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Bemidji Chorale to open Mother's Day concert with Ukrainian tribute

Ukraine has been on the minds of most Americans since February when Russia invaded the country. This led Chorale director Patricia Mason to reach into the archives to bring back the Courtney piece.

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Pat Mason directs the Bemidji Chorale during a rehearsal on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer
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BEMIDJI — The Bemidji Chorale has sung “Ukrainian Alleluia” in previous concerts, but the song by Craig Courtney will take on special meaning when it opens this year’s Mother’s Day concert on Sunday.

The concert will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 8, in the Beaux Arts Ballroom at Bemidji State University.

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Bemidji Chorale members rehearse “Distant Land (A Prayer for Freedom)” by John Rutter on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

Ukraine has been on the minds of most Americans since February when Russia invaded the country. This led Chorale director Patricia Mason to reach into the archives to bring back the Courtney piece.

“It’s a beautiful piece of music that we’re singing in support of Ukraine,” Mason said. “We’re just adding our support.”

The Chorale also will perform “Uniamo in Amore” (Let Us Unite in Love) by Kevin Memley. It will feature Wayne Hoff on piano and Maggie Ragan on French Horn, with solos by three choir members, baritone John Stewart, tenor Levi Capisius and soprano Amanda Renbarger.

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Pianist Wayne Hoff accompanies the Bemidji Chorale during a rehearsal on Monday, May 2, 2022, of “Uniamo in Amore” (Let Us Unite in Love) by Kevin Memley.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

“It’s kind of like a full-blown, in-your-face upper chorus piece without the real juice because it would tear off the roof of the building,” Mason said. “It’s very romantic in style and it’s all about filling the world with love.”

Soloist Maddy Lawrence will also be featured in Rene Clausen’s arrangement of “What a Wonderful World.”

The concert is free to all, with donations happily accepted. Chorale members will be wearing masks for their own protection, and audience members are asked to do the same.

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Pat Mason directs the Bemidji Chorale during a rehearsal on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer
050422.N.BP.CHORALE - 5.jpg
Bemidji Chorale members rehearse on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer
050422.N.BP.CHORALE - 6.jpg
Pat Mason directs the Bemidji Chorale during a rehearsal on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer
050422.N.BP.CHORALE - 7.jpg
Bemidji Chorale members rehearse on Monday, May 2, 2022, ahead of its Mother’s Day concert set for May 8 in BSU’s Beaux Arts Ballroom.
Annalise Braught / Bemidji Pioneer

Related Topics: THINGS TO DOUKRAINEMUSIC
Dennis Doeden, former publisher of the Bemidji Pioneer, is a feature reporter. He is a graduate of Metropolitan State University with a degree in Communications Management.
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