Through VocalEssence ¡Cantaré!, selected composers from Mexico participate as artists-in-residence with elementary schools, high schools, colleges, and community organizations. The composers work directly with student choirs and community choruses throughout the year, becoming familiar with the ensembles and writing new music specifically for each. At the end of the school year, community and school partners present world premieres of new music in concert.
- In the 2017-2018 school year, Mexican composers Bernardo Feldman and Jimena Contreras will spend four weeks over the course of three visits with elementary, high school, and community choral singers, exploring Mexican cultural and choral music traditions.
- The program will culminate in the creation of new music compositions by our composers-in-residence, premiered at the VocalEssence ¡Cantaré! 10th Anniversary Community Concert at Ordway Music Theater in St. Paul on May 22, 2018 at 7 pm. Selected works will be published through VocalEssence Music Press.
- Extending across the country for the second time, VocalEssence supports Chicago a cappella as they implement ¡Cantaré! with Novelli Jurado in the Chicago metro area, which will premiere new choral works at the ¡Cantaré! Chicago Community Concert on May 4, 2018 at Benito Juarez Community Academy.
- VocalEssence will provide partner schools with a map of Mexico, a toolbox of Mexican folk art, a teacher resource guide, and companion CD to address social, historical and cultural contexts of Mexican choral music that teachers can use as a springboard for integration into the school curriculum before, between, and after residencies.
- Evaluation is an important component of the program, as VocalEssence builds upon the evaluation tools developed by UpFront Consulting to ensure greatest student impact.