Area schools participate in Augustana choral ensembles

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Augustana College choral ensembles' work with local and regional high school choirs culminate in two separate concerts this week. Both concerts are free and open to the public.

Lauren Reid, a senior from Sherrard, majoring in business administration- marketing/communication studies and Brad Moran, a senior from Aledo, majoring in music education vocal will both e performing.

On Thursday, Oct. 27, at 7 p.m., the Treble Choir Outreach Concert will feature Augustana's Jenny Lind Vocal Ensemble and the UT Singers of United Township High School. The concert will be held in Ascension Chapel (639 38th St.) on the Augustana campus.

United Township High School Choral Director Juliet Minard, a 1998 alumna of Augustana, is excited to bring her women's group to the college and share this experience with the Jenny Lind Vocal Ensemble and director Dr. Michael Zemek. The two choirs will work together during the afternoon with both directors, preparing two joint choir selections for the evening concert.

Dr. Zemek believes both ensembles "have something to learn from one listening to one another and ultimately performing together, we hope to grow and expand our understanding of how choral music can be used to bring people together in meaningful ways." He sees this as a great opportunity for members of the Jenny Lind Vocal Ensemble to model not only treble singing but also the value of singing in a choral ensemble. He hopes the United Township students leave "challenged and inspired to higher levels of musicianship and the desire to continue singing beyond high school."

On Friday, Oct. 28, at 8 p.m., the Augustana Choir Fall Honors Choir Concert will feature the Augustana Choir under the direction of Dr. Jon Hurty, in addition to the Plainfield North High School Concert Choir and Lake Zurich High School Concert Choir. The concert will be held in Centennial Hall (3703 7th Ave.). The two high school choirs will spend the day working on choral music and technique with Dr. Hurty and Dr. Zemek as well as rehearsing with the Augustana Choir.

The evening concert will offer a diverse and eclectic program of choral music. The selection "In Remembrance," to be sung by the combined choirs, was programmed in memory of the 9/11 tragedy and its 10th anniversary this fall. The Augustana Choir will include an improvisation as part of its program-an offering that has become signature to the group. Hurty is "excited about trying this new format of combined performance and outreach" and looks forward to working with these top high school choirs from the region.