Laurentian Singers Home Concert to Follow Tour in Puerto Rico

St. Lawrence University’s Laurentian Singers will wind up their Spring Break tour with a Home Concert beginning at 8 p.m. on Friday, March 31, in Gunnsion Memorial Chapel. The concert is free and open to the public.

During St. Lawrence’s Spring Break week, the Laurentian Singers returned to Puerto Rico, the “Isle of Enchantment.” After stops in historic San Juan, Arecibo, Aguada and Rincón, the Laurentians will wind up in Ponce, participating in the Discover Puerto Rico Choral Festival from March 24 to 26. Sponsored by Music Contact International from Burlington, Vermont, the festival features choirs from across the island. The Laurentians are the featured American choir, singing at all three events as well as a Sunday Mass in Catedral de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, also known as Ponce Cathedral.

Led by Director of Music Ensembles Barry Torres, the program begins with a salute to opera, starting with Giuseppe Verdi’s famous “Va, pensiero” from the opera “Nabucco.” Senior tenor José Miguel Santelices Ormazábal ’17 of Santa Cruz, Chile, who has been accepted into the graduate program in vocal performance at the University of South Florida, will be featured in a song from the zarzuela (Spanish operetta) “Luisa Fernanda.”

José, a tenor, will also perform a senior recital at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 9, in Peterson-Kermani Performance Hall. His performance is free and open to the public.

Selections from Mozart’s “Requiem,” which the Laurentians presented in Fall 2016 with the University Chorus, will follow. The first half closes with the flamboyant “El Fuego” by Renaissance Spanish composer Matteo Flecha El Viejo. This piece is an example of the genre called ensaladas – a work including all the current styles, sacred and secular, of 16th-century Spanish music.

After intermission comes a pops section with Cole Porter’s “Begin the Beguine” and 1960’s hits such as “Under the Boardwalk” (sung in Spanish), “Heat Wave” and “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” The centerpiece of the program is a section of Spanish-texted works by non-Hispanic composers, including Tarik O’Regan’s “Tal vez tenemos tiempo” (poem by Pablo Neruda) and Z. Randall Stroope’s “Amor de mi alma” (Garcilaso de la Vega). The Hebrew folk song “Hine ma tov” will feature oboist Chandler Turpin ’19 of Ashburn, Virginia.

The program will close with a rousing medley of traditional Puerto Rican songs, titled “Las Plenas.”

For more information, contact the Department of Music at 315-229-5166.