Denison's Concert Choir Program Features FaurÃ©'s Requiem
Posted: April 16, 2001
The Concert Choir and Orchestra of Denison University present a concert at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday (April 29) in Swasey Chapel featuring Gabriel FaurÃ©'s "Requiem." The Choir also will perform Daniel Gawthrop's "Behold This Mystery," a work composed to complement the "Requiem." The performance is preceded by a lecture by Gawthrop on "Music as a Moral Force: Marketing Transcendence in a Pre-Apocalyptic Society" at 4 p.m. also in Swasey. Both events are free and open to the public.
The concert begins with Cesar Franck's festive setting of "Psalm 150," a longtime favorite of church choirs, but rarely heard with its original orchestral support. The orchestra alone will then present a brief, dramatic symphonic poem excerpted from Franck's "Redemption," an oratorio of 1874. Gawthrop's "Behold This Mystery," the exception to the French focus of the evening, employs the same pair of soloists and its biblical texts reflect on the same ideas and subjects as the Latin of FaurÃ©'s Requiem Mass. "A perennial favorite of choral singers across the world, the Requiem remains unique in its relative serenity compared to the other, more theatrical responses to the same language," says Distinguished Professor of Fine Arts William Osborne, director of the Concert Choir.
The Concert Choir has performed the FaurÃ© on three previous programs in its history, the last time in December 1982. The Choir will be joined by two visiting soloists: soprano Jennifer Whitehead of the Otterbein voice faculty and baritone Ray Fellman, a graduate student at Indiana University in Bloomington.
Whitehead has sung many roles with both Opera Columbus and the Columbus Light Opera and has been extensively involved with the Opera Columbus outreach program. She holds degrees from Ohio State University and performed often in Ohio State's Opera/Theatre program. She also maintains a private voice studio in Columbus.
Fellman has wide experience on the opera stage, particularly at Indiana, but also with Opera Illinois and the Utah Festival Opera Company. He also has performed with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic and Champaign-Urbana Symphony. One of his voice teachers at Indiana was Dale Moore, a former member of the Denison faculty and conductor of the Concert Choir prior to his departure in 1964.
Osborne, director of choral organizations and university organist at Denison, followed Moore as conductor of The Concert Choir.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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