Amasong's concert aims to 'champion the music of women composers'

Amasong's concert aims to 'champion the music of women composers'

CHAMPAIGN — Amasong will present "Nevertheless, She," a concert of music written by women, Saturday and Sunday.

Amasong, an award-winning lesbian/feminist amateur choir founded here in 1990, will perform a newly discovered piece from Baroque-era convents.

Heidi Weatherford, the group's interim director, said, "One of the wonderful things about Amasong is the great variety of music we perform. We champion the music of women composers, both local and internationally known."

This semester features music written by two women on the University of Illinois faculty, physics Professor Smitha Vishveshwara and Ivette Herryman Rodriguez, a lecturer in theory and ear training.

Also featured is a piece by grad student Reshmina William.

Among other works, the concert will include Justice Choir protest music composed in 2017, an avant-garde work by Meredith Monk and a contemporary favorite by Imogen Heap.

Included will be works written or arranged by Fanny Mendelssohn, Lisa Young of Coco's Lunch, 17th-century abbess Chiara Margarita Cozzonlani, Meagan Johnson, Tone Krone, Ethel Smythe, Peggy Seeger and Eleanor Daley.

Also returning is all-women folk bluegrass group the Coneflowers.

Mari McKeeth has sung with Amasong since 1994.

She said that over the years, she has enjoyed the opportunity to sing under the direction of founding director Kristina Boerger, the release of five CDs, Amasong hosting the Sister Singers National Festival in 2014 and singing in Krannert.

"Choral singing is a wonderful way to build community and connect with something larger than our cell phones," Weatherford said.

"The women of Amasong are bright, fierce and multi-talented. The choir includes musicians and ministers, librarians and civil engineers, artists and accountants, linguists and educators. What they share is a love of singing and the desire to support women in the arts."

A raffle of items donated from chorus members and the community will also be offered at both concerts.

If you go

What: 'Nevertheless, She'

Who: Amasong in concert

When: 4 p.m. May 19 and 20

Where: McKinley Presbyterian Church, 809 S. Fifth St., C

Tickets: Suggested admission is $15