IV Master Chorale presents “A Sunday Afternoon of Beautiful Music”

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Denny Lang directs sopranos Ruth Smith, Suzie Hawk, and Trina Hamby during Sunday’s performance of “Beautiful Music.”

EL CENTRO – Music enthusiasts enjoyed a Sunday afternoon of performances at the First United Methodist Church in El Centro as the Imperial Valley Master Chorale and the Imperial Valley String Quarter performed their annual spring concert to an engaged and inspired audience.

The concert was hosted by the Imperial Valley Choral Society and the Imperial Valley College, which offers the Master Chorale as a music course for students.

The spring performance was entitled “A Sunday Afternoon of Beautiful Music” and showcased a wide variety of musical genres as the Master Chorale performed old Southern spirituals along with selected songs from Les Miserables, and classical works by renowned composers such as Dvorak and John Rutter.

The Imperial Valley String Quartet wowed the crowd with classics such as “La Vie En Rose,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “Laudamus Te,” from Vivaldi’s Gloria.

The concert featured local soloists Ruth Smith, Susie Hawk, Marilyn Pyle, Jacquie Keltz, and Trina Hamby. Director Denny Lang also incorporated a flutist, Laura Goodsell, and feature performances from Anahi Araiza on the string bass, Luke Hamby playing violin, and Patty Lang on the piano.

Many attendees said the highlight of the performance was a stirring piece, “Meditation from Thais,” performed by Patty Lang and Luke Hamby.

Dedicated audience members and performers braved the heat to enjoy this performance, as the air conditioning in the Methodist church was not working. Despite the heat, the concert drew a full room and was filled with beautiful music.

The Master Chorale will be going in a different direction with its next concert, a featured dinner show called “Annie’s Black Hills Chuck Wagon Dinner Show.” The event will feature “great chow” and will be held at 6 p.m. June 3 at the Pioneers Museum in Imperial. Songs will be chosen from the musicals “Calamity Jane” and “Annie Get Your Gun.”  Tickets are priced at $30.  To purchase tickets or get more information, call Deborah Thornburg at (760) 356-2868.

Later in June, the Imperial Valley Chamber Singers will perform the “Chamber Singers’ Favorites” at 7 p.m. Friday, June 16 at Grace Lutheran Church on 8th and Holt Avenue in El Centro.