CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Oct. 22, 2001
University Choir to feature songs of death, life in free concert Oct.
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University Choir from the University of Iowa School
of Music will perform works with texts about death and life as part of a free
concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28, in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.
The concert, under the direction of UI Director of Choral Activities Timothy
Stalter, will also include pieces related to the biblical figure of King David.
University Choir is a select, advanced choir of 50 to 60 singers, primarily
undergraduate students. The group presents concerts of its own each semester,
in addition to participating in combined choral performances with the University
The first half of the Oct. 28 program will comprise pieces about King David
and his life, as well as settings of Psalms associated with him. Among the
shorter works on this portion of the program will be "The last words
of David" by American composer Randall Thompson, "Blessed be God"
by George Frideric Handel and "Jubilate Deo" by Benjamin Britten.
The final piece on this portion of the concert will be a work that Stalter
describes as "a bit of an oddity": the first movement of the "Psalmkonzert"
(Concert of Psalms) by German composer Heinz Werner Zimmerman. A setting of
Psalm 96, "Singet dem Herrn" (Sing to the Lord a new song), the
movement is characterized by jazz rhythms and harmonies and features an accompaniment
by three trumpets, vibraphone and string bass.
Stalter said, "In the second half of the concert, an emphasis is placed
on our response to life in light of our mortality." The songs will progress
from those about death to more life-affirming texts: "Carols of Death"
by William Schuman, followed by "Hark, I hear the harps eternal,"
a spiritual arranged by Alice Parker; "Ain't got time to die" by
Hall Johnson, "Life is now" by Oscar Ahnfelt; and -- about as optimistic
as any text ever sung -- "The best of all possible worlds" from
"Candide" by Leonard Bernstein.
Stalter joined the UI faculty as director of choral activities in 1999. He
directs Kantorei, the premier choral ensemble of the School of Music, teaches
graduate conducting courses, and administers the graduate program in choral
conducting. He has research interests in teaching conducting to undergraduate
and graduate students and historical music performance practices. An active
member of the American Choral Directors Association, he frequently presents
clinics and workshops in choral conducting around the United States.
In addition to conducting and teaching choral music, Stalter is active as
a tenor soloist in the United States and abroad. A specialist in the music
of the Renaissance, Baroque and Classical periods, he is known for his performances
as the Evangelist in the Passions of J.S. Bach and Heinrich Schuetz. He has
appeared as tenor soloist with the Newfoundland Symphony, the North Carolina
Symphony, the Robert Shaw Festival Singers in France, the Robert Shaw Chamber
Choir in Atlanta, the Classical Music Seminar and Festival in Eisenstadt,
Austria, and the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival. He has recorded as tenor
soloist with conductor Robert Shaw on two compact discs released on the Telarc
Prior to coming to the UI, Stalter was on the faculty of the University of
Wisconsin-Madison, the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Goshen College
in Indiana. He received a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin, where
he studied with renowned choral conductor Robert Fountain, and a masters from
the University of Illinois, where he studied with Don Moses, who was UI director
of choral activities in the 1980s.
The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/.
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