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CCU musicians to perform world premiere by S.C. composer

March 5, 2010

The Coastal Carolina University Concert Choir and Percussion Ensemble will perform the world premiere of Akhat Shaalt (One Thing I Ask), a choral work by noted composer Meira Warshauer, at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 10 in Wheelwright Auditorium. General admission is $3 and children (10 and under) are admitted free, but must be accompanied by an adult.

Coastal Carolina Universitys Department of Music commissioned Warshaeur, who was the 2009-2010 Nancy A. Smith Distinguished Visitor in Residence at CCU, to compose the piece for this concert.

The piece was inspired by Psalm 27, according to Warshauer. In this composition, I hope to convey how it may feel to sit with awareness of the Holy Presence, she says. It is traditional to read Psalm 27 every year in preparation for the season of teshuvah or return which begins with the Jewish New Year. The simplicity of verse 4 always holds my attention and gives me strength throughout the year.

This premiere event will be performed by students in the Universitys concert and chamber choirs under the direction of Terri Sinclair, assistant professor of music and director of choral studies, and the percussion ensemble, under the direction of Kurry Seymour, director of percussion studies and assistant director of bands.

Warshauer has received many awards recognizing her achievement as a composer, including fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and two artist fellowships from the South Carolina Arts Commission. She has devoted much of her creative output to Jewish themes and their universal message.

In addition to the world premiere of Warshauers commissioned piece, the program will include several other selections by the choirs and percussion ensemble, including a combined performance of Sleep by Eric Whitacre.

Special guest Ann Dervin, affiliate artist at the University, will accompany two choral pieces on the clarinet. The percussion ensemble will perform Flight of the Bumble Bee by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov as well as some rag time music. Heather Sweeney, a senior percussion major, will perform a solo marimba piece, Dream of the Cherry Blossoms by Kaiko Abe. For tickets or more information, call the Wheelwright Box Office Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 843-349-2502.