With Centre College’s bicentennial approaching in 2019, the music program recently performed a celebratory production titled “200 Strong,” a collaborative project with orchestras from Asbury University and Berea College.
Two concerts were held in early November, with one in Newlin Hall in Centre’s Norton Center for the Arts and another at Union Church in Berea, Kentucky.
Since his arrival at Centre, Johann J. Van Niekerk, assistant professor of music and director of choral ensembles, has been struck by the incredible camaraderie and non-competitive collaboration and support of conductors in central Kentucky.
After connecting with colleaguesat Asbury and Berea, Van Niekerk said he began to dream big and wonder if they could place 200 musicians on the Newlin Hall stage to celebrate 200 years of Centre’s history showcasing the role the performing musical arts have played in shaping the College’s legacy and identity.
The concert featured music from the classical and romantic choral traditions, as well as 20th and 21st century works from the United States and South Africa.
The orchestras combined for one piece, the Berceuse and Finale from “The Firebird” by Igor Stravinsky, and the final selection featured all of the ensembles for Johannes Brahms’ “Schicksalslied” or “Song of Fate,” directed by Stephen Bolster from Berea College.
by Centre College News
December 4, 2018