Benefit concert to feature award-winning vocal talent
Published: Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 30, 2012 01:10
The “Hope and Harmony” concert will be held at LaSells Stewart Center tonight at 7:30, featuring Grammy Award-winning composer Eric Whitacre. The concert will include a special performance by Grammy Award-winning soprano Hila Piltmann.
This concert will features some of Whitacre’s best known works, including “Sleep,” and one of his new pieces, “Alleluia.” There will be many choirs participating from the local Corvallis area, including: Corvallis High School, Linn Benton Community College and Oregon State University’s Bella Voce, among other groups.
The previous “Hope and Harmony” concert was two years ago, so this is not an ordinary concert. Due to Whitacre’s new celebrity status, his popularity has increased significantly, and this is an exciting opportunity for many people who are either not ordinarily interested in classical music or have studied it for years.
Several of Whitacre’s viral concert videos, such as “Water Night,” will be shown.
“Those who are not familiar with his work will probably still enjoy this concert very much,” said Erin Sneller, publicity and events coordinator for music in the school of arts and communication. “His music is very ‘user friendly.’ It’s contemporary, and really beautiful.”
The title “Hope and Harmony” is dedicated to the beneficiaries of the concert’s proceeds, the Community Outreach of Corvallis, which has helped the homeless and low-income families in the mid-Willamette Valley since 1971. This concert will help pay for: emergency shelter, transitional housing, therapeutic childcare, a food bank, medical and dental clinics and rehabilitative counseling.
This charity is one of the key aspects of Whitacre’s connections to Corvallis, his sister Kari Whitacre is the executive director of community outreach.
“Eric has been musical for as long as I remember,” Kari Whitacre said. “He was playing the piano well at the age of three.”
Kari Whitacre is very excited for what the concert will bring to Corvallis, the celebration of the common love people share for music.
“‘Hope and Harmony’ brings two world-renowned musicians to our community to contribute their talents to help the homeless, working poor and uninsured,” Kari Whitacre said. “The event combines choirs from Albany, Corvallis, LBCC and OSU, and offers the audience a chance to be a part of something special.”
This has also provided the music performance students a chance to work with a high-standing professional.
Jade Aimonetti, a junior in music performance, will be performing in this concert singing “Alleluia” alongside Whitacre’s wife.
“‘Alleluia’ is my favorite piece; I really look forward to it,” Aimonetti said.
Ainmonetti has worked with Whitacre and his wife several times before. She hopes to have a career in opera.
“I hope we have a huge crowd at LaSells, so we make some substantial money for Community Outreach,” Sneller said. “I hope the singers learn a lot and have a good time. I hope Eric Whitacre and Hila Plitmann are pleased with the outcome and want to come back to Corvallis again.”
Tickets are available on the Community Outreach website, at communityoutreachinc.org, as well as at Grass Roots Books & Music and Rice’s Pharmacy in Corvallis and at Sid Steven’s Jewelers in Albany.
General admission student tickets are available for $15. General admission tickets are $18; reserved seats are $25 and $35.
Amanda Antell, news reporter