Newtown Orchestra to fulfill a legacy of love with ‘Requiem’ performance N
EWTOWN – A composer’s dream will be realized and a legacy of love IuOfiOOHG wKHn WKH 1Hwtown Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Russell Hoffman, performs the “Missa De Profuctis Requiem” on Saturday, June 1 at Pennsbury High School West’s Keller Hall in Fairless Hills.
The requiem, composed by Dr. Samuel Bellardo, honors the memory of Joseph L. Bellardo III, who died tragically in an automobile accident in Trenton on May 17, 2003.
Following Joseph’s death, Dr. Bellardo, a Julliard graduate and professor of music for more than 3R years at Kutztown rniversity and later at Bucks County Community College, approached Joseph’s parents, Joseph Jr. and Agnes with his vision to compose the requiem.
Dr. Bellardo’s commitment was driven by his love of the arts and love for his family. As the music emerged, he worked continuously for the next four years, completing the composition in January 2007.
On Feb. 6, 2007, Dr. Bellardo was set to meet with friend and colleague, Rick Tocce, to discuss converting the composition into a software program so he could more easily orchestrate the work. That meeting never took place. On the drive to Washington Crossing, Dr. Bellardo sWRSSHG DW WKH SRsW RIfiFH WR PDLO D OHWWHU RI UHFRPPHnGDtion for one of his former students. Tragically, Dr. Bellardo died that evening from injuries sustained in an automobile accident. The requiem was found on the front seat of his car the next morning.
Since Dr. Bellardo’s death, his family and former colleagues have been commitWHG WR IuOfiOOLnJ KLs GUHDP RI bringing the Requiem to performance.
7RFFH sHOflHssOy WRRN Rn the exacting task of entering the Requiem score into the computer program so that it could be orchestrated. Then, Maestro Fernando Raucci, another former colleague of Dr. Bellardo’s, connected the family with Maestro Piero Niro of the rniversity of Campobasso, Italy who orchestrated the work according to the instructions left by Dr. Bellardo.
The family, along with friends and colleagues of Dr. BHOODUGR KDYH FRPPLWWHG finDnFLDOOy WKURuJK DOO WKH stages leading up to the performance and have raised more than 90 percent of the necessary funds. However, with additional costs remaining, donations and sponsors wRuOG EH JUHDWOy DSSUHFLDWHG WR PHHW WKH UHPDLnLnJ financial needs and commitment to complete this labor of love.
To become a sponsor or to make a donation and be recognized in the performance keepsake program, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
All net proceeds from the June 1 performance will be divided between the Newtown Chamber Orchestra and the Lewis and Elizabeth Bellardo Scholarship Fund at the Julliard School of Music in New York City in memory of Dr. Samuel Bellardo and Joseph L. Bellardo, III.
Tickets for the performance can be purchased online at www.newtownchamberorchestra.orgL or will be available at the door on the night of the performance.
Dr. Samuel Bellardo, left, and Joseph L. Bellardo III.