The Messiah College Concert Choir, Choral Arts Society, and Susquehanna Chorale, under the direction of Linda Tedford, performed Felix Mendelssohn's masterwork oratorio, "Elijah," with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra to rave reviews on April 11, 12, and 13. The April 11 performance, which took place on campus in the "beautiful design and exquisite acoustics" of Parmer Hall, was described by reviewer David Dunkle of the Carlisle Sentinel as " a thrilling aural experience, without the acoustical cross-currents so common in most auditoriums." Kari Larsen of the Patriot-News reviewed Saturday evening's performance at the Forum Auditorium with equal praise, describing the performance as "awe-inspiring," and calling the choirs an "elemental force." Full reviews of both Friday and Saturday's performances are available online at the Carlisle Sentinel and the Patriot-News.
Photo by Abby Madden '13
The Messiah College Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Bradley Genevro, recently released their newest album, Stained Glass Windows (Klavier label K11198; also available on NAXOS). One track from the album, Luminosity, is a new work that Dr. Mike Harcrow and the Messiah College Brass Choir, in conjunction with Murray Library, commissioned from composer Anthony DiLorenzo for the opening of Parmer Hall. The recording is by BrassCross, the large faculty-student brass ensemble at Messiah College, conducted by Dr. Brad Genevro. The entire album is available for purchase on iTunes or by contacting the Department of Music at (717) 766-2511, ext. 3310.
On Sunday afternoon, November 24, 2013, the Messiah College Faculty Brass Quintet played their much-anticipated return performance at the Trinity Episcopal Church Concert Series in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. The program was an eclectic mix of music from Gabrieli to the Beatles, and it also included Dr. Mike Harcrow's fantasia setting of "Immortal, Invisible." Dr. Bill Stowman's witty repartee kept the time between pieces lively, and the audience was wonderfully enthusiastic.
Other Messiah College faculty past participants in this series have included the Mendelssohn Trio with artists-in-residence Ya-Ting Chang, Peter Sirotin, and Fiona Thompson, as well as voice professor Damian Savarino.
The Messiah College Faculty Brass Quintet is [photo L-R] Mike Harcrow (horn), Drew Wolgemuth (Messiah College senior music major, trombone, substituting for Professor Michael Clayville who was performing in Germany at the time), Melanie Hess Miller (trumpet), Eric Henry (tuba), and Bill Stowman (trumpet and MC).
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The Messiah College Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Timothy Dixon, and the Messiah College Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Bradley Genevro, have been selected to perform at the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association state convention next spring. This is an honor reserved for the finest performing ensembles in the state, and it will allow both groups to perform to an audience of music educators and student musicians. Congratulations to both ensembles and to their outstanding directors!
The Messiah College Concert Choir, under the direction of Linda L. Tedford, was selected to perform at the American Choral Directors Association Pennsylvania conference at Millersville University in October. The group was chosen as a featured ensemble from hundreds of college choirs across the state and performed to great acclaim. This honor falls on the heels of a successful alumni reunion concert in the new Calvin and Janet High Center for Worship and Performing Arts over Homecoming Weekend. The choir was happy to welcome back old friends and introduce them to a new space!
The Concert Choir is also planning its third international tour, traveling to Italy in May, 2014. The group will travel to Rome, Florence, Assisi, and San Gimignano for nine days, and will perform in historic venues around the country.
On Wednesday, September 11, the Navy Band Brass Quintet visited campus, performing in the new High Foundation Recital Hall. Students had the opportunity to interact with the world-class ensemble, and the recital was standing room-only.
Since 1971, the Navy Band Brass Quintet has performed at libraries, museums, colleges and high schools throughout the National Capital Region, including performances as part of the Navy Band’s Music In The Schools program. In 1992, the Brass Quintet appeared at the Navy Band’s 15th International Saxophone Symposium at George Mason University, the Armed Forces School of Music Clinic and Recital and a special worship service at Washington National Cathedral honoring the Navy’s 216th birthday. The group also performed at inaugural events for President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard Cheney in 2000 and 2004.
The quintet’s repertoire includes works from the 16th through the 20th centuries, with many of the compositions arranged by its members. Directed by Chief Musician Christopher Sala, trumpet, the quintet includes Musicians 1st Class Brandon Almagro, trumpet; Musician 1st Class Jason Ayoub, horn; and Musicians 1st Class Colin Wise, trombone and James Hick, tuba. Brass Quintet members are often featured soloists with the Concert Band and perform in Navy Band recitals.
