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Take steps to better health with Walk Kansas -3/5/2015, 4:18 PM

Hydrant flushing begins Friday -3/4/2015, 4:00 PM

Are we strangers in our own homeland or not? -3/4/2015, 9:22 AM

Heartland Community Foundation partners with 16 nonprofit funds for Match Madness -3/3/2015, 2:41 PM

Hays advances to Round 2 of showdown -3/3/2015, 11:47 AM

'Focus' ends up adrift at box office -3/3/2015, 8:38 AM

Gloria changes 'lazy' to 'busy' as she prepares potatoes -3/3/2015, 8:38 AM

Take actions to reduce post-holiday stress -3/2/2015, 9:16 AM

Breeding costs in cow/calf operations have changed -3/1/2015, 4:49 PM

Clubs and meetings (March 1, 2015) -3/1/2015, 3:45 PM

Phillipsburg DCF worker honored by governor -2/27/2015, 4:49 PM

City starting burnout Monday -2/27/2015, 4:31 PM

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Sharma advancing MIS surgery for HaysMed -2/26/2015, 9:23 AM

Lenten retreat March 14 in Hays -2/25/2015, 11:50 AM

Spring 2015 continues enrollment growth at FHSU -2/25/2015, 10:57 AM

Rose Garden hosting special event March 9 -2/24/2015, 11:32 AM

Gloria 'Daniel-izes' dessert -2/24/2015, 8:14 AM

Breaks might help post-holiday depression -2/23/2015, 9:55 AM

Upcoming farm bill and grain price projections -2/22/2015, 5:26 PM

Clubs and meetings (Feb. 22, 2015) -2/22/2015, 3:17 PM

Birthday -2/19/2015, 8:59 AM

Extension offers advice for passing down farm or ranch -2/19/2015, 8:59 AM

A smile is friendly magic -2/18/2015, 4:56 PM

'Fifty Shades of Grey' is only slightly painful -2/17/2015, 8:44 AM

An easy-to-make, tasty food treat -2/17/2015, 4:18 PM

There are several ways to deal with post-holiday blues -2/16/2015, 9:22 AM

Kochia control in early spring for fields in wheat -2/15/2015, 2:37 PM

Business Briefcase (Feb. 15, 2015) -2/15/2015, 2:37 PM

Clubs and meetings (Feb. 15, 2015) -2/15/2015, 2:27 PM

A mother-in-law's example of faith shows transformation -2/13/2015, 9:26 AM

Birthday -2/12/2015, 9:08 AM

Elevate your marriage during National Marriage Week -2/12/2015, 9:08 AM

Taking time to have a little laugh during life's busyness -2/11/2015, 8:51 AM

Lions Club convention March 7 in Hays -2/10/2015, 4:10 PM

HaysMed welcomes new pulmonologist -2/10/2015, 1:35 PM

'SpongeBob Movie' is what you make it out to be -2/10/2015, 9:01 AM

Remembering Valentine's Days from years ago -2/9/2015, 10:07 AM

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Clubs and meetings (Feb. 8, 2015) -2/8/2015, 4:26 PM

Business Briefcase (Feb. 8, 2015) -2/8/2015, 3:32 PM

County Extension has farm bill information available -2/8/2015, 3:31 PM

Kansas 4-H Foundation names new president/CEO -2/5/2015, 3:32 PM

Freezer-ready slow-cooker meals can be safe and delicious -2/5/2015, 9:36 AM

Community Bulletin Board (Feb. 5, 2015) -2/5/2015, 8:15 AM

Youngsters look back through generations on KS Day -2/4/2015, 8:15 AM

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'Project Almanac' misallocates its resources -2/3/2015, 9:48 AM

Church services a busy time -2/3/2015, 9:47 AM

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Business Briefcase (Feb. 1, 2015) -2/1/2015, 4:32 PM

Nex-Tech names a studio space in Hammond Hall on FHSU campus -1/30/2015, 3:47 PM

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Moran gains seat on Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee -1/30/2015, 9:54 AM

Bible is playbook to super life, not Super Bowl, victory -1/30/2015, 8:23 AM

Moran gains seat on Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee -1/29/2015, 2:02 PM

