Each year, under the direction of Robert Cowles, professor of music, the Colleges Chorale performs a Madrigal Dinner Concert, an annual fundraiser for local non-profit organizations. This year, the proceeds will benefit the Ontario/Yates Fund for Women and Girls, which aims to foster personal growth among women and girls in Ontario and Yates counties. The dinner concert will take place on Saturday, Dec. 5, and will be an evening of fine dining and entertainment in the Vandervort Room of the Scandling Student Center. The event starts at 6 p.m.
In previous years, the Chorale’s Madrigal Dinner Concert has raised funds for a number of local organizations, including the Upstate New York Chapter of the ALS Association, Rape & Abuse Crisis Service of the Finger Lakes, Geneva Community Lunch Program Energy Fund, Success for Geneva’s Children, and the Geneva City Schools music program. Each year these performances have yielded about $2,000.
This year’s event will include Chorale and Cantori performances of both general and holiday repertoire in a festive atmosphere, and will feature a five-course meal prepared by Sodexo Campus Services.
The concert will feature guitarist and HWS faculty member Kenneth Meyer, who has been described by The Washington Post as, “A thinking man’s guitarist – he focuses on the inner structure of a piece…and plays with impressive gravity and power.”
The Colleges Chorale is a mixed, 40-voice ensemble of students whose auditions are evaluated on vocal technique and musicianship. The Chorale traditionally performs a wide a cappella repertoire with selections from the Middle Ages to the present day. The group annually tours for four days in the spring and has released compact disc recordings.
Cowles is the chair of the music department, teaches music theory and has been a member of the faculty since 1992. He is also the artistic director of the Syracuse Vocal Ensemble and has conducted many world premiere performances, a number of them during his time in Geneva. He also taught choral music at the Estonian Academy of Music as well as conducting master classes in Finland at the Sibelius Academy of Music.
Tickets for the Madrigal Dinner Concert are $25 general admission and $15 for HWS students, and can be purchased online.