Conspirare Sings Samuel Barber: American Romantic on September 23rd to 25th

     Conspirare opens its season with an all-Barber program honoring the great American composer.  The professional choir's Company of Voices and artistic director Craig Hella Johnson will perform the three Samuel Barber: American Romantic concert events in Austin on September 23rd through 25th
       The program includes "Agnus Dei" - the choral version of the famous "Adagio for Strings" heard in several recent film scores - along with other favorites, such as "Reincarnations" and "Sure on This Shining Night."  The program also features less well-known Barber pieces, such as "A Stopwatch and an Ordnance Map" and "Mottetto on the Words of Job."
       A highlight of the concert events will be the premiere of a new, Conspirare-commissioned re-orchestration of Barber's rarely performed "The Lovers," a setting of poetry by Nobel laureate Pablo Neruda.  Originally written for large chorus and orchestra, the work has been arranged for chamber ensemble and choir by composer Robert Kyr, whose most recent Conspirare collaboration in January 2011 garnered rave reviews in The Wall Street Journal and elsewhere. "The Lovers" will feature baritone soloist David Farwig, winner of a 2011 Austin Critics Table Award for "Outstanding Singer."
    Following the live performances in Austin, the Samuel Barber: American Romantic program will be recorded in the acoustically superb Sauder Hall at Goshen College in Indiana for international release in Fall 2012 on the Harmonia Mundi label.  Conspirare will be the first U.S. professional choir to record Barber's complete a capella choral works for a major label - and will be the first-ever commercial recording of "The Lovers."
      The concerts will be staged on Friday, September 23rd at 8 p.m. in St. Martin's Lutheran Church at 606 W. 15th Street; Saturday, September 24th, at 8 p.m. in Northwest Hills United Methodist Church at 7050 Village Center Drive; and Sunday, September 25th, at 3 p.m. at St. Martin's Lutheran Church.  A free pre-concert talk by Margaret Perry, Education Director at Austin Lyric Opera, will be offered one hour before each performance.
     An additional performance will be offered on Thursday, September 22nd, at 8 p.m. at Klett Performing Arts Center, located at 2211 North Austin Avenue in Georgetown.  Presented by the Georgetown Performing Arts Alliance, the concert will include a pre-concert lecture at 7 p.m.  Tickets are availabe through the Georgetown Symphony Society at (512) 864-9591.
   Tickets for the Austin concerts range from $28 to $48.  For more information and reservations, call (512) 474-5664, ext. 3, or visit

(Photo courtesy Conspirare)
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