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Internationally Acclaimed Wartburg Choir, Mission Vista HS Choir to perform in Oceanside- April 23

Oceanside CAThe Wartburg Choir will perform at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, 1450 Melrose Drive, on Tuesday, April 23, as part of its domestic tour through California and Arizona.

 The concert, which will feature a special performance by the Mission Vista High School Choir, under the direction of Bryce Harrison, will begin at 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at https://www.wartburg.edu/tours/#choir. Cost is $10 for adults, $5 for students with an ID and free for children under 12. Families can purchase a ticket for their party of four or more for $25.

The concert program theme “We Will Rise!” will feature music centered around the strength of the human spirit to overcome adversity. At the heart of the program will be Abbie Betinis’ “Bar Xizam,” which translated from the Persian Farsi language means “Upward, I Rise.” In addition, the audience will hear masterworks by Johann Sebastian Bach and Lili Boulanger, hymn favorites by F. Melius Christiansen and Albert Brumley, an American Freedom song arrangement by Tom Trenney and a reimagining of the well-known Protestant hymn “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” for choir, piano and electric guitar by Kyle Pederson.

“The program provides the listener with a sense of rising hope, a dedication to a higher purpose, and a calling to seek a better life together nourished in wisdom and love. You will hear the masterworks by composers such as J.S. Bach and Orlando de Lasso next to the music of composers who represent marginalized and often oppressed voices in our society,” said Lee Nelson, the Wartburg Choir director. “You will hear music that deals with unimaginable loss as well as redefined hope. You will hear new music by composers that draw their inspiration from texts and music written over 400 years ago that continues to lift up the idea of resilience, strength and love. We encourage you to listen deeply and allow the marriage of words and music to speak to your heart and mind. It is our hope that you leave the concert with a renewed sense of hope and love for yourself and for your neighbor, both known and unknown.”

The Wartburg Choir and Mission Vista High School Choir will combine voices for one number.  

“One of the most rewarding aspects of our tours is the opportunity to meet and collaborate with young singers from around the country,” said Nelson. “Music has a special way of inspiring new friendships. The choirs start as complete strangers and within minutes music draws them together as new friends and neighbors. We are excited to share this concert with the singers at Mission Vista High School.”

 The choir also will perform a new composition by 2013 Wartburg alumnus Connor Koppin and poet Brian Newhouse, a well-known radio host from Minnesota Public Radio, titled “Your Hand in Mine.”

The internationally acclaimed Wartburg Choir performs sacred music from all historical periods and styles and often features premiere works of contemporary composers, including Morten Lauridsen, Eriks Esenvalds, Jake Runestad, Betinis, Stacey V. Gibbs, Ola Gjeilo, Shawn Kirchner and Koppin. Choir members are chosen by audition and represent most academic disciplines on campus. The choir makes annual concert tours throughout the United States and travels abroad every three years during the college’s one-month May Term.

 Wartburg, a four-year liberal arts college internationally recognized for community engagement, enrolls 1,498 students. Wartburg is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and is named after the castle in Germany where Martin Luther took refuge disguised as a knight during the stormy days of the Reformation while translating the Bible from Greek into German.