Saturday, November 10, 2007

Autumn Choral Concert

A Taiwanese student whom we know through serving with ISI invited us to see her sing in the choir tonight.  The concert featured Pacific University Concert Choir and Pacific University Chamber Singers.  The program included Ubi caritas (composed by James Biery), Evening Song (composed by Zoltan Kodaly), Ave Maria, The Weather Song, Dona Nobis Pacem from "Missa Solemnis" (these three composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart), The Forest of Loo (composed by Lee Ann Dresser), Three Motets: Jubilate Deo, Super Flumina Babylonis, & Sicut Cervus (composed by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Vier Quartette Op. 92: O Schone Nacht, Spatherbst, Abendlied, & Warum (composed by Johannes Brahms, A Good Night (composed by Timothy Stevens), Walking on the Green Grass (composed by Michael Hennagin), Blow the Candles Out (arranged by Greg Smith), and I’m a Long Time Traveling (arranged by David Nelson Miller).  Awesome voices…skilled pianists, flute players, dynamic conductors, too.  Our whole family had a wonderful time.  We have been studying about classical music and composers so this concert was a fabulous complement to our study.

Some of the songs were sung in Latin.  I’m so glad that they have program notes in the concert booklet to explain about each piece :) .  Ubi caritas was very beautiful and it also has a beautiful statement, "Where true love and charity are found, God is there."  I like what it said at the end of the paragraph for this song, "The chant-like verses inspire us to set aside petty quarrels and to experience, as one family, God’s limitless and pure joy."  Dona Nobis Pacem is a last part of the "Missa Solemnis" which Mozart composed when he was 12 years old for the dedication service of an orphanage.  The Forest of Loo was really funny; it was lots of fun to listen to.  It was composed by Lee Ann Dresser when she was 17 (she’s now 25).  I also enjoyed the three motets composed by Palestrina, a famous Renaissance composer.  Jubilate Deo text’s translation: "Rejoice in God, all the world.  Serve the Lord with gladness and come before His presence with a song.  For the Lord Himself, He is God." (Psalm 100: 1, 2)  Super Flumina Babylonis text’s translation: "By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept when we remembered thee, O Zion: as for our harps, we hanged them up upon the willows that are there." (Psalm 137: 1, 2)  Sicut Cervus Desiderat text’s translation: "As the hart longs for living water, so my soul longs for You, O God." (Psalm 42:1)

I think it’s appropriate to close the concert with I’m a Long Time Traveling.  It’s true…we’re just traveling through this earth.  We, weary travelers, are promised a "brighter world on high."  For us…Christ’s followers, heaven is our home!  Have you made heaven your home?  Don’t leave earth without CHRIST!  By the way, He is the best Travel Guide anyone can ever have :) !  Why would you want to travel alone on this earth with no direction and no map when you can have the best Travel Guide who never leaves you nor forsakes you and also equips you with the best map, the Bible?   

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