AFCO's 10th Anniversary Season culminates in this glorious concert featuring two masterworks by acclaimed British composer Ralph Vaughan Williams.  AFCO will join with the Lux Singers and the Cache Children's Choir to perform Vaughan William's oratorio, Sancta Civitas (The Holy City), and cantata Dona Nobis Pacem (Plea for Peace).  This is an exceptional opportunity to hear these rarely performed, dramatic, and profoundly moving works.

Ralph Vaughan Williams wrote Dona nobis pacem in 1936, when the destruction of the First World War was not far in the past and Europe was once again facing the signs of war on the horizon.  This powerful oratorio, with an overarching message of peace and reconciliation, warns of the destruction and death brought about by war and violence.  Using a variety of texts, including Walt Whitman poetry, political speeches, Biblical passages, and text from the Mass, Vaughan Williams created this transformative work that is as relevant today as it was in 1936.

For this concert, AFCO pairs Vaughan Williams’ Dona nobis pacem with his oratorio Sancta Civitas. Completed in 1925, Sancta Civitas sets excerpts from the book of Revelations, taken from various sources, including the King James Bible and the Taverner Bible.  With movements covering the gamut of emotions, from ethereal, gentle, and ecstatic to powerful, intense, and somber, Sancta Civitas was the composer’s favorite of his choral works, and is considered by many to be one of the greatest English choral works ever written.

Both of these unique oratorios have monumental forces behind them.  In addition to the orchestra, the American Festival Chorus will be joined by the Lux Singers and the combined Cache Children’s Choir and Bear River Middle School Girls’ Choir. Soloists:  Cindy Dewey, soprano; Cory Evans, tenor; Errik Hood, baritone.

Saturday’s concert will be a prelude to the American Festival Chorus’ 2018 tour of England in July, where they will be performing at Ely Cathedral, Coventry Cathedral, Kneller Hall in Coventry, and Holy Trinity Sloane Square in London.

Don't miss the FREE pre-concert lecture by Musicologist and Professor Christopher Scheer from 6:00 - 6:45 in FAV 150 in the USU Chase Fine Arts Center.