OBU’s famed Bison Glee Club will celebrate its 80th anniversary during Homecoming Weekend Nov. 2-3. Their 80th anniversary reunion will begin Friday, Nov. 2, at 4 p.m. and conclude on Saturday with a spectacular concert in Raley Chapel’s Potter Auditorium at 6 p.m. The event is free and the public is invited.
Founded in 1938 by Warren M. Angell, former dean of the College of Fine Arts, the Bison Glee Club is an auditioned group of outstanding male musicians on the campus of OBU. Its annual season features a variety of performances including tour concerts, regular campus concerts, Homecoming Fine Arts Showcase, Hanging of the Green, chapel events and numerous Oklahoma-area appearances. They have been featured as honor choirs for the Oklahoma Music Educators Conference and the Baptist Church Music Conference, and the group has performed all over the United States and around the world.
Weekend festivities will begin at 4 p.m. Friday in the newly renovated Ford Hall. Members past and present will gather for stories and singing. OBU’s annual Harvest Dinner will follow, and attendees are invited to attend the Fine Arts Showcase at 8 p.m. which will feature the current edition of Bison Glee Club.
On Saturday, Club members will rehearse throughout the day ahead of the evening concert. The group will likewise sing the National Anthem before the OBU homecoming football game at 2 p.m.
The reunion concert Saturday evening will feature nine songs sung by Bison Glee Club members from the club’s past 80 years along with current members.
Dr. James Vernon, professor of music and former director of the Club, arranged a version of “O God, Our Help in Ages Past,” specifically for the concert. This song was one of Dean Angell’s favorite pieces and is how each rehearsal begins for the current Glee Club.
Dean Angell will be the guest conductor of “Deep River,” via video recording. An archived video of Angell conducting, viewed from the choir’s perspective, will be used to lead the choir.
The Bison Glee Club is currently under the direction of Dr. Chris Mathews, dean of the Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts. This free reunion concert celebration is open to public and begins at 6 p.m.
Learn more about the Bison Glee Club.