Choral Arts Salutes JFK With New Work and Verdi’s ’Requiem’
A tribute concert in honor of President John F. Kennedy took place Nov. 10 in the Concert Hall of the Kennedy Center. This Nov. 22 marks the 50th anniversary of his death -- a day remembered by every American alive that day -- and a story retold to generations thereafter.
The concert, entitled ”Legacy and Life,” performed by the Choral Arts Society of Washington, was conducted by its artistic director Scott Tucker. As a musical and visual reflection of Kennedy's life, the concert began with composer Steven Stucky's «Take Him, Earth», composed specially to commemorate the assassination, before venturing into the first movement of Guiseppe Verdi's «Requiem» to honor the 200th anniversary of Verdi's birth.
The two-hour long concert featured special performances by soprano Jonita Lattimore, mezzo soprano Géraldine Chauvet, tenor Patrick O'Halloran and bass Kevin Maynor. As the funeral mass was played, originally composed by Verdi in honor of Italian writer Alessandro Manzoni, photographs and film clips of Kennedy were projected on a large screen behind the orchestra – from his days as a young boy in Hyannisport, Mass., to his funeral in Washington, D.C. It was a beautiful and worthy tribute to a president, beloved by so many Americans.