The 2012-13 Messiah College Horn Studio spent July 29-August 3, 2013, at the University of Memphis in Memphis, Tennessee, for the 45th Annual International Horn Symposium of the International Horn Society. Nearly 700 professional players, teachers, and students from all over the world were in attendance for a week of outstanding performances, workshops, masterclasses, and competitions.
Members of the Messiah College Horn Studio attending were [photo L-R] Linnie Hostetler (Class of 2013), Bethany Franklin (2016), Mary Grace Friedell (2014), Edward House (2013), Jairo Meza (2014), and Garrett Krohn (2014). This talented group entered the IHS Large Ensemble Competition held on Wednesday, July 31, and, against some excellent groups, won second place. A very strong and deserving ensemble from the Queensland (Australia) Conservatory took first.
The day before, on Tuesday, July 30, at the Lunchtime Concert Series in the college cafeteria, the Studio also performed a full 30-minute program consisting of seven works for six horns. Three of these pieces were world premieres of compositions commissioned by horn professor Dr. Mike Harcrow and the Messiah College Department of Music for the Studio especially for this event. These premieres included Sextet No. 2 by Matthew McLaughlin, Mountain Spires by 5-time Emmy-award winning composer Gary Kuo, and Fanfare by Messiah College composition instructor Bruce Yurko.
Winners of all this year's competitions have been officially announced at http://www.hornsociety.org/home/ihs-news/719-competition-winners-at-ihs-45.
Congratulations to the horn studio!
This summer, the Greater Harrisburg Concert Band under the direction of Dr. William Stowman premiered two new works by Dr. Mike Harcrow, Messiah College professor of horn and music theory. Castle Hill March was written for the band's performance in Parmer Hall on the occasion of the appearance of guest conductor and renowned British cornettist Neil Jowett. Maestro Jowett was presented a score and a full set of parts to perform in England with his group, the Huddersfield Wind Band.
Cumberland Crossings was commissioned by a retirement center in Carlisle and dedicated to local musician Janet Clark, a resident there, and premiered during a performance this past July. Afterwards, Dr. Harcrow presented Mrs. Clark with a signed copy of the score (photograph L-R, Mrs. Janet Clark, Dr. William Stowman, Dr. Mike Harcrow), and the Greater Harrisburg Concert Band encored the piece at the end of the concert.
Another of Dr. Harcrow's recent works, Classical Variations on "For the Beauty of the Earth", was recorded last summer by the Greater Harrisburg Concert Band on their CD World Winds, released this summer, as well as on the soon-to-be-released Messiah College Wind Ensemble CD.
Congratulations to Gregory Glessner, violin, for his winning performance in the annual Kuhlman Competition, and to Bryan Jones, piano, for winning the annual Messiah College Concerto Competition.
Gregory Glessner is currently a junior violin performance major at Messiah College, studying with Peter Sirotin. He has been a member of the Messiah College Symphony Orchestra since 2007, and now serves as their concertmaster. Gregory has also served as interim concertmaster for the West Shore Symphony Orchestra in their February and November 2012 concerts. Gregory was a prizewinner in the 2010 Rodney and Lorna Sawatsky Rising Stars Concerto Competition. He performed Nathan Milstein’s Paganiniana.
Bryan Jones is a sophomore piano performance major from Warrenton, VA. He has studied piano for fourteen years, two of those with his current teacher, Dr. Patrice Ewoldt. In 2012, he won first place in the annual college-sponsored Kuhlman competition. From 2007 to 2010, he appeared with the Piedmont Symphony orchestra as a soloist in their Young Artist concerto competition. From 2006 to 2011, he won composition awards at the national level from the National Federation of Music Clubs. In addition to his musical accomplishments, he is an Eagle Scout and appears in "Who's Who among Students in American Universities and Colleges." When not occupying the music building, he can often be found hiking, baking, studying chemistry, or swing dancing. Bryan performed the first movement of Johannes Brahms' Piano Concerto no. 2.
Both Gregory and Bryan will have the opportunity to perform a work with the Messiah College Symphony Orchestra as a featured soloist. Bravo to all students who performed at this year’s competition!