The Queens College Choral Society celebrates 75 years
Posted 4/30/2016

Queens College Choral SocietyA 16-year old high school singer stands next to an octogenarian, open-mouthed and inspired while rehearsing Verdi’s Requiem. A college music major performs between an avocational pianist and a lawyer. A Queens College math professor sings in the same choir with some of his students and three generations of a family sing in different sections of the ensemble. These are just a few snapshots of the membership of the Queens College Choral Society. As we approach our May 21 performance of Verdi’s Requiem to conclude our 75th anniversary season, we celebrate choral excellence, the diversity of our singers, the longevity of the group and the joy of choral music.

The Queens College Choral Society was founded in 1941 and the first concert, featuring Handel’s Messiah in a high school auditorium, was just days after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Over the past 75 years the group has been dedicated to performing the most significant works in the choral-orchestral repertoire, including recent performances of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, Bach’s Mass in B Minor and Britten’s War Requiem. More...

St. George's Choral Society announces 2016 Summer Choral Festival
Posted 4/22/2016

Matthew LewisBeginning Tuesday, June 7, St. George's Choral Society will host a two-week choral intensive, with two rehearsals a week, culminating in a free public performance on June 18 at 7 PM of Brahms's Ein deutsches Requiem. This performance will feature Brahms's arrangement of the work for chorus and piano, four hands. Both the choral intensive and public performance will take place at The Church of the Incarnation on Madison Avenue and 35th Street, New York City.

I spoke with Dr. Matthew Lewis, Artistic Director of the group, about his founding of the Summer Choral Festival when “summer sings” abound.

Laura Daly: What did you think was lacking in the usual summer sings that prompted you to start St. George’s Choral Society Summer Festival?

Michael Lewis: My goal is to allow the singers more time to become more comfortable and confident with the music. Summer sings are great fun, but it always seemed to me that singers would enjoy themselves more if we had more time to rehearse. So, the Summer Festival really allows for that. At the same time, there is a fun aspect to it. It’s summer time; we are all here to enjoy ourselves through music, and camaraderie. So, there is a certain comfortable aspect to it. More...

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  • New York City conductor Harold Rosenbaum is working on a number of ambitious new projects, including an upcoming concert celebrating the music of acclaimed Puerto Rican-born composer Roberto Sierra. On May 15, Rosenbaum will conduct the premiere of a new arrangement of Sierra's celebrated work, Missa Latina, a boisterous Mass setting infused with Latin rhythms, newly scored by the composer for two pianos and 24 percussion instruments. The premiere will take place at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College under the auspices of El Centro, the College's institute for Puerto Rican studies. On Saturday, June 4, Rosenbaum will lead several choirs at Choral Fest USA at Symphony Space, a free marathon event he established to showcase diverse American choirs. He has been actively recording with his professional choir, The New York Virtuoso Singers, and recently started his own recording company, Virtuoso Choral Recordings (virtuosochoralrecordings.com). Its first CD, Choral Music in the 21st Century – Volume 1: Katherine Hoover, David Lipten and Paul Davies, will be released in early summer by 4Tay Records. (2016-4-30)
  • Make Music New York Winter takes place on December 21. For details, visit makemusicny.org/winter-2015/. And this year, there are three opportunities that require singers. For details, visit the Info Exchange. (2015-12-2)
  • The Washington Heights Choir School (WHCS), an outreach ministry of Holyrood Episcopal Church in the upper Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights, has announced the hiring of its new music director, Ellen Wright. Currently the Dean of the Brooklyn Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, Ms. Wright has served as organist and director of music in several churches in the greater New York area as well as creator/teacher of music programs for elementary and secondary school students in New York and Long Island. The Washington Heights Choir School trains children from Kindergarten to 5th grade to achieve early excellence and growth through music and arts education. For more information, visit holyroodchurch.com/ministries/choir-school/. (2015-9-12)
  • John Scott. Organist and Director of Music at Saint Thomas Church, died suddenly on August 12. Read a tribute at www.saintthomaschurch.org/about/news/342/john-scott-1956-2015. See also the obituary in The New York Times. (2015-8-14)
  • Read a review of June's ChoralFest USA 2015 event by Jean Ballard Terepka on TheaterScene.net. (2015-8-12)

