The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music news: UW Choral Union and UW Symphony Orchestra to make their Overture Hall debut in Verdi’s dramatic and moving Requiem on Friday, April 20, at 8 p.m. | April 10, 2012

By Jacob Stockinger

Now that Spring Break has ended and the University of Wisconsin-Madison is back in session, this will be just a quick post to remind you that a special event coming up.

One week from Friday, at 8 p.m. on April 20, the combined forces of the 175-voice UW Choral Union – a campus and community singing group that is nearly 120 years old – and the 85-piece UW Symphony Orchestra (both are below) will make their debut in the Overture Center’s Overture Hall performing Verdi’s Requiem.

The soloists (below from top to bottom) are soprano Shannon Prickett, mezzo-soprano Marion Dry, tenor Aldo Perrelli and bass Tony Dillon.

The work is understandably dramatic and operatic, coming late from Verdi (below) whose many operas prove how well he had mastered composing for both the human voice and for various instruments.

The large-scale work both pleases and impresses. It promises to be a major event of the concert season – a ONE–PERFORMANCE ONLY event for a group that usually offers two performances each semester.

It a special, sure-to-please piece, under the direction of conductor and choral director Beverly Taylor (below, in a photo by Katrin Talbot), who has turned in stunning performances of the same work many years ago in the acoustically inferior Stock Pavilion, here all the hay provoked allergies of chorus members, soloists, orchestra players and audience members alike.

For the official UW press release about the work, with information about the soloists and the choice of the venue, visit:

This is also a chance to be an arts booster. It is a special concert that has taken a year to arrange; a concert that is expensive to stage in the beautiful and acoustically state-of-the-art concert hall rather than the usual Mills Hall on campus. So through hard work, major donations have been secured.

But in addition, for that reason the public should also be aware that tickets are more expensive than they usually are, costing $10, $15, $20 and $25 depending on the seat location. But the glorious music and performance should be well worth the expense.

Here is a link for buying tickets:

You can also call the Overture Center box office at (608) 258-4141.

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