Introducing Maestro Ekaterina Antonenko

PaTRAM Institute™ is proud to announce its newest collaboration with Maestro Ekaterina Antonenko, the renowned choral conductor, Founder and Artistic Director of the Russia-based Intrada Vocal Ensemble. Since its founding in 2006 the Intrada Vocal Ensemble has gained a reputation as “the best Moscow choir today” («Musical life», 2018).

PaTRAM Chairman Alexis V. Lukianov said, “PaTRAM is extremely pleased to partner with Maestro Ekaterina Antonenko, one of the top rising conductor stars in Russia, for our next concert tour and CD recording of Rachmaninoff’s All Night Vigil in June, 2021. Maestro Antonenko has received countless accolades for her work with Intrada, as the finest choir in Moscow. I am convinced that her creativity, professionalism and drive to be the best will have an outstanding positive impact on this project and the PaTRAM Institute™ Male Choir.

Ms. Antonenko will be conducting the PaTRAM Institute Male Choir on their upcoming multi-city concert tour and CD recording of Rachmaninoff’s “All-Night Vigil”, June 2021 in Serbia and Bosnia. The concerts will be presented in the cities of Belgrade, Banjaluka, Novi Sad and Nis. The culmination of the project will be recording sessions overseen by PaTRAM’s long-time production company, Soundmirror, in Nis.

Soundmirror’s multi-Grammy winning producer, Blanton Alspaugh, referred Ms. Antonenko to PaTRAM™ and described her as “extravagantly gifted. She melds a scholar’s grasp of performance practice with an entrepreneur’s flair, all in the service of a fluent and unaffected musicality. She elicits splendid singing and I can’t wait to hear Rachmaninoff with Ekaterina and the PaTRAM Male Choir.

Ms. Antonenko studied choral conducting at the Moscow Academic Music College and at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, earning her Ph.D. in 2013. She also studied at the prestigious Hochschule fuer Musik und Tanz in Cologne, Germany. She now teaches at the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory.

She has performed all over Europe with Intrada, and has collaborated with Peter Phillips, Hans-Christoph Rademann, Vladimir Jurowksi, Mikhail Pletnev, and Yuri Bashmet, among others.

Most recently Ms. Antonenko led the Intrada Vocal Ensemble in singing Sviridov’s “Sacred Love”, the traditional Christmas carol “Shchedryk (the Little Swallow)”, Tchaikovsky’s “The Legend” and many other presentations. After the Dresden Music Festival, KARSTEN BLÜTHGEN, writing for Sächsische Zeitung, said about the Intrada concert, “One could hardly imagine more inspired, well-balanced and powerful choral singing.”

With such a stellar choral background, Maestro Antonenko will make an exciting and creative addition to the PaTRAM Institute’s choirs. PaTRAM looks forward to a long and artistically fulfilling relationship in the years to come.


This week the PaTRAM spotlight focuses on Dr. Jason Thoms, whose vocal range runs from baritone to bass to oktavist, and he appears on the PaTRAM Institute Singers’ recording of “Blessed Art Thou among Women”. Dr. Thoms is, currently, the Director of Choral Activities at Bismarck State College in Bismarck, ND.

Dr. Thoms comes with impressive resume of accomplishments. In addition to being a professional singer, he also is an accomplished conductor, teacher and published composer. He has conducted choral ensembles around the world and has performed at Carnegie Hall, as a soloist, not once but FOUR times! We highly recommend visiting Dr. Thoms’ website as his resume is too long to list here.


Please enjoy this wonderful video clip of Dr. Thoms singing “Weep You No More”, by John Dowland.


Cue the spotlight and shine it directly on Michael Hawes! Michael, Bass-Baritone Singer and Trumpet player, is a member of Chicago based Axiom Brass, is the newly appointed Music Director at Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Parish in Chicago, and tours around the world singing and playing with groups such as Axiom Brass, the PaTRAM Institute Choirs, Seraphic Fire, the Clarion Choir, St. Tikhon’s Choir, Skylark and more.

Michael said, “It is such an honor to sing with my wonderful and esteemed colleagues in the PaTRAM organization, and has been a huge highlight of my musical life these last several years. Most recently, a concert and recording tour to Saratov, Russia was a thrilling and deeply spiritual experience. Thank you PaTRAM!”

