The Winter Choirfest will be Feb. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the de Jong Concert Hall in the Harris Fine Arts Center at BYU. Tickets are $10 for the public, $9 for alumni or seniors and $6 with a BYU or student ID. Tickets are available in person at the BYU Ticket Office in the Harris Fine Arts Center or Marriott Center, by phone at 801-422-2981 or online at byuarts.com.
The Winter Choirfest is an annual event featuring all four of the BYU auditioned choirs: BYU Singers, Concert Choir, Men’s Chorus and Women’s Chorus.
“Each of these choirs perform their own concerts throughout the year, but this is a chance to see them all at once,” BYU Singers director Andrew Crane said. “So if there is one concert a year that you are able to go to this would be the one, because you get such a variety of repertoire and you get to see all of the groups.”
Scott Jackson is a member of Men’s Chorus. Jackson said he is excited about the opportunity the combined performance gives the choirs to collaborate.
“I love singing with my own ensemble—and then adding a few hundred other extremely talented singers is a powerful experience,” Jackson said. “This is the type of performance you only get to see at BYU.”
Under Crane’s direction, BYU Singers consists of 40 students pursuing a variety of graduate and undergraduate degrees. The choir has performed in some of the most prestigious concert halls in the world, including Carnegie Hall in New York City, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., the Sydney Opera House and Town Hall, and more. BYU Singers will perform “Man in the Mirror,” arr. Annie Nepomuceno, “Morgen” by Richard Strauss, arr. Stanley M. Hoffman, and “In Your Light,” by Daniel Elder.
Concert Choir comprises 80 student performers. This semester’s Concert Choir and Men’s Chorus are being directed by interim choral conductor Matthew Nielsen while conductor Rosalind Hall is on leave. This group generally does not tour, but has a rigorous performance schedule on and off BYU’s campus. Concert Choir’s performance will include “Pilot Me,” an arrangement of “Jesus Savior, Pilot Me; “For the Future,” a composition written in the style of an Appalachian work song by BYU alumnus Andrew Maxfield; and “Musick’s Empire,” by Lloyd Pfautsch.
“I love Winter Choirfest because there’s something here for everyone,” Nielsen said. “No matter your musical background, experience or preference, you will hear something you love at this concert.”
Thought to be the largest collegiate male choral organization in the country, Men’s Chorus has more than 400 students audition for the ensemble each year. Choir members originate from many different countries and over two thirds of the chorus have served LDS missions throughout the world. Men’s Chorus will perform three unique songs including former King’s Singer Bob Chilcott’s arrangement of a Beatles tune “Penny Lane;” “Isaiah 44:3,” a meditation verse by Berkey Jackson; and “Sicut Locutus est,” a movement from Magnificat by Johann Sebastian Bach arranged for men’s voices.
Women’s Chorus is known for its beautiful, blended sound. The choir is directed by Jean Applonie and has a large repertoire including medieval and renaissance to modern masterpieces. Women’s Chorus will perform three pieces including an arrangement of “I Know That My Redeemer Lives,” “Now Touch the Air Softly,” and “Mary Speaks” with text by Madeline L’engle.
The show will include a variety of spiritual and secular pieces performed by each choir. As a trademark of the combined performance, the choirs will sing together Mack Wilberg's arrangement of “Redeemer of Israel” as the final number of the concert. Wilberg is a former BYU faculty, BYU alumnus and director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
“The singers are all throughout the de Jong stage, all through the aisles and up in the balcony,” Crane said. “It’s a really exciting stereo effect to hear five or six hundred singers and hearing them all together is a pretty spectacular experience.”
This final number promises to be a highlight of the evening concluding a night of beautiful music.
BYU Singers, Andrew Crane
Women’s Chorus, Jean Applonie
Concert Choir, Matthew Nielsen
Men’s Chorus, Matthew Nielsen