What are you thankful for this time of year? Music lovers will be thankful for a beautiful UNC Greensboro “Harvest Home” choral concert, held in the richly ambient space of Greensboro’s First Presbyterian Church.
The UNCG Choral Ensembles’ seasonal concert will be held Sunday, Nov. 19, at 5 p.m. Admission is free.
First Presbyterian, a Gothic Revival church crafted largely from brick and stone to create what author Gerald Allen called “a loose interpretation of the cathedral at Albi in southern France,” is known for its wonderful acoustics. In the 1920s, New York architect Hobart Upjohn, principal designer, collaborated with architect Harry Barton in planning the building. Barton designed many UNCG campus buildings, such as UNCG Auditorium, Brown Building, Guilford and Mary Foust residence halls, and Rosenthal Gymnasium.
The annual “Harvest Home” concert celebrates the themes of bounty, harvest, family, and community. The program includes Coro di Belle Voce, Chamber Singers, Spartan Voices, University Chorale, and combined choirs.
Dr. Welborn Young, Dr. Carole Ott Coelho, and Dr. Brett Nolker are among the conductors of the choral groups. Graduate conductors will be Bec Tillman, Sam Howell, Brandon Winbush, Jada Poteat, Cory Davis, Kyle Gray, Yuhua Li, and Reyna Alston.
The concert features the world premiere of “Calling Us Home” by Jane K (Evgeniya Kozhevnikova); Dr. Ott will conduct the University Chorale. “Jane’s music is simply gorgeous, and this piece has a particularly beautiful text by Germaine Shames,” she said.
This concert is a special treat for audiences, held annually. “The audience will hear all four of our choirs sing individually and on combined pieces,” she explained. “The audience will also be invited to participate on a piece called ‘Take What you Need’ by Indian-American composer Reena Esmail and ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ by James Wheldon Johnson.”
Dr. Nolker added he values the focus by everyone involved to build, enjoy, and share a warm sense of community. “It provides us all a time to live out the reason many of us dedicate our lives to choral music – community joining in song.”
And Dr. Ott added one more thing: “We’re also excited to have PopTech student Cady Fleet sing a Beatles cover!”
By Mike Harris
Photography by Martin W. Kane