Naples Philharmonic Chorus
Ave Maria University Chamber Choir
Radu Paponiu, conductor
James Cochran, chorus director
Brice Gerlach, chamber choir director
Lindsay Ohse, soprano
Laura Beckel Thoreson, mezzo soprano
Justin Berkowitz, tenor
Junhan Choi, baritone
Handel — Messiah (HWV 56)
The Naples Philharmonic and Chorus are joined by the Ave Maria University Chamber Choir and director Dr. Brice Gerlach to present one of music’s most beloved choral works in this rousing holiday classic. Experience the power of the 100-voice Naples Philharmonic Chorus as they present Handel’s masterful oratorio. A commentary on the life of Jesus Christ, Messiah remains Handel's best-known work, with performances particularly popular during the Advent season.
Sunday's performance will be presented in Hayes Hall.
Friday's performance will be presented at:
First Presbyterian Church
250 6th Street South
Radu Paponiu is the assistant conductor to Andrey Boreyko and the Naples Philharmonic and director of the Naples Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. A native of Romania, Radu recently completed his Master of Music degree in orchestral conducting at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where he studied with Hugh Wolff. While in Boston, Radu was also conductor apprentice with the Handel and Haydn Society, assisting Harry Christophers and Richard Egarr. Radu also served on the conducting faculty for the Juilliard School Pre-College Division in New York.
Radu furthered his studies under the guidance of Robert Spano, Larry Rachleff, Leonard Slatkin, Patrick Summers and Federico Cortese. Additionally, Radu served as assistant conductor for the Aspen Opera Theater Center’s full production of Mozart’s Così fan tutte.
Radu began his musical studies on the violin at age seven, moving on to study privately with Carmen Runceanu and Stefan Gheorghiu. After coming to the US at the invitation of the Perlman Music Program, Radu was accepted to the studio of Robert Lipsett at the Colburn School Conservatory of Music in Los Angeles, California, where he earned both a Bachelor of Music degree and an Artist Diploma degree in violin performance. Radu was appointed assistant conductor of the American Youth Symphony in spring 2011.
James Cochran is the founder and director of the Naples Philharmonic Chorus, director of the Naples Philharmonic Youth Chorus and resident organist of the Naples Philharmonic. As an organ recitalist, Cochran has performed in the United States, Canada, Great Britain and Mexico. As the Naples Philharmonic Chorus director, he has prepared the ensemble for concerts under the batons of such preeminent conductors as Keith Lockhart, Jack Everly and Jorge Mester. Outside of his work with the Naples Philharmonic, Cochran serves as the director of music at the Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church. Cochran holds master and doctorate of music arts degrees from the Eastman School of Music.