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Acclaimed tenor William Ferguson to perform at APSU

Acclaimed tenor William Ferguson will perform in recital at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 16 in the Music/Mass Communication Building Concert Hall.

The recital is presented by the Clarksville Community Concert Association in cooperation with Austin Peay State Universitys Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts.
Acclaimed tenor William Ferguson will perform in recital at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 16 in the Music/Mass Communication Building Concert Hall.

The recital is presented by the Clarksville Community Concert Association in cooperation with Austin Peay State University's Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts.

“There should be something for everyone on the program,” says Ferguson. “The recital will begin with two songs of Bellini, who was known primarily as an opera composer. German Lieder form the backbone of classical song, and I am singing five incredible songs of Robert Schumann, a real master of Lieder.

“French music is next with some sublimely beautiful songs of Reynaldo Hahn. The second half of the program will feature all American music. It ranges from Stephen Foster to Charles Ives, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Tom Leherer and a host of others. It should be fun, funny and beautiful,” says Ferguson.

A native of Richmond, Va., Ferguson holds bachelor's and master's degrees in music from The Juilliard School. He has been the recipient of various awards and honors including the Elihu Hyndman Career Grant from Opera Theatre of St. Louis, the Judges' Award in the Opera Index Competition and The Alan Weiler Award for Excellence presented by Opera Orchestra of New York.

In 2003, Ferguson became the first tenor to receive the Alice Tully Vocal Arts Debut Recital Award granting him a New York recital debut at Alice Tully Hall. Ferguson says, “The Tully Award was an honor and a thrilling experience. Tully Hall is beautiful, and it was a grand experience singing a recital there.”

Ferguson has appeared with Orchestra of St. Lukes, The American Symphony Orchestra, The Richmond Symphony, The Wheeling Symphony Orchestra and The Bellingham Festival Orchestra.

He often performs at universities through the support of the Marilyn Horne Foundation, which promotes singers in recital at various performance series. “University festivals are a favorite because of the educational aspect it offers,” says Ferguson. “I do a lot of outreach programs in local schools during these residencies.”

Recently joining The Metropolitan Opera, Ferguson will debut this summer with the Santa Fe Opera as Caliban in the premier of “The Tempest.” He also is a regular performer at The New York City Opera.

Last month, Ferguson released a CD titled “Love for Three Oranges,” featuring a live recording of his performances at the Sydney Opera House in January of last year. He says, “It was a fantastic experience. Richard Hickox had just been appointed as music director of Opera Australia and chose ‘Love for Three Oranges' as his debut. The piece is amazing and showcases the formidable talents of the Opera Australia Orchestra and Chorus brilliantly.”

Outside of music, Ferguson has a love for art and theater. “I go to museums and plays often. I'm a big fan of Austrian and modern expressionists such as Egon Shiele and Mark Rothko.”

Tickets are $25 for adults, $12 for students. APSU students with a valid ID card can attend for free. There will be a reduced rate for groups of 10 or more people. For ticket information, telephone (931) 221-7644.

For more information on the Community Concert Artist Series, telephone Dr. Ann Silverberg, professor of music, at (931) 221-7644. — Crissy Laubach-Young