April 20, 2004
The Bison Glee Club will presents its annual Spring Concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 29, in the historic sanctuary of First Baptist Church of Shawnee (the corner of 10th and Union).
Founded in 1938, the Bison Glee Club is one of the premier choirs in the Southwestern United States. The 36-member menís choir performs throughout Oklahoma, sings for many OBU events, and conducts both national and international tours. Built on the motto "Tradition-Excellence-Brotherhood," the BGC concerts are energetic, meaningful, and musical. With a wide variety of music in many different styles, the BGC Spring Concert will be enjoyed by all people.
The BGC Spring Concert will feature a tribute to an American Spiritual writer, a world premier, music of the church, and traditional BGC songs.
In the concert, we pay tribute to Moses Hogan," said Dr. John Simons, director of the Bison Glee Club. "He was a gifted composer, who helped bring the African-American Spiritual back into the repertoire of many choirs and died at a young age. He composed with rhythmic vitality, and brought an unprecedented complexity to the Battle of Jericho and Elijah Rock."
In addition, the concert features the world premier of Jamie Killionís Te Deum.
"Killion is an Oklahoma composer from Chickasha, and his powerful work is for menís choir and brass," Simons said. "Although the title is Latin, the piece is in English, and is built on a powerful theme of praise."
Also, Wondrous Cross, Hymn to God the Father, Pablo Casalsí O vos omnes, and Jacob Handlís Haek est Dies will be performed. As always, the BGC includes a section of folk songs, and will end the concert with BGC tradtional favorites: Hawaiian War Chant, Dry Bones, and Heís the One. The BGC invites the entire Shawnee community to our concert.
A member of the OBU faculty since 2000, Simons leads the church music department, teaches several music classes, and conducts the Bison Glee Club. In addition to his collegiate responsibilities, Dr. Simons sings with the Singing Churchmen and serves as Minister of Music (part-time) at University Baptist Church in Shawnee. Dr. Simons and his wife, Ellen, have three children.