Luther College Norsemen and Aurora to perform spring concert May 2

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Luther College first year vocal ensembles Norsemen and Aurora will present a spring concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 2, in the Main Hall of the Center for Faith and Life on the Luther campus.

The event is open to the public with no charge for admission.

The concert will begin with the collaboration of both choirs and Luther Philharmonia on a movement from the E minor Mass composed by Anton Bruckner. The choirs will also collaborate on "Make Our Garden Grow" by Leonard Bernstein and "Homeward Bound" by Mack Wilberg.

The Norsemen performance includes pieces by Jonathan Gardner, Alice Parker, Robert Shaw, Connor Koppin, Ralph Vaughan Williams, as well as Jonathan Kobs, Luther first-year student.

Aurora's performance includes pieces by Heinrich Schütz, Pavel Chesnokov, Paul J. Christiansen, Moses Hogan and Frank La Rocca. They will also perform the piece "Eatnemen Vuelie" by Frode Fjellheim, which was recently featured in the hit movie "Frozen."

Aurora and Norsemen are two of seven choral ensembles at Luther. Established in 1981, the groups are comprised of first-year students, selected each fall by audition. They perform on campus for worship services and various events, participate in the annual Christmas at Luther concert and Dorian Vocal Festival and present a spring concert.

The groups have participated in Luther performances of major choral and orchestral works, such as Beethoven's "Mass in C Major" and Bach's "St. John's Passion."

Both choirs have appeared at several regional conventions of the American Choral Directors Association, most recently in March 2011 when the Norsemen performed at the national ACDA convention in Chicago.

Conducted by Andrew Last, Luther assistant professor of music, Norsemen is Luther's first-year men's choir consisting of approximately 90 men selected annually by audition.

Along with conducting Norsemen, Last also conducts the Collegiate Chorale as well as teaches private voice lessons and conducting. Prior to his appointment, Last served on the voice faculty of Concordia University in Nebraska.

Conducted by Jennaya Robison, Luther assistant professor of music, Aurora is Luther's first-year women's choir consisting of approximately 100 women selected annually by audition.

In addition to conducting Aurora, Jennaya conducts the Cathedral Choir and teaches conducting and voice. As a conductor, clinician and soprano, Robison is in high demand throughout the United States, having conducted premiere choirs in Arizona and New Mexico.

Luther College is home to one of the largest collegiate music programs in the world with seven choirs, three orchestras, three bands, two jazz bands and nearly 1,000 student musicians. Luther students perform in large ensembles, faculty-coached chamber groups, private lessons and master classes. More than 350 music majors study music theory, ear training, history, education, composition, church music and performance.