Michael has performed with PaTRAM choirs on three CDs:

  • “The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom”
  • “Blessed Art Thou among Women”
  • “More Honorable than the Cherubim” (coming very soon)

Michael would like to share with us a piece called, “Dawn’s Awakening”, by Florence Price. To read more about Michael, please take a look at his website,


This week the spotlight shines squarely on Glenn Miller, oktavist, who appears on the PaTRAM Institute Singers’ recordings of “The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom” and “Blessed Art Thou among Women” which were released in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Glenn hails from Michigan and is in very high demand for his amazing LOW vocals. Truly, unique.

Glenn began his professional career singing with the Robert Shaw Festival Singers, most notably recording the Rachmaninoff “Vespers” as well as numerous other recordings. He went on to sing in many different choirs around the United States including Clarion (NY), Skylark (Boston), Capella Romana (Portland), Yale Choral Artists (New Haven, CT), Conspirare (Austin), TX), St. Tikhon’s Chamber Choir (Pennsylvania) and many, many more.

Amongst numerous recordings with Conspirare, its recording, “The Sacred Spirit of Russia,” on which he was a featured soloist, performing the Chesnokov “Do Not Reject Me in My Old Age,” won the 2014 the Grammy award for Best Choral Recording. He, also, wrote the chapter, “Reflections of an American Choral Oktavist” which was included in the book, “Conducting Men’s Choirs,” published in 2020. As though there weren’t enough accomplishments already, he is Director of Music and Organist at Kirk in the Hills, Bloomfield Hills, MI, where he directs the church’s professional adult choir and boys’ and girls’ choirs and an extensive musical outreach program of concerts, video productions, and recitals.

In addition to Glenn’s aforementioned award-winning Chesnokov piece, we invite you to hear Glenn singing, with Cappella Romana, “Lord Have Mercy” by Tchaikovsky.


Cue the PaTRAM™ spotlight on Milan Acimovic, bass, who appears on the PaTRAM Institute Male Choir’s recording of “More Honorable than the Cherubim” which was recorded in Saratov, Russia in 2019 and is scheduled for release later this year. “Mika” hails from Bosnia and has been a critical contributor to PaTRAM’s planning of this year’s Rachmaninoff “All-Night Vigil” tour and CD recording in Serbia. His efforts on the ground there have played a key role in making this event a reality.

Mika is the Chief Conductor of the Belgrade City Choir in Serbia. He is also an orchestral conductor and a professional singer in his own right. But his talents run the gamut of responsibilities including music director of the International Belgrade Choir Festival, program manager of various musical events in Serbia and even work in pop bands on keyboards and backup vocals. A man of all musical trades!

Please watch this clip of Milan singing an excerpt he arranged from “Testament” by Rajko Maksinovic and based on text by Bishop Petar Petrovic Njegos. Also, enjoy watching Milan’s conducting skills on display in this clip of Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 3”, Fourth Movement.



This week the PaTRAM spotlight shines on Seth Davidenko, oktavist, who appears on the PaTRAM Institute Male Choir’s recording of “More Honorable Than the Cherubim” which was recorded in Saratov, Russia in 2019 and is scheduled for release later this year. Seth, a Canadian, is a reader and singer at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Toronto, Ontario.

Seth graduated from the Synodal School of Liturgical Music in 2015 then completed his Bachelor’s Degree at the Holy Trinity Seminary (HTS) in 2018 and is now working on his Master’s Degree from HTS. Occasionally, Seth conducts the choir at his home parish as well as at the Holy Trinity Monastery. All this experience was essential in his earning a place in PaTRAM’s choirs which employ a rigorous selection process for non-professional singers and provide amateurs the opportunity to sing with a Grammy-nominated, professional choir.

Please watch this clip of Seth singing “The Beggar”, by Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov and accompanied by Laurie Jeanne Crockett on piano.




This week we introduce Daniel Shirley, tenor, who appears on the PaTRAM Institute Singers’ GRAMMY-nominated recording of Kurt Sander’s “The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom” and on their “Blessed Art Thou among Women” CD. Daniel has performed as a soloist with opera companies and symphony orchestras across the United States and Europe. He serves as Assistant Professor of Vocal Studies at the ECU School of Music in Greenville, North Carolina, where he directs ECU Opera Theater. He and his wife Caitlin have three small children, and he says they have located Goldfish crackers in nearly every imaginable location in their home.


Please enjoy this wonderful audio clip of Daniel singing an excerpt from “Danksagung an den Bach (Die Schöne Müllerin, D795: no. 4”, by Franz Shubert and accompanied by Eric Stellrecht on piano.

