News & Stories
Jazz Orchestra
April 23, 2022

Spring Concerts Abound

The Berry College Music Department recently celebrated the end of the semester with performances by the symphony orchestra, Berry Singers, jazz and wind ensembles.

On April 3, the Music Department hosted “Sacred Spaces”, an afternoon of choral music to celebrate the history and sanctity of Frost Chapel.

"We are excited to return to the Frost Chapel,” said Paul Neal, associate professor of music and director of choral activities. “The pandemic took so much from us over the last two years, and we are excited to return to singing in our chapels here at Berry College. Each group tells a story, while also celebrating the history and acoustic of this wonderful space.”

The choir performed a selection of Gregorian Chant, specifically focused on a theme of honoring and celebrating the stars. Their music selections include an Indonesian Folk Song from the 19th century, pieces by Czech composer Antonín Dvořák, and a song of hope that combines Latin and Sámi, the language spoken by the Sámi people of Northern Europe.

On April 7, the Berry Symphony Orchestra performed music from two American composers: George Gershwin and Aaron Copland. Gershwin was a composure for the Broadway musical theater and was known for his orchestral and piano compositions. He would blend forms and techniques of different kinds which would incorporate different styles of popular music and jazz. Copeland was a composer, a writer, conductor, but primarily he was an educator. He cared for the students to fall in love with music.

On April 19, The Berry Jazz Ensemble and the “Berry Breeze” Steel Drum Band brought a variety of modern and energizing performances to Bell Recital Hall. Directed by Artist-in-Residence John David, the ensemble performs a variety of music from new contemporary jazz to swinging classics.  The band played covers of iconic songs throughout the 20th and 21st centuries by jazz composers Duke Ellington and Count Basie, rock band Foo Fighters and instrumental ensemble Snarky Puppy. The Steel Drum Band highlighted the work of Grammy award winner Eddie Palmieri, a Puerto Rican American master of Afro-Cuban music.

On April 23, The Berry Singers and Berry Voices performed with their last concert of the year titled “Let My Love Be Heard.” The Berry Voices, a group of students within the Berry Singers who specialize in vocal jazz and acapella, opened the performance with songs such as “Sing Together” and “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

The Berry Singers performed Jake Runestad’s “Let My Love Be Heard,” along with vocal works by Renaissance composer Palestrina, David von Kampen and blues artist Ruthie Foster.

“The Berry Singers presented a program that speaks to the need for love and acceptance in our world,” Neal added.  “During this time of turmoil from COVID-19 and the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, the program spoke to how we must seek love, resolution, and peace when our world doesn't always show it. We hope our songs help bring peace and hope to our audience.”

For more information about Berry's music department, please visit


Written by Public Relations Student Assistants Carson King and Lauren Chandler

Office of Public Relations

 Back to Top

Footer Menu