The Music Department at Mary Baldwin University presents its final concert of the season at 3 p.m. on April 13 in Francis Auditorium, as acclaimed soprano Katherine Jolly takes the stage with pianist Emily Yap Chua.
Praised for her “agile, bright, lyric soprano,” Jolly has performed with the Houston Grand Opera, the Virginia Opera, Opera Theatre Saint Louis, American Lyric Opera, and New York City Opera, among other companies throughout the U.S. She was a winner of the 2006 Metropolitan Opera National Council Grand Finals and was also recently chosen to sing for the national conference of the National Association of Negro Musicians.
On April 13, she and Chua will treat the Staunton audience to a varied program, beginning with Mozart’s beautiful and well-known Exsultate Jubilate.
“I love singing in operas, but one is limited to one single character,” Jolly explains. “The wonderful and challenging element to recital work is the ability to explore different characters and musical styles in an intimate setting. The Mozart is a joy to sing, and a wonderful way to open a concert.”
They will continue with Quatro Madrigales Amatorios by Spanish composer Joaquin Rodrigo. These appealing songs were inspired by the folk songs of Andalusia. Balancing out the program is Honey and Rue, a moving set by the American composer Andre Previn. “Previn’s song cycle is powerful, set to poems by Toni Morrison,” says Jolly.
Chua has been described for her “tonal beauty and clarity,” “graceful, effortless manner,” and “spirited and movingly expressive” playing. An active soloist and chamber musician, her collaborations include recitals with members of the Cincinnati, San Francisco, Tenerife (Canary Islands, Spain), and Granada (Spain) symphony orchestras. She is on the faculty at Randolph College.
Single tickets for April 13 may be purchased at the door and are $5 for the general public and $4 for students and seniors (free for Mary Baldwin students, faculty, and staff). For more information call 540-887-7294 or visit Music at Mary Baldwin.