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After Ireland Tour, Juniata Concert Choir Performs

(Posted March 19, 2012)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Juniata College Concert Choir will perform a concert at 3 p.m., Saturday, March 24, at Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts at Juniata College as the ensemble returns from an international tour of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

The concert is free and open to the public.

The 45-member Concert Choir recently finished a nine-concert tour throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland during Juniata's spring break, March 2-11.

The concert will showcase a repertoire mixing sacred music, Celtic selections and African-American spirituals. The choir is conducted by Russell Shelley, Elma Stine Heckler Professor of Music at Juniata.

The concert will open with "O Lux, beata Trinitas," written by Australian choral composer Michael Leighton Jones. The next selection, "Exsulte Justi in Domino," was written by a 17th century Polish composer, Andrzej Hakenberger.

The song "Sing, Sing Unto God," by Paul Fetler, and "Hallelujah," written by award-winning composer Dan Forrest, are the next selections, followed by "Alelouya," by Emile Desamours, a Haitian composer.

The ensemble will then perform "Adoro Te Devote," a text written by St. Thomas Aquinas, followed by "Ubi Caritas," which combines two compositions by Morten Lauridsen and French composer Maurice Duruflé. A Gregorian-style chant, "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence," written by mid-20th century English composer Edmund Bairstow, is next, followed by "The Road of Passage" by composer Michael McGlynn.

An arrangement of the hauntingly beautiful Irish folksong "Carrickfergus" will open the second half of the concert. "Heading Home" by Lauren Pelon is the next selection. Another Irish piece, "Dulaman," is arranged by Irish composer Michael McGlynn. The piece is based on a traditional Irish poem.

The next composition in the program, "Turtle Dove," based on an English folksong, was written by Ralph Vaughn Williams. The choir will transition to "The Urchin's Dance," part of the madrigal collection "Elizabethan Spring" by Canadian composer Stephen Chatman. Then the choir will sing "A Dream," by Lehigh University senior Casey Rule. Rule is the brother of current choir member Tim Rule, a sophomore from Annville, Pa. "Shenandoah," arranged by Marshall Bartholomew, and "At the Round Earth's Imagined Corners," by Williametta Spencer, round out the set.

The final portion of the concert will feature "In That Mornin,'" a traditional African-American spiritual, and "I Know I've Been Changed," a spiritual arranged by Damon Dandridge. The final piece in this last set is "Ain't That Good News," a spiritual arranged by Moses Hogan.

The concert will end with Juniata's traditional closer "Set Me As a Seal," adapted from Rachmaninoff's "Vespers."
The Juniata Concert Choir is one of three choirs performing at the college. The 50-person choir tours every spring semester, focusing its program on historical sacred music. Juniata choirs have performed at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., and St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City. Recent tours have taken the choir to Hungary and Romania in 2011, Brazil in 2010, and France in 2009.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.