SU music kicks off concert series

The Stevenson University music department‘s concert series begins on April 25 at 7 p.m. to showcase the Concert Band, University Singers, Percussion Ensemble, and Ukulele Ensemble. Music will continue on Sunday, April 28, when the Greenspring Valley Orchestra takes center stage at 4 p.m. Both concerts will take place in the Inscape Theatre.

Stevenson seniors Lauren Aversa and Meghan Wrigley are two trombonists in the ensemble and are excited to be performing in their fourth concert. (Photo from the Stevenson University Flickr)

Each year, the department hosts a series of spring concerts and is tasked with making them unique. As a result, every ensemble has a surprise in store for the audience, especially this year.

The concert will begin with the Ukulele Ensemble, which is a course offered by the music department to “explore elements of music, as well as the music of Hawaii.” This ensemble is led by Jared Denhard, adjunct instructor of music, who teaches students of any skill level to learn how to play the instrument.

The University Singers, which has continued to grow in size since the arrival of artistic director Beverly Gandolfo, has added more challenging music to its setlist for this concert. This semester, the ensemble has recruited the help of technical director Chris Crostic to design light-based effects for its last song, which will also feature flashlights as a prop.

Mark Lortz, assistant professor of music, is the conductor of the bands and has composed several of the pieces that will be played, including Iron Maiden’s “The Trooper,” and “The Heart of Madness.” The latter is a musical score about three of Edgar Allan Poe’s stories, including “The Telltale Heart,” from which the piece’s name is derived. Lortz’s compositions have been played all over the world, including Shanghai, as was as at a music festival in Austria which he himself attended.

Sam Morrison, the incoming tenor line section leader, is keen on making sure the drumline plays as well as they can during the concert.

The concert on the 25th will end with a preview of the Stevenson University Marching Band‘s 2019 field show, performed by the Pep Band and Percussion Ensemble. This piece will feature a tenor saxophone soloist, and attendees will easily recognize it.

On Sunday, the second concert in the spring series will take place, featuring the Greenspring Valley Orchestra. This ensemble is known within the Baltimore are as one of the most respected amateur groups, being primarily made up of local non-professional instruments and students. They play a very advanced repertoire of classical music, and will perform three pieces by Beethoven, Massenet and Borodin for this season’s concert.

Lortz is looking forward to a positive experience for both audience members and the musicians, and he hopes for continued musical success in the future.

There is no charge for the tickets to the concert, since Lortz has always been adamant about “making sure the concert is free for everyone.” He hopes to see a large audience at the concert, for which the musicians have been practicing since February.

Editor-in-chief Emma Cathy Smith contributed to this article.

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