HU choir to perform with Santa Fe Symphony

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By Margaret McKinney
Highlands University

The New Mexico Highlands University Madrigal Choir will perform “Journey’s End” in concert with members of the Santa Fe Symphony at 3 p.m. on Sunday, April 29 in Ilfeld Auditorium.

The concert features Las Vegas composer Linda Rice Beck’s Requiem and German composer Jean Berger’s Exiles.

The Highlands University choral director, Andre Garcia-Nuthmann, will conduct the concert.

Santa Fe Symphony members performing Requiem include Elena Sopoci, violin; Elaine Heltman, oboe; Greg Heltman, trumpet; and Dana Winograd, cello.

Nicole Robinson, a Highlands vocal performance major, is the soprano soloist for Requiem. Other soloists include guest mezzo-soprano Monika Cossan, and Carlos Archuleta, a Highlands alumnus, singing bass.

Beck’s music has been performed throughout the United States and Europe, including in Rome at the Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore. She has received numerous awards for her compositions from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.

Some of her recent commissions include the Santa Fe Women’s Ensemble, the Sangre de Cristo Corale in Santa Fe, and the Durango Women’s Choir in Colorado.

Beck graduated from the University of Akron, with graduate studies in composition.

She also sings soprano for vocal ensembles such as the Santa Fe Symphony Chorus and Canticum Nova in Santa Fe.

As a child, Beck said she saw her first concerts in Ilfeld Auditorium, the beginning of her love of music. She asked that the Madrigal concert be dedicated in memory of her mother, Daisy Rice, a Las Vegas community member and distinguished Highlands University alumna.

Berger’s Exiles tells the story of German Jewish people under siege during World War II, torn from their homes and going into exile to survive. Berger was a Jewish composer who was dragged by Nazi soldiers from a concert venue and escaped to South America, later settling in the U.S. to compose and conduct.

Piano accompanists for Exiles include Highlands music faculty member Linda King and Ron Grinage, a Highlands alumnus. Highlands music students Isaac Hidalgo and Ty Lewis will play percussion. Em Krall will play celesta.

Soloists for Exiles include Cossan and Highlands music student TJ Harris singing bass.

Tickets for the concert are $10 for general admission, and $5 for Highlands University faculty, staff and seniors. Students with valid ID are free.