Today: Jun 17, 2024

Earth day choir concert recreates nature’s beauty

Mackenzie Hurlbert – General Assignment Reporter

Hamden’s Spring Glen Church resonated with harmonious melodies as Southern’s university choir rejoiced in the beauties of mother nature with their own beautiful voices. The concert started at 7:30 p.m. on Apr. 22, which was Earth Day, and songs included “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables and ranged to an original piece by choir conductor Dr. Terese Gemme titled “God’s Domain.”

“The concert was very successful. After all of Dr. Gemme’s hard work this semester, it was a great culmination to our time with her,” said soprano Jeanette Glazier who had two solo performances that night in songs “Sure On This Shining Night” and “God’s Domain.”

Overall, the students felt the concert went very well, especially after ending the night’s performance with “The Rain Is Over And Gone,” which put the audience on their feet and earned the students a standing ovation.  That song featured two soloists, Maggie Federico and Annicia Smith.

“My favorite song is ‘The Rain is Over and Gone’ because it is not only incredibly moving but stylistically I think it is combining some very classical pieces with gospel,” said junior Georgia Russell, theatre major, “And I think that that is a really cool sound, and obviously the soloists knocked it out of the park. They did amazingly.”

Russell was one of the lucky choir members given a solo during the night’s performance. She awed the crowd by singing “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables.

“I felt good,” said Russell about the solo. “I felt like it is a very popular song so there is a little bit of pressure to sing it really well, especially when you are being compared to like Anne Hathaway and Broadway greats.”

“I’ve had solos before in other choirs but this was my first solo with the university choir at Southern. So it was very exciting,” said Russell.

The concert started with “Let the River Run” then moved on to a section of songs themed as “Songs of Night.” After the “Songs of Night,” these sections followed, also themed: “Songs of the Morning,” “Songs of the Sea,” and “Flowers Appear on Earth.”

“I think it went well, and I am really excited for moving forward next semester. I think we worked very hard pulling this together and creating a great performance,” said Colleen Swift, junior, when asked about the concert.

Conductor and choir director Dr. Terese Gemme composed an original score for the poem “God’s Domain“ by Margaret Campilonga. “I liked ‘Requiem’ but the one that Dr. Gemme wrote, ‘God’s Domain,’ was very nice, especially since she wrote it for us,” said Swift. “To have that experience was very moving and very powerful”

“I would like to thank the Stutsman family for their generous support of the Southern Choir,” said Swift.

The choir is composed of people of all ages, not all of them being students, but nevertheless, all of them share the passion for music. “Some of them are former students, and others, well Dr. Gemme plays piano at Spring Glen, so some of them go to that church and sing with her, and other people just kind of join in. We are a welcoming group of people who like to sing,” said Swift.

The choir traveled overseas to London last year to perform, and this year they will be heading to Spain.

“It was a great trip, an amazing opportunity, and we were really fortunate to go,” said Glazier about the choir’s trip to London last year. Many choir members are looking forward to traveling again when the partake on the trip to Spain.

Russell is excited for the upcoming trip to Spain, especially since she called the country home for a couple of years as a child. “I would be returning, so I would love to just revisit places that I’ve visited before and also being in a different country is a great experience. You get to experience a different culture,” said Russell.


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