SPONSORED STORY FROM A CHORUS AMERICA PARTNER
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, Steve Smith was five months into his new job as president of Berkshire Choral International (BCI) with a mandate to reset and re-energize the summer program for a new generation of choral singers. COVID-19 then forced cancellation of all BCI live events for both 2020 and 2021. After a two-year gap of in-person programs, the summer of 2022 has seen a much-anticipated reopening. Chorus America checked in with Steve to see how the return is going and what lessons he and the organization have learned.
The digital edition of our 2022 Spring issue of the Voice is here! Read more for feature articles, a letter from chair Brian Newhouse reflecting on the past three years and resilience shown by the choral field, news from our members, and 2022 Chorus America Conference content.
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At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, many choruses scrambled to create new virtual connections in an effort to stay engaged with their singers and supporters. Two years on, as singing in-person returns, choral organizations are making the time to reflect on what they’ve learned and to envision a virtual presence that makes sense for their long-term future.
This is a uniquely challenging time for the choral field, full of both hope and fatigue. For two years the ground has shifted constantly beneath our feet, leaving many feeling drained and apprehensive about the future. Yet this has also been a time of extraordinary creativity and innovation, and the reaffirmation of the value of choral music. We asked seven choral leaders to share how they are caring for their organizations, their singers, and themselves right now.
An artist, arts educator, teaching artist, policymaker, and philanthropist, Alysia Lee has a broad perspective on the arts ecosystem. As the founder and artistic director of Sister Cities Girlchoir and as the inaugural president for the Baltimore Children & Youth Fund (a position she began in early 2022), she works to advance access, equity, and decolonization—always with a focus on youth, anti-racism, creativity, and justice.
SPONSORED STORY FROM A CHORUS AMERICA PARTNER
The Hartford Chorale has a lot to celebrate this spring. Part of the fabric of the Hartford community for 50 years, the chorale has established a reputation for excellence throughout southern New England and beyond. The organization takes great pride in its rich history and tradition of performing symphonic-scale, choral-orchestral repertoire at a high standard of artistry. A bedrock of dedicated volunteer singers and savvy board members, together with dynamic artistic leaders and a small fellowship of resourceful paid administrators, have keyed the organization’s longevity, achievements, and evolution.
SPONSORED CONTENT FROM A CHORUS AMERICA PARTNER
Sometimes it takes a dramatic change in the environment for an innovation to take hold. That's the story of InsideGuide - a new platform for creating digital program books for concerts and events from arts technology company InstantEncore. Before COVID-19, there were several reasons that a digital program option could make sense for many arts organizations - including increased editing flexibility and lower shipping and printing costs, to name a couple. Then, adopting new safety measures and decreasing touch points became a priority for arts organizations, and this new driving force ultimately led InstantEncore to develop its new platform for digital programs.
David Dombrosky, InstantEncore's chief marketing officer, is right at home with choruses and the Chorus America community, just like he is with emerging technology platforms. A past Chorus America Conference speaker and former chorister himself, David has witnessed a great deal of evolution in technology over his career, and is knowledgeable about helping arts leaders overcome the challenges of adopting new tech - as well as realize the exciting upside of the benefits. David spoke with Chorus America about his own story with technology and the arts, and InstantEncore's new InsideGuide platform for creating digital programs.
Five choruses with plans for concerts in January or February 2022 share how they made the decision to either reschedule or proceed. The Choral Arts Society of Washington postponed Living the Dream, Singing the Dream (a Martin Luther King tribute concert) from January 30 to April 10. See the full series here.
Five choruses with plans for concerts in January or February 2022 share how they made the decision to either reschedule or proceed. The Key Chorale in Sarasota, Florida postponed Choral Splendor in 40 Parts (music by Thomas Tallis and Alessandro Striggio) from January 14-15 to May 6-7. See the full series here.
Five choruses with plans for concerts in January or February 2022 share how they made the decision to either reschedule or proceed. The Thirteen in Washington, DC and moving ahead as planned with Sing Willow (centered on music by Vaughan Williams) February 11, 12 and 13. See the full series here.
Five choruses with plans for concerts in January or February 2022 share how they made the decision to either reschedule or proceed. VOX Femina Los Angeles postponed Music They Wrote (honoring past and present women composers) from February 26 to April 23. See the full series here.
Five choruses with plans for concerts in January or February 2022 share how they made the decision to either reschedule or proceed. Baltimore Choral Arts is moving ahead as planned with Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana on February 27. See the full series here.