Archive for the News Category

VAE videos on YouTube–Plus contest!!

Posted in Concerts, Ireland, News on October 7, 2010 by Tracia

The Vocal Art Ensemble is proud to announce that several videos of our performances in Ireland are now up on YouTube. There is one video for each of the venues we sang in, so you can see some of the incredible sights we were honored to see. They can be located by user Truglyn here:

IN PARTICULAR: our video of Betelehemu is now entered in a CONTEST supported by local music store Watermelon Music, since it features the darbuka drum we purchased at their store specifically for our tour. If this video gets more views than the other October entrants, VAE can win a $100 gift certificate for Watermelon to help pay for music or musical instruments (specifically we need finger cymbals to be used for our December 10-12th concerts!).

Please help VAE win the contest by clicking the above link to enjoy the video to ‘cast a vote’ for VAE!! (feel free to forward it to your friends, coworkers, and families, too ;)).

This video is also rather special because it shows all the different venues we performed this piece in in just one video! It also helps local business Watermelon music, which recently opened a second location in Woodland in addition to its popular Davis location. The store has been very kind to VAE by posting posters, offering discounts, and even selling our CDs in their store. And of course since we are very supportive of encouraging local music in the community, we’re happy to be spreading the word about them, too! 🙂

Thank you so much for your continued support of VAE!


Breaking ground

Posted in Concerts, Ireland, News on August 27, 2010 by Tracia

This season for VAE has been a series of unique experiments in pursuit of our goal of sharing exquisite music through artful musicianship.

The whole fact that we even had a summer season to begin with was already unique, as most choruses (VAE included) often take the summer months off to regroup, relax, vacation, and maybe even build up a little choral withdrawal…

But considering we had our performance tour of Ireland planned for September, our summer has instead been packed with rehearsals, home practice, logistics training, memorization clinics, optional sings, quartet practice, gigs….all while trying to skate around the fact that 20-25% of the chorus was usually absent at any given rehearsal due to vacations, family weddings, summer work schedules, and what not.

In fact, it was not until our ‘Bon Voyage’ concert in Davis on August 22 that the entire chorus was actually all together for the first time!! It is no mean feat to try and develop a polished and blended choral sound when it was constantly changing and we weren’t even sure what it was until we did it for an audience! (and I do mean the actual performance…not even the dress rehearsal had everyone present)!

It’s enough to make you crazy! 🙂

The tour was also the excuse to set our sights a bit higher towards a more professional image and execution, experimenting with ideas of a unified concert attire that can coordinate with our concert repertoire — Renaissance motets, modern choral masterpieces, and ethnic choral music. It was only through persistence and a rather lengthy process of collaborative communication (not to mention a great deal of late night sewing by Jeannie Nishikawa and Jeri Ohmart), that we managed a travel-able look that is both modern and timeless, coordinated and individual, not exclusively American but not exclusive to a particular culture….and more than anything formal yet comfortable enough to sing in. The most amazing part is we even got it in time for our August 22 performance for our family, friends, and loyal supporters before our tour! Many thanks everyone!

But alas spiffy performance attire is rightfully only icing on the cake, and it has been the dedication to blend, balance, finesse, and detailed musical execution that has broken the most ground this summer. I’m very proud of our performance last weekend, and can’t wait to take it abroad in the churches and cathedrals of Ireland!

So please stay tuned for details about our adventures….this blog was created by request from some of our audience members, and is another experiment in sharing our musical experiences with our community. Please check back and feel free to post your comments, ideas, suggestions, and feedback!

– Tracia Barbieri (director)

Hello world!….Literally!

Posted in Ireland, News on August 24, 2010 by Tracia

VAE is about to partake on a new adventure with our performance tour of Ireland that starts next week! So we’re created this blog/journal to help keep our fans posted about our latest news and happenings. Enjoy!