McGlothlin Center For the Arts —
A bit of North meets South when Emory & Henry Chamber and Concert Choirs perform at 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 24, on the Main Stage Theatre in the McGlothlin Center for the Arts at Emory & Henry College. The “South African Send-Off” serves as the choir’s spring concert and an opportunity to publicize their upcoming tour of South Africa.
“This concert is unique because it will feature numerous South African selections,” said Allyss Haecker, director of choral and vocal studies at Emory & Henry College. “We will sing traditional folksong, a new composition by a South African composer, and even the South African National Anthem. We also will perform works by various North American composers.”
The Concert Choir will perform a few selections from the fall concert including "in Remembrance" by Eleanor Daley; "Bach (Again) Come Sweet Death" by Rhonda Sandberg; "Sweet Home" arranged by Wendell Whalum; and "Rise Up, My Love, My Fair One" by Healey Willan. New repertoire includes "Silence My Soul" by Francisco Feliciano; "Three Sacred South African Folksongs: Masithi Amen, Mayenziwe, Ke nna yo Morena;" and "Two Secular South African Folksongs: Siya Lobola and Amavolovolo." The choir also will perform "Indodana" by South African composer Michael Barrett and the South African National Anthem "Nkosi sikelel 'iAfrika." The Chamber Choir will perform three movements from Maurice Durufle's "Four Motets on Gregorian Chant," two Renaissance madrigals "Il est bel et bon" by Passereau and "April is in My Mistress Face" by Thomas Morley. In addition, the choir’s version of "Over the Rainbow" is a cappella and presented Hawaii-style. The Chamber Choir will use syllables to provide the harmony for two featured soloist, senior Christina Druen and junior William Scott.
According to Haecker, the Concert Choir has toured Germany and, most recently, China. The Concert Choir leaves May 15 for the South African tour that will last 11 days. The choir will perform in Cape Town, Johannesburg, and Pretoria.
“We also will spend some time on a safari,” Haecker said. “I selected this location because I lived there for a short time. The choral singing culture is very rich and active. I have numerous friends in South Africa and we will even get to make music with some local choirs. It has to be one of the most stunningly beautiful places I have ever been.”
The music professor hopes her students will better understand the universality of music. “The noises we make have meaning and expression to us just as they do for music makers around the world. The people of South Africa have experienced (and still are) horrific racism and tragedy in their culture. Music has been a weapon, a consolation, and a means of healing for the country. I want my students to simultaneously recognize their responsibility to a better world while witnessing the beauty already in it.”
On the McGlothlin Center for the Arts Main Stage. Tickets are $ 8. E&H Students: one complimentary ticket, E&H employees: two complimentary tickets (must claim in person with E&H ID).