By Liz Carlson
The Dept. of Music presented the choir’s Spring Concert on March 7. It was held in Thorpe Langley Auditorium. Both the A Capella and Chamber Choir together performed about seven songs of mixed genres that focused on American music.
Jazmin Wong has been part of the A Capella Choir for eight semesters and has enjoyed it from the start. She said singing in choir has allowed her to travel to different places such as high schools and churches throughout the community. Jazmin also said, choir is a lot like a mentoring program when they go and perform to surrounding high schools. The group not only gets to show their talent to a younger crowd, but get to give advice on how high school students can improve.
Wong’s favorite song performed in the concert was “Soon Ah Will Be Done” by William Dawson. She said that when the choir sings this song she finds it rather powerful due to the lyrical value. The lyrics were incredibly chilling and the dynamics of everyone’s voices starting off soft and building up made for a definite emotional piece.
Steven Neff has been a part of the A Capella Choir for twelve semesters. Choir is his favorite class of the day and he really enjoys meeting a bunch of people from all different departments. Steven wanted to let students know who may be interested in taking this course that it’s a bonding experience with your peers as well as the professor, and it’s just plain fun. When asked about how he thought the performance was going to go, he said the group was faced with some challenging songs the past few weeks and they didn’t know if they were going to be ready to go on stage, but everyone was feeling prepared and excited to show off what they had been working hard on.
“Dawn,” by Eric William Barnum was the most unique sounding song. It started off soft with the women’s voices sounding angelic and had put me in a trance of some sort. The harmony of each group was incredible and made the piece strong although it was sang very softly. What made this song stand out from the rest was the ending. Part of the choir held out an “ooh” sound while the other half made these sounds to interpret a whisper. I have no idea how they did it, but it was awesome.
The last piece the choir sang was called, “Five Mystical Songs” by Ralph Vaughan Williams. This tune is made up of… you guessed it, five songs. To my surprise, there was a guest singer, Dr. Madison, the vocal professor here on campus who joins the choir every year for at least one concert. A small group of professional string players, combined of two violins, a viola and cello performed as well. Each song felt as if I had been told a story, and it was difficult not getting lost while the string instruments played alone.
I was highly impressed with this performance, and left the auditorium like I was just leaving one of my favorite band’s concert. I couldn’t stop talking to my friend about all the beautiful and intriguing parts of each song, and I had this rush of excitement. If you haven’t yet experienced one of the University of Wisconsin’s choir concerts you need to because you’re missing out on listening to a group of very talented musicians.