Faculty team up for classical Latin music

J. Arden Hopkin (left) and Lawrence Green enjoying a rehearsal at Hopkin’s house.

Baritone J. Arden Hopkin and classical guitarist Lawrence Green from the music department will bring classical music from Latin America to BYU when they perform together in two February recitals.

Hopkin has led the school’s vocal division since 1998 and has a strong interest in vocal music from Latin America. He will be hosting the first recital in this collaboration on Feb. 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Madsen Recital Hall.

Many students know Green as the entry-level guitar teacher who performs great rock covers. But as a faculty member, he only performs classical guitar and said that he has “just as much fun doing that.”

Green will accompany Hopkin at his recital “Friends of Arden” for pieces like “Besame Mucho” by Consuelo Velázquez, “Soloamente Una Vez” by Augustin Lara, and a number of songs by Tulio Peramo, a contemporary Cuban composer.

Peramo’s songs are about love, death, parties, and of course, his homeland. Hopkin said that Peramo’s music “captures a whole bunch of different moods of that time in Cuba.”

The two BYU faculty members will give another performance of the pieces at Green’s recital on Feb. 9 at 2 p.m. in the Museum of Art Auditorium.They will also be performing together at the Assembly Hall on Temple Square at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 22. Admission to each event is free.

Hopkin will also perform some non-Latin music at his recital, such as Howard Hanson’s “Four Psalms, but all of Green’s solo pieces will be Latin. Green described classical Latin music as very catchy and likable music.

“There’s a lot of variety in the sounds and rhythms,” he said.

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