Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA's Choral Union and Women's Choir to perform 'Mass Hysteria'

February 25, 2014 - Robbie Goodrich
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present the Choral Union and Women's Choir performing "Mass Hysteria" at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 6, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

The title of the concert was chosen because the ensembles will perform three Mass settings by Gabriel Faure, Emma-Lou Diemer and Franz Schubert, and a Sanctus from Leonard Bernstein's Mass, according to Tod Fish, visiting assistant professor and director of the Choral Union and Women's Choir.

Members of the SFA School of Music voice faculty, including Debbie Berry, Scott LaGraff, and Jamie Dahman, will be soloists for the Schubert Mass No. 2 in G Major performance.

"This is a youthful work of Schubert," Fish said. "He composed it at the age of 18. It is an accessible work that is composed for syllabic chorus, string orchestra and soloists. It is a wonderful opportunity to display collaboration between the choral, voice and string faculty."

Sanctus from Mass will showcase a small portion of Bernstein's large multi-media work entitled Mass, Fish explained.

"This is going to serve as an upbeat closer for the concert," he said. "It gives us the opportunity to combine the Women's Chorus and Choral Union, as well as show off our wonderful accompanists for both choirs, Dr. Geneva Fung and Michelle Ribeiro."

Fragments from the Mass is an a cappella setting of fragmented portions of the five mass movements, Fish explained.

"Ms. Diemer sets this music in the style of the early Renaissance masters, but with a feeling of 20th century harmonic and rhythmic schemes," he said.

Also to be performed is Faure's Messe Basse, which leaves out the Gloria and the Credo and lends itself to a shorter setting of the Mass, Fish said.

"It is set for treble voices and is Faure trending to his musical and philosophical beliefs conveyed in his Requiem," he said.

The Women's Chorus will perform Messe Basse and Fragments from the Mass, Choral Union will perform Schubert Mass No. 2 in G and Sanctus from Mass, and the Piney Woods Camerata will perform Concerto Grosso Op. 6 No. 1.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students. For tickets or more information, visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407.