Friends University Community Orchestra and Choir Celebrate American Music
Friends University will be bursting with patriotism as the Friends University Community Orchestra and Choral Union celebrate the United States of America’s rich musical traditions, including folk songs, spirituals, hymns and symphonic music.
“Made in the USA” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 15 in the Riney Fine Arts Center’s Sebits Auditorium.
“Orchestras often focus their attention on composers from Europe and Asia,” explained Dr. Wesley DeSpain, music professor at Friends University. “Because 2011 represents the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and the concert is so close to Veteran's Day, we thought that a concert featuring music made in America would provide a great tribute to our heritage and inspire hope for the future.”
The Friends Community Orchestra and the 200-voice Choral Union will be joining forces. Dr. DeSpain will conduct the first orchestra-only half of the concert, and Dr. Mark Bartel, assistant professor of music and director of choral music at Friends University, will conduct the second half, which will include orchestra and choir.
Friends University’s Choral Union was created in 2005 to “create the excitement and unity achieved by working together in larger numbers,” Dr. Bartel said. The Choral Union consists of the Women’s Chorus, Concert Choir and the Singing Quakers.
“The last time this particular collaboration occurred was in fall 2006 with Mozart’s ‘Requiem,’” Dr. Bartel said.