CWU News

Composer Ola Gjeilo Creates a Luminous Night with the CWU Chamber Choir and Friends

World-renowned composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo [pronounced Yay-lo] will present an enchanting concert of his ethereal compositions at Central Washington University on Friday, April 7. He will perform with the CWU Chamber Choir and a special 50-voice choir of singers from the six of the top high school choral programs in Washington and Oregon.

Gjeilo was born in Norway and later moved to the United States to study at the Juilliard School in New York City, where he currently resides and works as a full-time composer. He has visited the CWU campus three times to create YouTube videos with the Chamber Choir.

This concert marks the first time Gjeilo and the CWU Chamber Choir will take the stage together in a live performance. The choir will present his well-known "Unicornis Captivatur" and "Luminous Night of the Soul," as well as his newer compositions, "Wintertide" and "Prologue."

The concert will begin at 7:00 p.m. on April 7 in the McIntyre Music Building Concert Hall. Tickets are $12 for general admission, and $7 for students and seniors. Tickets may be purchased online at or by calling 509-963-1429. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the Wildcat Shop Customer Service at the Student Union and Recreation Building. Parking is free in all university lots after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends, except in residential housing lots and in specially designated spaces.

The concert will open with the 50-voice student choir singing the challenging "Prelude" and a poignant "Ubi Caritas."

CWU Director of Choral Studies, Dr. Gary Weidenaar will conduct the choirs, accompanied by a string quartet. A gifted pianist, Gjeilo will also accompany and/or improvise with the choirs. CWU professor and cellist John Michel will join the CWU Chamber Choir on “Serenity.”

“It is always a pleasure to work with Ola Gjeilo," Weidenaar enthused. "From our first collaboration in 2011 till now, I’ve watched his music become more and more known worldwide. I’m very excited to be able to perform with him live!”

The choral students are from Bonney Lake High School, Amy Fuller, director; Meadowdale High School, Jeff Horenstein; Moses Lake High School, David Holloway; Newberg High School, Matthew Fletcher; Spanaway Lake High School, Sara Forte; and West Valley High School, Joshua Setten.

Media Contact: Valerie Chapman-Stockwell, Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,
April 4, 2017