Choir to perform eclectic mix of classical, folk

Published 6:30 am Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Wartburg Choir will perform works by European composers and American folk songs and spirituals during its concert Friday, April 1 in Austin.

The 85-member choir, under the direction of Dr. Lee Nelson, associate professor of music, will sing at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, 1600 W. Oakland Ave., at 7:30 p.m. Its program will feature selections from its upcoming European tour and collaboration with the Austin High School choir.

“This year’s theme of ‘Sing to the Lord a New Song!’ honors the past traditions of the Wartburg Choir, while acknowledging the future direction and evolution of the choir,” Nelson said.

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The program, he added, will include “hallmark works sung by past Wartburg Choirs” and will premiere two new works.

“Herr, neige deine Ohren und erhöre mich” was written for the choir by German composer Siegmund Schmidt, while “Sacred Origins” by Norwegian-born, New York City-based composer Ola Gjeilo was commissioned by the children of Dr. Edwin Liemohn, who founded the choir in 1937.

The choir also will perform songs written by composers from areas it will visit in Europe — Hungary, Germany, Norway, Sweden and Denmark — and American folk songs and spirituals.

Tenor Dr. Brian Pfaltzgraff, assistant professor of music, will sing “I Lift Mine Eyes Unto the Hills” by African-American composer Adolphus Hailstork and other selections.

More information about the ensembles is available here.