PROJECT : ENCORE  

Previously based in Seattle and Boston, conductor and composer Sarah Riskind is the Music Director of the Baroque Artists of Champaign Urbana and the Director of Choral Activities/Assistant Professor of Music at Eureka College. She leads the Eureka College Chorale, Chamber Singers, and instrumental Chamber Ensemble, as well as teaching courses in composition, improvisation, musicianship, and conducting.

Riskind is a long-time faculty member and choral director at The Walden School Young Musicians Program, an inspiring summer program in New Hampshire for creative musicians ages 9-18. She has written chamber music for the Quince Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, Hub New Music, the International Contemporary Ensemble, and Ensemble Dal Niente as part of the Walden School Faculty Commissioning Project.

Many of her choral works are settings of Jewish texts, such as Psalm of the Sky for TBB chorus, violin, and piano, which was premiered in 2020 as part of the Creative Commissions Project at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.

As a presenter and clinician, Riskind specializes in Renaissance polyphony, Sephardic music, musicianship training, and choral improvisation. In a 2021 Walden Online Workshop entitled Chromaticism in Renaissance Music: What living musicians can learn from Gesualdo and friends, she discussed wide-ranging uses of musica ficta and guided the multi-generational participants in composing with similar techniques.

In addition to choral conducting, composition, and singing early music, Sarah Riskind enjoys playing Irish and French-Canadian fiddle and classical violin. She holds a DMA in Choral Conducting from University of Washington, an MM in Choral Conducting from University of Wisconsin at Madison, and a BA in Music from Williams College.


HariyuVoicing: SATB  Accompaniment: Piano  Performance Length: 2:39  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Psalm 100  Language: Hebrew  Descriptive Terms: Celebration, Faith, Joy, Love, Praise  First Performance: May 11, 2015: Triad: Boston’s Choral Collective, Karl Henning, Harvard-Epworth Church, Cambridge, MA Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 949/982~2019-Q3)
Oseh ShalomVoicing: SATB  Accompaniment: Piano, Violin  Performance Length: 3:42  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Amidah blessings, Job 25  Language: Hebrew  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Shabbat, Jewish Holidays  Descriptive Terms: Peace, Prayer, Supplication, Tango, Worship  First Performance: May 23, 2018: University of Washington Chorale, Elisabeth Cherland, Meany Hall, University of Washington, Seattle, WA Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 949/950~2019-Q2)
Sim ShalomVoicing: SATB  Solo(s): Soprano or Yenor  Accompaniment: Piano or Organ  Performance Length: 4:00  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Hebrew Liturgy  Language: Hebrew  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Shabbat, Jewish Holidays  Descriptive Terms: Blessing, Light, Meditative, Peace, Prayer  First Performance: May 02, 2010: First Parish Church of Berlin Choir, Sarah Riskind, First Parish Church of Berlin, MA Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 949/1027~2019-Q4)
Mi Y’malelVoicing: SATB  Accompaniment: Piano, Violin  Performance Length: 3:00  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Traditional Jewish, Psalm 106  Language: Hebrew  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Winter, Jewish Holidays, Hanukkah  Descriptive Terms: Celebration, Freedom, Joy, Salvation, Triumph  First Performance: Dec 03, 2017: University of Wisconsin Concert Choir, Beverly Taylor, Luther Memorial Church, Madison, WI Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 949/1053~2020-Q1)
Psalm of the SkyVoicing: TBB  Accompaniment: Piano, Violin  Performance Length: 5:00  Notation: Standard  Text Source: Rabbi Rachel Barenblat, Psalm 23  Language: English, Hebrew  Seasonal/Liturgical Uses: Memorial Services  Descriptive Terms: Comfort, Faith, Flight, Hope, Suffering  First Performance: Feb 23, 2019: Ensemble X, Austin Ridlen, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music Text Setting Composer’s Notes Source for Scores (P:E 949/1188~2020-Q3)
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