From press release
Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center (MPAC) will present the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra in “A Handel Celebration” at 7:30 p.m., Friday, March 18, at Court Street United Methodist Church.
The orchestra, directed by Stephen Squires, will perform with members of the Mendelssohn Chorale, organist Bill Stein, and baritone Jonathan Beyer, winner of the 2010 Amelia Guthrie Promising Singer of Merit Award. Tickets are $25 for adults and $5 for students. Groups of 10 or more adults receive $5 off per ticket.
The program will include selections of George Frideric Handel’s most well-known works, including movements from “Water Music,” Organ Concerto in G minor, and two Coronation Anthems.
The Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra, under the baton of Stephen Squires, was founded more than 20 years ago by Eleanor Stanlis, and is a highly-respected, professional chamber orchestra.
Founded in 1975, the Mendelssohn Chorale, under the direction of Martha Bein, is composed of lovers of choral music from the greater Rockford area. The chorale has appeared in concert with the Rockford Symphony Orchestra, Rockford Lutheran Choral Union and the Diocesan Chorale, among others.
Bill Stein is the former director of music for Court Street United Methodist Church and Holy Family Church in Rockford. He has served as director of Music Ministries for First Presbyterian Church of Kirkwood, Mo., since May 2006. Stein is a graduate of Illinois Wesleyan and Northwestern universities, holding degrees in Organ Performance and sacred music. Bill has completed choir tours in Italy, Austria, Germany, France and Ireland.
This performance will honor soprano Amelia Guthrie, a past president, longtime supporter and friend of the Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center who passed away Nov. 10, 2010. Guthrie created the Promising Singer of Merit Award to encourage and support young singers in the same way that she was helped early in her singing career. The 2010 award winner, baritone Jonathan Beyer, has performed a variety of repertoire with various opera companies and symphonies, and has won numerous awards and competitions.
To purchase concert tickets or for more information, call the Mendelssohn Performing Arts Center at (815) 964-9713 or visit www.mendelssohnpac.org.
From the March 16-22, 2011, issue