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Encore Chorale celebrated a grand Singing at Sea Journey on board the elegant Queen Mary 2© ocean liner, sailing out of the Manhattan harbor on July 6. There was much celebrating going on as the ship passed by the dramatic skyline of the city, sailing past the Statue of Liberty and finally squeaking under the Verrazano Bridge. There were 2,500 passengers on board with a crew of 1,500. Needless to say, the passengers were well cared for by the huge and excellent crew. Thirty very lucky singers from Encore were on board and because their rehearsals were in the open area of the Winter Garden, they attracted ten more singers from England and the US. Days began with a 10:00 am rehearsal and by noon the singers were ready to embark on a day of many activities offered on board. Activities included the planetarium, movies, lectures, classes with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA), chamber music concerts, relaxing on the signature green QM2 deck chairs, and high tea. Evenings were spent dining in the elegant Britannia Restaurant, followed by excellent entertainment with the Cunard Singers and Dancers and guest artists, including actors from RADA. There were also formal balls, including the famous Black and White Ball and the Royal Ascot Ball. Encore was well represented with some of our singers wearing festive and creative hats.
Read more: A Fabulous Voyage Aboard the Queen Mary 2!
The Fourth Annual Encore Chorale Institute at St. Mary’s College, June 21 – June 25, was a huge success. Fifty seven eager and excellent singers travelled to St. Mary’s College of Maryland to rehearse choral music, learn vocal technique and have a great time. And a great time was had by all.
The days started with an excellent movement class taught by Shaye Moore. She utilized Yoga, and stretching and relaxation exercises. That got the singers ready for their first rehearsal of the day. The voices were excellent and the blend was excellent. Then off to lunch, followed by a vocal technique class or a sectional rehearsal. The singers happily rehearsed another two hours, followed by dinner. The evenings offered excellent professional concerts presented by Saint Maries Musica, a madrigal choral ensemble performing in costume, conducted by Krystal Rickard. They were delightful. Brooke Evers, soprano, wowed the audience with a wonderful recital including opera, lieder and American song. Singers also enjoyed a scenic boat cruise on the St. Mary’s River and also a tour of Historic St. Mary’s. Friday evening the singers enjoyed the Chesapeake Orchestra concert on the college green, conducted by Jeffrey Silberschlag, in an all Baroque concert.
The final day the Encore Choral Institute singers performed a grand finale concert, conducted by Jeanne Kelly, to a very appreciative audience. They opened with a delightful Madrigal by Arthur Sullivan. The diction was perfect, energy was high and the blend was excellent. They followed with a lovely performance of Vicki Tucker Courtney’s This Morning’s Paradise. Their musicality came across with beautifully sculpted lines. Singing in the Rain was a uplifting performance and the singers truly enjoyed themselves. A very nice touch was opening umbrellas on the final cadence. Then on to The American Songbook with a beautiful reading of Someone to Watch Over Me by Gershwin. The sound was passionate and the text was delivered with real sincerity. Another Gershwin, Embraceable You, was performed with great nuance and warmth. If I Loved You from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel showed beautiful and rich singing from both the women and men…..a real crowd pleaser. Then on to a very entertaining and energetic performance of Make ‘Em Laugh: A Medley of Comic Songs arranged by Greg Gilpin. It had lots of bounce and the singers had a ball performing it. The concert closed with The Beatles When I’m Sixty Four and the audience rose to a standing ovation. It was a fabulous and joyful climax to an exceptional five days of Encore Choral Institute at St. Mary’s College of Maryland.
