PULLMAN, Wash. — Morten Lauridsen, chair of composition at the University of Southern California’s School of Music and a world renowned choral works composer, will be featured at Washington State University’s New Music Festival Feb. 6-8.

Lauridsen’s music has reached a permanent place in the standard vocal repertoire, said Charles Argersinger, coordinator of the festival. His work is performed regularly by choruses and vocal artists throughout the world. His catalog includes major vocal cycles as well as various individual songs and choral works, including the moving “O Magnum Mysterium” and “Dirait-on” from “Les Chansons des Roses.”

Born in Colfax, he divides his time between Los Angeles and a summer home off the Washington coast.

Three concerts are planned for the 2001 festival, according to coordinator Charles Argersinger.

The festival begins Tuesday with works by student composers during an 11 a.m. program in Kimbrough Auditorium. The program will include “Duet for Clarinets” by Amber Montgomery, “Autummne” by David Darke, and “Number Nine” by Bryan Werry.

A Tuesday program at 8 p.m. in Kimbrough Auditorium will feature works by faculty composers.

Among the program pieces will be “Seven Deadly Sins” by Argersinger, performed by Meredith Arksey, violin, Erich Lear, viola, and Eugene Zenzen, cello; and Gregory Yasinitsky’s “Music of Wood, Silver, and Ivory,” performed by Anne Yasinitsky, flute, Zenzen, cello, and Gerald Berthiaume, piano. Also on the program will be Paul Smith’s “Trinity Mass,” performed by the Trinity Lutheran Church Choir with the Rev. Dawna Svaren, soloist, and Jill Schneider, piano.

Works by guest composer Lauridsen will be part of the Feb. 8 program, set for 8 p.m. in Kimbrough Auditorium. The concert includes Madrigali’s Six “Firesongs” on Italian Renaissance Poems performed by the WSU Concert Choir and conducted by Lori Wiest.

Also on the program is “O Magnam Mysterium” and “Ubi Caritas et amor,” performed by the WSU Madrigal Singers and conducted also by Wiest; and “Dirait-on from Les Chansons des Roses,” performed by the WSU University Singers with Charles Neufeld conducting.

The program also includes “Cuatro Canciones,” performed by Julie Wieck, soprano, James Schoepflin, clarinet, Eugene Zenzen, cello, and Michelle Mielke, piano. Wiest, a mezzo soprano, and Irina Albig, piano, will perform “A Winter Come,” while Michelle Mielke, piano, will perform “Variations.”

All festival programs are open to the public without charge.


Photo available upon request.