iSing Silicon Valley

Here I Stand

Innova 058



1.         Only in Sleep, Ēriks Ešenvalds  4:43

2.         Ave Generosa, Ola Gjeilo  4:18

3.         In Your Light, Daniel Elder  3:48

4.         365, Daniel Elder  2:34

            Never Shall I Forget, Adam Schoenberg 

5.                     I           Never  2:47

6.                     II          In the camp I lived as one in a dream, a shadow...  3:30

7.                     III         But I cannot keep silent  2:46

8.         Like a Singing Bird, Bob Chilcott  4:38

9.         Birds’ Lullaby, Sarah Quartel  3:23

10.       Salut Printemps, Claude Debussy  4:37

11.       Here I Stand, Karen Linford  4:59

12.       Sing, PinkZebra  5:09

13.       Grow Little Tree, Andrea Ramsey  2:12


– 49:26 –


iSing Silicon Valley

Singers from iSing HD, Polyphonics, Prephonics, and Harmonics Choirs, conducted by iSing Artistic Directors Jennah Delp Somers and Shane Troll, with iSing collaborative pianists Anny Cheng and Anna Khaydarova, and iSing Team Members, Erin McOmber, Lu Tesarowski and Mattina Keith.


Guest Instrumentalists

Emily Botel (violin)

Ron Ho (violin)

Lesley Robertson (viola)

Warren Wu (cello)

Kent Reed (percussion)

Meredith Clark (harp)


iSing commissions: Tracks 3, 4, 5 (2019); 9 (2016); 10 (2018).

World premiere recordings: Tracks 3, 4, 5, 9, 10.


Here I Stand is dedicated to the memory of beloved iSing parent, Allison Templeton — and to all of the generous and enthusiastic members of iSing’s musical community. Here’s to girls inspiring girls as they find the power of their voices and change the world through song.


You hold in your hands the debut album of iSing Silicon Valley, the premiere girls’ choral education organization based in Silicon Valley. The music on Here I Stand celebrates iSing’s focus on nurturing the love of singing, growth through pursuing music together, and the power of raising our voices in remembrance and in strength. Recorded at the Skywalker Sound and at First Baptist Church of Palo Alto, Here I Stand not only chronicles some of the stunning works commissioned by iSing during our first six seasons of singing, but also includes challenging selections of classic repertoire for treble voices.


For this first iSing recording, we made a conscious decision to showcase the breadth of performance by iSing students. Some works on Here I Stand demonstrate the musical finesse and the stunning vocal blend of our oldest singers — a few of them feature some of iSing’s talented teenaged soloists. Other pieces are sung beautifully by girls ranging in age from 7 to 12.  From start to finish, Here I Stand highlights the passion for music and the joyous singing of every one of the 200 iSing girls who helped to bring this album into the world.





Only in Sleep, Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977)

Words by Sara Teasdale

Mia Hamilton, soloist 


A soprano solo, supported by lush choral writing, creates the emotional power and drama in this programmatic setting of Sara Teasdale's’ nostalgic vision of childhood, re-experienced through dreams.  


Only in sleep I see their faces, 

Children I played with when I was a child. 

Louise comes back with her brown hair braided, 

Annie with ringlets warm and wild. 


Only in sleep time is forgotten

What may have come to them, who can know?

Yet we played last night as long ago, 

And the dollhouse stood at the turn of the stair. 


The years had not sharpened their smooth round faces

I met their eyes and found them mild—

Do they, too, dream of me, I wonder,

And for them am I too a child?



Ave Generosa, Ola Gjeilo (b.1978)

Words by Hildegard von Bingen

Hannah Kloninger-Stever, soloist


Norwegian-born composer Ola Gjeilo recasts this 12th-century chant by Hildegard of Bingen, one of the most powerful voices of the Middle Ages, in a stunning, swirling, four-part setting for treble choir.

Ave, generosa

Gloriosa et intacta puella

Tu pupilla castitatis,

Tu materia sanctitatis,

Que deo placuit.

Hail, girl of a noble house,

Shimmering and unpolluted,

You pupil in the eye of chastity,

You essence of sanctity,

Which was pleasing to God.



