North Central College - Naperville, IL

Vienna Boys Choir performs March 6 in North Central College’s Wentz Concert Hall

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Contact: Ted Slowik, director of PR and media relations, 630-637-5307

Additional seats have just been made available (Feb. 23).

Jan. 7, 2011—Audience members on March 6 can hear the angelic voices of Austria’s historic Vienna Boys Choir for the first time in North Central College’s acoustically stunning Wentz Concert Hall.

The choir, founded in 1498 and featuring boys ages 10 to 14, previously performed at North Central College’s Pfeiffer Hall in 1961 and 1987. This will be the choir’s first visit to Naperville since the College dedicated Wentz Concert Hall in 2008.

The Vienna Boys Choir performance begins at 6 p.m. Sunday, March 6, in Wentz Concert Hall at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville. Tickets are $50 and $40; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-6370-SHOW (7469) or visit northcentralcollege.edu/showtix.

For centuries following the choir’s founding, performances were reserved solely for the Austrian imperial court for mass, private concerts and state occasions. After the collapse of the Habsburg Empire in 1918, the choir began performing for wider audiences and traveling to other countries to sing. Today, the choir’s 100 members are divided into four separate touring groups.

The four choirs give around 300 concerts and performances each year in front of nearly half a million people. Each group spends nine to 11 weeks of the school year on tour. They visit virtually all European countries, and they are frequent guests in Asia, Australia and the Americas. The choir’s repertoire includes everything from medieval to contemporary and experimental music.

The Washington Post says the choir is a “mix of purity and lung power, childlike simplicity and mature command of breath control and phrasing.”

The choir is led by Gerald Wirth, who became artistic director of the Vienna Boys Choir in 2001. While Wirth has expanded the choir’s reach to include a number of projects involving world music, a cappella pop and film music. “We do not claim to play ‘authentic’ world music; we create something from the original sources that is our own,” Wirth says. “We want to be faithful to the source in the sense that we treat it with respect.”

North Central College’s 2010-2011 Sesquicentennial Fine & Performing Arts Season is supported by a generous grant from the Illinois Arts Council. USG Corporation and Navistar, Inc. are underwriting sponsors.

This performance is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit northcentralcollege.edu/show or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).

11-25-2010