Williams Concert Choir
Brad Wells, Director
Alexander Schumacker ’08, student conductor
The Williams Concert Choir and orchestra will give a concert directed by Brad Wells on Saturday, March 8, at 8 p.m. in Thompson Memorial Chapel on the Williams Collage campus. This free event is open to the public.
This evening of music will include Johann Sebastian Bach’s Credo from Mass in B Minor as well as the world premiere of graduating senior Alec Shumacker’s Mass on American Poets which he will also conduct.
Bach’s Credo or Symbolum Nicenum is the centerpiece of his monumental Mass in B Minor. Assembled in the last years of Bach’s life, the work ranges from the despairing Crucifixus to the exultant Et Resurrexit, from elegant solos and duets to virtuosic choral and orchestral movements. This is some of the most brilliant and most loved music by the baroque master. Featured soloists will be Kerry Ryer-Parke, soprano; August Caso ‘09, soprano; and Keith Kibler, bass-baritone
Schumacker’s Mass on American Poets, receiving its world premiere, is a presentation of five texts by beloved American poets, ranging from Longfellow to Whitman, collectively forming a narrative and organized thematically into a Mass setting. The piece will feature soloist Matt Allen ‘08, tenor. Schumacker ’08, who has been composing since age 12, has continued this passion at Williams College under the guidance of Professors Ileana Perez Velazquez and David Kechley.
Williams College has long had a fine tradition of music performance in its choral ensembles. Brad Wells, in his ninth year as Director of Vocal Activities, has helped that tradition flourish. The choral program has much to offer students interested in singing, with a number of performances throughout the year, a wide range of repertoire, recordings and tours.
The season usually includes one major concert on campus each semester. Additionally, the group regularly participates in choral festivals and performs around the community at a variety of events at the Clark Art Museum, the Williams College Museum of Art, the annual Lessons and Carols service in Thompson Chapel.