The St. Olaf Choir, which has set a standard for choral art since its founding in 1912, will continue Lee University's Presidential Concert Series on Friday, Feb. 14. The 75-voice choir will perform at 7:30 p.m. in the Conn Center, 1150 11th St., SE, on the Cleveland, Tenn., campus.
"When they opened their mouths to sing, an even wall of sound emerged: words clear, notes true. More than that, the notes were felt," a New York Times reviewer once said of the choir.
The choristers have taken 13 international tours and performed for capacity audiences in major concert halls of Norway, France, South Korea, New Zealand, Australia, New York City, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles and Dallas as well as Minneapolis-St. Paul in the choir's home state of Minnesota. They are returning to Lee after a 2003 performance that drew a large and responsive crowd, according to university officials.
The choir began recording in the 1920s. The annual "St. Olaf Christmas Festival" has aired on national and international radio and television for more than 30 years. In December 2013, PBS premiered "Christmas in Norway With the St. Olaf Choir," which was filmed at the Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim, Norway.
Conductor Anton Armstrong has led the ensemble since 1990. He is the Tosdal Professor of Music at St. Olaf College and only the fourth conductor in the choir's history.
"Hearing the St. Olaf choir is more than just a musical experience," says Armstrong. "What makes this ensemble distinctive is the way our singers perform at the highest artistic level and touch the hearts and souls of our listeners. Through body, mind, spirit and voice, our audiences are transformed."
Tickets are available at the Lee University box office in the Dixon Center, 1053 Church St.; by phone at 423-614-8343 (the box office is open 3-6 p.m. weekdays); or online at http://stolaftickets.com.
For more information, call the School of Music at 423-614-8240.