Renowned a cappella group Anonymous 4 will perform its “Anthology 25” show at 7:30 tonight in the Pasquerilla Spiritual Center in celebration of 25 years together.
The female quartet boasts a unique repertoire covering various styles and time periods, including medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and contemporary pieces, John Mark Rafacz , editorial director at the Center for the Performing Arts , said.
“Anonymous 4 is by far the most famous a cappella group of their type,” Rafacz said. “They are sort of the superstars of medieval and ancient music.”
The show features at least one piece from each of the group’s 23 CDs as a celebration of its illustrious 25-year history, as well as some new material, Rafacz said.
“It’s a microcosm of what they are about,” he said.
The performance is a part of the Classical Music Project , Marica Tacconi , musicology professor and faculty leader for the curriculum and academic components of the project, said.
The Classical Music Project was made possible by a $470,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and aims to engage students, faculty and the community more directly with classical music to which they would not otherwise be exposed, Tacconi said.
“The music that Anonymous 4 sings is not something you hear on the radio or in concerts very often,” she said.
Pasquerilla Spiritual Center will be a unique space for guests to experience this act, Tacconi added.
“The group was looking for a space that was resonant, as opposed to dry,” Tacconi said. “A space with that type of reverb makes it possible for voices to blend even more.”
Amy Dupain Vashaw , audience and program development director at the Center for the Performing Arts, said that the music of Anonymous 4 is meant for churches and cathedrals.
“We knew that the Pasquerilla Spiritual Center was the right place to maximize the audience enjoyment and to optimize the acoustics,” she said.
Most of the songs will be in languages other than English, Rafacz said. A program with translations will be provided, but it is for each guest to decide whether or not to use it.
“Some people wouldn’t want to be there if they didn’t know the specifics,” Rafacz said. “Other people just sit back and enjoy the beauty of the sound, and it’s not as important to them specifically what the words are about.”
The fact that the group has been together for such a long time is what really sets them apart from other a cappella groups, Tacconi said.
“They have been together for 25 years, which is special,” she said. “Their sound is very well balanced, and each voice blends perfectly with the other voices.”
The show is a great introduction to the music of Anonymous 4 and classical a cappella in general, Vashaw said.
“It shows the full scope and range of what four female voices can do,” Vashaw said.
Tickets are $15 for students, $32 for guests 18 and under and $42 for adults. All tickets are general admission and guests are encouraged to arrive early for the best seats.
Tickets can be purchased at the door with cash or check, online at cpa.psu.edu, in person at Eisenhower Auditorium , Downtown Theatre Center , HUB-Robeson Center and Bryce Jordan Center or by calling 814-863-0255 .