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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Bob Jones University

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Bob Jones University

The Collegian

BJU combined choirs and orchestra to perform Haydn’s “The Creation” in 2023-2024 artist series finale

Anastasia Noonkesser
The BJU Concert Choir performs in War Memorial Chapel.

This April, Bob Jones University musicians will perform Haydn’s “The Creation” as the final production of the 2023-2024 Concert, Opera and Drama series. Many choirs have sung in artist series concerts in the past, but what makes this performance unique is that all BJU choirs – the Chorale, Concert Choir, Lyric Choir and University Singers – as well as the BJU Symphonic Orchestra are a part of this huge production.  

Joseph Haydn’s “The Creation” was inspired by the works of George Frideric Handel, including the famous “Messiah.” Haydn wrote the work in 1797 and 1798. It is about an hour and forty-five minutes in length. The oratorio was written in German, although it is often performed in English. BJU’s choirs will sing the piece as it was written, in German, an added challenge for the students and faculty involved.

The BJU Concert Choir performs in War Memorial Chapel. (Anastasia Noonkesser)

Dr. Michael Moore will direct the performance. Dr. Megan Stapleton will perform as soprano, guest artist Joshua Wheeker as tenor and Dr. David Parker as bass. Moore, Stapleton and Parker are faculty in BJU’s music department. Wheeker, a graduate of the University of Cincinnati and the LA Opera’s young artist program, has performed as a leading lyric tenor in operas and concerts across the country. 

Parker is also helping the choirs with proper diction to sing in German. He said he is especially enthusiastic for this artist series. He has performed as a soloist in more than 130 productions, but this will be his first time singing “The Creation” in German, he said. 

The Haydn ‘Creation’ is indisputably one of the greatest oratorios of all time,” Parker said. “Recreating such a great Biblical event is tremendously rewarding as a Christian.”  

Dr. Pattye Casarow, who directs the University Singers, the freshman choir, said she believes this artist series will be special for BJU because of its collaborative nature, involving all BJU choirs. Many involved in the concert have never performed the piece, making it their introduction to Haydn’s masterpiece, she said. Haydn’s “The Creation” is so beautiful because of his use of “word painting,” using the music to portray the story of creation in Genesis, Casarow said.  

The performances for Haydn’s “Creation” are at 7:30 p.m., on April 18 and 19 in Rodeheaver Auditorium.  To purchase tickets, visit Showpass.  

Editor’s note: Staff Writer Rylie Wiedell will be singing in “The Creation” as part of the combined choirs.

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About the Contributor
Rylie Wiedell
Rylie Wiedell, Staff Writer
Rylie Wiedell is a freshman English major from North Carolina. Along with writing for The Collegian, she also works at Mack Library on campus. Rylie aspires to be a published author in the future and is currently working on her debut novel.
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