In Your Light, Daniel Elder (b. 1986)

Words by Rumi

Arrangement for treble voices commissioned by iSing


“This work explores one of the most joyful of Rumi’s poems and expresses it musically in a churning statement of pure ecstasy. The primary sense of this piece is the wordless expression of emotion on syllables such as ‘la’. As the significant words of the poem are ‘light’ and ‘love,’ this repeated syllable acts as a fragmentation and an alliteration to aid in the grounding of these ideas.” -- Daniel Elder 


In your light I learn how to love.

In your beauty, how to make poems. 

You dance inside my chest, where no one sees you, 

But sometimes I do, and that sight becomes this art. 


—        Translation, Coleman Barks


365, music and words by Daniel Elder (b.1986)

Arrangement for treble voices commissioned by iSing


“This original poem and its musical setting seek to pay tribute to the victims of gun violence in the modern United States, specifically those targeted, directly or indirectly, in mass public incidents. The poem is structured in seven stanzas for the days of the week, and there are twelve iterations of ‘Three hundred and sixty-five’ for the twelve months in the year. This text humbly seeks to draw attention to what exactly is happening among us, among our neighbors, our governors, and our legislators, and the importance of addressing this ever-growing crisis in our society.” -- Daniel Elder


Three hundred and sixty-five offenses

Three hundred and sixty-five offended


Three hundred and sixty-five questions

Three hundred and sixty-five objections


Three hundred and sixty-five inquiries

Three hundred and sixty-five appeals 


Three hundred and sixty-five in favor

Three hundred and sixty-five against 


Three hundred and sixty-five reproaches

Three hundred and sixty-five excuses


Three hundred and sixty-five denials

Three hundred and sixty-five tears. 


No more God

Forgive us for

We know not what we do...



Never Shall I Forget, Adam Schoenberg (b.1980)

Lyrics by Charles Anthony Silvestri, from Night by Elie Wiesel

iSing Commission. This commission was made possible by the Dale Warland Singers Commission Award presented by Chorus America and funded by the American Composers Forum, with the support of the iGive Annual Fund and the Barbara Foster Memorial Fund, and with the permission of the Elie Wiesel Family.    


It is part of iSing’s mission to offer our singers knowledge, a way of remembering and understanding what they have not experienced themselves, the means to connect the past with the present, and a way to make their voices heard. 


Nearly 75 years after the defeat of the Nazis and the liberation from the concentration camps in 1945, importantly by American as well as by European Allied forces, fewer and fewer Holocaust survivors are here to tell of their experiences. Many of us, including our singers, have never met a man or woman who survived the Holocaust.


Elie Wiesel spent his adult life teaching, writing, and advocating for social justice. Like other Holocaust survivors, he believed that only by remembering, only by telling the stories, and only by speaking out, and — when possible — taking action, in the face of the mistreatment of one human being by another, can we create a better future for ourselves, our children, and future generations. 


With this new piece, Never Shall I Forget, Adam Schoenberg, Anthony Silvestri, and the singers of iSing Silicon Valley continue to bear witness and commit to always remember. 


I. Never

Never shall I forget that night,

The first night in the camp,

That turned my life into one long night,

A night seven times sealed.


Never shall I forget the Selection.

Men to the left, Women to the right.

My mother and sisters, Disappearing into darkness.


Never shall I forget the small faces of children

Transformed into smoke Under a silent sky

Never shall I forget that smoke

Never shall I forget those flames

That consumed my faith forever.


II. In the camp I lived as one in a dream, a shadow…

My father’s hands, My father’s tears,

My father’s voice, Crying


The bell, the whip, The Appellplatz

Marching, fall in, Five-by-five

Work, exhaustion,

The terror of selection


Death, and bread,

And soup that tasted of corpses

A madman playing the violin

Here at the edge of his own grave.


My father’s hands, My father’s tears

My father’s voice, Crying out that awful night,

Crying out for me

And hearing only silence


Was this a dream?

Was I awake?

How was it possible that the world kept silent? Silent…  


III. But I cannot keep silent

But I cannot keep silent,

I must bear witness, testify…

For the youth of today

And the children of tomorrow…

For I do not want our past

Of misery and ashes

To become their future


And so we shall not keep silent.

We shall never keep silent.

Never shall I forget.



