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Lehigh's Choir and Glee Club set to make Lincoln Center debut

Lehigh's Choir and Glee Club will perform at Lincoln Center in January.

The Lehigh University Choir and Glee Club make their debut at the renowned Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts with the University Glee Club of New York City (UGC) on Jan. 13, 2006.

And they have a Lehigh alum to thank for it as Larry Hunter '83, a member of the UGC, helped secure a place for the Choir and Glee Club at this prestigious location.

The UGC, which presents January and May concerts each year in Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, has traditionally invited one university or college glee club to join them. Hunter, who sang with the Lehigh University Choir as a student, introduced Steven Sametz and the Lehigh Choir’s work to the conductor and several UGC members. The UGC was familiar with Sametz’s work as director of The Princeton Singers.

The 160 members of UGC will open the concert. For the second half of the program, the LU Choir will take the stage to perform several pieces including Ummah sallih , Sicut cervus, Resonet in Laudibus, a Ladysmith Black Mambazo piece King of Kings, a traditional Russian psalm Blagoslov’en dushe moya and two compositions by Sametz, Zinga and Gaudete. The last part of the program will showcase the UGC and the LU Choir performing together.

The Lehigh University Choir is an active force in campus life. The 55 students, drawn from all majors at the university, audition at the beginning of the academic year. During the year, they give three major concerts on campus and tour internationally. The Choir frequently performs with orchestra in such works as Bach's Mass in B Minor, Magnificat, St. Matthew Passion, Mozart's Mass in C Minor, and Handel's Messiah.

They have appeared with the internationally renowned ensemble Chanticleer in New York and at Lehigh in performances of Monteverdi's Vespro della beata Vergine. The Choir performs new music regularly, including many works written especially for them by Steven Sametz, Paul Salerni, Robert Moran and Bradley Ellingboe. They have been heard five times in recent years over National Public Radio. Recent tours include Moscow, St. Petersburg and Berlin; Florida; California; the Virgin Islands; Germany; Austria; France; and a recent five-city tour of Asia.

The new Lehigh University Glee Club is comprised of members of the Lehigh University Choir who gather once a week to sing music from the rich repertoire of male singing. Inspired by the long tradition of men's singing at Lehigh, the new Glee Club was established in September of 2005 and has already performed frequently in concerts and community events.

Steven Sametz, Ronald J. Ulrich Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Lehigh University, has earned increasing renown in recent years as both composer and conductor. He is the Director of Choral Activities at Lehigh University and also serves as artistic director of the elite a cappella ensemble, The Princeton Singers. Recent guest conducting appearances include the Taipei Philharmonic Foundation, the Berkshire Choral Festival, the New York Chamber Symphony and the Netherlands Radio Choir. Sametz’s compositions have been heard throughout the world at the Tanglewood, Ravinia, Schleswig-Holstein, Santa Fe and Salzburg music festivals. His in time of appears on the recent Grammy award-winning CD by Chanticleer, “Colors of Love,” and his works may be heard on six other Chanticleer CDs, as well as Lehigh University Choir's “Live from Taipei,” Lehigh University Choral Arts “Christmas at Lehigh,” The Princeton Singers’ “Reincarnations” and “Christmas with The Princeton Singers.”

The University Glee Club of New York City is an all-male singing group founded in 1894 “to encourage male voice singing of the highest excellence.” Currently, they have approximately 160 active singing members who span from recent college graduates to men who have sung with the UGC for over fifty years. Many members sang in college glee clubs and small groups and still participate in small group and quartet singing. The Glee Club’s repertoire covers a wide range of music including classical, Broadway musicals, sea chanteys, spirituals and traditional college songs.

Tickets for the event are $20.00. Immediately following the concert, the University Glee Club hosts an Afterglow party on the Grand Promenade, Lincoln Center Plaza. The party will include a live band, dancing, refreshments and a cash bar. Tickets for the concert and Afterglow party are $45.00. For more information about the event and the party, please visit the special Alumni Clubs page. For more information about the concert itself, please visit www.lincolncenter.org.

--Jessica Bien

Posted on Tuesday, December 13, 2005

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