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Hudson Chorale Concert in Pleasantville – Psalms, Quartets, and Waltzes

largest chorus, will present an evening and matinee performance of its spring concert in central Westchester on Friday, May 17, 8:00 pm, and Sunday, May 19, 3:00 pm, at the Pleasantville Presbyterian Church, 400 Bedford Rd, Pleasantville, NY. The program features works by Johannes Brahms, Igor Stravinsky, and Béla Bartók, composers who left us an unforgettable collection of songs spanning the 19th and 20th centuries.

In addition to including his often-performed and well-loved Liebeslieder Waltzes (Lovesong Waltzes), the program will also feature Brahms’ Quartets which many audience members will have the pleasure of experiencing for the first time.  As a point of interest, it is thought that the Waltzes, a collection of folk songs and love poems, was inspired by the composer’s unrequited love for a friend’s wife. His Quartets are based on romantic secular texts paying tribute to the wonders of nature.

Stravinsky continues to be one of the most towering and influential composers of the 20th century.  His Symphony of Psalms is a beautifully structured work that conveys the religious nature of the piece through compositional techniques.  Stravinsky’s groundbreaking style was a severe reaction to the romanticism of composers – such as Brahms – which pushed him to move in the neoclassical direction, the Psalms being a prime example of that movement.  The chorus will perform the piece with thrilling four-hand piano accompaniment.

A lover, collector and composer of folk songs, Bartók made significant and lasting contributions to choral music.  His Four Slovak Folk Songs are an excellent example of the lasting gift he has left us.  Composed for only piano accompaniment, the instrument becomes a part of the colorful harmonies and textures of the Songs that make it a sophisticated piece of music.

Artistic Director/Conductor, Ira Spaulding, promises a program you “will not forget!”  He has a 45-year career of performing, conducting and teaching conducting master classes in more than 60 countries all over the world, and currently holds the position of Professor of Vocal and Choral Music at City College of New York.  David Baranowski and Laurel Larsen, who will provide the piano accompaniment, are outstanding keyboards artists with the expertise and craftsmanship needed to bring the pieces to life.

Following the concert, the audience is invited to an informal reception to meet and chat with the conductor, soloists, orchestra and chorus members while enjoying some delicious refreshments, a long-standing Hudson Chorale tradition.  Ticket Prices: Advance Sale-$25;  Door-$30;  Students-$10.  Advanced Sale tickets can be purchased on-line at www.HudsonChorale.org or by calling 1-800-838-3006.  Handicap parking is available at the venue.  For additional chorus or event information, visit the chorus website.