Los Angeles Children’s Chorus celebrated the debut performance of its newest choir, Emerging Voices – which is one of only a few in the country to serve boy vocalists with changing voices – at a special concert and fundraiser on February 19, at the home of Antoinette Adams and Frederic Cohen in San Marino.
Guests enjoyed a short concert by the choir, conducted by Steven Kornauer, featuring four works specially selected to fit within the range of the choir member’s fluctuating vocal ranges, including the Muskogee Indian piece Hellelujan, Vaga Luna by Vicenzo Bellini, Dona Nobis Pacem, by an anonymous composer, and an arrangement of And I’ll kiss thee yet. Several choir members also gave personal comments about how important it is for them to be able to participate in a choir of this caliber after their voices changes and they could no longer sing in the children’s choir.
A lavish array of gourmet hors d’oeuvres, desserts and spirits added to the festivities. Proceeds from the event, which was open to the public, benefit the Emerging Voices program.
The current members of Emerging Voices are Christopher Adams-Cohen, Joseph Beech, Thor Blough, Isaac Calvin, Brandon Cheung, Arthur Nguyen Diep, Jameson Evans, Justin Filbrich, Ian Ford, Andrew Huerta, Peter Kurzner, Eric Lifland, Benjamin Liu, Daniel O’Brien, Benno Ressa, Gregory Sliskovich, Paul Supanich, Nico Walsh, Joshua Williams, and Marquis Williams.
Under the direction of conductor Dr. Steven Kronauer, a noted singer, conductor, educator and voice teacher, Emerging Voices gives boys with maturing voices the opportunity to nurture their vocal talent and pursue choral studies at LACC, one of the nation’s finest institutions for young singers. The choir enables boys who traditionally “graduate from” treble children’s choirs once their voices change to continue their vocal studies and perform with LACC throughout high school. One of fundamental considerations for working with the choir, Kronauer notes is being very flexible with the repertoire, which he may change from week to week based on fluctuations in the singer’s voice to ensure the voices are never “pushed” or strained.
Since the choir’s inception in September, its members have participated in weekly rehearsals, a specially-tailored musicianship course, and individualized vocal coaching sessions that adhere to LACC’s exceptionally high standards and rigor. They also attended a retreat at USC Thornton School of Music and presented a special “conversation” with acclaimed counter-tenor David Daniels, among other special activities.
According to Mary Blodgett, LACC Board Member and Chair of the Emerging Voices Task Force, the Emerging Voices choir is designed to “cultivate the deep passion of boys who wish to pursue singing and the choral arts as they enter high school.”
For information on Emerging Voices or the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, please call (626) 793-4231 or visit www.lachildrenschorus.org.