Asheville Choral Society presents Carmina Burana

The choral society, joined by guest soloists and a chamber orchestra, performs the famed work this weekend. It will be Musical Director Lenora Thorn’s second-to-last production with the group. Having experienced the choral society perform in the lovely Methodist church space, we highly recommend this event. From ACS:

“On Saturday, March 20 and Sunday, March 21, the Asheville Choral Society and Music Director Lenora Thom will present Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, one of the most well-known and exciting classical works of the 20th century. The ACS will be joined by a chamber orchestra and accomplished guest soloists Anne O’Byrne, soprano, Stephan Bryant, bass-baritone, and Tony A. Burdette, tenor.

Carmina Burana was first performed in 1937 by the Frankfurt Opera, after which Carl Orff stated to his publisher Schott, “Everything I have written to date, and which you have, unfortunately, printed, can be destroyed. With Carmina Burana, my collected works begin.” The 25-movement piece conveys themes of human nature from Medieval poetry that today’s audiences will still find relevant: the intense highs and lows of love and power, vices of lust, gambling, drinking, and the joyous return of Springtime.

Carmina Burana is, quite simply, a blast to sing and conduct,” said Ms. Thom. “It’s extremely dramatic, with huge changes in mood and tone. The music is at times ominous, joyous, raucous or exquisitely beautiful. It is rhythmically fascinating and powerful to experience, especially in such a wonderful acoustic space as Central United Methodist Church. Watching the four percussionists work their magic is worth the price of admission!”

The most famous movement, “O Fortuna,” has infused both humor and dark, mysterious tone to the soundtracks of movies such as Speed and television shows Glee, Dancing with the Stars, The Office, and many more. “O Fortuna” begins and ends Orff’s work with explosive dynamics and short, rhythmic words about the ancient Wheel of Fortune and the fates which dictate our lives: “I reign,” “I have reigned,” “I have no reign,” and “I shall reign again.” 

Carmina Burana will be performed on Saturday, March 20 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 21 at 4 p.m. in Central United Methodist Church, 27 Church St. in downtown Asheville. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for students, with discounts available for groups of 10 or more. Visit or call (828) 232-2060 for tickets or more information.”

Also, learn more about ACS’s fundraiser and raffle event, where you could win tickets to events all around WNC.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.