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Musica Nova Headlines Student Arts Festival

Musica Nova

Musica Nova, a group of student musicians directed by Dr. Robert Xavier Rodríguez, will perform at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2 in the Jonsson Performance Hall as part of this year’s Fall Student Arts Festival.

Dr. Robert Xavier Rodríguez, composer-conductor and professor of music at UT Dallas, will direct the Musica Nova classical ensemble in its bi-annual concert Dec. 2.

A highlight of the two-week Fall Student Arts Festival, the free concert will be held at 8 p.m. in the Jonsson Performance Hall.

“Year after year, the ensemble comes together to deliver an outstanding performance and a rare opportunity for our community to experience great works, often in unusual juxtapositions,” said Rodríguez, UT Dallas Chair in Art and Aesthetic Studies. “This year’s selections explore connections between the music of Johann Sebastian Bach and composers of our own time. I urge everyone to come early, because our concerts always fill up the performance hall.”

The program, titled “Bach Meets the Moderns,” will feature alternating works by Bach and 20th-century composers Bohuslav Martin and Paul Hindemith. Joined by faculty pianist Michael McVay, members of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and other guest artists, students will weave their way through Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos III and VI, which are regarded as the pinnacle of Baroque-era orchestral composition.

Dr. Robert Xavier Rodriguez

Dr. Robert Xavier Rodríguez

The ensemble will also perform The Four Temperaments for Piano and Strings, a ballet commissioned by New York City Ballet in the ’40s, and Martin’s Quartet for Oboe, Violin, Cello and Piano.

Student-musicians performing in Musica Nova are drawn from the UT Dallas Advanced Orchestra/ Chamber Music Ensemble, which provides opportunities for students to play music written for small and large ensembles, as well as multimedia and theater works of all periods.

Musica Nova guest artists have included members of the Dallas Symphony and Dallas Opera orchestras, and singers from the New York City Opera and Metropolitan Opera. Past Musica Nova concert programs have ranged from Medieval and Renaissance dances and motets to standard repertoire to experimental new works written for or developed by the ensemble. Concerts have included an evening of jigs, an evening of tangos, French cabaret and mariachi songs, chamber opera, ballet and a fully-staged commedia dell’arte pantomime.

Students to Showcase Skills in Fall Festival

The Fall Student Arts Festival showcases the works of more than 600 students from more than 40 courses. The festival offers audiences the opportunity to roam from one building to another, taking in art exhibitions and classical, jazz, theater, dance, guitar, piano and vocal performances, including a special concert from the students in Opera Workshop.

Monday, Nov. 28

7:30 p.m. Vocal Instruction I, Jonsson Performance Hall

Wednesday, Nov. 30

7 p.m. Readers Theater, University Theatre

Thursday, Dec. 1

6 p.m. Guitar Courses, Jonsson Performance Hall6 p.m. Dance Recital by Maria Emilia Lasso de la Vega, University Theatre7 p.m. Improv, University Theatre8 p.m. Jazz Band, Jonsson Performance Hall

Friday, Dec. 2

6:30 p.m. Art Exhibition opening reception, Visual Art Studio8 p.m. Musica Nova ensemble, Jonsson Performance Hall

Saturday, Dec. 3

2 p.m. Piano I-III, Jonsson Performance Hall7 p.m. Holiday Sing, Edith O’Donnell Arts and Technology Lecture Hall

Sunday, Dec. 4

2 p.m. Orchestra ensemble, Edith O’Donnell Arts and Technology Lecture Hall4 p.m. Creating Music, Jonsson Performance Hall

Wednesday, Dec. 7

7 p.m. Acting, Jonsson Rehearsal Hall

Friday, Dec. 9

6:30 p.m. Creative Writing Readings, Jonsson Performance Hall8 p.m. Advanced Voice, Jonsson Performance Hall 

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].

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