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Rise UP!

November 4 & 5, 2016 8 PM

Lehigh University Choral Arts kicks off the season with music by three of today’s hottest choral composers. Lee conducts the world premiere of Reena Esmail’s* I Rise: Women in Song, commissioned to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Dolce, the LU women’s ensemble, and the 45th year of women at Lehigh. Also, the area premiere of Ola Gjeilo’s cinematically luminous Sunrise Mass and Sametz’s Doth Love Exist. *Ronald J. Ulrich Artist-in-Residence

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Local school students visit Lehigh for Child’s Requiem performance

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Members of the University Choir were on hand Saturday, November 7th, to welcome middle school students whose words were used as texts in Doc’s oratorio, A Child’s Requiem.Early in the composition process, Doc sent out a call to schools nationwide, to better understand the perspectives and attitudes of children who experience violence in their neighborhoods. Two schools – the Swain School in Allentown, PA, and the Hamilton Disston School in Philadelphia, PA – were particularly helpful. Many of these students’ poignant words would directly make their way into the oratorio, giving A Child’s Requiem its signature impact.

As a small token of our gratitude, these students were treated to a fun afternoon and evening on Lehigh’s campus with members of the Choir. After introductions over lunch at Upper Cort, all traveled down the hill to the bookstore, where each student picked out a Lehigh t-shirt to bring home with them. Ice cream at the Cup came next, followed by a campus tour, led by our very own John Larson, ’17. Stops on the tour included Linderman Library, Lamberton Hall and Hawk’s Nest, and the Asa Packer statue outside of the Alumni Memorial Building.

child req asaAfter dinner at Rathbone, the students attended the evening’s performance, and were specially recognized during the applause (and received a standing ovation!). The day ended with a dessert social in Zoellner’s Black Box with President Simon.

All of the students had a fantastic time– many asked for individual pictures with Doc, and wanted Choir members to sign their programs!

I remember thinking that they should have been signing our programs. They were the real stars of the evening. It was an honor to spend the day with them, and to have been a part of their first memories of Lehigh.

Special thanks to our very own Hayley Goodman, ’18, for organization/coordination of the event, and for making such a memorable day possible for these students!

 

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DOLCE: Raise Your Voice – a great success!

 

raise-your-voice-1This past Friday night, February 19th, I had the pleasure of joining Dolce in co-hosting “Raise Your Voice,” a gala concert featuring women artists at Lehigh. Guests arrived at an intimately set Lamberton Hall to hear students, faculty, and staff perform everything from jazz, to musical theater, to the debut of a new fight song, “Lehigh Women,” written by Michelle Sanabria ’15. Sharing the stage with not only fellow students, but with some of my former professors as well, I really felt the sense of community among women of Lehigh that this event aimed to create.

Friday night was such a success (we had to scramble to set up extra chairs right before the concert started!) that I am already looking forward to the next big thing on our radar. On November 4th and 5th, Dolce will be celebrating its tenth year (!!!) with a concert in Baker Hall which will include the world premiere of I Rise, a piece commissioned  from Los Angeles composer Reena Esmail for Dolce. All Dolce alumnae are invited back for this performance – more details coming on this soon.

It has gotten to that point in the year where many of us seniors, myself included, have no idea where we’ll be in six months, but I am certainly hoping to make it back to Lehigh for this one – and I hope you will, too!

– Kristen McArthur ’16

 

 

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Winter Choir Camp vs. Winter Storm Jonas

For 60+ years, the University Choir has held retreats before coming back to class in the fall.  More recently, we have started a tradition of returning prior to the January start of classes.  Very few choir camps, however, have been so affected by massive snowstorms. It’s a testament to the bonds of this group that members of the University Choir braved winter storm Jonas and trekked across campus, while most people would have rather curled up on a couch at home.

We made the best of it, though, and the best of it turned out to be pretty great. Doc realized there was no place for us go beside rehearsal – so we accomplished what singers at Lehigh have always done: we made music!  And also went sledding, as you can see from the photo.  

Seeing the Valley’s heaviest snowstorm in decades with friends made this an unforgettable choir camp

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Christmas Vespers on PBS

This past December, Lehigh University Choral Arts was lucky enough to have PBS39 (WLVT-TV) record our Christmas Vespers concert. Check out this clip of “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming” (which featured the LED light display originally used for Founder’s Day), and “Alleluia, Amen.”

Many thanks to PBS39 for providing us with the full concert footage!

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