September 15, 2020
Every musician has felt the effect of the ongoing pandemic, but the coronavirus has singled out choirs in particular. A March chorus practice in Washington became a superspreading event, later the subject of a CDC report. That grim precedent has meant that, while other ensembles tentatively resume scaled-back live performances, singers are still staying home.
But it’s not all bad news for choruses online. New technology promises the possibility of rehearsing virtually but in real time. And even without new performances, there’s still plenty of music to share.
Choral Arts Initiative, an Orange County ensemble dedicated to new choral music, wants you to hear its 2019 concert, What Color Is the Dawn? That performance took top honors for “Best New Music Performance” in this year’s SFCV Audience Choice Awards. Now, you can listen to it again, or for the first time. Find the full concert here.
The Nov. 17 program featured the West Coast premieres of three short pieces: Edie Hill’s “Clay Jug,” Andrew Maxfield’s “The Door,” and Elaine Hagenberg’s “A Farewell.” And of course, the title work: What Color Is the Dawn? a four-movement cantata by composer Jordan Kuspa, here in its world premiere.