The Southern Delaware Choral Society will present its spring concerts, Regal to Rustic, Saturday and Sunday, May 3-4. Featuring song and dance from Eastern and Central Europe, the program will be conducted by Ann Freeman and accompanied by Paul Fleckenstein on piano and percussionist Ken Schleifer. Several pieces will be performed with piano duet accompaniment, when Rebecca McDaniel will join Fleckenstein at the keyboard.
“There are many people of Eastern and Central European descent who reside in this area. They grew up hearing music from that region at church, family or social events. Our audiences will be treated to a diverse selection of choral music in a variety of styles that will be familiar and bring back memories,” said Gail Launay, executive director of SDCS.
Several of the songs feature dance themes: Selections from Borodin’s "The Polovetsian Dances," Brahms’ "Liebeslieder Waltzes" and Zigeunerlieder "Gypsy Songs." Others feature a religious theme such as Dvorak’s "Blessed Jesu" and Tschesnokov’s "Salvation is Created." Folk songs will fill the remainder of the program, including Bartok’s "Three Hungarian Folk Songs"; three Russian folk songs - "Dark Eyes," "Volga Boatmen" and "Moscow Nights" - and several others.
“This concert is exciting because it is as much a visual experience as an auditory one,” said Launay. Deni Robinson of The Ballroom Blitz in Lewes will perform elegant Viennese waltzes to the Brahms, while dancers from First State Dance Academy in Milford, under the direction of Michelle Xiques, will highlight sections of the Borodin with ballet choreography. As an added feature, SDCS member Peter Schultz has created a compelling presentation that will enhance both the listening and visual enjoyment of the concert.
Fleckenstein rejoins the SDCS as accompanist for the concerts. Fleckenstein has served as organist and director of music at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Wilmington since 1993. A native of California, he holds degrees from the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music and Westminster Choir College, where he held a graduate assistantship as accompanist for the famed Westminster Symphonic Choir.
Both concerts will be held at Epworth United Methodist Church on Holland Glade Road, Rehoboth Beach. The Saturday, May 3 concert will begin at 7 p.m. and the Sunday, May 4 concert will start at 4 p.m.
Tickets for both performances are available by calling 302-396-7617. They are also available online at southerndelawarechoralsociety.org and at Browseabout Books in Rehoboth Beach and Puzzles in Lewes. Tickets will be available at the door on the date of the concert. Ticket cost is $20 for adults and $8 for students with valid ID.