Choirs to join for evening concert ‘Lights in the Darkness’ on March 21

The choirs of Western Carolina University’s School of Music will present a spring choral concert, “Lights in the Darkness,” on Tuesday, March 21.

Admission is free for the performance that begins at 7:30 p.m. in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center. Scheduled performers include the Concert Choir, University Chorus and Early Music Ensemble, along with special guest artists, WCU’s Inspirational Choir and the A Cappella Club.

The evening’s repertoire will explore both literal and figurative meanings of light, ranging from a 12th-century chant written by Hildegard of Bingen to Keith Hampton’s modern gospel arrangement of “This Little Light of Mine.”

Allison Thorp

Other notable works include Brahms’ motet “Warum is,” based on text from the Book of Job; Thompson’s “Choose Something Like a Star”; a setting of the Robert Frost poem of the same name; and a Latvian piece accompanied by tuned water glasses called “Northern Lights,” with text from the journals of 19th-century Arctic explorers Charles Francis Hall and Fridtjof Nansen. The concert will close with combined choirs performing the South African freedom song “Siyahamba.”

“The theme of light in the darkness is one that spans both time and place, and this music allows us to explore that idea whether we are in 12th-century Germany or in modern America,” said Allison Thorp, director of WCU choral activities. “As humans, sometimes it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by forces outside of our control. Yet, as Francis of Assisi once observed, “Even all the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.’ I think this music, while exploring darkness, is ultimately a message of hope and of optimism.”

For more information, contact the School of Music at 828-227-7242.