news-category: Performing Arts

GWU Department of Music Presents Concerts by Concert Choir and Chorales

Dr. Joshua Cheney leads choir rehearsal in Dover Chapel last fall.
Dr. Joshua Cheney leads choir rehearsal in Dover Chapel last fall. Photo by Lindy Lynch / GWU Student Photo Team

Choir Performs Oct. 12, and Men’s Chorale and Treble Chorale Perform Oct. 14

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—The Gardner-Webb Department of Music is hosting two concerts this week. The Concert Choir presents a program on Tuesday, Oct. 12, and the Men’s Chorale and Treble Chorale will perform on Thursday, Oct. 14. Both programs are free and open to the public and each one will begin at 8 p.m. in Dover Chapel.

The Concert Choir will be performing a program entitled “(here)”. The title, explains Director and Assistant Professor of Music Dr. Joshua Cheney, is an investigative journey that deals with the search for identity in shared experiences, community, and the individual’s search for acceptance despite inherent imperfections.

The performance will feature original works by Paul John Rudoi, Joshua Shank, Ruth Morris Gray, Alberto Grau, and other composers alongside arrangements of a Québécois folksong and a song by Billie Eilish.

Joshua Cheney
Dr. Joshua Cheney

The Men’s Chorale and Treble Chorale are conducted by Cheney and Dr. Eric G. Johnson, assistant professor of music education. The groups will present a program called “Ad astra,” a collection of original choral music and folk song arrangements celebrating the ineffable strength of the human spirit. The music includes works for treble voices, tenor and bass voices, and mixed voices.

First-year student Sam Roller, who is majoring in music education with guitar, is a new member of the Men’s Chorale. Initially signing up for the chorale as a graduation requirement, the class soon turned into one of the main things Roller looks forward to during the week. “Guitar has always been my outlet for stress, but given that now guitar is my stress, chorale has filled that gap and allows me to let my worries and tension melt away. It’s a very relaxing and just blissful atmosphere,” Roller commented. “I also really enjoy learning from Dr. Cheney. I understand the way he explains things, and I like his teaching style. He just makes chorale very fun and interesting.”

Eric Johnson
Eric Johnson

During the performance, the Men’s Chorale will present “King Jesus is A-Listening,” composed by William L. Dawson, “Wondrous Love” from the University of Florida, and the Gardner-Webb Alma Mater. Along with the Treble Chorale, they will perform “There Has to Be a Song,” “Shenandoah,” and “Ad astra.”

Cheney explains that as an instructor, the musical challenge centers around choosing the repertoire. He looks for music that “helps the students grow individually and communally, that engages the mind with new perspectives, that provides an opportunity for artistic development and engagement for individuals and the group, and is fun to sing.”

He concluded, “That initial challenge is both daunting and exciting, because the process of repertoire selection in itself is a creative and expressive enterprise.”

Sarianna Miranda-Rosado, ’24, intern for communications, contributed to this story.

Auxiliary aids will be made available to persons with disabilities upon request 48 hours prior to the event. Please call 704-406-4270 or email [email protected] with your request.

Gardner-Webb University is North Carolina’s recognized leader in private, Christian higher education. A Carnegie-Classified Doctoral/Professional University, GWU is home to six professional schools, 14 academic departments, more than 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, and a world-class faculty. Located on a beautiful 225-acre campus in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb prepares graduates to impact their chosen professions, equips them with the skills to advance the frontiers of knowledge, and inspires them to make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of others. Ignite your future at Gardner-Webb.edu.

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