Ellisville, MS - The public is invited to join Jones County Junior College’s JC Voices for a celebration of music, hope, peace and the dawn of possibilities as it presents, Serenade to Music, on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 at First Trinity Presbyterian Church in Laurel. The annual spring concert begins at 7 p.m. and is a free event.
JCJC’s premiere vocal ensemble, JC Voices will be in concert Tuesday, March 31, at Laurel’s First Trinity Presbyterian Church in Laurel. Pictured from the vocal group are: Row 1: Ashley Mills, Waynesboro, MS; Morgan Smith, Laurel, MS; Victoria O’Quinn, Meridian, MS. Row 2: Rohini Malkani, Hattiesburg, MS; Elizabeth Hensarling, Patterson, CA; Dr. Susan A. Smith, Hattiesburg, MS. Row 3: Isha Williams, Mobile, AL; Leah Dueitt, Neely, MS; Lauryn Easley, Laurel, MS. Row 4: Bryce Kinzer, Gautier, MS; James C. Cooley, Hopkinsville, KY; Shaquille Shelwood, Ellisville, MS; Reagan Arnold, Collins, MS. Row 5: Jordan Sanders, Ellisville, MS; Steve Jones, Starkville, MS; David Walker, New Orleans, LA; Harlan Mapp, Hattiesburg, MS; Gary Young, Ellisville, MS.
The concert will feature works by Dominick Argento, Ralph Vaughan Williams, György Orbán, Eric William Barnum, Stephen Paulus, Ola Gjeilo, and others. The chamber singers, conducted by Dr. Susan A. Smith and accompanied by Dr. Victoria Johnson are also joined by a host of collaborating instrumentalists this year. The singers will perform everything from the a cappella selection Pange Lingua, Orban’s impressive piece based on an ancient liturgical text, with driving percussive rhythms and complicated chromatic lyricism, to Eric Barnum’s Dawn, a meditation on the coming light-filled day and all the possibilities it brings, and Stephen Paulus’ The Road Home, a “Prospect” tune from Southern Harmony.
A string quartet, as well as organist and JCJC faculty member Ms. Kay Guiles, will join JC Voices, Dr. Smith and Dr. Johnson on one of Ralph Vaughan Williams’ best-loved works, Serenade to Music, with text by William Shakespeare. This work, originally written for sixteen singers and commissioned by the conductor Sir Henry J. Wood to mark his fiftieth anniversary as a conductor, was written not to be in praise of him, but rather a work, as stated by Sir Henry Wood, ‘that could be used at any time and for any occasion.’
Dr. Michael Boyd, JCJC guitar instructor will also join the group on the regional premiere of Ola Gjeilo’s unpublished work The Lake Isle. The singers will also perform Gjeilo’s stunningly beautiful piece, “The Ground,” based on a chorale from the last movement of his Sunrise Mass, drawing on portions of texts from “Sanctus,” “Benedictus,” and “Agnus Dei.”
Dr. Patrick Richards, JCJC horn instructor, will perform with the singers on the Richard Nance setting of Set Me As a Seal from Song of Solomon, and violinist Pedro Oseias will accompany the JCJC men’s ensemble on a traditional American Folk Song, The Girl I Left Behind Me.
The women’s ensemble will sing Away from the Roll of the Sea, first made famous by Canada’s award winning women’s choir, Elektra, and the chamber ensemble will also perform Bob Chilcott’s The Singing Heart, as a double choir, incorporating tone chimes. Culminating one of the group’s most challenging and collaborative programs to date will be Péter Louis van Dijk’s a cappella works, Chariots, a piece commissioned by the Texas State University Chorale and the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Choir. Chariots is based on Psalm 20: 1-9, a prayer for success. And embedded within the text of the song is our hope for the year: “may He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”