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Interfaith colloquium will explore themes of Exodus

An interfaith colloquium entitled “Christian and Jewish Perspectives on the Exodus” will be held at 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 22 at Zoellner Arts Center, Room 145. The colloquium will offer perspectives for the upcoming Lehigh University Choral Arts presentation of Handel’s oratorio, “Israel in Egypt.”

"Our panelists are drawn from a variety of Jewish and Christian traditions, each of which weaves the Exodus story into its religious narrative," says Rabbi Seth Goren, director of Lehigh’s Hillel Society. "Each of our panelists will share his or her personal understanding of the Exodus's significance and how he or she views the Exodus in a broader religious, historical and spiritual context."

The discussion, hosted by Goren, is free and open to the public.

The panel members are Lehigh University Chaplain Lloyd Steffen; Bill Scott, professor of Africana studies; the Rev. Wayne E. Killian, director of Catholic Campus Ministry for the Diocese of Allentown, Catholic Chaplain of Lehigh University, director of the Newman Center, and pastor of the University Parish of Holy Ghost, which is the present home of The Catholic Center of Lehigh University; the Rev. Peter Pettit, director of Muhlenberg College’s Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding; and Robby Schotter of the Metropolitan Community Church of the Lehigh Valley.

The Lehigh University Choral Arts performances of “Israel in Egypt” will be at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 24 and Saturday, April 25 in Zoellner Arts Center’s Baker Hall. The concert explores the story of the Exodus through Handel’s most ambitious and brilliant oratorio for double choir and orchestra.

The 200 singers of Choral Arts will be accompanied by a 45-piece orchestra and the internationally acclaimed soloists, sopranos Carol Chickering and Michele Zuckman, counter-tenor Roger Isaacs, tenor Eric Fennell, and bass-baritones Elem Eley and William Walker.

“We’ve been taking an in-depth look at themes of slavery and Exodus this year, both in our earlier concert of American Spirituals and in our performance of Handel’s oratorio. The music itself is glorious, but it is enhanced with an understanding of the Biblical themes Handel uses,” says Steven Sametz, director of the Choral Arts.

The public is also invited to attend a free, pre-show lecture prior to each concert at 7 p.m. The lecture will be hosted by Nadine Sine, professor of music, who will discuss the musical and Biblical themes in Handel’s masterpiece.

For information tickets or information about the performances, call (610) 758-2787 (7LU-ARTS), visit Zoellner Ticket Services, or order online at www.zoellnerartscenter.org.

--Tricia Long


Posted on Tuesday, April 21, 2009

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