University musicians will welcome the community home for the holidays Monday, Nov. 28, for a special gift — an MTSU Presidential Concert — when they bring their annual performance of George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah” to Hinton Hall for the first time in years.
The MTSU Schola Cantorum, comprising the School of Music‘s top upper-division vocal majors and graduate students, will perform in a 6 p.m. concert inside the Wright Music Building at 1439 Faulkinberry Drive.
They’ll be joined by two guest soloists: soprano Alice Matlock Clements, an MTSU alumna, and Nashville-based baritone Ryan Bede.
MTSU music faculty, plus Nashville symphonic musicians, will provide orchestral accompaniment for the production, which once again will be conducted by vocal performance professor Raphael Bundage. School of Music staff pianist Joseph Walker will provide the harpsichord continuo.
Tickets are $15 general admission and are available online at here and at the door. MTSU students, faculty and staff will be admitted free with current IDs.
This year’s concert marks MTSU’s 36th annual presentation of “Messiah,” in full or in part, for the community. The student group often performs with the Middle Tennessee Choral Society in Murfreesboro’s First United Methodist Church.
“We are very pleased to present this performance of ‘Messiah’ with the 50 voices of the MTSU Schola Cantorum,” Bundage said. “This group along, with the Choral Society, has shared this beloved choral work for decades, and it’s my hope that our community continues to receive this musical blessing for years to come.”
Handel, a German-British musician who introduced Londoners to Italian opera in the early 18th century, composed the English-language “Messiah” oratorio in 1741. His patron, Charles Jennens, used scripture from the King James Bible and the Anglican Communion’s Book of Common Prayer to create the text for the three-part libretto’s popular recitatives, arias and choruses.
This year’s community concert features five student soloists: MTSU senior voice major Alex Baldwin from Manchester, Tennessee; Skylar Carson-Reynolds, a senior from Madison, Tennessee, majoring in organismal biology and ecology; junior vocal and music education major Cameron Roberts of Knoxville, Tennessee, and voice major Jesse Lowery of Columbia, Tennessee; and sophomore music major Haylee Casper of Smyrna, Tennessee.
A preview of their work (available below) features the Schola Cantorum group performing with their colleagues in the MTSU TEBA and SOAL, or Tenor and Bass, Soprano and Alto, Chorale in an October concert in MTSU’s Wright Music Building.
For more information on concerts and events in the MTSU School of Music, call 615-898-2493 or visit mtsumusic.com and click on the “Concert Calendar” link under the blue “Events Calendars” button.