Mark Elliott Memorial Concert "To love is to live!" planned at Coe

Extra: Rod Pritchard, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
(319) 399-8605 or

2010-09-24 10:19:35 - General

Mark Elliott

"Zu lieben ist zu leben!" ("To love is to live!") is the theme of a memorial concert in honor of Coe College Teaching Artist in Music (voice) Mark Elliott, set for Sunday, Oct. 10, at 4 p.m. in Sinclair Auditorium on the Coe campus. The event is free and open to the public, with a reception following the concert in the Sinclair lobby.

Elliott's life journey ended on Aug. 3 as the result of a stroke brought on by advanced pancreatic cancer. A native of England, Elliott's career as a professional musician began at the age of nine as a child chorister. He was a proud graduate of the Royal College of Music in London, and between 1982 and 1998 he fulfilled a career in the field of operatic performance in theaters throughout Germany. In August 1998, Elliott and his wife, Rosanne Duncombe-Elliott, retired from operatic performance and moved to her hometown of Davenport to begin careers as teachers of singing. Elliott taught voice at Coe for more than a decade, as well as other area schools, notably Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids. He was in high demand as both judge and master class instructor for a multitude of vocal competitions.

Elliott was beloved by his students, and he will be greatly missed by his colleagues in music and across the Coe community. In his memory, the concert will include many of his former students and colleagues, and feature a wide variety of music. The program will include everything from Scottish bagpipes to piano duets to vocal solos and duets, as well as remarks from members of the music community.

"Every musical piece chosen for the concert has a special significance or connection to Mark," commented Coe Music Professor Richard Hoffman. "Compositions significant to Mark's musical life and training, his musical gifts, and embracing the career he had in opera will be performed."

The concert's featured ensembles include the Kennedy High School Chamber Singers, Mu Phi Epsilon Chorus, a Coe men’s chorus, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia – Beta Chapter Chorus, and the Coe Concert Choir. Elliott’s former students will perform, including Daniel and Jonathan Dyrland, Theresa Sparbel Schutzl, Matthew Walker, Luke Viertel, Renee Schwarz, Jesse Upah, and others. Participating members of the Coe music faculty will include Marita and Brett Wolgast, Margie Marrs, William Carson, Richard Hoffman, Marc Falk and Jerry Owen. Remarks will be offered by Coe President James Phifer, Joan and Abbott Lipsky Professor Emerita of Political Science Margaret Haupt, and former students Andrew Guffey and Matthew Burch. Elliott's widow, Rosanne, will sing "Widmung" by Robert Schumann.

The memorial concert will conclude with "Going Home" from "New World Symphony" by Dvorak played on the bagpipes, and a hymn uniting the audience and the performers, the British favorite "O Day of Peace," with a tune by C.H.H. Parry.

For more information, call the Coe Music Department at 399-8521.