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“Living Voices” fill MPAC

The free “Living Voices” concert, a choral night of music, will be performed in MPAC on Sunday, March 27 at 7:30pm. MUG credit will be given.

The concert will mostly be a capella with a few accompaniments from a 16-piece chamber orchestra and a solo with guitar. All of the pieces have been composed by students and a few faculty members. There is also a guest composition written by Paul Osterfield from MTSU.

“The Living Voices has a dual-meaning because all the composers are living and the music is voices,” said Mark Volker, Coordinator of Composition for Belmont and now the concert coordinator.

A variety of music will be performed by students and faculty. Volker assures the music is different, however, it will not be difficult to understand.

“It’s not intense avant garde music but it is different music than what [the audience is] used to hearing,” Volker said. “I think most of them will find it exciting music at the same time…the majority is fairly acceptable where it’s not going to sound like a totally foreign language.”

Volker wants the audience to enjoy the music but also expose them to what is being produced today in the classical genre.

“It’s not Mozart but it’s also not incredibly intimidating, overwhelming music,” Volker said.

The concert is a collaboration between Volker and David Bridge’s Music in Lives Junior Cornerstone class. Bridge’s students were in charge of the concert advertising.

Monique Parrish, biology pre-med junior, was responsible for getting print ads and also helped with getting the concert promoted through local media outlets.

“We have to figure out a way to advertise to a general audience of those who would like to attend and those who would usually choose not to so that was difficult,” Parrish said.

Parrish is excited to hear the compositions from the students and faculty. She is looking forward to hearing the students sing, play instruments and perform pieces they have written.

“Students should attend because many times people get caught in the judgment of classical music as being strictly from the past and miss out on what contemporary classical music is comprised of,” Parrish said. “It will be a different exposure to the genre of music.”

Volker’s go-big-or-go-home approach to the concert happened when he received a plethora of choral student compositions. He figured he should put them all together and have a vocal-themed program.

So far, the students have been receptive.

“I’ve been encouraged by how enthusiastic the student performers are in doing new music by their peers, putting together a show, not for a class, but because they think it’s a worthwhile project to do for its own sake,” Volker said.

Overall, Volker simply wants the audience to learn what classical music has up its sleeve.

“A lot of modern, classical music that is being written now is something a lot of people, who don’t think they’re into classical music, might find more exciting and compelling,” Volker said.

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