Memorial celebrates the phenomenon of singing
By Tracey Mills
La Camerata De la Neuva España from Mexico is one of the choirs taking part in Festival 500.
If you like to sing then Memorial’s campus is the place to be this summer. Starting on Thursday, June 30, and running until Sunday, July 3, Memorial University will host The Phenomenon of Singing: International Symposium V. This event is an integral component of the Festival 500: Sharing the Voices celebration which runs from July 3-10 in St. John’s.
The symposium, sponsored by Memorial University and under the guidance of co-directors Dr. Andrea Rose and Ki Adams, will gather clinicians and performers from all over the world along with international experts in the field of singing. Featuring 80 presentations from places as diverse as Argentina, Australia, Congo, Finland, Hong Kong, Lebanon and many more, it will be a forum like no other focusing on interdisciplinary discourse, performance and the sharing of research.
Presentations will be given in a variety of formats including papers, lecture-recitals, lecture-demonstrations, panel and roundtable discussions, cameo recitals and an interactive two-hour broadband multipoint video-conference choral session with choirs in Calgary, Ontario and Nova Scotia conducted by internationally renowned Venezuelan conductor Maria Guinand on Canada Day. There will also be a special interest day for music educators on Saturday, July 2.
“One of the most truly unique aspects of this symposium and festival is its celebration of diversity and interdisciplinary sharing,” said Dr. Rose, Faculty of Education. “Scholars and performers come from around the globe to share their research,
performance practices and pedagogies related to singing. This integration of theory and practice and fusion of discipline-based scholarship and performance practices this type of sharing of voices is one of the main philosophical tenets of the entire Festival 500.”
A special sub-theme of the symposium and choral festival will be a celebration of Latin America’s contribution to the singing world, with special guest performers De Boca En Boca, a Grammy-nominated quartet of female vocalists from Argentina. They will perform at a special cameo concert at Bianca’s restaurant on Water Street on Sunday, July 3, as well as at the festival grand opening ceremonies on July 3 at 3 p.m. in the Field House.
The symposium concludes on Sunday, July 3, with the start of the Festival 500: Sharing the Voices celebrations. Artistic directors for the festival include Memorial’s own Dr. Rose, Mr. Adams and Dr. Doug Dunsmore, together with choral conductor Susan Knight, an honorary graduate. Opening ceremonies for the festival will start at 3 p.m. in the Field House with an opening concert that evening at the Arts and Culture Centre.
For a complete listing of events related to the choral festival or for more information call 738-6013 or visit www.festival500.com. Tickets can be purchased in advance for any of the evening concerts by calling the Arts and Culture Centre box office at 729-3900 or Mile One Stadium at 576-7657.