Extension offers regional estate planning workshops -1/29/2015, 9:36 AM

DeBakey Heart Institute sponsoring CPR training -1/28/2015, 1:46 PM

Hays Academy of Hair Designs sweeps competition -1/28/2015, 12:06 PM

Hospital restrictions in place at HaysMed -1/28/2015, 10:25 AM

Battling the flu -1/28/2015, 10:06 AM

Comedian, author Rainn Wilson coming to FHSU -1/27/2015, 1:37 PM

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DeBakey Heart Institute sponsors coffee, conversation -1/26/2015, 11:04 AM

Many can suffer from seasonal disorders -1/26/2015, 9:50 AM

Clubs and meetings (Jan. 25, 2015) -1/25/2015, 3:05 PM

Winter, spring options for winter annual weed control in wheat -1/25/2015, 3:05 PM

Bishop from Ghana visits area -1/23/2015, 7:47 AM

Eating well while spending less actually is possible -1/22/2015, 9:55 AM

One of 5 finalists for FHSU provost position withdraws -1/21/2015, 11:36 AM

Away from home, and longing to be back in Kansas -1/21/2015, 8:44 AM

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Couture-Lovelady assigned to House Rules Committee -1/19/2015, 11:22 AM

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Save some trouble, get agriculture leases in writing -1/18/2015, 3:14 PM

Clubs and meetings (Jan. 18, 2015) -1/18/2015, 3:13 PM

-1/18/2015, 2:00 PM

Hays to host Western region farmers market conference -1/17/2015, 3:23 PM

Community Bulletin Board (Jan. 17, 2015) -1/17/2015, 3:14 PM

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Community Bulletin Board (Jan. 12, 2015) -1/12/2015, 8:47 AM

Clubs and meetings (Jan. 11, 2015) -1/11/2015, 4:00 PM

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Hays Recreation Commission calendar -1/9/2015, 4:00 PM

Regional farmers market vendor workshop Jan. 30 in Hays -1/8/2015, 9:18 AM

Community Bulletin Board (Jan. 8, 2015) -1/8/2015, 9:18 AM

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SPOTLIGHT
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Hays Symphony, FHSU choirs inspire all

Published on -5/16/2013, 9:44 AM

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A Saturday or two ago, the Hays Symphony Orchestra, the combined FHSU choirs and Smoky Hill Chorale, plus local and guest soloists, inspired each other and the audience in an unforgettable season-ending concert.

The semester's final concert is also a time for awards. Graduating senior Steven Cornwell won the Donald Stout Award for outstanding contributions to choral music, and violinist Naomi Kitzis won the Edwin Moyers award for excellent performance in the Hays Symphony Orchestra. Heartfelt congratulations to both, as well as to graduating senior Polly Li and all members of the class of 2013.

Piano soloist Irena Ravitskaya and the Hays Symphony, conducted by Benjamin Cline, gave an electrifying performance of the second piano concerto by Sergei Rachmaninov. It was one of those rare occasions when a concerto worked just as it should: The soloist inspired the orchestra and the orchestra inspired the soloist. They negotiated the sumptuous melodies (think of "All by Myself" or "Full Moon and Empty Arms," which both borrow themes from this concerto), lush harmonies and thrilling cadenzas with skill and feeling. There was a brief pause at the conclusion while the audience caught their breath, rose to their feet and rewarded the musicians with wave upon wave of applause replete with cries of bravo and stomping of feet.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's "Vesperae Solennes de Confessore" and "Solemn Vespers of the Confessor," an elaborate setting of six psalms for soloists, chorus and orchestra, comprised the rest of the program. Under the baton of choral director Terry Crull, all performed well and more than did justice to the work. The soloists, soprano Ivalah Allen; guest artist mezzo soprano Lee Ann Scherlong of Denver; tenor Joseph Perniciaro; and baritone Steven Taylor, also of Denver, did a fine job. Special praise to soprano Allen for flawlessly performing the elaborate cadenzas of her part (legend has it Mozart hated sopranos -- or maybe loved them). While the choral texts are sung without repetitions or ornaments, the contrapuntal composition of the individual parts, as well as the complexity of the orchestral component, belie their apparent simplicity. Both chorus and orchestra met the work's challenges with great success. The audience applauded their efforts with gusto.

Ruth Firestone is a supporter of music and theater in Hays. She can be contacted at rfiresto@fhsu.edu.

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