MRU choirs need more Sopranos
It’s a rare musical predicament.
Jean-Louis Bleau, the director of MRU’s Artio choir explains, “Unlike other choirs in the city…we have a shortage of sopranos.”
Sopranos are routinely plentiful in the choral world. There’s often an abundance of talented ladies willing to carry the melody, while choirs scrounge for supporting female voice parts and men’s voices. “Other choirs are struggling for guys to sing bass and tenor.” Bleau resounds, “Two-thirds of the choir are guys. We are unbalanced on the top-end, so we need some strong sopranos… especially sopranos that can sing high A’s.”
That’s a high order.
As the new Program Administrator for MRU Conservatory’s General and Orchestral Programs and director of Artio, Bleau has the perfect pitch for ladies who are interested, “The music we do is very challenging. We’re doing these aggressive style pieces like (Mozart’s) Dies Irae and Flame by Ben Parry.” The latter includes a two-minute finale featuring a staggered soprano section continuously singing a high A.
“People are always welcome to pop by and see what we do,” Bleau attests. “We have a couple extra chairs we set up in rehearsal.” When asked what the general reaction is of those who venture into the rehearsal hall, the director admits that most who come to listen stay to sing.
Artio will be seen next in concert with pianist Konstantin Shamray at the Bella Concert Hall on November, 22nd. Then, they will be featured in the MRU Conservatory’s holiday show Sounds of the Season on December 12th. If you have a high voice and a passion for choral music, perhaps you can join them.