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Three Choirs Join Jillian Gardner for Organ Celebration

January 30, 2018
Baylor University celebrates the 25th Anniversary of its McLane Organ on Tuesday, February 6, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Jones Concert Hall, located within the Glennis McCrary Music Building. This 4-manual, 92-rank electro-pneumatic instrument, built by Petty-Matten in 1993, was a generous gift from the Drayton McLane family.
Featured as organist on the silver-anniversary concert will be Jillian Gardner, a graduate student from Lee Center, New York, who earned her master’s degree at Baylor University under Assistant Professor of Organ Isabelle Demers and now continues her studies with Dr. Demers in the Artist Diploma program. The choral ensembles will be the Concert Choir (led by Lynne Gackle), Bella Voce (also led by Dr. Gackle), and A Cappella Choir (led by Brian A. Schmidt).
Opening the program will be the 44-member Concert Choir with Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms. This work, commissioned for the 1965 Southern Cathedrals Festival at Chichester Cathedral in England, was Bernstein’s first composition after his Kaddish Symphony.
Bella Voce, Baylor’s 29-voice female choir, will sing Litanies à la Vierge Noire (“Litany to the Black Virgin”) by French composer Francis Poulenc. The composition is Poulenc’s first piece of sacred music, written by him in 1936. It sets a French litany recited at the pilgrimage commune of Rocamadour. The title refers to the site’s venerated black sculpture of Mary.
Next on stage will be the 44-voice A Cappella Choir, which will perform four pieces: Geistliches Lied (1856) by Johannes Brahms, Festival Te Deum (1944) by Benjamin Britten, “Magnificat” from New College Service (2014) by Alexander L’Estrange, and “Nunc Dimittis” from Collegium Regale (1945) by Herbert Howells.
This concert is free of charge and open to the public. For more information, call the Baylor University School of Music at 254-710-3991.
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