Posted on April 19, 2011 by Michael
The Michael O’Neal Singers recently completed its Third Annual Hear the Future! Music Festival Concert. In this concert, MOS invites superb high school musical ensembles to join with us in performing a large work, as well as performing as an individual group on the program. This year we were honored to welcome the Lassiter High School Concert Chorale, under the direction of Brian Williams and the Woodstock High School Varsity Singers, under the direction of Ryan McKendrick. Each of these ensembles sang beautifully and made the adult singers of MOS very encouraged about the future of choral singing. As I have commented on several occasions before, when we hear young singers such as these, we are hearing both the “future” and the “present.”
Our combined work this year was the Mass in G by Franz Schubert, only eighteen years old himself when he wrote this gem of a piece. It was a joy for me to look out at the 225 singers on stage and see high schoolers and adults standing beside each other as they sang this choral masterwork. It is my hope that as singers from various generations came together in this shared experience they were able to recognize that we are all capable of learning from each other. I always hear many positive comments from participants and audience members after our “Hear the Future” concert and I hope this year many of the readers of this blog will take the opportunity to share some of their thoughts and observations about this “intergenerational” experience.
Filed under: Choral experiences | Tagged: Brian Williams, Hear the Future, high school arts, Lassiter High School, Ryan McKendrick, schubert Mass in G, The Michael O'Neal Singers, Woodstock High School | 5 Comments »
Posted on April 4, 2011 by Michael
As MOS makes final preparations for its Third Annual Hear the Future Music Festival, I am reminded what a joy it is to work with excellent singers of all ages. The Michael O’Neal Singers (MOS) is an auditioned community chorus of around 130 voices, ranging in age from early 20s to mid 70s. The Hear the Future Festival invites outstanding high school ensembles to join MOS in a combined presentation of a large choral/instrumental masterpiece. This year the Lassiter High School Concert Chorale (Cobb County) and the Woodstock High School Varsity Singers (Cherokee County) will join with MOS and the Riverside Chamber Players (a professional string ensemble from Fulton County) in a performance of Franz Schubert’s Mass in G. In addition to the Schubert, the combined chorus of nearly 250 voices will sing Hear the Future, a piece written for the inaugural season of the Festival. Each chorus will also have the opportunity to sing several individual selections for the other choruses and assembled audience.
I find that talented and committed high school singers participating with equally talented and committed adult singers creates a phenomenal learning opportunity for everyone. As all the singers (a true multigenerational event spanning fifty years from youngest to oldest) work together on the same music, we quickly discover our commonalities instead of our differences. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if there were more possibilities available for such a sharing between generations!
There are constant daily reminders why I am thankful for choral music and what it adds to my life. This annual event bringing together high school students and adults is one of the most gratifying of those reminders.
Filed under: Choral experiences | Tagged: Hear the Future, Lassiter High School, Michael O'Neal, MOS, multigenerational, Riverside Chamber Players, Schubert, The Michael O'Neal Singers, Woodstock High School | Leave a Comment »