With the conclusion of VocalEssence 53rd season and the completion of auditions for season 54, Artistic Director and Founder Philip Brunelle will be working on plans for the coming season as well as time to “attack” the filing of music and correspondence that awaits him! He is very pleased that this month his “Musical Moments” of 300 composers is now being linked with the network of the American Choral Directors Association, providing choral conductors nationwide with access to this treasure trove of information!
At the end of May Philip travels to Dartmouth College (New Hampshire) to be a lecturer at a Symposium on Mexican music for choirs and bands. This marks a first collaboration between VocalEssence and Dartmouth–with more about this to share in the coming months. Also, his article on past Symposia of the International Federation of Choral Music (of which he was on the Executive Board for a decade) will be published in June in the IFCM quarterly.
Several dear friends of Philip and VocalEssence have passed away and he is involved with the planning of services for Michael McCarthy, Ann Manning, and Don Helgeson. And a special occasion took place on May 20 when he accompanied the senior high school recital of violinist Spencer Bubola, whom he has been mentoring for several years.
G. Phillip Shoultz, III:
Associate Artistic Director G. Phillip Shoultz, III (GPS) kicked off a summer of collaborations and performances with an extended residency with the 360 students of the Detroit Lakes Middle School Choirs. He led VocalEssence Singers Of This Age in a special performance highlighting the 2nd Anniversary of George Floyd’s murder as the opening to the Westminster Town Hall Forum on May 24. In June, he will partner with the Bach Roots Festival to serve as chorus master and a soloist in performances of the monumental St. Matthew Passion. GPS is also helping to develop their Emerging Artist program for singers of the Global Majority (Black, Brown, Indigenous). He will conclude the month by leading performances of Vaughn Williams Serenade for Music with seven harps and chamber vocal ensemble for the National Conference of the American Harp Association in Sioux Falls.