CU Concert Chorus to Present the ‘Messiah’ Dec. 8

Dec. 2, 2009

For Immediate Release



By Ashley Zsedenyi, staff writer

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Campbellsville University’s Concert Chorus and the University Orchestra will present Handel’s “Messiah” Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. in the Ransdell Chapel, located at 401 N. Hoskins Ave., Campbellsville.

            The concert is free and open to the public.

            Dr. Frieda Gebert, associate professor of music (vocal/choral) and director of the chorus, said, “The familiar strains of Handel’s ‘Messiah’ have been a part of Christmas since the late 1700s. This year that beloved work can again be heard in Campbellsville, thanks to the School of Music at Campbellsville University.”

            The performance will feature soloists from within the ensemble with the University Orchestra will provide the accompaniment, along with faculty members, Dr. Reese Land, assistant professor of music/trumpet, playing piccolo trumpet, and Dr. William Budai, assistant professor of piano, playing harpsichord.

            Recently retired School of Music faculty member Nevalyn Moore will play organ for the event.

            “It is a pleasure to work with so many terrific colleagues here at Campbellsville,” Gebert said, “and it is a special treat to have Mrs. Moore return and play this performance with us.”

            Moore has spent her retirement traveling across the country to present a series of organ recitals in recent months.

            Handel’s “Messiah” was composed in just 22 days in the summer of 1741. It was first performed at a concert held to benefit an orphanage and infirmary in Dublin, Ireland.

            It was near the end of Handel’s life, in 1759, that annual performances of the work became popular, although it was not published until 1767. Since that time “Messiah” has been performed by choirs of every size and kind.

            “The Concert Chorus consists of over 50 singers this year,” Gebert said. “But as a way of reaching out to the community, we opened up the group to community members as well.

            “In addition we have invited some area high schools to join the chorus. It’s not often that high school students get to perform in a work of this scope, with an orchestra and soloists. We thought it would be a valuable and exciting experience for them,” Gebert said.

            The Concert Chorus will be joined by students from Bardstown High School and Nelson County High School.

            The concert will offer only a portion of the entire “Messiah,” but will include many well-known choruses such as “For Unto Us a Child is Born” and will conclude with the “Hallelujah Chorus.”

            Gebert said it has become a tradition for the audience to stand for the “Hallelujah Chorus,” following the lead of the first monarch to hear the work, King George II.

            “I think people will want to come to their feet and applaud such a tremendous and historic work, and I believe they will find this performance to be worthy of their applause as well,” Gebert said. “The CU School of Music has a remarkable music program and I believe that will be demonstrated once again in this performance.

            Campbellsville University is a private, comprehensive institution located in South Central Kentucky. Founded in 1906, Campbellsville University is affiliated with the Kentucky Baptist Convention and has an enrollment of 3,006 students who represent 97 Kentucky counties, 30 states and 37 foreign nations. Listed in U.S.News & World Report’s 2010 “America’s Best Colleges,” CU is ranked 23rd in “Best Baccalaureate Colleges” in the South, tied for fifth in “most international students” and fourth in “up-and-coming” schools in baccalaureate colleges in the South. CU has been ranked 17 consecutive years with U.S.News & World Report. The university has also been named to America’s Best Christian Colleges® and to G.I. Jobs magazine as a Military Friendly School. Campbellsville University is located 82 miles southwest of Lexington, Ky., and 80 miles southeast of Louisville, Ky. Dr. Michael V. Carter is in his 11th year as president.


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