Oklahoma Panhandle State University Panhandle Chorale in collaboration with the Amarillo College Concert Choir, the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus, and special guest artists from Amarillo Symphony are performing Mass of the Children by John Rutter this weekend.

Apr 10, 2019

Panhandle State Communications

Panhandle Chorale Collaborates for Mass of the Children Performance

Goodwell, Okla. — Oklahoma Panhandle State University Panhandle Chorale in collaboration with the Amarillo College Concert Choir, the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus, and special guest artists from Amarillo Symphony are performing Mass of the Children by John Rutter. This is the culminating event of the year devoted to Kids and Cancer for Panhandle State Choirs.

The choral groups will combine for two special performances, Thursday, April 11th at 7:30 p.m. at the Polk Street United Methodist Church in Amarillo and Friday, April 12th at 7 p.m. at Centennial Theatre on the Panhandle State campus. Both performances are free and open to all to attend.

Mass of the Children is a major work of English composer John Rutter. It is a non-liturgical mass interwoven with several English poems. It consists of five movements and will feature soloists from Panhandle State and Amarillo College. The mass was first performed in 2003 at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

Dr. M. Dee Wilkins, Director of Vocal Music at Panhandle State, will conduct the performance. He is assisted by Dr. Nathanial Fryml, Director of Choral Activities at Amarillo College and Artistic Director of the Amarillo Master Chorale, and Dr. Julian Ackerley, Director of the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus.

Conversation about this collaboration began two years ago with the Tucson Arizona Boys chorus. Having such a prestigious ensemble coming to our campus, and joining forces with the wonderful musicianship of our OPSU singers and the Amarillo College Choir promises to be a special event.

An extension of the Concert Choir at Panhandle State, the Panhandle Chorale includes collegiate and community members. Having made great strides in enrollment and artistry over the last three years, the Panhandle Chorale was recently invited to make its Carnegie Hall Debut in April 2020.

Amarillo College Choir is a select ensemble consisting of both music and non-music majors. They have performed for the Texas Music Educators Association convention (1995), for the Southwestern Conference of the American Choral Directors Association, and have toured annually since 1988.

Founded in 1939, the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus is celebrating its 80th Anniversary. The Chorus has earned the reputation as a premiere music education and performance organization of both classic boychoir repertoire as well as representing the diversity of the American Southwest. The group has sung in some of the most prestigious halls in the United States and they are regularly invited to perform overseas.

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