LAB 7 —the seventh session of Chanticleer's honor choir for young singers— is already deep in rehearsal with plans to start performing later this month. This special LAB session is based in the East Bay; a great way to lessen the travel time for students on that side of the Bay Bridge! Long-time collaborator with Chanticleer and director of the Acalanes High School Choirs, Bruce Lengacher, is directing, assisted by Ben Johns, our Education Director. Among the challenging songs this time around are "She Walks in Beauty" (Chanticleer's 2003 student composer competition winner); "Veniki" (a tongue-twisting Russian folk song); Renaissance gems from Arcadelt, Victoria and Passereau; and a gorgeously lush Romantic style work by Georg Schumann.
A full day of in-school performances is planned for Oct. 24 that will span Redwood City to Lafayette.
Students who participate in the LAB Choir get a rare opportunity to receive very specific and high-level feedback on their ensemble singing, attend Chanticleer concerts, sing in an elite small ensemble (sometimes one on a part!), earn college credit, share conductorless singing with younger students around the Bay Area, and (so far!) bond fiercely with other talented and passionate singer peers. Even if LAB singers aren't sure about pursuing music as a career later in life, the work ethic reinforced, life skills developed and pathways to excellence during rehearsal are wonderful to behold. It's another reason why we wanted to share the experience of directing LAB with other directors in the area.
LAB 8 will be back to "normal" mode this January, with rehearsals at our headquarters in San Francisco. Mr. Johns is always looking for new singers. If you happen to know of any students aged 14-20 who might be interested in participating, please spread the word!
LAB 8 singers will be selected by the middle of November. An audition is required, but, as many LABbies would say, "It's totally worth it!"