Rensselaer School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Fall Concert to Take Place Oct. 29

October 20, 2022

Rensselaer School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Fall Concert to Take Place Oct. 29

Performance by Orchestra and Concert Choir to create a memory space for the losses of the last two years

The 2022 HASS Fall Concert at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will take place on Saturday, Oct. 29, at 7 p.m. in the Concert Hall of the Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) on campus.

The event is free and open to the public, and seating is first come, first served.

The concert is titled “Far Past War,” after the choral work by Augusta Read Thomas, a major contemporary composer who will be present as it is performed publicly for only the second time. “Far Past War” is, in Thomas’ words, “about bringing peace through nature, both to the self and to the world.”

Throughout the program, the performers will make creative use of the concert hall’s space to create an immersive environment where all gathered can process and memorialize the events of recent years.

"In my first concert together with the Rensselaer Orchestra and Concert Choir, the program articulates the central tenets of an RPI education: intellectual agility, multicultural sophistication, and a global view,” said Robert Whalen, lecturer of music and conducting at Rensselaer. “It is this global view that empowers us to come together and heal as we celebrate our differences. It is through our music united across continents and history that we seek this connection, solace, and community."

In addition to Thomas, the Rensselaer Orchestra and Concert Choir will perform select works of Mxolisi Matyila, Ludwig van Beethoven, Lili Boulanger, Georg Friedrich Handel, Edward Elgar, Olivier Messiaen (Robert Whalen, arranger), and David Nelson (Christopher Fisher-Lochhead, arranger) under the direction of conductor Robert Whalen.

Before the performance, Augusta Read Thomas will give a talk titled “Recombinant Music: A Composer's Inspirations from STEM.” This will be held in the concert hall at 6 p.m.


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About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America’s first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, over 30 research centers, more than 140 academic programs including 25 new programs, and a dynamic community made up of over 6,800 students and 104,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include upwards of 155 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration. To learn more, please visit