Spring concert features choral music
Community choir, civic orchestra to perform
Tickets for adults are $10 in advance and $12 at the door, while tickets for students are $4 in advance and $6 at the door.
Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
People may purchase tickets at the Waupaca Area Chamber of Commerce, Stratton’s Drug Store, the Waupaca Community Arts Center, from choir members and at the door.
The varied program of masterworks will include John Rutter’s Requiem, The American Mass by Ron Kean and the MissaFestiva by John Leavitt.
Though he is perhaps best known for his carols and other short pieces, Rutter also has several large-scale works for chorus and orchestra to his name.
Most of these received their first performances in the United States, where Rutter is a frequent visitor, writing regularly for American choirs and conducting performances of his own music.
The Requiem, completed in 1985, does not adhere strictly to the conventional Catholic liturgy, but combines texts from the Requiem Mass and the Book of Common Prayer.
This is by no means unusual; Faure, Brahms and Durufle’ all followed their own individual preferences when selecting appropriate verses to set.
The first movement comprises the Requiem Aeternam and Kyrie Eleison.
This is followed by a setting of Psalm 130, “Out of the deep have I called unto thee O Lord,” which begins darkly with an unaccompanied cello solo in C minor, later giving way to a more positive C major at the words “for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption.”
As with the Requiems of both Fauré and Duruflé, the Pie Jesu focuses on the soprano soloist, though in this case with the addition of a subdued choral commentary.
The Sanctus and Benedictus are both followed by an exhilarating Hosanna.
In the Agnus Dei, the Latin text alternates with verses from the Burial Sentences, taken from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer.
At this point, Rutter inserts his superb setting of the 23rd Psalm, notable for its plaintive oboe solo, delicate orchestration and sensitivity to the text.
This exquisite and moving piece, though composed some seven years earlier for Mel Olson’s First United Methodist Church Choir in Omaha, was destined for this context, encapsulating as it does the work’s message of reassurance.
The last movement opens with another verse from the Burial Service, sung by the soprano soloist, which leads seamlessly into the Lux Aeterna, finally returning to the opening Requiem Aeterna theme for the peaceful conclusion.
The Requiem was last performed by the Waupaca Community Choir in 2002.
The American Mass by Kean was last performed in 2006 by the choir.
This significant and unique composition successfully melds many of the great traditions of American sacred music into a Missa Brevis for choir, orchestra and soprano soloist.
Using elements of the traditional liturgy, Latin texts, early American hymns and spirituals, Kean crafted a richly expressive and melodic work that is compelling both in its scope and in the artistic requirements to bring it to life.
The MissaFestiva by Leavitt marks the premiere performance for the choir.
Each of five individual movements is beautifully set with strength and dignity.
The Latin texts from the Mass Ordinary provide a vehicle for exciting and inspirational choral singing.
Additional information about the choir and the Waupaca Fine Arts Festival may be found at finearsfestval.org