In February, VCU Commonwealth Singers travelled to NYC to sing . . . well . . . just about everywhere! We started at 7am (!) on Thursday, Feb. 16 in Richmond with a beautiful coach and enough water to hydrate a chorus of 35. Our final destination was Carnegie Hall, but along the way, we sang roughly 5 (or so) concerts, met some great high school students, and had some time to enjoy NYC!
On the way up, we stopped at two high schools - Mountain View High School in Stafford, VA and Baltimore School for the Arts. We sang our a cappella repertoire and told the good news of VCU Music.
Friday was a musically fulfilling day - beginning with a marathon rehearsal on Poulenc's Gloria with a large chorus comprised of singers from Virginia, Georgia, Florida, and Wales. This is the group that joined us for our Carnegie Hall concert as part of the Distinguished Concerts International New York (DCINY) concert series. We had the great opportunity to spend an hour singing in the stunning Church of St. Mary the Virgin in Times Square. And, of course, we couldn't resist staging a flashmob on the steps in Times Square. After this, the students had the rest of the day and evening to explore while Dr. Freeman (stressed out?) prepared for rehearsal with the DCINY orchestra.
Saturday began with a self guided tour of Lincoln Center - home of the Metropolitan Opera, the NYPhilharmonic, and NYC Ballet. We had more DCINY rehearsal, and then we headed straight to Redeemer Presbyterian Church - where Tom Jennings, a VCU Music alumnus, is music director. The space was stunning - a former parking garage turned recital hall/worship space. Recordings of this concert coming soon!
Sunday. Finally, we got to Carnegie Hall! Rehearsal in the morning and a concert in the afternoon. The space, the acoustics, and the history helped us perform our best.
Part 2 (with recordings!) coming soon.