Hickory – Western Piedmont Symphony (WPS), the professional orchestra of the western foothills of North Carolina, presents MASTERWORKS: CARMINA BURANA featuring works by Orff and Brahms on Friday, February 9, at 7:30 PM at P.E. Monroe Auditorium on the campus of Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory. Orff’s massive chorale work features acclaimed soloists Sequina DuBose (soprano), Daniel Stein (tenor), Michael Adams (baritone), and more than 120 members of regional community choirs including the CVCC Choir, Hickory Choral Society, Lenoir-Rhyne A Cappella Choir, and Lenoir-Rhyne Youth Chorus. The symphony performance opens with the celebration to scholarly success, Brahms’ Academic Festival Overture.

“Our upcoming Masterworks celebrates living life to the fullest,” said WPS music director Matthew Troy. “Both Brahms’ Academic Festival Overture and Orff’’s Carmina Burana are immersive musical odes to fate, fortune, the trials of life, and our human nature to seek joy and other earthly pleasures when possible. Carmina Burana is one of the most iconic works ever written, and the music has timeless appeal due to the famous recognizable opening chords. This is the dynamite music event of the year and not to be missed!” added Troy.

Orff’s 20th century epic chorale work, based on a set of 24 poems written in the 13th century by the Goliards, a group of defrocked monks and vagabond students, was an instant hit with orchestras, but it has also become the underscore to many films and pop culture moments. When King Arthur leads his knights into battle in the movie “Excalibur,” the music is from Carmina Burana. In one scene where Jim Morrison hallucinates in “The Doors,” Carmina Burana provides the soundtrack. Its instantly recognizable themes have even worked their way into “The Simpsons,” a Super Bowl commercial, and several YouTube flash mobs and TikTok stories. Backed by four community choruses of more than 120 singers and relentlessly driven by a powerhouse orchestra and three stellar operatic soloists, Carmina Burana is a tour de force to experience live and in concert.

The Catawba Valley Community College Chorus is led by CVCC professor of music Caroline Simyon. The Hickory Choral Society’s artistic director and conductor is Dr. Ryan Luhrs. The Lenoir-Rhyne A Cappella Choir is directed by Dr. Ryan Luhrs. The Lenoir-Rhyne Youth Chorus is conducted by Cory Westby.

MASTERWORKS tickets are $20, $30, $40, and $50, with $10 tickets available for students with valid ID. Purchase by visiting wpsymphony.org/tickets, call 828.324.8603, or visit the WPS Box Office, located on the SALT Block at 243 Third Avenue NE, Hickory, NC, 28601. Box Office hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mon. – Fri. Concert venue is P.E. Monroe Auditorium on the Lenoir-Rhyne University campus, 775 6th St NE, Hickory, NC, 28601. Please note: All programs, artists, venues, prices, and dates are subject to change.