SPRINGFIELD, Ohio — The Wittenberg University Choir will begin its 2005 tour on Thursday, March 3, with a concert at Trinity English Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne, Ind. The choir will present 13 concerts in Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan and Ohio before presenting a home concert at 8 p.m. Friday, March 18, in Wittenberg’s Weaver Chapel.
When the Wittenberg University Choir was formed in 1930, a reporter predicted in a review that the new group would go on to earn “a national, even international, reputation.” That review turned out to be prophetic.
Under director Donald A. Busarow, professor of music and university organist, the 40-voice group is one of the most traveled college choral groups in the world, having earned rave reviews from critics across the United States and in Canada, Latin America, Europe and Russia. This is the choir’s 23rd tour under Busarow’s direction.
Former Ohio Governor James A. Rhodes designated the choir “Ohio’s Musical Ambassadors of Goodwill,” based on the group’s “eminence among the nation’s college choirs.” That opinion has been echoed time and again by critics throughout the world.
“The Wittenberg Choir, which has circled the globe with its tours, is unquestionably in the forefront of such groups,” according to the Dayton Daily News.
The choir’s repertoire ranges from Renaissance to contemporary music. It includes selections sung in English, Latin, German, Russian, French and Spanish.
Featured in the concert program this year is the motet for two choirs “Das ist meine Freude” by Johann Ludwig Bach. A variety of works ranging from spirituals to well-loved hymns will be performed, along with two pieces from the Russian Orthodox Church.
Singing in the Wittenberg Choir is no easy commitment. Earning a position for one year is no guarantee of a permanent position. Annual auditions are held, and selections are based on voice quality, ability to sing in tune and ability to read music, among other qualifications. The choir also is made up of student performers from a wide variety of majors and disciplines, representing every academic department on campus.
Busarow says he has great respect for the students in the choir.
“This is an outstanding group of singers who want to work, are easy to work with, and possess great morale and spirit,” he said.
For more information, call the Wittenberg University Department of Music at (937) 327-7341. A complete itinerary for the 2005 Wittenberg University Choir Tour is available online.
Marj Newman, Office of University Communications, wrote this release.
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