October 02, 2015

Choir, wind ensemble join forces for concert

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. – The first SIU Concert Choir and SIU Wind Ensemble concert of the season is a fond look back at summer and a nod to the sense of community -- appropriate as students, faculty and staff come together again for a new academic year at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. 

“Summer Remembrances/Remembering Connections” begins at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 8 at Shryock Auditorium. Tickets are $12 for the general public, $6 for students. Order tickets in advance at 618/453-2787. Tickets are also available at the door beginning one hour before the concert begins. Susan Davenport directs the Concert Choir and Christopher Morehouse directs the Wind Ensemble. 

“(After we each selected our music), we went looking for connections,” Davenport said, explaining the title of the night’s program. “We discovered the music has real connection to our memories and our sense of community.” 

Most of the choral music is grounded in folk music history, she said. The choral music in the program includes songs steeped in folklore, including Brahms’ versions of Gypsy songs, Hebrew love songs, a Scottish folk song and others. 

The Wind Ensemble selections include a piece reminiscent of this year’s cicada summer. “Rusty Air in Carolina,” composed by Mason Bates, includes electronic sounds that, according to the composer, “bring the white noise of the Southern summer into the concert hall.” Bates’ compositions fuse “innovative orchestral writing, imaginative narrative forms, the harmonies of jazz and the rhythms of techno.” 

Other selections include Michael Markowski’s “joyRiDE” and two from composer Charles Ives. 

“(These selections) truly capture the feeling of a hot summer in the South,” Morehead said. “I imagined the concert as scenes from the summer: a road trip with the top down, the cicadas, and two pieces recalling the summer band playing at the town gazebo.” 

Davenport said each of the choral selections features an instrumental soloist, drawing attention to the theme of connectedness in the night’s program. The soloists are:

Graduate student:

• Kayoko Funada, piano

SIU School of Music faculty:

• Edward Benyas, oboe

• Eric Lenz, cello

• Michael Barta, violin

• Jennifer Presar, horn

• Christopher Butler, percussion