Baylor Bella Voce in Concert at Seventh and James

October 8, 2021
Bella Voce, Baylor University’s chamber choir of twenty-three female voices, will present a concert called “On the Wings of Words, Prayers, and Poetry” on Sunday, October 17, beginning at 3:00 p.m. in the sanctuary of Seventh and James Baptist Church in Waco. Bella Voce is conducted by the School of Music’s Director of Choral Activities, Lynne Gackle.
The program will open with Z. Randall Stroope’s setting of the “Dies Irae” theme, best known from its use in the Roman Rite Requiem Mass.
The choir will sing Saint Teresa’s “Nada te turbe” (“Let Nothing Disturb You”) in a contemporary setting by Joan Szymko. A Spanish nun, Saint Teresa (1515-1582) authored several spiritual classics and originated the Carmelite Reform. Four centuries later, in 1970, she became the first woman to be elevated to Doctor of the Church by Pope Paul VI.
German composer and organist Josef Rheinberger lived in the late nineteenth century. His setting of “Regina coeli” begins with two soprano soloists venerating Mary as “Queen of Heaven” before the whole choir joins the prayer.
According to composer Kevin Memley, “When I wrote There Will Come Soft Rains,” I wanted to explore poet Sara Teasdale’s depiction of the absence of humanity, specifically through what she describes as ‘the war.’ This may have been a reference to her own time period, although I find it more haunting to imagine that she could be describing the things of today.”
Also to be heard on the Bella Voce concert is the pastoral folk tune “Hoj, hura hoj!” by Czech composer Otmar Mácha.
Daniel J. Hall’s “The White Birds” is based on a text by Irish poet and dramatist William Butler Yeats. It describes the desire of the two lovers to escape the fleeting moments of life.
The program will close with Alexandru Pascanu’s setting of the choral dance “Chindia,” which refers either to the time before sunset or a place in the sky where the sun is about to set.
This concert is free of charge and open to the public.
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