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Music

Concert Schedule and Upcoming Events

Spring 2017 Concerts

Below are the events and concerts at SXU for the season. Tickets can be purchased at the door and pricing is free for all SXU students, faculty and staff with a current ID. General admission is $6; and admission for senior citizens, visiting students and members of the military is $5. This is the standard cost for all concerts, unless listed as otherwise.

Please check out our Warde Academic Center map for location details.

Jazz Ensemble - Tribute to the First Lady of Jazz, Ella Fitzgerald

Friday, February 24, 2017
7:30 p.m., McGuire Hall

The Saint Xavier University Jazz Ensemble will be honoring Ella Fitzgerald during her centennial celebration by performing five of her classic songs from some of America's finest composers, like Duke Ellington, Cole Porter and Irving Berlin. The jazz ensemble will be joined by four talented SXU vocalists, as we start the first concert of the semester swinging. The SXU Jazz Combo will open the concert.

Wind Ensemble

Saturday, February 25, 2017
7:30 p.m., Music Performance Space

In its first concert of the semester, the Wind Ensemble will present a collection of musical dedications. Czech composer Karel Husa passed away in late December 2016, leaving behind an enormous legacy of music that was inspired by his heritage and his home. As an homage to Czech music pioneer Bedřich Smetana, Husa wrote a deep and provocative tribute, simply and humbly entitled "Smetana Fanfare." Also included in the concert is David Holsinger's "Havendance," an energetic musical dedication to his own daughter who enjoyed ballet and other forms of dancing from a very young age. "Old Churches" by Michael Colgrass with its odd instruments (including random sizes of mixing bowls for the percussion to use), takes us on a journey through an old church and all of its various happenings: From baptisms to funerals, sacred spaces have the capability to retain varied and powerful memories. Another work, "Early Light," was composer Carolyn Bremer's tip-of-the-hat to our National Anthem but not necessarily in an overtly patriotic nature: Bremer instead harnessed the incredible excitement that she always felt when the National Anthem would be performed at baseball games when she was a child. It will be a varied and meaningful concert, and we hope to see you there!

Third Annual SXU Jazz Combo Festival and Concert

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Guest Judges and Clinicians
9 a.m. to 5 p.m., McGuire Hall and Butler Reception Room

Masterclass, with Chicago bassist Junius Paul
5 p.m., McGuire Hall

Concert
6:30 p.m., McGuire Hall - featuring The Junius Paul Quartet, SXU Jazz Combo and Outstanding combo recipients

The Third Annual SXU Jazz Combo Festival runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in McGuire Hall and Butler Reception Room as high schools, middle schools and community college jazz combos from all across the Chicagoland area perform for guest judges and clinicians. The festival is open to the public to attend all the performances and clinics. At 5 p.m., join guest artists and Chicago bassist Junius Paul for masterclass in McGuire Hall.

The annual SXU Jazz Combo Festival Concert, featuring The Junius Paul Quartet, concludes the day of events with an evening concert, with performances by the SXU Jazz Combo, festival participants and The Junius Paul Quartet. Junius Paul was born and raised in the Chicago area and is a graduate of the Music Department at Saint Xavier University. He is an active composer and arranger and is well established in many genres of music, ranging from jazz to hip-hop, house music, funk, classical and gospel.

Junius Paul has shared the stage and recorded with some of the top artists in music, including Wynton Marsalis, Curtis Fuller, Donald Byrd, Fred Anderson, Roscoe Mitchell, Kahil El'Zabar, KRS-One, Dee Alexander, Roy Hargrove and Corey Wilkes.

This concert is free for festival participants.

Wind Ensemble with the Lake Mills High School Concert Band

Monday, March 20, 2017
7:30 p.m., Music Performance Space

Under the direction of Benjamin Faugstad, the Lake Mills High School Concert Band (Iowa) will be traveling to Chicago for their Spring Break trip to perform alongside the Saint Xavier University Wind Ensemble. Both ensembles will be performing a number of pieces of programmatic music and even a few popular movie scores. In addition, the ensembles will combine to perform John Mackey's inventive work entitled "Foundry." The composer requires that the ensembles use what he calls "found percussion." As a result, the ensembles will be using various pieces of metal and wood from all across the Midwest (literally) and will leave the Music Performance Space sounding more like a factory than a musical venue! We hope that you are able to attend and welcome our talented guests!

Irish Music Concert

Wednesday, March 22, 2017
7:30 p.m., McGuire Hall

This concert with feature music from the group The Dirty Wellies.

