Quad City Choral Arts Presents Fall Concert

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Quad City Choral Arts, under the direction of Jon Hurty, will present a Fall Concert at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 7, at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Davenport, Iowa. Tickets are $10 ($7 for seniors; students with ID are free) and can be purchased at the door.

Works on the concert are:

Rejoice in the Lamb, Benjamin Britten

Three Flower Songs, Eric Whitacre

     I Hide Myself

     With a Lily in Your Hand

     Go, Lovely Rose

Nocturnes, Morten Lauridsen

     Sa Nuit d’Été

     Soneto de la Noche

     Sure On This Shining Night

     Epilogue

Two American Spirituals

     Walk Together, Children, arr. Moses Hogan

     Lord, If I Got My Ticket, arr. Stacey Gibbs

Rejoice in the Lamb (Op. 30) is a festival cantata for four soloists, SATB choir, and organ composed by Benjamin Britten in 1943 and based on the poem Jubilate Agno by Christopher Smart (1722-1771). The poem, written while Smart was in an insane asylum, is a highly idiosyncratic and ecstatic praise and worship of God by all created being and things, each in its own way. The cantata was commissioned by Rev. Canon Walter Hussey for the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the consecration of St Matthew's Church, Northampton.

Eric Whitacre is one of the most well known composers of choral literature in the United States today. His works are known for their beautiful harmonic content and originality of conception. He wrote the Three Flower Songs early in his career in the early 1990s when he was a student at the University of Las Vegas, Nevada. These were some of his earliest pieces and became the impetus for many commissions and performances of his works.

In the Nocturnes, composed in 2005, Lauridsen has made an anthology of the verses of three twentieth-century poets, each of a different nationality:  the German Rainer Maria Rilke, the Chilean Pablo Neruda, and the American James Agee. To ensure unity of conception amid this poetic diversity, the composer has chosen poems that share the theme of night and love.

The program concludes with two American spirituals, composed by two well-known arrangers—Moses Hogan and Stacey Gibbs.

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About Quad City Choral Arts

Quad City Choral Arts was founded by Artistic Director Jon Hurty to provide the Quad City region with high quality choral music. The group performs a wide variety of literature from chorale chamber music to major choral works with orchestra. Quad City Choral Arts members are as varied as the music they sing. Many members are music teachers or choir directors in the area while others represent a variety of professions. Membership in the group is by audition.

About the Conductor – Jon Hurty

Jon Hurty is Artistic Director of Quad City Choral Arts and Director of Choral Activities at Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois. Before coming to Rock Island he was Director of Choral Activities at Concordia University in Irvine, California. He has conducted school, church and community choirs for over twenty-five years. He completed his undergraduate degree in vocal performance at Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas, his master’s degree in choral conducting from California State University, Northridge, and his doctorate in choral conducting and literature from the University of Illinois. He has studied conducting with John Alexander, Don Moses, Chester Alwes and Ann Howard Jones. Active as a guest conductor and clinician throughout the United States, he has served in this capacity for the American Choral Directors Association, the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians, and the Choral Conductors Guild as well as many churches and high schools.

About the Guest Artist – Chris Nelson

Chris Nelson is the Director of Music Ministries/Organist at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Davenport, Iowa.  Previously, he served as Minister of Music at First Presbyterian Church in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he played the organ and directed several choirs.  

Mr. Nelson earned his Bachelor’s degree at Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kansas, and his Master of Sacred Music Degree at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota in conjunction with St. Olaf College in Northfield.  His teachers include Cathy Rodland, John Ferguson, David Cherwein, Jesse Eschbach, Pamela Ruiter-Feenstra and Sharon Hettinger and his conducting instructors include Anton Armstrong, Robert Scholz, Greg Aune, and Joel Panciera.

Mr. Nelson is a member of the American Guild of Organists, the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians, and the Presbyterian Association of Musicians.  He has presented workshops for several chapters of the AGO, and regional conventions for ALCM. While at First Presbyterian Church, he served as the director of the church’s Music Series and the National Organ Playing Competition, an organ competition that has been in existence since 1960 and is considered to be one of the longest running and widely respected competitions for young organists.