University Of South Dakota

This weekend, music abounds at the University of South Dakota. If you haven’t caught the holiday spirit yet – or if you just want to soak up more of it – there are three concerts happening this weekend that are bound to boost your holiday cheer.

First, tonight, Friday, Nov. 30, at 7:30 p.m. in Aalfs Auditorium, the USD Symphony Orchestra will perform a concert featuring Dvorak’s “New World Symphony.” USD Horn Professor Amy Laursen will perform Mozart’s Third Horn Concerto as well. For those unable to attend in person, the concert will be live-streamed on the orchestra’s Facebook page.

The USD Symphony Orchestra is directed and conducted by USD Professor Luis Viquez. The orchestra is comprised mainly of USD music students, but also includes some members of the community as well as some advanced high school students.

On Saturday at 3 p.m. in Aalfs Auditorium, meanwhile, you can catch the USD Bands in action. USD’s numerous bands include the Jazz Band, Concert Band, Symphonic Band, Percussion Ensemble, as well as the Sound of USD, Pep Band, and others. Come and listen to a rousing concert by various USD bands.

On Sunday, Dec. 2, at 3 p.m. in Aalfs Auditorium, return for the USD Holiday Concert featuring six groups. Don’t forget to arrive early to hear pre-concert music by the High Howlers, Clarinet Choir, and the Double Reed ensemble who will be performing as people arrive before the official concert begins.

According to David Holdhusen, chair of the USD Music Department, more than 200 performers will be involved in Sunday’s Holiday performance, which will be a wonderful showcase of what the music department ensembles can do, he said.

“The holiday concert is nice because people can see a variety of performances instead of just focusing on one ensemble style,” he said. “All of our groups are performing at a very high level and look forward to sharing their music with the audience. This is a wonderful way to kick off the holiday season.”

Those performing in the holiday concert Sunday include the Chamber Orchestra, the Chamber Singers, the Concert Choir, the Men’s and Women’s Choir, the Bell Choir, and the Symphony Orchestra.

“This year we will be featuring all three of our choral ensembles and both of our orchestras,” Holdhusen said. “In addition, a group of music education students will be performing bell choir music as part of the performance. … These ensembles will perform holiday classics and other music by master composers.”

All three major concerts this weekend are free and open to the public.

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