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Drexel Concert Week

March 2, 2011 — piano keys and music notes

Our Music Program will end the winter term with a series of music concerts from the Percussion, Rock, Mediterranean, Guitar, and Fusion Ensembles, as well as the All College Choir and String Orchestra, all leading up to a performance from the University Chorus of Mendelssohn’s greatest work, “Elijah”. This diverse week of concerts begins on Friday, March 4th and runs through Sunday, March 13th.

The music concerts feature over 300 Drexel musicians and singers whose majors include Biology, Digital Media, Engineering, International Business, and Marketing. The week begins with the Percussion Ensemble, under the direction of Mark Beecher, who will present “A Tribute to Rock Band”. The ensemble will perform classic Rock & Roll songs made popular by the hit game Rock Band. The program will include “London Calling” by The Clash, “These Days” by Jackson Browne, and Pink Floyd’s “Money”. The concert will take place on Friday, March 4th at 7 PM in the Mandell Theater (33rd & Chestnut Sts). On Sunday, March 6th at 7 PM, also in the Mandell Theater, the Concert Band, under the direction of Dr. Mike (Myron) Moss, Music Program Director, will perform pieces that are musical portraits of people or events. The program includes Pierre Leemans’ “March of the Belgian Paratroopers” and a performance from the Student/Faculty Brass Quintet of “Shadowcatcher Movement IV.” This powerful piece by Eric Ewazen was inspired by the photographs of Edward Curtis, the great American photographer who chronicled Native American Indians in the early decades of the 20th century. The concert will also feature “Gaelforce” by Peter Graham, conducted by senior Music Industry student, Joel Collier. Tuesday, March 8th at 7:30 PM in the Mandell Theater, the Rock Ensemble and Fusion Band will share the stage. The Fusion Band will delight audiences with a “Jazz Meets the Caribbean” theme. Under the direction of Lynn Riley, the band will play classic hits with a flare that include Marc Anthony’s “I Need to Know” and Van Morrison’s “Moondance.” The Rock Ensemble will take the second half of the night to entertain audiences with classic Rock & Roll  including “Layla” by Eric Clapton and “Joy to the World” by 3 Dog Night.

The Mediterranean Ensemble will switch gears as they present “Al Andalus: Spanish Cross Roads of “oud and guitar, Arabic and Sephardic-Ladino,” on Wednesday, March 9th at 7:30 PM in the Mandell Theater. The evening will include songs in Ladino and Arabic and will include performances from Jack Kessler, Rodger Mgrdichian, Tito and Anna Rubio, Stan Slotter, and Bob Wilson. That same night the Guitar Ensemble, a unique ensemble made up of almost entirely electric guitars, will play a program including “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” theme and the Beatles’ “Hey Jude.” The All College Choir and String Orchestra will perform on March 11th at 7:30 PM in Main Auditorium. The All College Choir will sing music from “Sweeney Todd,” as well as hits from Louis Prima and Billy Joel.

The week of concerts will culminate with the highly anticipated performance from the University Chorus. On Sunday, March 13th at 3 PM in Main Auditorium, under the direction of Dr. Steven Powell, the Chorus will perform one of the greatest oratorios ever composed, “Elijah” by Felix Mendelssohn. Taken from the books 1 Kings and 2 Kings in the Old Testament, “Elijah” depicts various events in the life of the Biblical prophet. The oratorio brings to life the resurrection of a dead youth, the bringing of rain to parched Israel through Elijah’s prayers, and the bodily ascension to heaven of Elijah on a fiery chariot. Penny Shumante (soprano), Perry Brisbon (tenor) and John Packard (baritone), from the Fairmount Chamber Ensemble, will be the featured vocalists for the work. Tickets for “Elijah” are $3-$8 and can be reserved by calling the box office at 215-895-2787. Admission for all other performances is free and open. For more information please visit http://www.drexel.edu/westphal, or call 215-895-2787.

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