American Festival Chorus to present African Sanctus

The American Heritage Chorus will present the “African Sanctus,” A Mass for Love and Peace under the direction of Dr. Cory Evans this Saturday Feb. 8.

LOGAN – The American Festival Chorus will present the “African Sanctus,” A Mass for Love and Peace, under the direction of Dr. Cory Evans in the Newel and Jean Daines Concert Hall Fine Arts Center at Utah State University on Saturday Feb. 8, at 7:30 p.m. Tickers are $15 to $30.

Professor Cory Evans, associate director of American Festival Chorus, will direct the choir this weekend as the preform “African Sanctus,” A Mass for Love and Peace.

“It is going to be incredible. The chorus has been working on it since September,” said Claire Cardon, spokesperson for the American Festival Chorus and Orchestra. “It is a huge project and it is significantly different than anything they have done.”

The music is an utterly unique composition in choral repertoire. It was written by British composer David Fanshawe. The legendary choral masterpiece juxtaposes the Latin Mass with live recordings of traditional African music.

“Professor Cory Evans, associate director of AHC, approached (Dr. Craig) Jessop about performing the music,” Cardon said. “Craig said it would be wonderful to introduce something new because the mission of the American Festival Chorus is to educate people about different kinds of music.”

Evans is also Director of Choral Activities at Utah State University. He holds degrees from Utah State University, the University of Florida, and Arizona State University.

“Craig was familiar with the piece and had seen it performed before,” she said. “Evans had worked on it once with the original composer, Fanshawe, before he died in 2010.”

Fanshawe journeyed for four years along the Nile River, from the Mediterranean Sea to Lake Victoria, on a four-year odyssey beginning in 1969. He took a tape recorder and recorded music form Egypt, Kenya, the Sudan, and Uganda.

He came home and wrote the work with 13 movements that follows his expedition through Egypt, Kenya, the Sudan, and Uganda.

The music of “African Sanctus” informs both listener and performer about African music and its relationship to Western polyphony and captures the eternal and spiritual soul of music. It is an event, a celebration of power and energy, both visual, aural and multi-cultural, now performed live all over the world.

David Fanshawe’s wife, Jane, will travel from England to Logan and will speak at the concert. She said she was excited to perform the African Sanctus with the chorus.

“Fanshawe’s music is exciting, robust, powerful, unapologetic, moving and representative of his intense devotion to combining music of the world into one singular purpose of peace, goodwill and understanding between nations and people,” said Evans.

Tickets are $15 – $30, with a special student rate of $10 (bronze section only). Children aged 8 and older are welcome. For more information visit


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