The spirit behind Bring the Sing the mass choral events that Classical MPR has hosted so far in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Duluth, Rochester, and Collegeville is to build community through singing at a time when cultural unity feels elusive.
Plus, Bring the Sing is fun.
On Oct. 14, Bring the Sing brought another community together as one voice, two cities famous for their choral traditions: Fargo and Moorhead. Led by Moorhead native and former Minnesota Music Teacher of the Year Joe Osowski, the event brought together singers from western Minnesota, eastern North Dakota, and elsewhere around the state for music of Mozart, a rousing spiritual, a love song by Minnesota composer Abby Betinis, and the anthem adopted by all Bring the Sings to this point, Mark Miller's "Draw the Circle Wide."
It all took place at one of the nation's undisputed choral hotbeds, Concordia College in Moorhead. Along with many singers from the college, North Dakota State University also contributed singers, and two of its ensembles, the Concert Choir and Madrigal Singers, offered performances of their own. Several other college and community choirs also took part, including vocalists from Minnesota State University (Moorhead), North Dakota State College of Science, Minnesota State Community and Technical College (Fergus Falls), the Fargo-Moorhead Choral Artists, and Great Plains Harmony. High school singers came from Fargo, West Fargo, and the school shared by the western Minnesota communities of Dilworth, Glynden, and Felton.
The event also broke new ground.
"The success of the vocal music programs that NDSU, MSUM, and Concordia College enjoy doesn't provide them much flexibility for collaboration," said Osowski, an alumnus of the Concordia Choir and the NDSU Concert Choir. "To my knowledge, they had never all participated in a collaborative concert together. My hope for holding Bring the Sing in Moorhead was to provide an opportunity for a collaborative celebration of these programs, which have richly cultivated the choral landscape in our country."
Listen to the Moorhead Bring the Singers via the audio player above.
ProgramMozart: Ave Verum Corpus
Betinis: Love Is Love
Ames: Let Everything That Hath Breath
Miller: Draw the Circle Wide
Bring the Sing returns to Rochester on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018. Watch ClassicalMPR.org for details.