Honors Recital

Friday, March 31, 2017
7:30 p.m., McGuire Hall

Orchestra - "Overtures"

Thursday, April 6, 2017
7:30 p.m., Music Performance Space

For the Spring Symphony Orchestra Concert, the ensemble will take its audience through a variety of overtures. Although the concept of an overture has expanded to encompass many types of ensembles and genres, it originally began as an orchestral musical selection to be performed at the beginning of operas. The concert begins with Verdi's famous overture to "La Forza del Destino." His work encapsulates the two most powerful elements of any good opera, which are love and death. The drama continues with an overture by German composer Richard Wagner. This work was originally written as the beginning of an epic opera, which lasts well over four hours, entitled "Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg." One of Wagner's most enjoyed operas, it also shares the strong musical depictions of hope and despair. Finally, the ensemble will perform Johannes Brahms' "Tragic Overture, op. 81." This overture was actually not written for an opera, but rather was part of a set of two incredibly different concert overtures that the composer wrote in 1880. When asked of the relationship that the two overtures had to each other, he was noted as saying that one of them ("Academic Festival Overture") laughs, but the other one ("Tragic Overture, op. 81") weeps. Please join us for an evening of musical drama!

Flute Choir

Friday, April 7, 2017
7:30 p.m., McDonough Chapel

The spring concert will feature the flute choir in pieces for the entire ensemble, as well as in smaller groups of trios, quartets and quintets. Repertoire includes folk songs such as "Sakura" (Japanese) and "Shenandoah" (American), arrangements of dance music such as "Sephardic Medley" and "Danse Macabre" by Camille Saint-Saëns and pieces by Gabriel Faure and Scott Joplin to round out the program.

Chorale and Opera Workshop

Sunday, April 9, 2017
3 p.m., Music Performance Space

George Frideric Handel, best known for his work "Messiah" with its ubiquitous "Halleluia" chorus, wrote several pieces for the coronations of British monarchs, including "Let thy Hand be Strengthened." This setting includes a stately opening of the title's text, a contemplative middle section on the text "Let Justice and Judgement," and a joyful "Alleluia" section to close the piece.

Dido and Aeneas tells the story of Dido, Queen of Carthage, and the Trojan Prince Aeneas, who has taken refuge in Carthage after the burning of Troy. Though smitten, Dido initially refuses Aeneas. After much encouragement, she accepts his proposal. Meanwhile, the Sorceress and witches plot Dido's destruction and conjure a storm that arrives when the couple goes to celebrate with a hunting party. The storm descends and the couple hastens back to town. Meanwhile, the Sorceress sends an impersonator of Mercury to instruct Aeneas to leave Dido and sail for Italy to find the new Troy. Aeneas and his sailors prepare to depart, to the delight of the Sorceress and witches. Aeneas, choosing between love and what he believes to be his duty, leaves Dido. Heartbroken, she ends the opera singing with the despondently beautiful (and well-known) aria "When I am Laid to Rest."

Chamber Music Concert

Sunday, April 9, 2017
7:30 p.m., McGuire Hall

The SXU Chamber Music Concert will feature the SXU Saxophone Quartet, SXU Guitar Ensemble and SXU Horn Ensemble. Join us for an evening of chamber music from classical to contemporary and beyond!

Wind Ensemble

Saturday, April 22, 2017
7:30 p.m., Music Performance Space

The semester's final Wind Ensemble concert will feature a variety of newer works, with its feature being the epic masterpiece entitled "...and the Mountains Rising Nowhere." Composer Joseph Schwantner used Carol Adler's poem "arioso bells" as his musical subject matter, harnessing his favorite line of the poem as an overall inspiration for the composition and also for use as the work's title. This strange and inventive style inspired an entire generation of composers, who were challenged to be as creative as Schwantner: The work contains a number of unique sounds including crystal flutes, tuned wine glasses, specialized percussion, an amplified grand piano (performed by Professor Patricia Lee in our concert) and numerous strange ways of performing standard instruments. Hearing (and performing) this work is an experience like few others, so we hope you can join us!

Chamber Singers - with guest artists La Caccina

Sunday, April 23, 2017
3 p.m., McDonough Chapel

"Be like the bird that, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her -- and sings -- knowing she hath wings." - Victor Hugo

Two female vocal ensembles, La Caccina and the Saint Xavier University Chamber Singers, will feature the music of prolific female composers, poets and repertoire that speaks of enduring faith, renewed hope and communal strength.

Repertoire includes:

"Be Like the Bird" Abbie Betinis
"Cassiopeia" Timothy Takach
"Faith is the Bird" Elizabeth Alexander
"Today This Spring" Libby Larsen
"O Virga Mediatrix" Karen Thomas/Hildegard of Bingen
"Warrior" Kim Baryluk
"Still I Rise" Rosephanye Powell

SXU Jazz Night II - The Funky Side of Jazz

Friday, April 28, 2017
7:30 p.m.,McGuire Hall

Join us for an evening of music that features deep funk and heavy grooves! The SXU Jazz Ensemble will perform works by John Scofield, Steely Dan, Radiohead and more. We will also be paying tribute to our graduating seniors in the their final concert as SXU students.

Flute Studio Showcase

Saturday, April 29, 2017
7:30 p.m., McDonough Chapel

The spring flute studio showcase recital will feature Saint Xavier University students as well as community members playing favorite pieces by Bach, Handel, Rutter and Clarke. Please join us!

Piano Showcase

Sunday, April 30, 2017
7:30 p.m., McGuire Hall