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News Release

Moravian College Professor Larry Lipkis to Receive Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission Award

Bethlehem, Pa., March 27, 2009— Moravian College Professor Larry Lipkis will receive the Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission’s Individual Award at its Annual Tribute to the Arts Luncheon on Friday, May 8, at the historic Hotel Bethlehem. The Individual Award is given to one who supports and promotes a branch of the arts beyond the requirements of his/her profession in a way that benefits the Bethlehem community. The category is designed to reward individual vision and service.

“We honor Larry Lipkis for his considerable contributions to the musical life of our community,” said Barbara Diamond, board member of the Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission.  “As an internationally known composer, founding member of the Baltimore Consort, leadership and service with the Bach Choir and the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, as well as his benefit performances at the Ice House and Trinity Soup Kitchen, Dr. Lipkis has immeasurably enriched the arts in Bethlehem and the Lehigh Valley.”

Dr. Lipkis, the Bertha Mae Starner ’27 and Jay F. Starner professor of music and composer-in-residence at Moravian College, directs the composition and early music programs at the College.  He is on the Board of Directors of the Bach Choir of Bethlehem, and serves as a music director for the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival.

Lipkis has written over eighty works for chamber ensembles, choir, and orchestra.  His bassoon concerto Pierrot, which was premiered by the Houston Symphony in 2002, marked the completion of a trilogy of concerti based on characters from the Commedia dell’Arte. Scaramouche (1989) for cello and orchestra was recorded by Carter Brey and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Orchestra on the Koch International label.  Harlequin (1997) for bass trombone and orchestra was premiered by Jeffrey Reynolds and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.  In 2007, his Flute Concerto was premiered by Robin Kani, principal flautist of the Bach Festival and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Orchestra.  Most recently, Lipkis composed two orchestral dances—Pas de Deux and Rondo Caprice—that were premiered in November 2008 by the Moravian College Community Orchestra.

Lipkis performs and records with the Baltimore Consort, a world-renowned early music ensemble specializing in popular music from the time of Shakespeare.  The group has made 14 recordings on the Dorian label and tours extensively nationally and internationally.  In April of 2009, the group will release their newest CD, Adio España, a collection of songs and dances from Renaissance Spain.  The Consort does numerous outreach programs in schools and hospitals, and performs annually (or nearly so) in Bethlehem at little or no cost. Larry frequently does benefit performances locally with his family members at the Ice House and Trinity Soup Kitchen.

The Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission was founded in 1963 through an ordinance established by City Council during Mayor Gordon Payrow's term. Ever since, the Commission has worked to bring quality art events to the Lehigh Valley.  From its annual Tribute to the Arts Luncheon and the Downtown Fine Arts Show in May, to the summer concert series in the Sculpture Garden, to our year-round juried art shows in the Rotunda, the goal is to bring the arts to the community.

Commission Members are appointed by the current Mayor, usually on the recommendation of the Commission, and approved by City Council. Commissioners serve a three year term of volunteer service with possible reappointment. For more information visit: http://www.bfac-lv.org/tributetothearts.htm or call Barbara Diamond at 610-691-8269.
Moravian College is a private, coeducational, selective liberal arts college located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Tracing its founding to 1742, it is recognized as America’s sixth-oldest college. Visit the Web site at http://www.moravian.edu/.