The 37th annual Collegiate Chorale and Friends in Concert performance entertained a large audience on March 5 in the Cirigliano Studio Theatre. The choir, made of current Lorain County Community College music students (both vocal and instrumental), delighted the concert goers with a wide range of musical genres and time periods.
Under the leadership of the Director of Choral Music Performance at LCCC, Nancy Davis; and accompanist and Assistant Director of Chorale Music, David Blazer, the Collegiate Chorale, and members of the LCCC Vocal Jazz Singers performed a history of music. There were a variety of genres and styles of music represented. From the 14th century and the 1940s, the era of flower power and Broadway showstoppers, to the more contemporary, there was something for everyone in attendance.
“I am so proud of my students. They have worked so hard and have worked so well together,” Davis stated. “This concert gives them the chance to display their talent for their friends and family, and shows that there is a lot of talent in Lorain County. It also shows that we have a wonderful music department at LCCC. It was a chance to honor them, the theater and to honor the music itself,” she added.
Davis not only conducts the collegiate chorale choir but also conducts the select vocal ensemble (Renaissance Singers and Vocal Jazz Singers) and the civic chorale. Ms. Davis is also currently chair of the Repertoire and Standards Committee for Two-Year Colleges in the Central Division of the American Choral Directors Association. She has also presented at numerous state and national conferences through the association.
The solo performances also displayed a variety of themes and genres. A majority of the songs doubled as audition pieces for several of the members of the choir for when they transfer from LCCC to a four year school.
“I used the solo I performed tonight as my audition piece today at Cleveland State University prior to tonight’s performance,” Timothy R. Parks, a musical theater major at LCCC, said of his solo “This Is the Moment” from the musical “Jekyll & Hyde”. “It is a song I am comfortable with and allows me to use my vocal strength to its advantage.”
Natalie Butchko, a third year member of the choir and a vocal performance major, sang “O del mio amato ben (O Thou, My Beloved Enchantment Lost). This was also a audition piece. “My vocal coach said that it was a good idea to use this song because it sounds good and because of my love of Italian,” said Butchko, who plans on transferring to Kent State University.
Due to maintenance work in the Hoke Theatre where the annual performance usually takes place, the show was moved down the hall to the Cirigliano Studio Theatre. The studio theater venue, which dwarfs in size compared to the Hoke, worked wonders for the performance.
“I love the intimate space of the [Cirigliano Studio] theatre,” Davis said. “If the students had performed in the Hoke Theatre they would have been swallowed up. It is also a wonderful space for the jazz pieces in our program.”
“I enjoyed the studio theatre because of the intimacy,” added Butchko. “It allows me to interact with the audience more in the close space.”
A third year ensemble member and music education major, Anthony Teague, thought that the performance could have succeeded in its original location.
“I really like the black box because it’s very intimate, however I feel like we sound better in the Hoke Theatre. Regardless, we pulled it all together and it was great.”
The next performance for the Civic Chorale Concert will be the “Spring Sing ‘16” on May 7.