Director of UC Riverside Orchestra and Chamber Singers Conducts War-Themed Concert

By Staci Wilson, CHASS Dean’s Office Student Intern
May 18, 2011

As part of this year’s College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) theme—War —Music Department Lecturer Ruth Charloff will conduct a program entitled “Choral Music of War and Peace.” The first half of the program consists of a cappella performances by the UCR Chamber Singers, moving from energetic songs of soldierly humor and pride to the sobering effects of actual combat. After a brief intermission, the audience will be treated to Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem, featuring the two Music Department choruses and the vocal talents of faculty members Camelia Voin (soprano) and Ralph Cato (baritone).

Dona Nobis Pacem (translated as “grant us peace”), composed in 1936 as World War II threatened, stems from Vaughan Williams’ experiences as an ambulance worker during WWI, in combination with vivid images and themes from Walt Whitman’s Civil War poetry. Though the cantata depicts the violent and tragic effects of war, it ends with Vaughan Williams’ positive hopes for a peaceful future.

Roughly one hundred and ten people have contributed to this production, spanning from students to faculty members, humanities to science majors. Under the sponsorship of CHASS and the Department of Music, “Choral Music of War and Peace” is scheduled to appear at the University Theater Saturday, May 21st at 8pm and Sunday, May 22nd at 3pm. General admission is $10, with $8 tickets available to students and seniors, and $6 tickets for audience members under the age of twelve.

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