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June 22, 2001

Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Delivers Stunning Performance in Atlanta

Additional Stories:

Church News Release: Mormon Tabernacle Choir performs in 8 Southern Cities

Tabernacle Choir in Tampa, Florida: One voice, one spirit

Mormon choir to make first Birmingham appearance

Chorale captivates listeners

Choir offers inspirational performance

By David Winters

ATLANTA --  The Mormon Tabernacle Choir captivated an audience of 3,800 in Atlanta's famous Fox Theater on Thursday evening.  The program included numbers from several genres including: hymns of praise, choral masterworks, American sacred choruses, songs of the land, and hymns of faith.  Despite the cavernous hall, the choir's intonation, diction, dynamics and delivery were all superb.

"We're excited to be in Atlanta," Lloyd Newell exclaimed at the beginning of the program.  He endeared himself to the Atlanta crowd by calling Atlanta the "choral capitol of the world" due to the great works of the late Robert Shaw.  Robert Shaw, former conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus is perhaps the best-known choral conductor of the 20th century.  He passed away in 1999.  He was a great friend of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, having worked with them on multiple occasions.  He was also a friend of current music director of the Tabernacle Choir, Craig Jessop.  The concert marked the first time the choir has performed in Atlanta in over three decades.  The audience applauded when Lloyd Newell said, "Let's not wait so long next time."

The choir opened the evening with "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty" with several choir members both singing and ringing hand chimes.  It was a powerful beginning to the program, which lasted roughly two hours with no intermission.  The opening number also gave a hint as to the influence associate director, Mack Wilberg, has had on the choir since joining them in May 1999. Six of the nineteen numbers on the program were arranged by Mack Wilberg.  He was former director of choral activities at Brigham Young University, where he conducted the BYU Concert Choir and the Men's Chorus.  It was apparent in the concert that what was BYU's loss, was the entire Church's gain.

Perhaps the biggest crowd-pleaser of the evening was the spiritual, "The Battle of Jericho" which resonated with the Georgia audience.  The choir closed the program with "Come, Come Ye Saints" and "Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing."  It was a touching finale for the saints in the South, many of whom are modern-day pioneers.

The choir performed two additional encore numbers: "Bring Him Home" from Les Miserables and "Battle Hymn of the Republic."  The choir's next concert will be in Tampa, Florida on Saturday, June 23.

Additional Resources on the web:

Russ Josephson's Mormon Tabernacle Choir Page

Places to visit: Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Mormon Tabernacle Choir (Mormons.org)

 

 

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