Conductor’s Message for Program
Thank you for attending tonight’s performance! I feel evenings like this are critical to the survival of the best parts of our humanity. Our culture is obsessed with competition, cynicism, greed, technology, and violence. These are not the best parts of us! Tonight we offer a different voice. One that radiates artistry, beauty, community, grace, inspiration, passion, reflection, and truth. I believe these are the best parts of who we are.
As we share an evening together – one that doesn’t have to have a winner or loser, one that doesn’t gain at the expense of others, one that doesn’t require a smartphone or iPad, one that is peaceful – we embrace the things that elevate and exalt the human race. The importance of allowing the right voices their proper space in our collective cannot be underestimated.
Our time together is also important because we have chosen to slow down and experience something together. In a culture that awards and praises being busy, it is important to get off the merry-go-round and take time to think and reflect. Your presence here tonight speaks to your willingness to do this; and we are honored.
If America is to be all that it can be, it must experience a renewal of the importance of the arts. The arts can surely be a harbinger of the future, but they are most definitely a cultural mirror. Without examining things through the artists’ lens we will lose the ability to hear or appreciate diverse viewpoints. Taken to its extreme, this will lead us to only want to hear voices that agree with ours. Tonight, we offer the opportunity to appreciate what authors and musicians have thought about their times throughout the ages, and encourage you to allow the music to speak to you deeply and touch you profoundly.
This evening’s repertoire offers a vast array of thoughts and reflections exquisitely joined with wonderful music. If we do our job well, you will hear the uniqueness of each composer’s voice as we weave a tapestry of beauty and grace. Some of the thoughts have been around for a long time – others are newer, but rightly deserve a place in our head and heart.
For a moment take in all of the magnificent beauty around you. You are in a beautiful place, surrounded by beautiful people, preparing to hear beautiful sounds. We are so fortunate to have these in our lives. May we continue to appreciate and support the efforts that remind us of the best parts of who we are. Let us take from this place tonight a renewed zeal for seeing and sharing beauty – in all its forms.
Dr. Clark Roush
Conductor, YC Concert Choir
Professor of Music