the Annunciation hymn "Dghes tskhovrebisa" (Today is the crown) with the Yale Georgian Chant Group. This is the Erkomaishvili variant from the Shemokmedi monastery (2016)

 

 

Singing "Netar ars katsi" (Blessed is the Man), Gelati monastery variant, with the monks in Bana Monastery, Georgia (2016)

 

 

Singing the troparion for St. Pilimon Koridze in the town of Ozurgeti, Guria region, where Koridze spent decades transcribing traditional chant from local master chanters in the 1890s and 1990s. Here, performing with members of the Aghsavali Ensemble (2015)

 

 

"Aghdgomasa shensa" (To your Resurrection), an Easter hymn sung with Soso and Shergil in the wonderful acoustic of Sapara Monastery (2014)

 

 

"Kriste aghdga" (Christ is Risen!), sung in several West Georgian variants with Soso, Poti, and Alex (2014)

 

 

Directing the Princeton Georgian Choirs, this is "Elia Lrdei" (Svanetian hymn to St. Elijah). Performed at Princeton (2013)

 

 

A pair of Georgian love songs... sung with Ekaterine, Keti, Shergil, and Soso (2013)

 

 

Singing in Svan tuning with Romeo and Betkil Pirtskhelani (2013)

 

 

Performing "Tqveta ganmatavisuplebelo" (As the Deliverer of Captives), troparion to St. George. This is the Erkomaishvili musical variant from the Shemokmedi monastery, performed with members of the Sakhioba Ensemble during their performance at Princeton University (2012)

 

 

Chanting "Atskhovne upalo" (Nativity chant), from the Gelati monastery. Performed with the Aghsavali Ensemble (2012)

 

 

Performing a medley of songs with some dances with our dear friends Magda and Gigi Garaqanidze (2011)

 

 

Singing "Chela" (Megrelian cart song) during a performance in Finland. With Ekaterine Diasamidze-Graham and Dato Shugliashvili (2011)

 

 

Singing the chant "Dideba maghalta shina" (Glory be to God in the highest). This variant is from the Karbelashvili brothers in East Georgia. Sung together with Ekaterine Diasamidze-Graham and Dato Shugliashvili (2011).

 

 

Singing Aslanuri Mravalzhamier at our wedding (2011)

 

"Pirveli Iona" (hymn for St. Jonah), performed with the Aghsavali Ensemble at the Tbilisi Conservatory (2010)

 

 

Singing "Qanuri" (Gurian field song) with the Princeton Georgian Choirs (2009)

 

 

American-European Vocal Performance

  • Handel Society of Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH
  • Musica Alta Renaissance Ensemble (Choir, Recorder), Princeton University
  • Collegium Musicum, Wesleyan University, with Jane Alden
  • Wesleyan Singers (Assistant Director), Wesleyan University, with Ron Ebrecht
  • Trinity Cathedral Church Choir, Copley Square, Boston, with Brian Jones
  • Sacred Harp and New Compositions Ensemble, with Neely Bruce
  • Gospel Choir, Wesleyan University, with Marichal Monts
  • Rosentest Choir, New Scandanavian Compositions, NYC, with Edward Jensen
  • Wesleyan Spirits (artistic director), contemporary men’s chorus, 2 albums, toured Japan
  • Valley Forge Men-Boy’s Choir, England/Wales Tours, with Peter Conte and Bernard Kunkel
  • Pennsylvania District Chorus, Regional Chorus, and State Chorus, auditioned competitions

 

Other Vocal Performance

  • Yale Georgian Chant Group (director), Yale University
  • Princeton Georgian Choirs (director), Princeton University
  • Kashweti St. George Church Choir, Tbilisi, Georgia
  • Karnatak ragam, studied with Fr. M.P. George, Orthodox Theological Seminary, Kottayam, Kerela, India
  • Okros Stumrebi Georgian Folk Choir, Tbilisi Georgia, with Carl Linich
  • Bulgarian, South African, Corsican repertory with the "Northern Harmony Choir," eight week professional tour in England, with Patty Cuyler, Larry Gordon
  • South Indian vocal and solkattu, with TJ Vishwanathan and David Nelson, Wesleyan University
  • Cantus Firmus (director), Wesleyan University

 

Instrumental Performance

  • Yale University Javanese Gamelan Ensemble, with Sumarsam
  • Brazilian Maracatu Ensemble, with Scott Kettner
  • Cuban Bata Drumming, with Elizabeth Sayre
  • Recorder, Musica Alta Renaissance Ensemble, Princeton University
  • West African Ewe drumming/vocal/dance, with Abraham Adzenyah
  • Brazilian Samba percussion ensemble, with Eric A. Galm