November 17 2008
Written by American composer Glenn McClure, the piece celebrates the union of Latin American cultures and the spiritual legacy of the Medieval Italian saint, Francis of Assisi. According to McClure, the mass sets several of Francis' writings into languages and musical styles of the New World. The instrumentation features steel drums and other percussion instruments from Latin American traditions.
Scott Buchanan, director of Choral Activities, says that the work is truly unique.
"The piece is not written in a style that most listeners are used to when they hear the liturgy of the mass. There are movements in Latin. There are movements in Italian. And there is one movement in English that is one of the prettiest things I've ever encountered. When you combine these varied languages with samba and calypso and salsa rhythms, you get musical experience that is quite distinctive. I mean, it's a rare occasion when one wants to get up in the aisle and dance when reciting the text to the mass liturgy, but folks will want to do just that when they hear this."
The Masterworks Chorale is a group comprised of ISU students, faculty, and staff, as well as community members from throughout the Wabash Valley. They will be accompanied by members of the ISU Steel Drum Band, directed by professor Jimmy Finnie. Robyn Ton, an ISU graduate, will play the piano. In addition, Indiana State voice faculty members Peggy Balensuela (mezzo-soprano), Colleen Davis (soprano), Lisa Lowry (soprano), and David Mannell (tenor) will serve as soloists for the work.
"I hope the music lovers in this community come out and hear this fine work," said Buchanan. "I can assure you that the experience of hearing this mass will be one that is far different from any other."
Tickets for the concert are $10 for adults and $5 for K-12 students. ISU students will be admitted free of charge with a valid student ID. For more information, call the ISU choral music office at 812-237-4590.
Contact: Scott Buchanan, ISU Director of Choral Activities, (812) 237-4590
Writer: Paula Meyer, ISU Communications & Marketing, (812) 237-3783 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Indiana State University Masterworks Chorale, under the direction of Scott Buchanan, will present "St. Francis in the Americas: A Caribbean Mass" at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 23, in Tilson Auditorium.