End of the semester Kassia concerts planned

May 1, 2013
Left-right: Sharon Jensen, Rebekah Demaree, Xianghua Han, Susan Savage Day and Marian Maciej-Hiner.

PLATTEVILLE, Wis.­­­ — The University of Wisconsin-Platteville faculty vocal chamber ensemble “Kassia: Women in Song” and the Confucius Institute will reprise their “Folk Songs of the World” recital on Wednesday, May 1 at 7:30 p.m., at the University of Dubuque, Blades Recital Hall.  The performers for this rare, diverse musical experience include, sopranos Rebekah Demaree, Susan Savage Day and Xianghua Han with instrumentalists Sharon Jensen, piano and Megan Whiteman, flute. The program is free and open to the public.

The UW-Platteville Confucius Institute is the only one in Wisconsin, and it is charged with the unique role world-wide of sharing information about all 56 ethnic groups in China, particularly including folk songs, dances, musical instruments, costumes and traditions. These concerts are the result of many months of planning and preparation.

Director of the Confucius Institute, Marian Maciej-Hiner initiated the contact between the Confucius Institute and the music area of the UW-Platteville Performing and Visual Arts Department.  Maciej-Hiner has presented a brief background of each Mandarin song and its importance for the representative regions of China. Full translations for each song are available in the programs as well.

"The recital repertoire features each of us performing two sets of folk songs or art song settings of folk songs. Han sings six pieces in Mandarin, Day performs in English, French and Spanish, and my pieces are in French, Italian and German," said Demaree. The folk songs heard will represent the following countries and regions, Bohemia, China, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Serbia, Spain and the United States.

After the first collaborative performance last October, the group sought out additional performing venues for the spring.  Demaree added, “We wanted to take our show on the road as soon as possible, because we love to share this unique repertoire, and Shell is only assigned to UW-Platteville until June.” 

The recital has already been given in Platteville and Madison and will return to Madison on Monday, May 20 at Oakwood Auditorium. 

Day believes that the recital is a musical expression of the diversity that UW-Platteville strives to offer and reflect to the community, students and faculty.  “As a founding member of “Kassia,” I am honored to have learned so much from Han, and everyone at the Confucius Institute,” she said. “I am also honored to share a musical venue with them. This recital is one of the excellent examples of how music unites people of the world. Every detail of this program has been well thought out from the music to the posters. I invite you to look carefully at the posters, you will see titles of the folk song genre from every country, and no example is repeated. This shows the level of thought and detail that has gone into just one of the aspects of this united performance.”

For more information, contact Demaree, demareer@uwplatt.edu, (608) 342-1041.

Written by: Eileen McGuine, UW-Platteville University Information and Communications, (608) 342-1194, mcguinee@uwplatt.edu


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