Monday, May 12, 2014

The Arrival and the Departure

The portion of our tour in Ottawa had a sense of dual sense of arrival and departure. One of the most poignant moments from the weekend was when the Cantata Singers of Ottawa sung a farewell song for Michael Zaugg. Their conductor, Amy Henderson, took to the podium and Pro Coro quickly scrambled to get off the risers so the CSO could have their moment with Michael.

Many of us sat in the front few pews and off to the side to witness the moment of choral intimacy. They sang what they could not speak. I could hear the quiet sobs of Pro Coro choristers beside me, there were some CSO choristers discretely wiping away tears, or choristers who needed to discontinue singing in order to compose the emotional turbulence in their voice. I found my eyes beginning to fill with moisture as I watched them singing. The significance of Michael's nine years increased with every note the choir sang. It was both heartbreaking and heartwarming to see a performance of this nature. It made me wonder if Pro Coro would be singing such a song in 10 years for Michael. There are so many different phases in life. I felt honored to be witness at such a significant transitional moment in a group's history. It is evident that the Cantata Singers had a wonderful run with Michael at the helm of their choir; however, I am also excited to see the development of Pro Coro in the future.

The Ottawa weekend wasn't all sad departures though. Ottawa had some gorgeous summer weather, which meant sunshine filled walks along the Rideau canal, sipping iced coffees in courtyard patios, and good local eateries all around. I got to connect with blog readers within the Cantata Singers of Ottawa and The Canadian Chamber Choir, reconnect with familiar choral and blogging faces I had met at Podium 2012, an old highschool friend, and even an Arts writer and fellow chorister I know from Sound + Noise.

Now that my Ottawa adventures are completed, it is time to focus on what the next phase of our Pro Coro tour will bring in Halifax. There will be much more music making to be had and many more people to meet! Stay tuned readers and keep your eyes peeled for me if you are attending Podium 2014.

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