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Music Department Presents 'CAROUSEL: A Concert'

SUNY Plattsburgh’s Department of Music will present “CAROUSEL: A Concert” on Friday, April 27, as part of its annual ChoralFest. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m.  in E. Glenn Giltz Auditorium located in Hawkins Hall on the college campus.

“CAROUSEL” (music by Richard Rodgers Book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II), premiered on Broadway in 1945 and ran for 890 performances. It won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical 1944-1945 and eight Donaldson Awards. Rodgers and Hammerstein describe this musical, which includes the predominant message of redemption and hope, as their best work. 

Associate Professor of Music Jo Ellen Miano is the music director for the performance, which will be staged by Music Lecturer Timothy Morningstar.

“This year’s ChoralFest project showcases the breadth of vocal talent within our choral-vocal program at SUNY Plattsburgh” said Miano. “My collaboration with Timothy Morningstar has allowed for an extended preparation process in which we can meaningfully explore the cross-section of vocal and dramatic intention within the genre of musical theater.”

The concert version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical will feature a chorus, soloists and a full orchestra performing many well known melodies including “If I Loved You,” “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and “June is Bustin’ Out All Over.”

The cast of soloists and speakers and the full chorus are all drawn from the SUNY Plattsburgh Cardinal Singers and the College Chorale. Principals include Todd Lawson of Warrensburg, N.Y., singing the part of Billy Bigelow; Ersian Francois of Trinidad and Tobago as Julie Jordan; Aislinn McKinstry of Plattsburgh as Carrie Pipperidge; Alexander Malsan of Valatie, N.Y., as Enoch Snow; Maegan Pollonais of Trinidad and Tobago as Nettie Fowler; Steven Hebert of Waterford, N.Y. as Jigger Craigin; Sarah Cohen of Buchanon, N.Y., Mrs. Mullin; and Terri-Ann Gordon of West Harrison, N.Y. as Louise.

“In this challenging work, the characters struggle with many issues, including domestic violence, gender roles in their society, substance abuse and suicide. The group’s rehearsal process has allowed them to dig deeply for a better understanding of the narrative’s characters and the various family relations issues brought to light,” Miano said.

 In order to create the opportunity to pause, ponder and reflect, Miano and Morningstar are collaborating with other academic departments and student organizations on campus and providing a public opportunity for conversation about the socio-cultural issues imbedded in “CAROUSEL.”

As a result, there will be a Faculty Scholar Panel Discussion on Tuesday, April 17, from 7–8:30 p.m. in the Alumni Conference Room of the Angell College Center. Participating on the panel will be faculty from the departments of music; theater; human development and family relations; social work; history; and gender and women’s studies. Light snacks will be provided. Admission is free and open to the public.

“We encourage our students and the general public to explore how the ‘CAROUSEL’ themes are relevant to our lives today. There is a moral imperative as relevant to today’s society as it was when the show was written,” Morningstar said.

Miano added, “We are excited to bring to Plattsburgh this masterpiece of American musical theater — multi-dimensional characters and beautiful music. “

Tickets will be sold at the door and are available in advance at the Angell College Center desk.

Prices are $10 general admission and $8 for seniors, students and SUNY Plattsburgh faculty and staff. The concert is free for SUNY Plattsburgh students.

Additional events associated with ChoralFest 2012 include choral clinics in area schools and the annual “Getting Ready for Your NYSSMA Solo” workshop on April 28 in the Myers Fine Arts Building.

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