The Cowley College Concert Band and Concert Choir performances on Oct. 25 will be their first with new instrumental band and choir leaders Evan Ricker and David Smith at the helm.

Concert Band and Concert ChoirThe two new instructors say they are eager to share the Robert Brown Theatre stage.

There is no cost to attend the concert, which will begin at 7 p.m.

The Concert Band will perform a family pops concert, featuring works by Danny Elfman and Alan Menken.

“The first concert of a season with a group is always important,” Ricker said.

“This performance is doubly important because it is not only the first concert of the season, but also my first concert leading this ensemble, and I do not take that responsibility lightly.

“The students have been working diligently to prepare some fun works that are familiar, yet challenging. I look forward to sharing the stage with them on October 25 to launch the 2016-17 concert season.”

Ricker said he came to Cowley with the goal of developing solid musicianship, as well as a sense of ensemble unity.

“The student musicians here at Cowley have responded to these goals quite well,” Ricker said. “From our first rehearsal, they have been open to trying new things and challenging themselves to explore what they are capable of doing as musicians.”

The Concert Choir will perform a variety of styles, from the traditional folk tune of “Home on the Range” to the contemporary harmonies contained in “The Eyes of All Wait Upon Thee,” by Jean Berger.

“I am confident the audience will find at least one piece they enjoy thoroughly, but my hope is they will enjoy them all,” Smith said. “The students have worked very hard to present a quality performance and I am looking forward to the public hearing them.”

The Concert Choir will perform the following pieces:

  • “Festival Sanctus,” by John Leavitt;
  • “Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves,” by Giuseppe Verdi and edited by John Rutter;
  • “The Eyes of All Wait Upon Thee,” by Berger;
  • “Alleluia, This Is the Day!” by Brad Croushorn;
  • “The Majesty and Glory of Your Name,” by Linda Lee Johnson;
  • “Wanting Memories,” by Ysaye Barnwell;
  • “Home on the Range,” arranged by Mark Hayes.

Following the concert on Oct. 25, the Concert Choir’s next performance will be the Vespers Concert on Dec. 4.

The choir also has been invited to Friends University’s Sing It! Festival in February 2017, with guest conductor Fransisco Nunez, of the Young People’s Chorus of New York City.

“I have enjoyed working with the students so far this semester,” Smith said.

“This being my first year here, they have made me feel very welcome and have been very open to my direction and suggestions.

“I would also like to recognize our fabulous accompanist, Mr. Stephen Butler from Southwestern College. It has been a joy working with him, as well.”

This information was provided by Cowley College Director of Institutional Communications and Public Relations Rama Peroo.

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