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WASHINGTON, DC, May 7, 2011: The Smithsonian Encore Chorale and singers from Washington Conservatory of Music Encore Chorale at Glen Echo performed a stunning concert at the beautiful National Presbyterian Church on Saturday, May 7 at 11am. The bright sun lit up the stained glass windows and the church acoustics really showed the singers off. The repertoire, listed above, delighted the large and appreciative audience. The singers sang with beautiful tone, exceptional diction, and the entire concert was full of energy. All the singers looked like they were thoroughly enjoying themselves and the applause was proof that they had truly performed an excellent concert. <CLICK HERE FOR PHOTO GALLERY>>
GLEN ECHO, MD, MAY 7, 2011: Some of the same singers at National Presbyterian Church drove up to Glen Echo Park in Bethesda to join the Washington Conservatory of Music Encore Chorale for a Saturday afternoon outdoor concert at the “Cuddle Up” pavilion. It was a gorgeous sunny day and the singers had a blast performing for their audience. Their smiles, enthusiasm and great sound said it all. The park is a truly wonderful treasure. The park hosts an arts education program and is known for its antique carousel, Spanish Ballroom and Historic electric streetcar. Encore’s concert in the park was a great way to end a fabulous day of singing. <<CLICK HERE FOR PHOTO GALLERY>>
FAIRFAX, VA, MAY 10, 2011: On Tuesday, May 10, the Potomac Academy of GMU Encore Chorale gave a rousing performance at the Woodlands Retirement Community in Fairfax, VA. They sang with such vibrancy and infectious spirit. The audience loved them. After the concert, Woodlands gave a lovely reception for the audience and singers. It was a great way to end the season for the singers of Potomac Academy of GMU Encore Chorale. They couldn’t have done a better job.
ALEXANDRIA, VA, MAY 10, 2011: The Encore Chorales of Goodwin House Alexandria, Goodwin House Baileys Crossroads, and Langston Brown were to perform a concert at Goodwin House Alexandria Tuesday evening, May 10. But the singers arrived to find no electricity in the building. So no concert. What a huge disappointment for all the singers and audience!
BALTIMORE, MD, MAY 11, 2011: Myerberg Encore Chorale and members of the AACC Encore Chorale gave a splendid concert at North Oaks Retirement Community on Wednesday, May 11. The audience loved the energized Irving Berlin melodies. The singers gave it their all and their efforts were very much appreciated. The singers broke out the straw hats for Doin’ What Comes Naturally and some of the male singers wore black Army baseball hats to sing This is the Army. A great evening was enjoyed by both singers and audience.
ARNOLD, MD, MAY 12, 2011: 130 singers from the Encore Chorales of AACC, Myerberg Senior Center, Scheinhaut Senior Center, Maryland residents of the Smithsonian Encore Chorale and Washington Conservatory of Music at Glen Echo came together to perform a fabulous concert at Pascal Center for Performing Arts on the campus of Anne Arundel Community College. Their large audience loved the high energy, wonderful full sound and pure delight from the singers. Guest artists were the Heart of Maryland Encore Chorale conducted by Glenn Phillips. The men sang delightful barbershop tunes and the audience particularly enjoyed the patriotic medley. Another truly great evening for Encore!
BALTIMORE, MD, MAY 15, 2011: The beautiful St. Vincent’s de Paul Roman Catholic Church of downtown Baltimore hosted the Myerberg and AACC Encore Chorales for an Encore concert on Sunday afternoon, May 15. The acoustics showed off the singers beautifully. The sound was rich, full and the articulation was excellent. It was a grand setting for Encore and the audience showed their appreciation with broad smiles and thunderous applause. Another great concert!
AKRON, OH, MAY 23, 2011: Encore’s affiliate chorale of Laurel Lake Retirement Community in Hudson, Ohio, gave a wonderful and inspiring concert on Monday, May 23, 2011. The 45 singers performed to a standing room only audience and performed beautifully under the direction of Donna Anderson. The evening opened with the singers performing Rodgers & Hammerstein on Broadway. The energy level was high, the sound full, the diction clear and everyone was glued to their conductor. Ryan Michaels, a young tenor from The University of Akron , performed a lovely rendition of You Raise Me Up. His clear, beautiful voice rang out. LAUREL LAKE CONTINUES HERE
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ARLINGTON, VA, MAY 6, 2011: The Virginia Encore Chorales presented a spectacular “From Berlin to Beatles” concert on Friday, May 6 at 7:30pm in the Washington-Lee High School Auditorium. The singers wowed their audience of 350 concert goers. They began with an energetic and spirited spiritual Great Getting’Up Mornin’ arranged by Donald Moore and the singers were off to a fabulous start. The audience was indeed in for a “great getting up concert”. They followed with two settings of Allelujia, sung beautifully with a focused tone and excellent phrasing. Festival Alleluia by Roger Emerson showed excellent diction and phrasing and Alleluia 2004 by Tom Benjamin displayed musical phrasing, exciting fortes and shimmering soft tones. Closing the first part of the concert featured another spiritual , Great Day!
Read more: Spring Concert Blog