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AUS students perform at choral concert
Students from the American University of Sharjah (AUS) Choral Ensemble presented two evenings of music in the Performing Arts Rotunda on campus recently. During the performance, the audience heard recitals from the AUS Choral Ensemble, Nassim Al Saba Choir, Nassim Al Saba Tarab and the SAMA Barbershop Quartet which performed choral music from a Western and Arabic repertoire. Students, their parents and other members of the AUS community attended the delightful performances.
The program included the SAMA Barbershop Quartet's performance of A Whole New World as well as Nassim Al Saba Tarab's 'Alli Gara. Additionally, the Nassim Al Saba Choir performed Introit, Kyrie and In Paradisum from Requiem.
The AUS Choral Ensemble is the Department of Performing Arts' introductory-level choir that performs Western and Arabic music. The Nassim Al Saba Choir is the advanced choir and it performs only Arabic four-part music. Nassim Al Saba Tarab is an instrumental group associated with the Arabic choir, but is also a separate instrumental ensemble. SAMA, which takes its name from the first letters of its members' names, is a barbershop quartet comprising four male singers who sing in four different parts.
"We are extremely pleased with how the students have entered a choral environment and have embraced both their own Arabic tradition as well as the Western choral tradition," said Dr. John Perkins, Assistant Professor, Department of Performing Arts, who conducted the performances. "Much, if not all, of the West's influences on music originated in what we now call the Middle East. The West cultivated the idea of singing in more than one part, and now it has been translated back into Arabic culture in a new choral genre," he added.
The Nassim Al Saba Choir will travel to New York City in April next year to perform Arabic music at New York University, City University of New York, at an interfaith concert in Brooklyn and will conclude the week by performing the Requiem of Fauré in Carnegie Hall, under the baton of Joanna Nachef and the New England Symphony Orchestra, joining two Lebanese choirs and three American choirs.
AUS is now in its fifth year since the inception of its choral program and is the only university choral program in the UAE. AUS is also the only university in the region which supports applied music courses at the academic level, with students gaining credit for their work toward the music-making experience.
The event was organized by the Department of Performing Arts.