FEB 28 | 8:00 PM
Join the Washington and Lee University Singers in the Atlas Performing Arts Center premiere of Craig Hella Johnson’s Considering Matthew Shepard, one of the most meaningful recent works of social justice art. This multimedia fusion oratorio uses the featured choir, soloists, instrumentalists, and narrators to tell the tragic story and aftermath of the kidnapping, torture, and death of Matthew Shepard in Wyoming in 1998.
From the Washington Post, “Considering Matthew Shepard demonstrates music’s capacity to encompass, transform and transcend tragedy. Powerfully cathartic, it leads us from horror and grief to a higher understanding of the human condition, enabling us to endure.”
Join us for a post-show discussion, facilitated by Jason Marsden, the Executive Director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation. .
The University Singers, the premiere choral ensemble at Washington and Lee University, continues to be recognized as one of the finest a cappella choirs in the region. Under the direction of award-winning conductor Shane M. Lynch, the University Singers tour nationally or internationally every year, performing a wide variety of literature across the globe while serving as artistic ambassadors for Washington and Lee in concert series, music festivals, competitions, and conventions. The University Singers have been recognized for their excellence in performance by the American Choral Directors Association National Conference, the Virginia Music Educators Association, and in featured programs at major venues such as Carnegie Hall, the National Cathedral, and the Academy of Music. At Washington and Lee, the University Singers are the centerpiece of the annual Candlelight Lessons and Carols service, perform in concerts and convocations, and take part in the ChoralFest, which honors America’s top conductors and composers. Student members of the University Singers represent a wide cross-section of the programs offered at the school, routinely representing over 30 of the 37 undergraduate major concentrations. Membership in the University Singers is chosen by a competitive audition process each spring. Visit wlu.edu/music for more information. Follow the ensemble via WLU Singers on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and other social media platforms.
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
Shane Lynch, a noted conductor, composer, and music educator assumed the position Director of Choral Activities at Washington and Lee University in the Fall of 2009. He conducts the University Singers, Cantatrici (treble choir), and the Glee Club, and oversees W&L’s innovative and unique conductor mentorship/teacher preparation program. Dr. Lynch is a sought-after clinician and guest conductor, having worked with groups throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. Quite interested in musical scholarship, some of his recent research includes trends of Neo-Impressionism in modern American choral music and eurhythmic movements in the choral rehearsal and performance setting. He is also noted for conducting large-scale productions, including operas, oratorios, and festival concerts. Dr. Lynch has led choirs on several national and international tours, including featured performances in Scotland, South Korea, Italy, and Ireland. Dr. Lynch has received numerous awards as an educator, including the Junior Faculty Member of the Year at Monmouth College and the Outstanding Faculty Service Award at the University of Wisconsin—Barron. An active composer interested in a wide variety of compositional styles and mediums, he has commissioned compositions ranging from octavos to choral/orchestral works. His piece Joseph and Grace premiered in Ireland for the 100th Anniversary of the Easter Rising and won the 2017 National Collegiate Choral Organization composition contest, and he recently served as Composer-in-Residence for the Every Voice Festival of the City of Derry International Choir Festival. Prior to his appointment at Washington and Lee, Dr. Lynch served as Visiting Director of Choral Activities at Monmouth College (Illinois) and Director of Choral Activities at the University of Wisconsin—Barron as well as several past positions in church music and teaching high school science. Shane Lynch graduated from Concordia College (Moorhead, Minnesota), with degrees in Music and Physics, received the Master of Music degree in Conducting from the University of Northern Colorado, and completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Washington.