UAB Concert Choir to perform at festivals in England, the Netherlands

Tours like this are transformative experiences, says Director Brian Kittredge. The choir is requesting donations to help make the trip a reality for as many students as possible.

music choir 3The University of Alabama at Birmingham Concert Choir will perform in choral festivals in England and the Netherlands in May.

The Concert Choir is an ensemble in the College of Arts and SciencesDepartment of Music.

At least 42 students will leave May 17 and travel first to London, where the group will perform a recital in Canterbury Cathedral and participate in the London Sangerstevne Festival. The festival performances include the Fringe Concert at St Sepulchre-without-Newgate, the main festival concert and the Fringe Concert in St George-in-the-East Church. The students will enjoy four days in London, with opportunities to take in the sights including walking tours of Windsor and Canterbury, a boat ride on the River Thames, a guided tour of London, and the chance to visit Hyde Park and local museums and attend a concert or West End show.

The choir will depart May 22 for Velp/Doesburg, the Netherlands, where they will sightsee and rehearse, then travel to Kerkrade to participate in the CantaRode Festival opening concert May 26. The students will also participate in a gospel workshop at Kerkrade Music School, perform a concert in the Wittern Historical Library and participate in the closing concert in Roldec Abbey. The group will then travel to Cologne, Germany, for sightseeing before departing for home on May 30 from Dusseldorf.

The UAB Concert Choir is raising money through a crowdfunding drive to help make the trip possible for those students who may not have the means and resources to do so. Nearly $7,000 has been raised toward the $20,000 goal. Contributions to the drive can be made at crowdfund.uab.edu/project/6105, says Director Brian Kittredge, DMA.

“Through generous support by the College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of Music, and many other donors, we have been able to defray costs quite significantly for these students, but are still in the process of raising support and awareness,” Kittredge said. “This is a very exciting opportunity for our choir members, as these are some of the finest sites in the world, especially for singers.”

Since the Concert Choir’s last experience participating in the 2014 World Choir Games and performance appearances in the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Italy and Latvia, there have been a number of invitations to choral festivals across the world, Kittredge says.

“In considering some of our possibilities and experiences that would benefit our current student body, we decided to honor an invitation to participate in the London Sangerstevne and the CantaRode International Choral Festivals,” Kittredge said. “It is in the interests of the UAB Department of Music and the choral program to find transformative experiences like this for our current and future students. I think this tour does just that, and opens the door for future interdisciplinary opportunities.”

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