‘Italian Salad’ musical feast on campus

The Northwestern University Music Academy Chorus and Chamber Choir — a group of 30 or so community members, faculty, staff and students who sing recreationally — will perform a concert of Italian songs, choral works, arias and madrigals.

The fall program of Italian music is titled “Italian Salad,” in honor of the opera parody by Prussian-born Austrian librettist, playwright and composer Richard Genee (1823-1895).

Free and open to the public, the “Italian Salad” program will take place at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 9, at the Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Rd, on Northwestern’s Evanston campus.

Tickets are not required and seating will be on a first-come, first-seated basis.

The group’s program will include Vivaldi’s “Gloria,” the “Amen Chorus” from Pergolesi’s “Stabat Mater,” Caccini’s “Ave Maria,” the “Anvil Chorus” from Verdi’s “Il Trovatore,” the “Grand March” from Verdi’s “Aida,” the “Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves” from Verdi’s “Nabucco” and Monteverdi’s “Lasciatemi Morire.” It also will feature solo performances by some of the ensemble’s finer amateur singers. 

The vocal ensemble is conducted by Natalia Lyashenko, senior lecturer in the Henry and  Bienen School of Music. Each quarter — with the exception of summer — the chorus performs a free concert comprising an eclectic selection of music that ranges from classical works to ethnic music from America and around the world.

Lyashenko draws on her deep knowledge of vocal technique during rehearsals, including breathing, range and diction to help improve singing voices. Before she came to the U.S., she directed the opera theater chorus of the Novosibirsk State Opera in Russia in more than 50 new productions. She also directed the chorus of opera productions in Japan and taught at Iowa State University before she moved to Chicago and joined the faculty of Northwestern University.

The chorus is open to all adult recreational singers and welcomes new vocalists each quarter. Rehearsals are held on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., with the next quarter beginning Jan. 6, in Room 109 of the Music Administration Building, 711 Elgin St, in Evanston.

For more information about the chorus and other Northwestern University Music Academy classes, visit http://www.music.northwestern.edu/community/music-academy/voice/lessons-and-classes.html.

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