For their fall concert, the Masterworks Chorale of Carroll County will celebrate two major historic milestones, as they commemorate McDaniel College’s 150th anniversary as well at the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, which marks when Martin Luther split from the Catholic Church.
On Sunday, Nov. 19, the Masterworks Chorale will join the McDaniel College Choir, Frostburg State University Chorale, Children’s Chorus of Carroll County, Westminster United Methodist Church Choir and Washington Cornett and Sackbutt Ensemble for a special fall concert, “Here I Sing” featuring music from Martin Luther, J.S. Bach and Michael Praetorius.
The concert, which will start at 3 p.m. Sunday in the Baker Memorial Chapel, will also feature performers from the Carroll Singers, Emory United Methodist Church, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Messiah Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Luke’s Lutheran Church and St. Paul’s United Church of Christ.
Margaret Boudreaux, director of choral activities at McDaniel College, said music is the key that both the school and the Reformation have in common.
“Martin Luther was a musician and really valued the power of music to be able to elevate the spiritual health and vitality not only of individuals involved in music, but everybody exposed to it,” Boudreaux said.
“We also feel music played an enormous role at McDaniel. I’ve certainly had hundreds upon hundreds of singers go through my program. It’s always played a huge role in bringing the community together.”
Boudreaux said the college used to perform one of Praetorius’ Reformation pieces,”A Mighty Fortress,” at the start of all of the school’s ceremonial events from the 1890s all the way through the 1970s.
During the concert, the event will feature poly-choral concertos, featuring multiple ensembles performing simultaneously.
“There’s an element where they’re competing, but then we’ll all come together in harmony,” Boudreaux said. “We’ll also be placed apart from each other for a quadrisound effect for the audience that’s almost overwhelming.”
During the opening and closing songs of the concert, they will be joined by performers from the Children’s Chorus of Carroll County. Boudreaux said the concert will begin with a single child’s voice coming from the balcony as more voices join them in the opening of “Lord Grant Us Peace with Mercy.”
Rachel Morgan, director of the Cantare Bel Canto II choir of singers from eighth through 10th grade, said in addition to the pieces by Praetorious, they will perform a jazz rendition of “Carol of the Bells.” She said it was an honor to be participating in the concert.