Ashland University Presents Handel’s Messiah

Ashland University Presents Handel’s Messiah

11/5/15 ASHLAND, Ohio – The Department of Music at Ashland University will present George Frideric Handel's holiday masterpiece, "Messiah," performed by the Ashland University Choir, Ashland Area Chorus and Ashland Chamber Orchestra with Dr. Rowland Blackley as conductor on Sunday, Nov. 22, at 2 p.m. in Hugo Young Theatre on the AU campus.

As the most famous oratorio ever written, Messiah is a collection of texts drawn from the sacred scriptures dealing with Christ’s birth, sufferings, death and resurrection. Best known for its "Hallelujah" chorus, the choral piece also features several well-loved recitatives and arias sung by soloists.

Dr. Blackley, professor of music and director of choral activities at Ashland University, previously presented Handel’s Messiah at Ashland University in 2005 and 2010. While conducting the University Choir and Chamber Singers, he also teaches in the areas of conducting and music education. He directs the annual Madrigal Feaste and has served as conductor and music director for several Ashland University theatrical productions. Ashland Area Chorus director Elizabeth Slade and staff accompanist Susan Gregg have assisted in preparing vocalists for the concert.

With more than 100 musicians on the Hugo Young Theatre stage, Ashland University’s presentation will feature a professional orchestra including University organist Timothy Guenther on harpsichord along with University trumpet students Nik Psota (Hinckley) and Hannah Phillips (Plymouth). Vocal solos will be performed by sopranos Abigale Brady (Ashtabula), Gracie Fumic (Avon), Elisha Hofer (Sandusky) and Fatima Imani Smith (Akron). Alto soloists feature Sarah Napier (Willard) and Eryn Reynolds Tramel (Medina). Male soloists are represented by tenor Corey Turpin (Ashland) and Timothy Johnson (a professionally trained vocalist from the Ashland Area Chorus); while baritones include Deric Dove (Newark) and Jake Riley (Wooster). 

Reserved seating tickets for the performance are $8 for adults; $6 for senior citizens, non-Ashland University students, Ashland University faculty, staff and alumni; and $1 for Ashland University students. To purchase tickets, call the Ashland University Central Box Office at 419-289-5125, Monday through Friday, 12 to 6 p.m., or online at

For more information, visit the Web site at or contact Tricia Applegate, coordinator of performing arts publicity and events, at 419-289-5950 or

Ashland University, ranked in the top 200 colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2016, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University ( values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.  ###

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