Combined orchestra, choir performance commemorates Veterans Day

Cornell College’s Symphony Orchestra and Concert Choir will perform their fall concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, in King Chapel. Titled “The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace,” the concert commemorates Veterans Day and the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

Cornell orchestra and choirs
Cornell orchestra and choirs directed by Martin Hearne.

The concert is free and open to the public.

The major work is a suite excerpted from Welsh composer Karl Jenkins’ large-scale work for orchestra and chorus “The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace.” The work is being performed internationally during 2018 in remembrance of the tragic losses of the First World War. It is themed on the French medieval song “L’homme armé” and includes movements from the traditional Mass form.

The Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Professor of Music Martin Hearne, will play Beethoven’s “Egmont Overture,” composed in 1810 and based on music composed for Goethe’s historical drama (1788) of the same name. Beethoven portrays the heroic struggle of Egmont, a nobleman who fought for the freedom of his Netherlands homeland and sacrificed his life for the cause.

Concert Choir, directed by Professor of Music Lisa Hearne, will sing Paul Aitken’s “In Flanders Field,” based on the most famous poem to come from the World War I era. John McCrae was a Canadian poet, physician, artist, and soldier whose poignant poem “In  Flanders Fields” captured the feelings of struggle and loss he and his fellow soldiers experienced. McCrae died of pneumonia in the last few months of the war.

Other repertoire on the program includes John Rutter’s “Distant Land.”