Classical Music

Celebrating Humanity And Tolerance With Music

Local musicians come together to celebrate the International Day for Tolerance with music by two Houston-based composers.

Cover art for the original CD release of Requiem For the Living
Cover art for the original CD release of Requiem: For the Living

This weekend, the Boniuk Institute at Rice University will present the “Concert for Humanity,” celebrating the United Nations’ International Day for Tolerance with performances of music by Arthur Gottschalk and Paul English.

The works on the program draw from several sources, with Gottschalk’s Litany using text from W.E.B. Du Bois, Paul English’s The Gospel According to John Coltrane drawing from the life of the noted jazz musician, and another work by Gottschalk–his Requiem: For the Living, combining elements of the traditional Catholic Mass with other sacred and philosophical texts.

The concert will consist of the combined efforts of choirs from the University of Houston and Prairie View A&M University, the Axiom Quartet, pianist John Cornelius, and other local musicians comprising the orchestra and vocal soloists for the Requiem.

In the audio above, I spoke with conductors Karl Blench and Vladimir Lande along with choir director Betsy Cook Weber from the University of Houston, where we talk about the music on the program and how it all ties into the messages of love and tolerance.

Concert for Humanity: A Gala Performance takes place at South Main Baptist Church on Saturday, November 17th at 7:30 PM. Go here for information and tickets.

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