Press Release

VocalEssence Family Series Returns with Tales & Tunes at the American Swedish Institute

Jennifer Weismann


Musical storytime event for families includes sing-alongs, lullabies, and crafts—Sept. 28

MINNEAPOLIS — June 26, 2019— Families with young children will have a chance to enjoy a creative morning of singing, reading, and listening, sponsored by local choral and community-building nonprofit VocalEssence with Tales & Tunes, a musical storytime hour at the American Swedish Institute.

Images are available here.

Children under six are the target audience for this all-ages-welcome interactive event. They can show up wearing their favorite dress-up outfits and learn how to invent their own songs after listening to original lullabies written by participants in the VocalEssence Lullaby Project. Members of the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers and the VocalEssence high school choir, Singers Of This Age, will be on hand to lead a sing-along of favorite songs. A craft project will keep the kids active and interested, and they’ll be treated to a special story read by a local authors David LaRochelle and Mike Wohnoutka.

The Tales & Tunes event will be held in Larson Hall at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis on Saturday, September 28, from 9:30-10:30 am. Tickets are currently available as part of a 2019-20 Family Series Subscription. Single tickets go on sale on Monday, August 5.

“Young children express their emotional lives through movement and sound, and teaching them how to sing builds beautifully upon that natural expression,” said G. Phillip Shoultz, III, VocalEssence associate conductor.  “Singing gives them not only an outlet for energy, but a tool to be creative—and connect with others. It’s a skill they can rely on their whole lives, so it’s never too early to start exposing kids to it—which is also the case with reading!”

VocalEssence, called “one of the irreplaceable music ensembles of our time” by Dana Gioia, past chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, impacts thousands of students, singers, and composers each year through its initiative programs, contests, and support for innovative art. VocalEssence was founded in 1969 and has debuted more than 300 commissions and 500 world premieres. For more information, visit