Music series

Presidential chamber music series returns with live audiences

SOCORRO – The presidential chamber music series returns with fully live performances for the fall semester 2021.

The NMT Performing Arts series features the New Mexico Bach Society’s performance at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, September 30, in the auditorium of the Macey Center. The concert will also be broadcast live on NMTPAS ‘Facebook and YouTube channels.

The four annual concerts in this series are sponsored by New Mexico Tech President Dr. Stephen G. Wells, and all shows in the series are free. NMT’s COVID-19 safety requirements at the Macey Center include providing proof at the gate of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within seven days of performance, wearing a mask and providing contact tracing information.

Certain facets of life change rapidly, become popular and then disappear, victims of public enthusiasm or the evolution of technology. Others, like secular art and music, last for years and even centuries, perhaps a testament to humanity’s search for the Eternal.

This is the genre of classical music. Johann Sebastian Bach is one of the oldest and best-known musicians / composers, having lived in Germany during the so-called Baroque period. Music lovers do not need to be familiar with the times or the music to enjoy this concert, as notes and explanations will be given during the performance.

The program will feature two instrumentalists (piano and flute) and four singers performing cantatas (narrative pieces of medium duration) and arias (solos) as well as instrumental works. The evening’s vocal selections are taken from music Bach wrote while in charge of music at St. Thomas Church in Leipzig, Germany. These include pieces from his “Passions,” telling the story of Jesus’ betrayal and crucifixion.

The New Mexico Bach Society is made up of musicians from New Mexico who are members of the New Mexico Performing Arts Society (NMPAS). The state-wide non-profit organization offers high-quality performances in venues across the state and also trains young artists.

The concert will be conducted by Franz Vote, who has been called the “singer’s director,” and who has conducted concerts at the Metropolitan Opera and collaborated with prominent lyrical artists like Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo.

Musicians include flautist Linda Marianiello, who has formed chamber music groups in Munich, Chicago and New England and has taught at Yale and Cornell universities, as well as in Wisconsin, Illinois and China. She is also the Executive Director of NMPAS.

New Mexico Tech’s chamber music series began over 30 years ago, under the vision of Adam Gonzalez, professor in the NMT Music Program under the direction of Michael Iatauro. Supported by then-President Laurence Lattman, the program continued to be funded by President Daniel H. Lopez and now President Stephen G. Wells. Additionally, this year’s Presidential Chamber Music Series concerts are also supported by the Susan Miller Memorial Endowment.

For more information on this and other NMTPAS concerts, visit nmt.edu/pas or call 575-835-5688.