Junior to Direct Choral Groups in Symbolic Concert
On Saturday, October 13,
at 8 p.m., conductor and composer Arianne Abela ’08 will
present “…There’s Always Something Sings,” a
program of women’s choral music that explores the journey
of life through prayer, invocation, and questions of mortality.
Abela will conduct members of the Smith College Glee Club,
Chamber Chorus, and Orchestra in works by Mendelssohn, MacIntyre,
Howells, Noble, Rautavaara, Johengen, and others. At the
core of the program will be Nicola Porporas’ grand
opus, Magnificat. From the Venitian Ospedale,
this piece brings together strings, organ, and women’s
choir. The concert will be in Sweeney Concert Hall, Sage,
and free and open to the public.
The title of the concert
comes from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s
poem “Music.” The phrase embodies the notion
that through difficult times in life, music is a form of
consolation. It is a notion that deeply connects to Abela’s
own relationship with music. The concert is a reflection
of her own journey to becoming a conductor, which has included
working through physical handicap as an amputee. She hopes
to give her audience a chance to experience the same joy,
peace, and inspiration that she has experienced from these
Abela is originally from the San Francisco Bay area where
she was a member of the San Francisco Girls Chorus for 13
years. She has also trained as an apprentice at the Berkshire
Choral Festival and the International Varna Conducting Workshop
in Bulgaria. This past summer, she studied under Simon Carrington
at the Yale Summer School of Music.
At Smith, Abela sings
with the Smith College Glee Club and the Chamber Singers.
She has served as assistant conductor for both choirs and
has appeared as a guest conductor with the Smith College
Orchestra. In 2006, she appeared as Le Feu in the Five
College Opera Production of Maurice Ravel’s L’Enfant
et les Sortilèges at Smith. She also served as
composer and musical director for Smith theatre dpeartment’s
2007 production of Cinders.
Locally, Abela sings as a soloist for the Wistariahurst
Museum concert series and has performed with the professional
choir Arcadia under the baton of Ian Watson.
-Music department press release