Concerts to celebrate ‘Music for Life’

Published 11:53 am Tuesday, April 16, 2019

“Music for Life” is the theme of two spring concerts combining the Commonwealth Chorale and Longwood University’s Camerata and Chamber Singers. For visiting director Dr. Pam McDermott, “Music for Life” is more than a catchy phrase. It’s a philosophy she wants to pass along to her students.

“Music should be community based,” McDermott said. “Singing with the Chorale will allow my students to see how they can contribute as musicians later in life.”

McDermott selected the repertoire for the spring concerts with the varied ages of the choir in mind.

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“I chose the ‘Gloria’ by Rutter because it’s contemporary,” McDermott said. “Then I paired that piece with more traditional music by Mozart, Vivaldi and Handel.”

The featured selection, John Rutter’s “Gloria,” is a contemporary piece as is “Alleluia,” by Longwood professor Dr. Gordon Ring. Traditional selections in the program include Mozart’s “Regina Coeli,” Vivaldi’s “Gloria” (first movement), and Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” All share a theme of celebration for the Easter season.

Both students and Chorale members look forward to performing music by a Farmville composer.

There is, in fact, a sense of joy among older members of the choir as they perform, an example McDermott hopes her students will follow.

“I’m grateful for the example of the Commonwealth Chorale,” McDermott concluded. “I hope my students will remember that participation in music is a lifelong choice.”

Concerts are scheduled for Thursday, April 25, at 7:30 p.m. in Longwood’s Jarman Auditorium and Sunday, April 28, at 3 p.m. at Farmville United Methodist Church. Admission is free, and the community is welcome.