The Tabernacle Choir Blog

Spring Concert Showcases Chorale and Orchestra

The April 17 and 18 spring concert is what some might call a double-header! The program will feature both the Orchestra at Temple Square and the Temple Square Chorale in an evening of rich classical music. The evening's performances will be led by the baton of Ryan Murphy, associate music director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and conductor of the Temple Square Chorale.

Beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the Tabernacle, the first half of the concert will feature the Orchestra performing Variations on a Theme by Joseph Haydn by Johannes Brahms and the Overture to The Bartered Bride. The Temple Square Chorale, the training ensemble for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, will perform Mozart's Requiem, one of the most storied and enigmatic works in the classical canon, in the concert's last half.

Describing the concert, Murphy explains, “While the Mozart Requiem is the centerpiece of the evening, the concert begins with Variations on a Theme by Haydn, which was performed at the inaugural concert of the Orchestra at Temple Square in 1999. Brahms wrote this almost a hundred years after the Mozart piece, but it still feels musically connected to the past. Brahms used a theme from the classical era as his subject, giving a nod to his predecessors in terms of style, structure, and counterpoint. We'll follow the Brahms with the Overture from The Bartered Bride, by Smetana, a wonderful Czech composer who was also a contemporary of Brahms. It provides a wonderful vehicle to feature the virtuosity of the Orchestra and to have some fun before we settle into the solemnity of the Mozart.”

Murphy continues, “The Mozart Requiem has some of the most hauntingly beautiful music ever written. There is an amazing depth of contrast to the material as Mozart explores universal themes of justice and mercy. The music is at times fiery and gentle, severe and serene, but always with Mozart's elegant touch. This concert has been a great joy to prepare.”

The Orchestra and the Chorale were each formed in 1999 as extensions of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir organization. Since that time, the Orchestra has become a key collaborator with the Choir and has added significantly to the artistry of the combined ensembles. The Temple Square Chorale has proved itself an invaluable tool for training future singers in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Singers participate in two sessions of the Chorale—one prior to becoming members of the Choir and another the year after admission to the Choir. Chorale rehearsals and performances, together with classroom study in Choir School, provide detailed preparation for new singers. This concert is the culmination of sixteen weeks of training.

Free tickets for the concert are available on a first come, first served basis beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. on