Under the direction of conductor Dr. Craig Jessop, the American Festival Chorus & Orchestra perform the Ukraine national anthem ‘Shche ne vmerla Ukrainy’ at the Cathedral of the Madeline in Salt Lake City on April 19.

LOGAN – The American Festival Chorus & Orchestra (AFCO) will present Music of Hope, Comfort and Peace on Saturday, May 14.

The featured music for that event, according to festival spokesperson Claire Cardon, will be Daniel Gawthrop’s In Quiet Resting Places and the oratorio To a Village Called Emmaus by Ethan Wickman and Glen Nelson.

As its final concert of the 2021-22 season, Music of Hope, Comfort and Peace is slated at 7:30 p.m. at the Newel and Jean Daines Concert Hall in the Chase Fine Arts Center on the campus of Utah State University.

“We are excited and honored to share two such inspiring choral works,” said music director Craig Jessop. “The music is vivid and glorious, yet touching and sensitive. The messages are incredibly relevant.”

In Quiet Resting Places takes its inspiration from the Book of Genesis. With soprano Kaylyn Baldwin and bass Caden Webb as soloists, the work features lyrical melodies that paint a vivid picture for the audience, focusing on a more spiritual view of the environment.

It’s composer, Daniel Gawthrop, has been the recipient of more than 100 commissions for original works. His music has been published and recorded by many prestigious groups in the United States and overseas.

In 2018, he was named the 25th Charles E. Lutton Man of Music by Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, the world’s oldest and largest secret national fraternal society in music. That honor places Gawthrop into the distinguished company of earlier recipients such as Howard Hanson, Van Cliburn, Aaron Copeland and Pablo Casals.

To a Village Called Emmaus returns to Logan after a stunning debut by the AFCO in 2019.

Drawn from the text of the Gospel of John, it tells the compelling story of events in the week after Christ’s resurrection using multiple translations and Glen Nelson original poetry to embrace many faith traditions.

Soloists for To a Village Called Emmaus will be soprano Ashley Tolman, tenor Cory Evans, baritone Errik Hood in the role of Jesus and bass Caden Webb.

Ethan Wickman’s music has been performed around the world.

He is an associate professor of music composition and theory at the University of Texas in San Antonio as well as executive director of the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University.

Glen Nelson is an American poet, librettist, publisher, writer and ghostwriter of several New York Times nonfiction bestsellers.

A graduate New York University, Nelson has collaborated with several composers on the creation of new works.

Founded in the summer of 2008, AFCO has become one of the premier professional musical organizations in the Intermountain West.

The AFCO provides a culture of musical excellence that edified, entertains and educates both performers and audiences, according to Jessop.

Tickets for Music of Hope, Comfort and Peace are $15 to $30. Children aged 8 and older are welcome.

For more information, call (435) 797-8022 or visit www.americanfestivalchorus.org.

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