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arts & leisure

Port’s youngest Alumni Hall of Fame honoree shares stage with HS musicians

The Port Jervis High School Choir sings with Evan Mack at Bethel Woods.
Photo by Rob Waligrowski

October 30, 2013

BETHEL, NY — Port Jervis High School graduate, and recent Hall of Fame inductee, Evan Mack performed “My Other Journey Home,” a collection of his musical compositions at Bethel Woods on October 20. The collection, which included parts of his acclaimed compositions, marked Mack’s first local performance in five years.

The World Stage Series concert featured guest artists mezzo-soprano Kara Cornell, violinist Joshua Rodriguez, and the Port Jervis High School Choir under the direction of Port Jervis’ Music Department Co-chair Ruth Ann Gordon. The choir performed Mack’s choral suite Langston Hughes’s Dream of Freedom, a selection of Hughes’ poems set to music.

Mack, who graduated from Port Jervis High School in 1999, holds a Doctorate of Music in Piano Performance from the University of Cincinnati’s Conservatory of Music. The Forestburgh native is an assistant professor of music at Skidmore College. He has received national acclaim for his operas “Angel of the Amazon,” which premiered in May 2011 by Encompass New Opera Theatre at the Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York City and has been released worldwide by Albany Records, and “Beach and Moan,” which is the 2013 winner of Atlanta Opera’s 24-hour Opera Project. His new opera, “The Secret of Luca,” premiered in Cincinnati in 2012 and is being workshopped across the country.

Earlier this month, Port Jervis recognized his accomplishments by selecting him for the Alumni Hall of Fame. At the age of 32, Mack is the youngest graduate to ever be inducted.