LPO and Chorale, Guests in Concert Sunday at TAMIU

Haydn’s “Creation” Comes to TAMIU Sunday, April 27

Texas A&M International University will be filled with the glorious sounds of Franz Josef Haydn’s oratorio “The Creation” as the Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO) and Chorale presents its final installment of its 28th season Sunday, April 27 at 4 p.m. at the TAMIU Center for the Fine and Performing Arts’ Recital Hall.

Also performing with the LPO will be the TAMIU Chamber Singers and guest soloists under the direction of LPO music director Brendan Townsend.

Since its first performance in April 1798, “The Creation” has enjoyed enormous success around the world. It tells the story of the Creation of the world taking its lead from the book of Genesis, the psalms, and John Milton’s “Paradise Lost.”

“Once you have sung ‘Messiah’ in its entirety as we did last year, the next hill to climb is Haydn’s ‘Creation,’” said Gloria Flores, president of the Laredo Philharmonic Chorale, “It is beautiful music, and we leave every rehearsal filled with joy.”

Joining the chorus and orchestra are soloists Melody Rich (soprano), Gregory Church (tenor) and Bruce Cain (bass), who variously represent the angels Gabriel, Raphael and Uriel as well as Adam and Eve in the third section.

“This is a rare opportunity to hear this glorious work in Laredo,” said Townsend, “I first encountered it as a boy when my dad contemplated producing it after his choir had done ‘Messiah.’ He never did it, but I conducted it in Germany and have wanted to bring it to life in Laredo for a long time.”

Though not as well known as Handel’s “Messiah,” in the world of oratorio “The Creation” stands alongside such works as the Passions of Bach, the Requiems of Mozart and Faure, and the infamous “Carmina Burana.” The libretto for this work was originally offered to Handel to set, and Haydn spent many hours admiring the great English choral traditions.

Townsend, who is finishing his fifth year as LPO music director, is currently finalizing the details of the 2008-2009 Season entitled “Heroes,” which he promises will include old favorites like Beethoven’s 3rd Symphony, alongside a few new pieces such as “Paddywak” – a concerto for tap dance and orchestra.

“Being innovative is not the problem,” said Townsend, who won an ASCAP Award for Innovative Programming in 2007, “It’s that we only have five concerts to fit all the ideas into.”

The concert is sponsored by the Lamar Bruni Vergara Trust.

Tickets are available at the Laredo Center for the Arts, as well as the business offices at TAMIU and Laredo Community College. Individual tickets are $25 general admission, $17 for seniors and free admission for students with ID.

For more information, contact Townsend at 326-3039 or e-mail btownsend@tamiu.edu

University office hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu