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WSU choral groups present concert
Thursday, Apr. 12, 2012
PULLMAN, Wash. - The Washington State University Madrigal Chamber Singers, University Singers and Concert Choir will present a free, public concert at 8 p.m. Friday, April 20, in Bryan Hall theater at WSU Pullman.
Performing in Renaissance costumes of the 16th century, the 18-member Madrigal Chamber Singers will sing "El Grillo,” composed by Josquin des Près, a satiric physical description of a singer named Grillo as mimicked by a cricket who loves to sing to attract women.
The more lyric "Il Bianco e Dolce Cigno” by Jacques Arcadelt, sung in Italian, draws an analogy where the lover contrasts and parallels his approach to death with that of a swan. While the swan, though singing, dies disconsolate, the poet, while weeping, happily would die a thousand deaths of love and desire.
"Fair Phyllis” by John Farmer is one of the most popular examples of "word painting,” as he sets the words of the text to music in a manner by which the music truly describes the words. John Wilbye’s "Draw On, Sweet Night” has lush six-part harmonies filled with harmonic suspensions that define the pain within the sentiment of the poem.
"My Bonny Lass She Smileth” by Thomas Morley is a popular English madrigal. It is modeled after the Italian 16th century madrigal, with light-hearted frivolity and inclusion of the famous "fa la la” nonsense syllables.
WSU’s University Singers will open their portion of the program with the heartfelt "If Music Be the Food of Love” by David Dickau and a quartet of soloists performing "God With Me” by Stephen Paulus. The program will continue with James McCray’s lilting "Rise Up, My Love, My Fair One,” and the lush "Dirait-on #5” from Morten Lauridsen’s "Les Chansons Des Roses.”
The singers will conclude with the silly a cappella "Old Horatius Had a Farm” by Z. Randall Stroope.
The WSU Concert Choir will feature musical selections based on the theme of spring and winter. Opening their portion of the concert with two selections appropriate to the church year, "Sicut Cervus” by Palestrina and "Regina Coeli” by Mozart, they will continue with a premiere performance of graduate composition student Mackenzie Trail’s "We Never Know How High We Are” set for choir, piano and strings.
Eric William Barnum’s "The Stars Stand Up in the Air” and two selections from Morten Lauridsens’ "Mid-Winter Songs” - "Intercession in Late October” and "Mid-Winter Waking” - will conclude the concert.
The WSU Concert Choir and Madrigal Chamber Singers recently completed a performance tour to the Seattle area, performing evening concerts in Bothell and Kent and performing in high schools in Moses Lake, Kirkland (Lake Washington), Renton (Lindbergh) and Issaquah.