Archive of old "News" items

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The latest additions to the site's content and features.
  • April 30, 2016: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for the New Jersey State Children's Chorus, an initiative of the Ars Musica Chorale. New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Mezzo, a contemporary women's a cappella ensemble based in Midtown Manhattan.
  • April 28, 2016: New link for Composers Work, a site for new and innovative choral compositions.
  • February 27, 2016: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Brooklyn Schiller Institute Community Chorus.
  • January 15, 2016: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Long Island Consort, a Chinese-American choir based in Little Neck.
  • October 27, 2015: New Choir Directory listing for Grassroots Harmony, an activist community choir based in Crown Heights.
  • October 22, 2015: In the interest of keeping the Info Exchange as fresh as possible, the default duration for ads has been reduced from three months to two months. Longer or shorter durations remain available upon request.
  • October 15, 2015: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Fieldston Choral Society, an SATB choir on the Upper West Side.
  • September 12, 2015: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for The Kachanov Ensemble, a newly-forming professional chamber choir directed by Nikolai Kachanov. New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Christ Church Bordentown Choir in Bordentown, NJ.
  • September 10, 2015: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Harmonic Insurgence, an a cappella vocal ensemble in Brooklyn.
  • September 3, 2015: New Choir Directory listing and Choir Auditions ad for Elision Vocal Ensemble, based on the Upper West Side.

Archive of old "New on VAN" items

See also the Info Exchange.
  • Need some exquisite beaded jewelry to complement your concert attire? Or perhaps a distinctive gift for that special singer in your life? Or maybe you'd like to host a jewelry show to benefit your favorite non-profit organization? Try Carnelian Knoll, where you'll find necklaces, bracelets and earrings of vintage beads and silver handcrafted by Julie Siegmund.
  • Looking for rehearsal space or performance venues? Try NYC Music Spaces, part of Fractured Atlas's SpaceFinder NYC database of available rehearsal and performance spaces for instrumental and vocal musicians. You'll find places to rent, from studios to large venues, for classical, jazz, rock--whatever you need to rehearse or perform in NYC.
  • Looking for an outstanding vocal ensemble coach? Mark Johnson, possessor of an amazing ear and terrific interpretive insights in a variety of styles, is available to coach your group. To arrange for Mark's services, e-mail Colette Thompson.
  • Liz Fleischer's Sight-Singing Program is offered each season at the Kaufman Center (129 West 67th Street). Classes include ear-training, rhythm and pitch reading, music theory, basic notation and terminology, with emphasis on learning to hold a part with confidence. For more info, visit www.kaufman-center.org/lucyadults_mus_sight.htm, e-mail fleischerliz@aol.com or adultdivision@kaufman-center.org or call (212) 501-3362. The sight-singing program is just one of the classes offered by the Kaufman Center's Lucy Moses School.

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Vocal Area Network gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Sustaining Member ensembles:

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Americas Vocal Ensemble, AmorArtis, The Babylon Chorale, C4: The World's First Choral Composer/Conductor Collective, Cantabile Chamber Chorale, Cerddorion, Chorus 802, Christ Church Choir, Douglas Frank Chorale, Down Town Glee Club, Greater Nassau Chorus, Lehman College and Community Chorus, New Amsterdam Singers, The New Choral Society, New York Choral Society, The Peace of Heart Choir, Renaissance Street Singers, Renaissance Vocal Ensemble, Riverdale Choral Society, Russian Chamber Chorus of New York, Sacrum Convivium, St. James' Compostela Choir, St. Paul's Englewood, Sing We Enchanted, Uncommon Chord, Voices of New York, Women Singing

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