Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Canadian Chamber Choir takes on Saskatoon

A choir of soloists seems to be an oxymoron. As choral conductors and singing teachers continue to battle for supreme authority on the voice of each of their students, along comes a choir that celebrates, supports and understands the solo voice. The Canadian Chamber Choir, led by Dr. Julie Davids recently wrapped their Saskatoon residency and looks forward a trip to Nova Scotia in the winter. Their website states that the CCC is
a national choral ensemble that provides a professional choral environment for Canadian singers, conductors and composers. The CCC has a mandate to perform new and existing Canadian choral works, apprentice choral conductors, and facilitate workshops in all sizes of Canadian communities.
How do 17 singers from all over the country come together?
The CCC organizes short 'projects' in different locations around the country. Usually 7-10 days in length, the choir will convene in the province of choice and spend 3-4 days in rehearsal; singers will have received their music in the mail and learned it prior to arrival. During the rehearsal period, a local school, choir, or community group will host the CCC's residency, and in turn the CCC gives workshops to local choirs in the community. The CCC then hits the road on a mini-tour, giving a combination of concerts and workshops throughout the province.
For me, I get excited by a leader that is a singer and understands the voice - when to round the lips to unify the sound, when to allow the full range of vocal colours to show and how to keep singers healthy.

I know these comments can open a whole can of worms....what are your thoughts? What have been your choral experiences? How are all of us supporting our singers as soloists and members of an ensemble?

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