TACOMA, Wash. –The University of Puget Sound’s Symphony Orchestra and Adelphian Concert Choir will feature an evening of dramatic and inspiring works from composers William Mathias, Claude Debussy, Gioachino Rossini, and Gabriel Fauré.
The free concert, conducted by Huw Edwards, will take place Friday, April 25, at 7:30 p.m., in Schneebeck Concert Hall. No tickets or reservations are required. The program will include:
William Mathias: Requiescat, Op. 79
Claude Debussy: Dances Sacred and Profane, for harp and orchestra
Gioachino Rossini: William Tell Overture
Gabriel Fauré: Requiem, Op. 48
The Symphony Orchestra, Adelphians, and guest vocalists will perform the program’s main work, Fauré’s Requiem, with Steven Zopfi, director of choral activities, conducting. Requiem—including an amended version of the Latin text from the Roman Catholic Mass for the Dead—was originally written and performed in Paris in 1888. The musicians will perform John Rutter’s reconstruction of the original score for choir, chamber orchestra, and soloists. Requiem is probably Faure’s most famous work, Zopfi says.
“The work was a little unusual in that the composer did not call for violins,” Zopfi adds. “This lends the piece a warmer, richer sound.”
The evening’s opening work, the haunting Requiescat, by Mathias, was written as a meditation following the death of a close friend of the composer. The title is taken from the Latin requiescat in pace, which translates as "may he (or she) rest in peace."
Debussy’s Dances Sacred and Profane, by one of the most influential composers of the early 20th century, will feature harp player Frances Welsh ’17, winner of the university’s Concerto Competition.
The stirring “William Tell Overture,” next on the program, is the most remembered part of the last opera that Rossini wrote, although he continued to produce music until his death. Conductor Huw Edwards describes the overture as a “minisymphony.”
“It's in four distinct sections-—and closes with what has become one of the most famous passages in the symphonic repertory.”
Huw Edwards, a native of Wales, joined Puget Sound following a dozen years as music director of Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra in Oregon, and nine years as music director of Olympia Symphony Orchestra, a position he continues to hold. He has been praised by audiences, guest soloists, and the media for his intense performances and daring programming.
Steven Zopfi, one of the leading young conductors in the Pacific Northwest, joined University of Puget Sound in 2008 as director of choral activities and conductor of the Adelphian Concert Choir. This followed a career that included singing with the Prague Philharmonic and New Jersey Symphony, conducting world premieres of new music, and serving with professional music associations.
The Symphony Orchestra at University of Puget Sound’s School of Music has maintained a standard of excellence for more than 30 years among college orchestras in the Pacific Northwest. The symphony performs diverse repertoire spanning from Baroque to modern music, from music solely for strings to standard works in the grand tradition of orchestral music.
The Adelphians have appeared at the state, regional, and national conventions of both the American Choral Director’s Association and Music Educator’s National Conference, and consistently receive the highest acclaim for their repertoire, interpretation, and musicianship. They have performed as a guest artist with Northwest Sinfonietta, Tacoma Symphony Orchestra, Tacoma Concert Band, and Tacoma City Ballet.
For directions and a map of the campus:pugetsound.edu/directions
Press photos of Huw Edwards and Steven Zopfi can be downloaded from: pugetsound.edu/pressphotos
Photos on page: Top right: Gabriel Fauré, by John Singer Sargent; Above left: Huw Edwards: Above right: Steven Zopfi.
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