CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – In 1939, Italian composer Alfredo Casella performed a little-known choral work by Antonio Vivaldi. The piece was about 200 years old, but after two centuries of neglect, Vivaldi’s “Gloria” struck a cord with Casella’s audience. The Baroque masterwork, originally composed as part of the Catholic Mass, is now a holiday staple, performed in churches across the globe each December.
At 3 p.m. on Dec. 8, the Gateway Chamber Orchestra and Choir will feature the famed work at the Madison Street United Methodist Church during the GCO’s second annual Winter Baroque Concert.
“We’re turning our attention to one of the most popular choral works in the repertoire,” Dr. Gregory Wolynec, conductor and musical director of the GCO, said. “It’s one of the most ambitious works we’ve done so far this year.”
The Vivaldi piece is only part of a challenging but entertaining program that features such Baroque composers as Arcangelo Corelli, Alessandro Scarlatti and Johann Sebastian Bach.
“Baroque music has long been associated with the holidays,” Wolynec said
“And the selections we’ve chosen are a good way to welcome in the holiday season.”
What makes the Winter Baroque Concert such an anticipated event each year is the inclusion of the Gateway Chamber Choir. Two years ago, Dr. Douglas Rose, chair of the APSU Department of Music, recruited dozens of talented, local singers to perform with this professional choir.
“The choir is made up of a number of talented community members, and Doug will lead them in two a cappella choir works, one by Bach,” Wolynec said.
Many of the works on the Winter Baroque program were originally intended to be performed in a church setting, which is why the orchestra hosts the concert each December at to the Madison Street United Methodist Church.
“Baroque music in a church resonates well this time of year,” Wolynec said.
The program also will feature Hollie Dueker and Andrea Ramos singing soprano and Christopher Mitchell singing countertenor. Dr. Lisa Wolynec, APSU professor of music, will perform on flute, and Dr. Jeannette Zyko, APSU assistant professor of music, will play oboe.
“And the program will end like last year with an audience sing-along on some very popular holiday carols,” Wolynec said.
The Winter Baroque concert is part of the orchestra’s 2013-14 season. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students and active duty military, and $40 for a family of four. Tickets are available on the orchestra’s website, gatewaychamberorchestra.com.