Concert Choir & Chamber Singers preview new piece

Jaclyn Moses

Photography courtesy of lafayette.edu

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Professor Jennifer Kelly, along with countless students, faculty, and musicians, have challenged themselves for the past year to plan for a performance premiering later this month.

Gabriela Lena Frank, a Latin Grammy award winner who is currently an Artist-in-Residence, commissioned the pieces.

Kelly touched base with Frank when she was writing her book, entitled In Her Own Words, where she interviewed 25 female composers, one of which was Frank, a freelance composer. Kelly was amazed by Frank’s ability to articulate her feelings, as well as her passion for teaching others.

“I knew immediately that our students would love talking with her,” Kelly said. “She’s got this sense of energy and intelligence and kind of ‘keep-you-on-your- toes’ [attitude] at the same time as being artistic.”

Kelly decided to bring Frank to Lafayette as a yearlong Artist-in-Residence to visit various departments and explore the idea of creative thought and design in an interdisciplinary fashion.

Other musicians are joining Lafayette’s performers in tackling Frank’s work, including the Concord Chamber Singers of the Lehigh Valley, internationally recognized soloists Andrew Garland and Susanna Eyton-Jones, and the Grammy award-winning Chiara String Quartet.

In addition to the concert, on Sunday, April 13, there will also be an interdisciplinary panel discussion.

The panelists include Lafayette professors from five different departments, Artist-in-Residence for dance Ben Munisteri, and Frank herself. Each panelist will discuss how he or she views the creative process.

Student Brenna Murphy ‘14, who is working closely with Kelly on the administrative aspects of the event, elaborated on the collaboration.

“There are a bunch of professors coming and they’re all going to talk about creativity from various aspects,” Murphy said. “There are mathematics professors, engineering professors, and visual arts professors bringing it all together;…very interdisciplinary.” The event is expected to have a large turnout as the community gathers next week to see all the accomplishments of the performers.

The concert, will take place on Sunday, April 13 at 3 p.m. in the Williams Center for the Arts, and will be preceded by a lecture.