Concert for Planet Earth
Saturday, May 17, 2014
From the Times Beacon Record:
LISCA's Concert Pays Homage to Walt Whitman
A continuing tradition of great music ...
Suffolk County's Long Island Symphonic Choral Association (LISCA) was founded by Gregg Smith in 1968, when he was at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Despite having moved to New York City, Mr. Smith maintained devotion to LISCA for over 40 years, traveling to Suffolk County every Tuesday night to rehearse the group. Under his guidance, LISCA has developed into a seasoned chorus noted for its fine intonation and blend and for the imaginative programming that is Mr. Smith's hallmark. Under out current director, Thomas Schmidt, LISCA's reputation for excellence has flourished. The group repertory ranges from the Renaissance masters to the avant-garde, an includes premiers of many works of contemporary composers. The chorus has toured in France and England (in 1997), Iceland (2000), Ireland (2003), Argentina (2010), and Italy (2013).
Our Director, Thomas Schmidt, is Director of Music at Saint Peter's Lutheran Church in Manhattan, and organizes the weekly concert series there on Tuesdays. Eleven years ago he founded the annual Basically Bach Festival at Saint Peter's, now an anticipated part of New York's yearly musical scene. He is been pianist with the Arden Trio since it was founded in 1979. They won the Concert Artist's Guild award in 1981, and have toured throughout the country and recorded on several labels.
LISCA's Founder and Conductor Emeritus, Gregg Smith, led LISCA for over 40 years. He is world-famous as a choral conductor and as a composer. His professional chorus, the Gregg Smith Singers, is internationally known and widely recorded. In 2008 the NEA awarded Gregg and the GSS a grant which supported a major choral festival celebrating American Masterpieces.