THE UST Conservatory of Music mounted “Musikang Tomasino: Tapat sa Diyos at Bayan,” a virtual concert, on April 29 to celebrate the University’s 410th founding anniversary.

“The concert was our simple contribution to UST’s 410th Founding Anniversary celebration,” Music Dean Antonio Africa told the Varsitarian

The concert opened with the UST Wind Orchestra’s performance of the UST March, composed by Capt. Campania and arranged by Assoc. Prof. Herminigildo Ranera, Xavier Celestial and the late Fr. Benildus Maramba, O.S.B. 

It was followed by “Tatlong Awit,” an original composition by Africa, consisting of Psalms 150, 13 and 67 from the Bible. Psalms 150 and 67 express praise and exaltation, while Psalm 13, lamentation.

Africa said that the psalms were arranged in such an order that the 13th psalm was in the middle of the 150th and 67th to give contrast to the piece. 

The audio recording played during the foundation concert was taken from the 2019 concert, “Tribute to the Thomasians: Pasasalamat sa Tomasinong Kompositor.”

For the third piece, award-winning pianist Michael Valenciano performed Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 31 in A Flat Major, Op. 110, his winning piece in the New York Young Performers Prize competition in April.

This was followed by Coro Tomasino’s performances of “Pie Jesu,” composed by one of its members, Francisco de Guzman Jr., and “Nativitas,” arranged by John August Pamintuan.

“Do Not Stand at my Grave and Weep,” music education major Michael Fabian’s composition, inspired by a poem by Mary Elizabeth Fraye written in 1932, was also featured in the concert.

 I have heard many songs dedicated to those who have died because of the pandemic…but I haven’t heard of a song whose focus is to console the ones they’ve left behind,” Fabian told the Varsitarian.

“The song highlights hope amidst the loss of a loved one, an inspiration to all and a reminder to keep holding on no matter how hard life’s challenges may be,” Fabian added. 

The renowned UST Singers were also featured in the concert through video recordings of their performances of conductor Fidel Gener Calalang’s “Ama Namin” from Italy in 1998 and “Psalm 100” from Germany in 2018.

The concert ended with the UST Hymn, which was composed by the first director of the Conservatory of Music, Julio Esteban Anguita, written by José Maria Hernandez and later orchestrated by the late Fr. Maramba. 

It was chosen as the official hymn when it won a national contest in 1961 during the 350th anniversary of the University. 

The concert was originally scheduled to premiere on the 28th of April but was delayed for a day due to technical difficulties.

The concert is still available for viewing on the Conservatory’s YouTube page. It can be streamed here. Larissa Mae C. Tan


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