Collegium Musicum offers evening concert
The grandeur of Venetian polychoral music, where choir members sing separate parts from different parts of the hall, will be on display as the UA’s Collegium Musicum takes the stage at the Arizona Senior Academy at 7:30 p.m. Monday.
Directed by Brent Rogers, a doctoral candidate in choral conducting at the University of Arizona, the Collegium Musicum is an ensemble of some 30 singers drawn from university students as well as community members. The group specializes in performing choral music of the Baroque and Renaissance.
For the Arizona Senior Academy performance, the Collegium will be joined by brass and string players as the ensemble splits into divided choirs for selections from the masters of Venetian polychoral style: Andrea Gabrieli, his nephew Giovanni Gabrieli, and Giovanni’s famous pupil Heinrich Schutz.
These composers cultivated antiphonal writing for divided choirs to exploit the acoustical characteristics of the San Marco Basilica in Venice, where multiple choir lofts were separated by considerable distances.
The program will also include a cappella performances of Italian and English madrigals composed by Luca Marenzio, Thomas Morley and Thomas Weelkes, followed by a stylistic jump to Claudio Monteverdi’s Eighth Book of Madrigals.
Professor to analyze
the threat of pandemics
Steven Soderbergh riveted moviegoers with his 2011 film “Contagion,” about a deadly airborne viral disease. Virologists and public health officials praised the film for the accuracy of its depiction of the nature of pandemics, the disruption they cause in the social order and what it takes to produce a vaccine against a new disease agent.
Where do matters stand now? Wayne Magee, a scientist with a distinguished career in applied and basic medical research, will update this subject in a presentation at Academy Village at 3:30 p.m. next Thursday.
By tracing the course of several recent viral outbreaks (including a new threat to humans known as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, or MERS-CoV), Magee will assess the likelihood of a devastating viral pandemic. He will examine how such factors as the density of the human population, the proximity of people to dense herds and flocks of domestic animals and the swiftness of international movement of people and materials come into play.
The virology scene changes rapidly. Knowledge about the physical and chemical nature of viruses, how they are transmitted and how they cause disease has only recently been acquired — the entire science of virology is a product of the 20th century.
Magee has experience as a research scientist in the pharmaceutical industry, as a director of basic science programs at several universities and research centers, and as an innovative teacher. Although now retired, he is still active as an adjunct research professor in the UA’s Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. He and his wife have been residents of Academy Village for more than a decade.