“We sing as love, afraid, uncertain, yet our heart takes flight.”
This text by Euan Tait has inspired the Island Voices Choir to again raise their voices in joyful song.
Their April 15 and 16 concerts, entitled Our Flight Begins as Song,will emphasize the power of music, transporting the listener to places and emotions through a wide variety of musical genres.
Island Voices has had a long tradition of performing both traditional choral works and the works of young composers, and is very pleased to present the Canadian premiere of John Conohan’s Of Man and of Angels. Based on a text from 1 Corinthians 13, which is believed to have inspired Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the piece begins with “If I speak in the tongues of man or of angels, but do not have love,” moves through sections that are haunting, then percussive, then sweet, then majestic, and ends with serenity. “And now these things remain: faith hope and love, but the greatest of these is love.”
Along with other sacred works, including the ethereal O Salutaris Hostia, which features the angelic voices of Michelle Johnson and Andrea Ritchie, the program will include a variety of folk songs. If I Were a Blackbird tells the story of a young woman in love with a sailor, much to her parents’ disapproval. The Jamaican Eva shows frustrations with a country girl in the city, and Songbird features the women’s voices delighting in playful flight. Not to be outdone, the men have their own moment of glory, singing Billy Joel’s The Longest Time.
Island Voices evolved from a madrigal group and have kept to the tradition, performing Morley’s Sing We and Chant It, and, for the first time, have included an opera chorus, Verdi’s a Pensiero. As always there are songs of love, like the luscious Go Lovely Rose.
But hang onto your hats, because there are wild things in the works. The Beaufort Scale is a humoresque based on the wind velocity scale, going from dead calm to hurricane! Zack Taylor’s Mon-key-a will be sure to energize all who hear it.
Our Flight Begins as Song will be performed in Campbell River at 7:30 p.m. on Sat., April 16 at the Maritime Heritage Centre. Tickets are $20 (students accompanied by an adult free) and are available at the Campbell River Info Centre (info at 250-285-3560). The choir will also be performing on Friday, April 15 at the Comox United Church. At this concert, they will be joined by a guest choir, the Village Voices from Qualicum. This large ensemble, conducted by Rosemary Lindsay, will perform both on their own and together with Island Voices, and are sure to bring a new dimension to the concert.
Tickets are available at Blue Heron and Laughing Oyster Books, (more info at 250-898-4773).