Like a Singing Bird, Bob Chilcott (b. 1955)

Words by Christina Rossetti and Robert Burns


British composer Bob Chilcott pairs his own new musical setting of Christina Rossetti’s poem A Birthday with an old Scottish melody setting Robert Burns’ timeless lyric, A Red, Red Rose. 

My heart is like a singing bird

Whose nest is in a watered shoot

My heart is like an apple tree

Whose boughs are set with thickset fruit

My heart is like a rainbow shell

That paddles in a halcyon sea

My heart is gladder than all these

Because my love is come to me.


Raise me a dais of silk and down

Hang it with vair and purple dyes

Carve it in doves and pomegranates

And peacocks with a hundred eyes

Work it in gold and silver grapes 

In leaves and silver fleur-de-lys

Because the birthday of my life 

Is come, my love is come to me. 


                         — Christina Rossetti 

O my love is like a red, red rose

That’s newly sprung in June;

O my love is like the melody

That’s sweetly played in tune. 


As fair thou art, my bonnie lass

So deep in love am I

And I will love thee still, my Dear

Till all the seas gang dry. 


Till all the seas gang dry, my Dear, 

And the rocks melt with the sun;

And I will love thee still, my Dear

While the sands of life shall run.


And fare thee well, my only Love!

And fare thee well awhile!

And I will come again, my Love, 

Tho’ it were ten thousand mile!


         — Robert Burns




Birds’ Lullaby; Lullaby, Sarah Quartel (b.1982)

Words by E. Pauline Johnson


Canadian composer Sarah Quartel sets a tuneful melody over syncopated, swinging harmonies, bringing to mind the swaying of branches in a cedar forest.


Sing to us, cedars; the twilight is creeping

Sing to us, cedars; the twilight is creeping

With shadowy garments, the wilderness through;

All day we have caroled, and now would be sleeping.

So echo the anthems we warbled to you;

While we swing, swing,

And your branches sing,

And we drowse to your dreamy whispering.


Sing to us, cedars; the night-wind is sighing,

Is wooing, is pleading, to hear you reply;

And here in your arms we are restfully lying,

And longing to dream to your soft lullaby;

While we swing, swing,

And your branches sing,

And we drowse to your dreamy whispering.


Sing to us, cedars, your voice is so lowly,

Your breathing so fragrant, your branches so strong;

Our little nest-cradles are swaying so slowly,

While zephyrs are breathing their slumberous song.

While we swing, swing,

While your branches sing,

And we drowse to your dreamy whispering.



Salut Printemps, Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

Dana Abbo, Soloist


The choir welcomes spring with soaring three-part harmony, the piano accompaniment evokes the calling of birds and the blooming of flowers, as the soprano soloist bids a lyrical adieu to winter, in this masterpiece by Claude Debussy for treble voices and piano.


Salut printemps, jeune saison!

Dieu rend aux plaines leur couronne.

La sève ardente qui bouillonne

S’épanche et brise sa prison.


Bois et champs sont en floraison.

Un monde invisible bourdonne,

L’eau sur le caillou qui résonne

Court et dit sa claire chanson.


Le genet dore la colline;

Sur le vert gazon l’aubépine

Verse la neige de ses fleurs

Tout est fraicheur, amour, lumière,

Et du sein fécond de la terre

Montent des chants et des senteurs.

Hail spring, young season!

Gods restores the crown to the plains

The warm and bubbling sap

Overflows and breaks its prison.


Woods and fields are in flower.

An invisible world buzzes,

The water, reverberating over the pebble,

Flows and sings its clear song.


The broom gilds the hill,

On the green lawn of the hawthorn

Pours the snow of its flowers.

All is freshness, love, light,

And from the fertile bosom of the earth

Ascend the songs and the scents.



Here I Stand, Karen Linford

Words by Malala Yousafzai

iSing commission


Commissioned in the spring of 2016 from Bay Area composer Karen Linford, Here I Stand speaks to iSing’s belief that the power of one voice is great, but the collective power of combined voices can change the world. Pakistani activist Malala is the best kind of hero for young singers; Linford’s musical setting of her words amplifies their impact. 


“Rabab mangia wakht de teer sho”

“Farewell music! Even your sweet tunes are best kept silent”

Our words can change the world,

It is our right to sing,

We will bring change through our voices.

