THE LATEST NEWS FROM CHORAL CHAMELEON
Picture Credit: LA Johnson/NPR
We wholeheartedly condemn the murderers and systemic racism that led to deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and of so many other black people in recent years and beyond.
We also acknowledge the role of institutions play in continuing to feed inequality and bias - it has led us to examine our own responsibility to uproot and eliminate systemic inequities and biases within our community.
We have carefully considered each of the following resolutions, which we are announcing today.
Moving forward, Choral Chameleon is committed, thus far, to the following actions:
If you would like to support our efforts by donating to our scholarship fund or matching our gift to ICD, please contact us at email@example.com.
We're grateful that we can make the space to meaningfully address this important matter as a whole organization with your support as our extended family.
Vince Peterson, Founding Artistic Director
Nicole Belmont, Executive Director
The Board of Choral Chameleon
The Choral Chameleon Summer Institute for composers and conductors has been enabling musicians of many career stages to work on becoming their best musical selves within a challenging and supportive environment since 2011. It is normally held in Brooklyn at the end of June and culminates with a fabulous concert packed with premieres of all of the pieces that have been composed during the week.
While we have provisionally postponed our in-person Institute to January 2021 (and remain open for applications), this June we are thrilled to be hosting a week-long virtual gathering for musicians and anyone interested in the development of new music.
The program offers both free public content and tuition-based programs for musicians at all levels of ability.
10th Anniversary Retrospective Roundtables – Free to the public
45-50 minute discussions hosted by Choral Chameleon Founding Artistic Director Vince Peterson, featuring recordings from the Summer Institute concerts which will be premiered on Facebook and YouTube at the following times:
Study Tracks - Subject to Tuition Fees
To learn more about these workshops, click here
Learn more about what Choral Chameleon's Chorus was working on when we had to suspend rehearsals in March 2019. Our 'Bigger Than My Song' project, due for performance in May, involved 11 new arrangements of pop songs which were going to be sung then recorded and remixed by a DJ. A complex exercise in multiple stages.
Artistic Director Vince Peterson got together with 5 of the commissioned composers for a chat about the project. All but one of them are also alumni of the Choral Chameleon Summer Institute for Composers and Conductors.
Composers interviewed are: Lauren Bydalek, Jared Graveley, Lydia Jane Pugh, Zachary James Ritter and Derek J. Weagle
How has Choral Chameleon bit hit by COVID-19 to date?
The Ensemble’s ‘If I Left the Zoo’ remaining Tour dates in March at the Jesuit Center for Spiritual Growth in Wernersville, Pennsylvania, and in April at Middlebury College in Vermont had to be canceled.
After yet another fantastic reception by the Unitarian Church in Westport, Connecticut in February, we were excited to be bringing Choral Chameleon to these two States for the very first time and to be welcomed by our hosts’ communities who are great supporters of choral music.
We appreciate that the Jesuit Center for Spiritual Growth had already invested a significant amount in marketing our events at the point of cancellation, which they were not able to recoup and yet they were still able and willing to honor their contractual obligations towards our singers. They have been exemplary supporters of the arts over the years and we definitely want to acknowledge that.
In the case of the Chorus, when the virus hit, we were about to begin a fundraising campaign and promotion for our second big project of the year ‘Bigger Than My Song’, which was slated for May 2nd and 3rd.
For this project, we had commissioned and rehearsed an unprecedented number of new song arrangements for a single program – eleven to be exact.
The event being planned for May, which is now also canceled, was an installation-style pre-recorded presentation in which the audience could freely move between purist renderings of the song arrangements - with choir only - to another space where EDM, House, and Trance beat remixes of these arrangements would be simultaneously presented in another room by our DJ collaborator, the amazing Brandon Wolcott.
Read an extensive description of the project HERE
So what’s next?
Even though these live events for May had to be canceled, recording was a central part of the project and we hope to capture the choir singing these arrangements as soon as we can safely resume in-person activity, and to use this hiatus time to let our DJ produce the tracks he will mix our music with. This route will allow us, at the very least, to bring the innovation at the heart of the project into the world and allow access to hearing these great new arrangements and their groundbreaking remixes. We are not ruling out trying to bring the live experience to life at some point next Season.
Thanks in no small part to the support of our donors and Board, we are happy and proud to report that we will be able to honor our payments to the commissioned arrangers and to our staff musicians for all rehearsal time to date, as well as our obligations to other contractors whose services we have engaged so far this Season.
We are now re-budgeting for the project to reflect the new plan.
Faculty members Matt Oltman and Steven Smith with composers L-R Lili Tobias, Pedro Finisterra and João Fonseca e Costa (2019)
The Choral Chameleon Summer Institute for Composers and Conductors is accepting applications for our annual 8-day intensive in Brooklyn, NY. This is our 10th year!
Students of many career stages and backgrounds gather to work with our expert faculty and choirs to develop and grow within a 'best case scenario'.
Capacity is currently limited to 12 composers and 3 conductors.
As at 4.5.20 - We have made the decision to postpone the Institute to January 2021, with the 8th-15th as dates currently earmarked. We're keeping applications open.