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Orphenians Celebrates 50 Years

The Orphenians,  a select vocal ensemble at Staples High School, will celebrate their 50th Anniversary with an alumni reception and concert. On Sunday, June 6,  the group will host a free concert that will include a varied repertoire of sacred and secular a cappella music ranging from Renaissance madrigals to contemporary choral works, spirituals, jazz and popular music.  Several seniors will perform solo pieces — Grace Lewis, Dan Shure, Ilana Elias, Jake Yarmoff and Rosie Lesser, Alan Southworth accompanied by his father, Jeff Southworth and Breezi Toole accompanied by her brother and former Orphenian, Robby Toole.  In addition, former Orphenians Emily Hall, Douglas McCormick and Caitlin Collins will perform.  A special performance will be given by an entire family of Orphenians—the Petersons—Brad, Abby, Katie, Sarah, and Scott.  All of the solo performers will be accompanied by Nava Zeevi.
The Orphenians was founded in 1960 by George Weigle, the Choral Director at the high school at that time.  In 1988, Alice Lipson succeeded Dr. Weigle as Staples Choral Director and continued the traditions and performance standards expected of this high quality performing group.  Over the past fifty years the group has toured in many European Countries as well as the Virgin Islands.  They have been heard year after year for five decades caroling in downtown Westport during the holiday season and have performed for countless community organizations.
The returning alumni will be invited to join the current Orphenians in singing two of their traditional pieces — Ride the Chariot, which will be conducted by Alice Lipson and “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” which will be conducted by Dr. Weigle.  The reception is at 6 p.m. and the concert begins promptly at 7:30 p.m.

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