Judson Singers perform at Carnegie Hall

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 8, 2005

Some 43 musicians from Judson College made the trip of a lifetime recently-they sang in New York City’s famed Carnegie Hall on Feb. 22.

“I wouldn’t change a single note,” said Dr. Roger Walworth who heads Judson’s Fine and Performing Arts Division and directs the Judson Singers. “As young as our choir is, they filled the room with such grace. It was God-inspired, and the Lord honored our journey to get there.”

This was actually the choir’s second trip to Carnegie. They made the trip in January 2003, presented a pre-event concert and sang with the mass choir in the main concert.

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This time, the Judson choir was allotted some 22 1/2 minutes to sing at the opening of the main concert.

Following their solo concert, the Judson Singers joined other choirs in the performance of Beethoven’s “Mass in C.”

Walworth arranged two of the six pieces the choir sang since finding arrangements for a women’s choir is sometimes difficult. The choir performed sacred texts in English, Latin, French and Haitian French.

“This is not only a good thing for Judson College,” Walworth said, “but it’s an evangelistic opportunity as we sang songs of faith.”

Carnegie does two kinds of events, Walworth explained. They engage an artist, such as Pavarotti, for a concert, and they also solicit mass choir events called “choral residencies.” Choirs from around the nation apply for residency in order to work with well-known directors. The Judson Singers rehearsed with the mass choir for five hours each day in New York.

Walworth said he began logistical work on this event a year ago, and the choir began their preparation at the beginning of the recent fall semester. The choir logged extra rehearsals in the final weeks before their concert.

In addition to the choir, Walworth and two accompanists, some 19 former students, family and friends accompanied the group, including Judson president Dr. David Potts.

“This opportunity is indeed a memorable milestone for our students and a credit to the fine arts program of the college,” Potts said.

Local choir members include Allison Adams of Pleasant Hill, Kathi Clements, Clara and Elyse Tew of Marion, Beth Perry of Selma and Jodi Denham and Connie Hudman of Clanton.