McDaniel choir concert memorializes lost friends

Jacob deNobel
Contact ReporterCarroll County Times

This year the McDaniel College Choir will honor lost friends and remembered colleagues — including professor Bo Eckard, who died in August — with their annual spring performance themed "I'll Remember You in a Song."

The concert is named and themed for the climactic piece "I'll Remember You a Song" by Steven Lutvak and Carol Hall, and arranged specifically for the concert by choir director Margaret Boudreaux.

Boudreaux said the piece was brought to her attention by Arts Administrator Josh Selzer, who thought it was a perfect fit for the choir. Boudreaux said she began to assemble the choral arrangement and planning the concept for the show. When Eckard died, she said the show evolved into its current form, as a celebration and remembrance of those who have passed on, from Eckard to other members of the McDaniel community and families.

"Music is a very powerful vehicle to express your memories," Boudreaux said. "It evokes memories of love from the present and the past, and all of the emotions associated with it."

Each of the pieces in the final program relate to the ideas of remembrance, loss and valuing our time with others. As the show goes on, different sections will relate to the ways in which diverse cultures express memories of the past.

Throughout the concert, audiences will engage with pieces written in the 19th century to new pieces, revolving around memories of concepts as distinct as biblical tales and the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean that killed more than 200,000 people.

Pieces in the concert include Ysaye Barnwell's "Wanting Memories," James Mulholland's "A Red, Red Rose," Moses Hogan's "Battle of Jericho" and Michael McGlynn's "Behind the Closed Eye." In addition to these pieces will be the world premiere of Robert Cohen's "Spirit of the Winding Water" which relates to the role of water in Native American culture. Boudreaux said they were two weeks into rehearsal when she heard from Cohen, who said he had just finished his newest piece and wanted to know if she'd like to hear it.

"I've premiered works by him before and it fit very nicely into one section of the concert," Boudreaux said. "It evokes places and sensations that those places evoke. We hadn't planned it, but it worked out perfectly."

The concert will all build to their performance of "I'll Remember You a Song," preceded by an introduction by Boudreaux. She said she plans on discussing the impact Eckard had on the McDaniel campus, as well as dedicate the song to the memory of all those who have been lost and remembered.

Boudreaux said it has been tough but rewarding for the members of the choir to put themselves into the emotional place necessary to perform an entire concert dedicated to loss and memory.

"There was one singer who recently lost an immediate family member, and she had to take a break in rehearsal to collect herself," Boudreaux said. "That's good. That's part of the process. That's what music does. It allows you to experience these emotions."

The song describes different ways loved ones are memorialized by those they leave behind. Boudreaux said connecting the piece to the memory of Eckard is a great way to honor his memory.

"Bo was a free spirit if I ever knew one," Boudreaux said. "The lyrics of the song are kind of funny. There's a line, 'I'll imagine you as an angel carrying a harp,' but if I know Bo, he'd have his bass up there and would be rocking the choir. That's how I'd imagine him in song."


What: "I'll Remember You in a Song"

When: 7:00 p.m. Sunday, April 23

Where: Baker Memorial Chapel, McDaniel College, 2 College Hill, Westminster

Cost: Free

For more information: Visit

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