The Grove Park Inn Resort has commissioned the North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem to create an original piece of music which will be heard for the first time in the last few minutes of the millennium. The Grove Park Inn Grand Millennium Suite will provide a unique, musical finale to the Inn's Grand Millennium Celebration, a three-day, nonstop, all-inclusive special event that begins on December 29, 1999.
"Our Grand Millennium Celebration will be an event that occurs not once in a lifetime, but once in many lifetimes. And what better way to end it - and to say farewell to the millennium - than with an original symphony," said Jim France, Grove Park Inn Vice President and General Manager.
"It's exciting for the School and our students to be partners with the Grove Park Inn in the creation and performance of The Grove Park Inn Grand Millennium Suite," said School of the Arts Chancellor Alex Ewing. "Incorporating the performing arts into such an extraordinary occasion ensures its lasting importance and reflects the aesthetic vision of the Grove Park Inn Grand Millennium Celebration."
The suite will be written by School of the Arts faculty member David McHugh, and performed by the School's student orchestra and chorus. McHugh, who teaches in both the School's Film and Music departments, has scored several Hollywood movies, including Mystic Pizza, Moscow on the Hudson and The Dream Team. The School of the Arts orchestra and chorus have performed internationally.
"It's an honor to be asked to compose what will certainly be one of the last serious pieces of music heard this century," said McHugh. Thematic material in the suite will trace the past 1000 years of Western music, starting with 11th Century chants, and incorporating elements of music indigenous to the Southern Appalachians, according to McHugh. The recorded, approximately 15-minute suite will be accompanied by a synchronized, continuous fireworks display.
Diana Mollaioli, 19, a School of the Arts freshman violin major from Assisi, Italy via Tryon, N.C., will be a junior when The Grove Park Inn Grand Millennium Suite is recorded. "It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I'm really looking forward to it," Mollaioli said.
The Grove Park Inn Resort will fund the creation, performance, recording and reproduction of the suite with a $25,000 grant to the School of the Arts. Grant money will be used to defray expenses associated with the project and fund additional School programs, according to Ewing.
For reservations or more information on the Grove Park Inn Grand Millennium Celebration, call (800) 438-5800.