The 100-voice Concert Choir of Ouachita Baptist University will present its spring concert on Thursday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. in Mabee Fine Art Center’s McBeth Recital Hall. The concert is free and open to the public.
Dr. Charles Wright, former dean of Ouachita’s School of Fine Arts and professor emeritus of music, is conducting the Concert Choir by invitation of Dr. Gary Gerber, chair of OBU’s Division of Music, while Dr. Gerber is on sabbatical. Dr. Wright, who spent 40 years on the Ouachita music faculty, has returned to campus after a decade of retirement and also serves in Ouachita’s Office of Development.
“Never would I have anticipated having the privilege of returning to Ouachita to conduct the Concert Choir,” said Wright. “It has been an exhilarating experience that I will never forget.”
Concert Choir is open to all students on campus, offering students from all majors and interests the opportunity to be involved in the university’s music program.
Abby Root, a freshman speech communication and theatre education double major from Arkadelphia, Ark., said she enjoys the diversity of students in Concert Choir. “It’s a huge collaboration of people, where everyone has to pull their own weight,” said Root. “I think it just really teaches you how to appreciate music and the art that music is. You learn to appreciate musicians and the work that they do.”
The evening’s performance will open with a series of pieces called “Te Deum,” composed by Anton Bruckner. This work is a setting of the early Christian hymn text and includes five movements that serve as a personal reflection of Bruckner’s profound yet simple faith.
Following this series will be “Rejoice in the Lamb” by Benjamin Britten, “Psalm 150” by Thomas Briccettii, “Song of Hope” by John Ness Beck and “O Magnum Mysterium” by James McCray. The concert will conclude with “Canticle of Praise,” also by Beck and “My Eternal King” by Jane H. Marshall.
David Glaze, minister of music and worship arts at Trinity United Methodist Church in Little Rock and a Ouachita graduate, will accompany the performance as guest organist.
Also assisting the choir for a portion of the concert will be Glenda Aldridge, staff accompanist at Ouachita. Drew Ervin, a senior music and computer science major from Springdale, Ark., will also assist in the performance on timpani.
Soloists for the performance are David Stanley, instructor of music at Ouachita, and the following students:
Kassie Coleman, a senior music composition major from Hot Springs, Ark.; Meredith Martin, a senior choral music education major from Garland, Texas; Caitlin Secrest, a senior vocal performance major from Arkadelphia, Ark.; and Jillian Turner, a junior vocal performance and music double major from Fort Worth, Texas.
For more information, contact OBU’s School of Fine Arts at (870) 245-5129.