There is light when we see darkness,

There’s a voice when we are silenced,

There are pens and books when we see guns,

Be peaceful and love everyone.


So here I stand, one girl among many,

I raise up my voice, thousands of voices,

Not so that I can shout,

But so those without a voice can be heard.


Pick up your books and pens,

Embrace your strength within,

Let us shield ourselves with unity,

Give us peace and prosperity!


So here I stand, we are all together,

I raise up my voice, we are tired of these wars,

Not so that I can shout,

But so those without a voice can be heard.

We will speak for our rights,

A bright and peaceful future,

Those who have fought for their rights,

There is a new life.


Brothers and sisters, our right to live in peace,

There is a new life, our right to dignity,

Now is the time, our right to equality,

Hopelessness died, courage was born.

Our words can change the world. We will bring change. 



Sing!, PinkZebra 

iSing Commission


Commissioned in the spring of 2018, this piece makes clear iSing’s mission: that every voice should be heard, every voice can make a difference. In a world that can dampen the confidence and enthusiasm of young women, the text of Sing is a message of empowerment to iSing singers, as they come together in song. 


When a flame burns bright, 

The darkness yields to light, 

And it grows in time, 

In the heart of every dreamer. 

And as the pages turn, 

The lessons we have learned

Come to shape our lives. 

Now the time has come 

To open my eyes 


And I’ll sing, sing my own song

Stand and be strong, 

Live in the moment. 

With every word speak from the heart. 

This is the start. 

We’ll make our voices heard 

When we find our destiny, 

Shine with inner beauty. 

Take my hand and see

There’s a world unfolding 

Right now, waiting for me. 


Though the road may wind, 

And doubts may cross my mind

I will reach inside

For the strength I know I carry.

With every step I take, 

There’s a choice for me 

To make every moment count. 

This is all I ask, 

If given the chance I will sing. 


Grow Little Tree, by Andrea Ramsey 


As we come to the end of each season, iSing celebrates our singers and our flourishing community with our spring anthem, Grow Little Tree. 


Grow little tree

Stretch your arms,

and spread your leaves

What will you be?


Grow little tree

Wave your branches 

wild and free

For all to see


I’ll grow too

Just like you I’ll grow tall

Nurture me, I look to you


Teach me how to dance, 

Dance in the wind

Stand, and soak up the sun

And when the storm needs a shower

Let the earth catch my tears

And sprout a new flower

Grow little tree. 




About iSing


Founded in 2013 by Artistic Directors Jennah Delp-Somers and Shane Troll, iSing Silicon Valley brings together more than 300 young female singers in the Silicon Valley, offering them rigorous musical and vocal training while fostering artistry, community, and leadership.


In addition to presenting their own concerts to enthusiastic, sold-out houses in Silicon Valley, iSing  was recently presented by Stanford Live and Festival Napa Valley. iSing has also now begun to achieve national and international recognition. Recent awards include the Grand Prize in the 8th International Robert Schumann Choral Competition (2018) and the Chorus America’s Dale Warland Singers Commission Award (2018). iSing has enjoyed collaborations with musical pioneer Meredith Monk and Vocal Ensemble, the world-renowned vocal ensembles Voces8 and Cappella SF, and other guest artists, including soprano Barbara Bonney, folk singer/songwriter Moira Smiley, and the Amaranth String Quartet.


iSing singers become friends for life, bonded by artistic experiences that challenge and shape their view of the world. Through singing and growing in iSing’s supportive community, they discover their vulnerability, uniqueness, and purpose. Their shared vision for a bright future in which the voices of these young women will be heard and valued, manifests itself in every rehearsal, every performance, and on iSing’s debut album Here I Stand.





Album artwork, Elizabeth Foster, iSing alumna


Recorded April 26–27, First Baptist Church, Palo Alto, CA

Recorded May 17–18, Skywalker Studios, Marin, CA

Nick Tipp, Lead Producer of the recording sessions

Nick Tipp, Lead Engineer, Soniferous Studios

Recording Engineer: Paul Vasquez

Editor: Nick Deyoe

Recorded and Produced in the USA


℗© 2020 iSing Silicon Valley


innova is supported by an endowment from the McKnight Foundation.

Philip Blackburn, director, design

Chris Campbell, operations director

Tim Igel, publicist