Sonoran Desert Chorale concert Feb. 29 in Mesa

Celebrate Fauré performance at First United Methodist Church


Under the direction of Artistic Director Dr. Carric Smolnik, the Sonoran Desert Chorale is performing a concert featuring works by Gabriel Fauré, who delighted in infusing traditional forms of music with a mélange of harmonic daring and a freshness of invention.

"One of the most striking features of Fauré's style was his fondness for daring harmonic progressions and sudden modulations, invariably carried out with supreme elegance and a deceptive air of simplicity," according to a release.

"In selecting these pieces, I was focused on providing a respite from the stress and craziness of life," Dr. Smolnik said in the release. "Too often, we move through life, or life moves by us, and we don’t notice the small pieces of beauty all around us."

The Celebrate Fauré performance is 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 29, at First United Methodist Church, 15 E. First Avenue in Mesa.

The concert will feature both well-known and lesser performed pieces, the release states.

"The beautiful and recognizable Pavane as well as Cantique de Jean Racine are joined by several variations of Tantum ergo. Madrigal, charming in its simple melodic lines, takes a quaint melody and plays it back and forth between the voice parts. For a beautiful variation in sound, both women's and men's voices are showcased separately, each with their own piece," the release states.

At the piano, Mutsumi Mori is featured in the keyboard accompaniments to these works.

The featured large work for the concert is Mr. Faure's sublime Requiem. It will be accompanied by Dr. Bonnie Loney at the organ and Linda J. Lambie on solo violin.

"I selected the Fauré Requiem because of its beauty," Dr. Smolnik said in the release. " Unlike many requiems, or masses for the dead, Fauré’s work is gentle. It is filled with beautiful, soaring melodic and motivic lines."

Tickets may be purchased at or by calling 480-305-4538. Advance single ticket prices are $18 for adults/$15 for seniors, students and groups of 10 or more. Ticket prices at the door are $20 for adults and $18 for seniors/students.