¡Cantare! VocalEssence Educational Program Links Mexican Composers with Area Schools, Churches and Choral Organizations
(November 4, 2009) – Now in its second season, the VocalEssence ¡Cantaré! Educational Program links Mexican composers
with nearly 500 students and adults in the Twin Cities community through
residencies in schools, churches, and choral organizations.
program is designed to encourage a deeper understanding of Mexico’s rich classical
musical heritage, develop a new understanding of the traditions that are
melding Mexican and American cultures, and create a new body of Spanish
language music for voices and instruments.
¡Cantaré! composers Jesús López and Diana Syrse traveled to Minnesota in October 2009 to meet the
ensembles (listed on page two) they will be working with for the 2009-2010
school year. After spending one week together, the composers returned to Mexico
to begin writing new works, which will be delivered to the singers in January. The
composers will return for a second visit in March 2010 when they will hear how rehearsals
are proceeding with their brand new compositions. In addition, Jorge Córdoba will return as a ¡Cantaré! composer, writing music for
the VocalEssence Chorus & Ensemble Singers, as well as working again with
church musicians on a new hymn.
The year-long educational program culminates
when the composers return for a third and final time in May 2010 for the world
premiere of their compositions at a series of three VocalEssence ¡Cantaré!
performances in April and May 2010.
¡Cantaré! program builds on the tremendous success of the inaugural season
which concluded on May 12, 2009 with the VocalEssence
¡Cantaré! Community Concert at
Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis. Over
500 area students and community members sang alongside the VocalEssence Chorus
& Ensemble Singers, performing the world premieres of works written
specifically for them by composers Jorge Córdoba, Jorge Cózatl, and Sabina
With nearly 2,000 audience members, the concert was an
overwhelming success. Consul of
Mexico Ana Luisa Fajer Flores remarked, “I am
still moved; speechless on what happened [at the performance.] It was so
wonderful that words are really not enough to express my gratitude, and
Mexico’s and Mexicans’ gratitude to what you have accomplished.”
For press information
and photographs related to the VocalEssence
¡Cantaré! Educational Program,
contact Jennifer Bauer (612-547-1459, firstname.lastname@example.org).
VocalEssence ¡Cantaré! Composer Residencies
Jorge Córdoba returns to the program for a second
season. He is working with:
- VocalEssence Chorus & Ensemble Singers and
Jorge Córdoba, a native of Mexico City, has gained prominence as a
composer and conductor, performing throughout his homeland, as well as Spain,
Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Hungary and the U.S.A. He has served as
Artistic Director for several well-known choirs, receiving numerous prizes for
his musical activities. Part of
the inaugural ¡Cantaré! program, Jorge conducted workshops and composed music
for the choirs of St. Olaf College and VocalEssence, and the
congregation of Sagrado Corazón de Jesús in Minneapolis.
Jesús López is working with:
- Burroughs Community School, Minneapolis
- Adams Spanish Immersion School, St. Paul
The principal organist at the
Metropolitan Cathedral of Mexico, Jesús
López has extensive experience working with school-age children and has
composed a variety of choral works including Suite Romántica, which was dedicated to the Children’s Choir of la
Schola Cantorum in Mexico.
Diana Syrse is working with:
- Como Park High School, St. Paul
- Washburn High School, Minneapolis
- Andover High School, Andover
Surrounded by music of all
styles from a young age, Diana Syrse
has a wide range of experience writing choral works for organizations such as
La Coordinadora Internacional de Mujeres en el Arte and Vox LaTina as well as
conducting workshops in contemporary compositional techniques.
Educational Program funding has been generously provided by The Minneapolis
Foundation, General Mills, Best Buy, RBC Dain Rauscher, Elmer L. and Eleanor J.
Andersen Foundation, and Harriett Dayton.
VocalEssence ¡Cantaré! Community Advisory Committee
Chairman Uri Camarena, Business Consultant, MEDA
Agustin, Arts Consultant, Neighborhood House, St. Paul
Driessen, Community Volunteer
Luisa Fajer Flores, Consulate of Mexico, St. Paul
Lopez, President, Casa Travel
Perez, President & CEO, Jeremiah Program
Robinson, Community Volunteer
Rodriguez, Business Consultant, MEDA
Shulstad, VocalEssence Chorus Member & Community Volunteer
Suarez, Attorney, Fredrickson and Byron
L. Vargas, President & CEO, The Minneapolis Foundation
Zepeda, Merrill Lynch Financial Advisor, Global Wealth Management Group
Consul Nathan Wolf, Director
General de Promoción, Económica Internacional, México