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Spring Music Festival

May 20, 2009

An exciting year of musical events draws to a close in a big way with the Spring Music Festival from May 31st-June 6th. Music of the past three centuries will be the theme for the Concert Band's performance on May 31st at 7 PM in the Mandell Theater. Eric Whitacre's October will be one of the 21st century pieces and Oliver Nelson's Fugue and Bossa, which combines a Bach fugue theme and an original Bossa by Nelson, will represent the 20th century. The concert's finale will be the final movement from Vasily Kalinnikov's First Symphony, composed in 1895.

The Fusion Band, led by Lynn Riley, will perform Stevie Wonder's Don't you Worry "bout a Thing, Bill Withers' Ain't No Sunshine, and Herbie Hancock's Chameleon, among others on June 2nd at 6 PM in The Quad. The Guitar Ensemble, led by Joe Napoli, will perform The Beatles' While My Guitar Gently Weeps and Charles Mingus' Nostalgia in Times Square. The Rock Ensemble also joins the bunch with Bob Dylan's The Man in Me and Guns N' Roses' well-known rock ballad Sweet Child O' Mine.

The Mediterranean Ensemble, directed by Bruce Kaminsky, will perform alongside members of the Middle Eastern Ensemble, Atzilut, playing the groups' songs: Avram Avinu, Syrtos, Ma Ahlaa/Hena Mah Tov, Nassam Alayna and Massikum Kol Haneshama. With Arab and Jewish members, Atzilut demonstrates the ability of differing cultures to find peace and create beautiful music. The Percussion Ensemble will perform Sing Sing Sing, Ina Gadda Da Vida, Mission Impossible and Jupiter in the event on June 3rd at 8 PM in the Mandell Theater.

The Jazz Orchestra and Jazztet, directed by Dr. George Starks, will perform compositions by Benny Golson, Horace Silver, Curtis Fuller and Arturo Sandoval on June 4th at 8 PM in the Mandell Theater.

The Gospel Choir, conducted by Gregory Ross, along with praise dancers and solo performers will entertain with singing, dancing and spoken word in a concert on June 6th at 7:30 PM in the Mandell Theater.

The String Ensemble, directed by Ron Lipscomb, will perform Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, movements 1 and 2 as well as Gershwin's April in Paris on June 6th at 7 PM in the Main Auditorium.

Rounding out the Festival will be the University Chorus and Chamber Singers, directed by Dr. Steven Powell, performing a variety of polychoral works including Machaut's "Kyrie' from his Messe de Notre Dame. The program will also include Joseph Haydn's part-songs and will conclude with Gabriel Fauré's famous Requiem featuring guest harpist Maryanne Meyer. The concert is on June 7th at 3 PM in the Great Court.

All Performing Arts concerts are free and open to the public. For more information call 215-895-ARTS.