Music Critique

– Choral Concert Essay, Research Paper

Music Critique

ECU Choral Concert

I attended the ECU Choral Concert on Monday, November 6, 2000. In performance

was Kantorei directed by Janna Brendell, ECU Men’s Ensemble Blackbeard’s Ghost

directed by Sean Berg, ECU Concert Choir directed by Matthew Harden, and special

guests Leesville Road High School Chorus directed by Diane Covington. The whole

program was entertaining and very impressive. All the choirs were very

professional in both their physical appearance and their sound. In each group

the first impressions, which are so important to a performance, were perfect.

They were all dressed and aligned effectively. The sounds of every performer and

group performing were strong and intriguing. The atmosphere was relaxed but at

the same time very professional.

The first group that came on all wore long purple dresses and the conductor wore

an elegant black sparkly top that hit the light just right with a black skirt.

The girls were all spaced evenly and formed a pyramid type shape coming down

towards the audience. All the performers were very professional in the way they

held their music and their posture, looking at the conductor, following her

every move. Their sound was extraordinary, many of the pitches going from loud

to soft tones. This diminuendo and then a crescendo kept the viewers very

interested and involved. Their second piece, Kumbaya, was assembled in a very

soft tone. The piece created great emotions. The women harmonized beautifully,

with wonderful intonation. The third piece, Didn’t it Rain, was very upbeat and

fun. The girls were smiling and enjoying their work just as much as the

audience. One can really tell they love to be up there, which makes their

performance even more entertaining. Many of the other pieces throughout the

performance created this type of atmosphere, getting the audience involved with

laughter and cheers.

The Kantorei group created a wonderful mix of sounds. Men and women were

involved, giving their pieces depth and style. The conductor set the tone and

relaxed the performers right away by making them giggle. This not only made the

performers more comfortable, but also the audience. The piano created wonderful

sounds, as well as the background noises that the performers created in “Hey,

Babe”. The men and women sang without any music, but created their own by using

tongue clicks, tongue rolls, and more. The crowd was very entertained and showed

this through laughter and a wonderful applause at the end.

The high school chorus was just as amazing as the college chorus. They were very

well organized and their sounds were perfect, from my perspective. The conductor

used the harmonica to help get the first note, and talked with the crowd to

educate us more on their performance and what they were doing. The pieces they

performed varied in many different ways. One was very somber, when the next

would be very bouncy and upbeat. The next was very soft and beautiful. The

harmonizing was done wonderfully. The words form this piece, Prayer of the

Children, were very meaningful which made the piece even more emotional and

memorable. The different type of pieces performed by this group kept the

audience on the edge of their seats, not knowing what to expect next, and

wanting more.

The ECU Men’s Ensemble was my favorite group. They were very entertaining and

fun. They sang songs from Brown Eyed Girl and Love Potion Number 9, to a song

about grits. The crowd was amazed. Clapping, laughter, and cheers came from both

the performers and the audience. The performers were all men in black tux’s, two

men on each mike. The performers all wore smiles and really got into what they

were singing. Different sounds were created by the snapping of fingers, and

noises were made by the men’s mouths themselves. The singers would freely walk

around the stage, encouraging the crowd to get involved by clapping our hands,

snapping our fingers, and singing along. The pitches and tones created by each

performer was amazing and showed great talent. I would pay to see this group

perform again and hope that some day I will be able to.

Blackbeard’s Ghost brought the concert back to a more formal atmosphere. The

choir sang pieces from Sweden, Norway, and more. They’re elegant but strong

voices were perfect for the last few pieces of the concert. The men and women

combined made the auditorium fill up with a sound that is so thrilling and

amazing, that I wondered how any human could make such an incredible noise. It

makes me want to become a singer. I find it so respectable to have such a talent

such as the performers I saw do.

The choral concert was a wonderful experience. Because of my increased knowledge

from music class, I feel like I had a better appreciation for the music and what

the performers were doing. It is not easy to do what they are doing, but the way

it was displayed in this concert shows that the singers have been working very

hard and long to do what is obvious that they love to do, and the audience loved

it too.



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