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RHS concert includes new symphony orchestra

The annual Ridgefield High School Winter Concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 19 at the Anne S. Richardson auditorium, Ridgefield High School, 700 North Salem Road. The concert is free and open to the public.

The evening of fine choral and orchestral music features performances by Ridgefield High School choral groups including the Concert Choir and Madrigal Singers under the direction of Joyce Flanagan, and the student-directed A Cappella 8 and The Nightingales. The concert also includes the first performance of the newly formed Ridgefield High School Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Michael McNamara.

The Concert Choir, accompanied by Emily Arth, will sing four pieces including Dirait-on, a selection from “Les Chansons des Roses” by Morten Lauridsen; the poetic Israeli love song Erev Shel Shoshanim with music by Josef Hadar, words by Moshe Dor and arranged by Jack Klebanow; There You’ll Be from the film Pearl Harbor with words and music by Diane Warren and arranged by Mac Huff; and The Last Words of David by Randall Thompson, commissioned in 1949 by the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO) and performed by the BSO and the Berkshire Music Center Chorus.

The Madrigal Singers, an auditioned group that sings sacred and secular Renaissance vocal music, will sing three pieces including I Heard the Bells with words by Henry W. Longfellow, music by J. Baptiste Calkin and arranged by Steve Kupferschmid; Pie Jesu from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Requiem” featuring Ridgefield High School soprano soloists Allie Short and Mattie Joyner; and All At Once Well Met Fair Ladies, an English madrigal by Thomas Weelkes and arranged by Patrick M. Liebergen.

A Cappella 8, the small co-ed a cappella group, will sing The Longest Time by Billy Joel, arranged by Ridgefield High School senior Patrick Lerchi; and Everybody Talks by Neon Trees, and arranged by Jeff Molush.

The Nightingales, the all-girls a cappella group, will sing How Will I Know with music and words by George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam; and Bring Me Little Water, Silvy by Huddie Ledbetter (Leadbelly) and arranged by Moira Smiley.

The Symphony Orchestra will perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5. The newly formed orchestra is comprised of string musicians enrolled in the Ridgefield High School orchestra course, as well as wind and percussion musicians selected by audition from other Ridgefield High School music ensembles.

The evening will conclude with traditional singing and playing of Handel’s the Hallelujah Chorus by the Concert Choir and select members of the Symphony Orchestra.

For more information about the concert or Ridgefield High School music ensembles please contact Mrs. Flanagan at jflanagan@ridgefield.org, 203-438-3785 ext. 1051 or Mr. McNamara at mmcnamara@ridgefield.org, 203-438-3785 ext. 1065.

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