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Author: Kelly Dean Hansen, Camera Classical Music Write

DAILY CAMERA: Star conducting student closes CU career with ‘Tender Land’

Joshua Horsch leaves university with ‘a bright future’

When the University of Colorado’s Eklund Opera Program ends its season this weekend with Aaron Copland’s “The Tender Land,”audiences will also witness the close of a notable and distinguished graduate student career.

Conducting student Joshua Horsch, who is completing his doctorate, has been a prominent presence during his studies with CU orchestra director Gary Lewis and Eklund music director Nicholas Carthy. The Ithaca College and Penn State alum directed matinee performances of “The Pirates of Penzance” and “La Cenerentola” and has been assistant conductor and chorus master for the program since 2013. He was pianist and music director for the 2014 Stephen Sondheim revue, conducted two workshops at the CU NOW new opera program in the summer, and served as co-director of the Campus Orchestra.

He also led Alban Berg’s notoriously challenging “Kammerkonzert” (“Chamber Concerto”). His recognition beyond CU, including positions of prominence with Fort Worth Opera and Opera Saratoga, is considerable.

After his heavy involvement with last April’s “Coronation of Poppea,” Carthy hands the reins of “The Tender Land,” to Horsch as a sort of final exam.

The opera itself is a deceptively simple tale of Midwestern American farm life in the 1930s. A coming-of-age story revolving around Laurie Moss, who is graduating from high school, it makes subtle yet profound statements about rumor, love, loss and choices. According to Eklund program stage director Leigh Holman, it is a surprisingly…

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