Soprano Debbie Berry, SFA vocal instructor, will be the featured soloist during the SFA Orchestra of Pines' performance of Gustav Mahler's "Symphony No. 4 in G major" at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 10.

NACOGDOCHES, TEXAS - For its "Journey to Heaven" concert at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 10, the Stephen F. Austin State University Orchestra of the Pines will perform Gustav Mahler's "Symphony No. 4 in G major."

"The concert's title is befitting of the symphony, as the work is Mahler's portrayal of and journey towards heaven," explained Gene H. Moon, director of orchestral activities at SFA and the orchestra's music director.

"We are happy to welcome back as a guest vocalist with the orchestra Ms. Debbie Berry, who will sing the soprano role in the final movement," Moon continued.

The text for this movement is a poem "Das himmlische Leben" (The Heavenly Life) taken from the collection "Des Knaben Wunderhorn" (The Boy's Magic Horn). It describes a child's view of heaven, complete with dancing, abundant food and music.

Berry, instructor of voice at SFA since 1988, is a frequent soloist with the School of Music's choral masterworks concerts and has performed extensively in musical comedies at the Lamplite Theatre.

Her performance credits include solo performances with the Kansas City Philharmonic, Civic Orchestra of Kansas City, Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra, Longview Opera Company, Opera Colorado education outreach, the Central City Singers, and regular performances as a recitalist.

Among her many operatic roles are Violetta in "La Traviata," Donna Anna in "Don Giovanni," Miss Wordsworth in "Albert Herring," Musetta in "La Bohème," Baby Doe in "The Ballad of Baby Doe," Norina in "Don Pasquale," Rosina in "The Barber of Seville," Gilda in "Rigoletto" and the Witch in "Hansel and Gretel."

The concert, which is a joint presentation of the SFA College of Fine Arts, School of Music and Orchestra Series, is sponsored in part by Nacogdoches Memorial Hospital and the Wedgeworth-Wright Endowment for the Arts.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and $5 for students. For tickets or more information, please visit or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.