PaTRAM Institute™ Announces Agreement With New Record Label


PaTRAM Institute™ is proud to announce it has entered into an agreement with Chandos, a long-established Grammy Award winning classical record company. Beginning with PaTRAM Institute’s most recent CD recording, “More Honorable Than the Cherubim”, Chandos will be handling the release of this recording, later this year, as well as future PaTRAM™ recordings.

Alex Lukianov, Chairman and Founder of PaTRAM Institute commented, “we are very excited about our newly formed association with Chandos Records, one of the foremost classical labels in the world. We are certain that this partnership will further PaTRAM’s goal of bringing more beautiful orthodox liturgical music recorded in unique venues to an even larger audience.”

Ralph Couzens, Managing Director of Chandos, stated, “Chandos Records is proud to announce the signing of the PaTRAM Institute Male Choir™ to its roster of artists. We have been looking, for some time, to find the ideal chorus to record this very neglected (on disc) genre of sacred music from the Russian Orthodox Church and are pleased to say that the PaTRAM choir(s) is the one. The first disc is already planned for release late this summer and with more projects being planned for 2022 we cannot wait to get this wonderful PaTRAM sound onto the market.”

We look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with Chandos and, together, bring the amazing beauty of Orthodox sacred choral music to the widest global audience possible.



It’s our pleasure to introduce Katie Boardman, soprano, who appears on the PaTRAM Institute Singers’ GRAMMY-nominated recording of Kurt Sander’s “The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom”. She has recently performed with the Rose Ensemble, the Boston Camerata, Red Shift Choir, the St. Tikhon’s Choir and was a Voces8 US Scholar in 2019-20. A native of Wisconsin, she grew to love music at the Madison Early Music Festival and holds a degree in Historical Performance from Boston University. Katie maintains an active voice teaching studio online.

Please enjoy this wonderful video clip with Katie singing an excerpt from “Amor dormiglione”, by Barbara Strozzi.



Introducing SERGEY TKACHENKO, our stellar tenor! Sergey studied in Moscow and Paris and has sung in Russia, Germany and the United States. You will be astounded by his talent! Sergey sang on two PaTRAM CDs: the 2020 “Blessed Art Thou among Women” album, where he was the featured tenor in the quartet singing “In the Flesh Thou Didst Fall Asleep” and the “More Honorable than the Cherubim” album, scheduled to be released this year.

Sergey prepared a beautiful song especially for our Singer Spotlight Series.


These are a couple blasts from the past! Enjoy!


PATRAM™ is excited to introduce you to the very talented singers who bring the notes and words, on pages of sheet music, to life in a truly beautiful and prayerful manner. We truly miss every one of our male and mixed choir singers and hope to be able to sing together very soon!


We begin with the supremely talented FOTINA NAUMENKO. Soprano Fotina Naumenko is based in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. She performs around the country as a freelance singer and serves on the voice faculty of Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, VA. She was a soloist on PaTRAM’s “Blessed Art Thou among Women” CD.

Listen to her angelic voice as she sings “Lilacs” by Sergei Rachmaninoff, with Joy Schreier at the piano

Don’t forget to check out Fotina’s website, too!

PaTRAM™ Donors Hit Match Target For Serbia Tour and CD Recording

YOU DID IT! YOU reached our GOAL!

A few months ago, a very generous person agreed to match every dollar you gave.

I am overjoyed to announce that, THANKS TO YOU, PaTRAM will now receive a MATCHING GIFT of $50,000 because YOU DONATED OR PLEDGED over $50,000!

Thanks to YOUR generosity we will do something incredible. PaTRAM now has a solid financial foundation and is able to move forward with plans for a musical pilgrimage and sing Liturgies, Vigils, Akathists, and Molebens at the holiest places of Serbia!

We will pray for you personally by name.

Our group of specially chosen Orthodox singers will accompany the Wonderworking Kursk Root Mother of God of the Sign icon and the relics of St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco to Serbia. Tens of thousands of visitors will have the opportunity to venerate these holy relics in Belgrade, Novi Sad, Sremski Karlovci, Tuman, Nis and Banja Luka! Thank you!

This endeavor includes a multi-city concert tour and landmark recording of Rachmaninoff’s “All-Night Vigil” and will allow the PaTRAM singers to spread the splendor and deep spiritual joy of authentic and prayerful Russian Orthodox music to the faithful and those new to the faith.

You will impact the whole world with intense prayer, make musical history and bring beautiful sacred music to our world!

THANK YOU and may God bless you for your kindness and generosity!

Tatiana Geringer, CEO