Los Angeles Children’s Chorus (LACC), led by highly regarded Artistic Director Anne Tomlinson and acclaimed for its agile bel canto sound that has made it one of the nation’s most in-demand children’s choirs, announces its 2014-15 season, entitled “Celebrating American Song…California and Beyond.” It spotlights the music of American composers, including several with strong California ties, among them John Adams, Philip Glass, Kirk Meechem, Terry Riley, David Montoya, Nick Strimple, Mark Grey, Wayne Brisbee, Abbie Betinis, David Brunner, Charles Ives, Brian Holmes and David Conte. The chorus also appears in a series of high profile engagements, continuing to build upon its longtime partnerships with such leading music organizations as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Los Angeles Master Chorale, Jacaranda and Pasadena Symphony. Further expanding its reach, LACC makes its debut at Stanford University’s recently opened Bing Concert Hall, considered one of Northern California’s most outstanding new venues, celebrates the 50th anniversary of the beloved musical Fiddler on the Roof with Los Angeles’s historic Wilshire Boulevard Temple, and hosts Windsbacher Knabenchor, Germany’s famed boys choir. LACC, which serves children ages 6 to 18 from 50 Southland communities, is lauded as “one of the world’s foremost children’s choirs” (Pasadena Star News), and described as “hauntingly beautiful” (Los Angeles Times), “astonishingly polished” (Performances Magazine), “extraordinary in its abilities” (Culture Spot LA), and “one heck of a talented group of kids” (LA Weekly).
Among numerous season highlights, LACC offers its signature Winter Concert (December 7 and 14, 2014) and Spring Concert (May 3 and 10, 2015) at Pasadena Presbyterian Church, featuring works by eminent American composers from Boston’s William Billings, who lived and composed during the nation’s infancy from 1746 to 1800 and is considered America’s first choral conductor, to Abbie Betinis, a Minnesota-based 2009 McKnight Fellow whose music has been hailed by The New York Times as “inventive” and “richly melodic.” The programs’ a cappella pieces and works with minimal accompaniment provide a special opportunity
to hear the choir’s striking sound in its purest form.
With the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the chorus is featured at the Hollywood Bowl this summer in “John Williams: Maestro of the Movies,” conducted by five-time Academy Award-winner John Williams (August 29 and 30, 2014). In the second half of the season, LACC collaborates with the orchestra and guest conductor Susanna Mälkki on the West Coast premiere of a new multi-media production of Alice in Wonderland by Unsuk Chin with libretto by David Henry Hwang, crafted from Lewis Carroll’s beloved tale, and multi-media component by innovative artist Netia Jones at Walt Disney Concert Hall (February 27, 2015).
LACC also hosts a choral exchange and concert with the illustrious German boys choir Windsbacher Knabenchor, at Pasadena Presbyterian Church (October 26, 2014). It also joins forces with the Wilshire Boulevard Temple, Los Angeles’s oldest temple, to celebrate the 50th anniversary the hit musical Fiddler on the Roof (November 16, 2014), and appears with the renowned Los Angeles Master Chorale, led by Artistic Director Grant Gershon, and Musica Angelica Baroque Orchestra in back-to-back historically informed performances of Bach’s seminal St. Matthew Passion at Walt Disney Concert Hall (January 31 and February 1, 2015). With Jacaranda, the celebrated music series presented at the First Presbyterian Church of Santa Monica, LACC is featured on its “Winter Dreams” program, singing Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols (December 6, 2014). It also rings in the season as part of the Pasadena Symphony’s popular “Holiday Candlelight” concert led by conductor Grant Cooper at Pasadena’s All Saints Church (December 13, 2014). Continuing to expand its reach, LACC presents the world premiere of a commission by Mark Gray, with libretto by Niloufar Talebi, at its highly anticipated debut at Stanford University’s Bing Concert Hall (April 19, 2015). It is also involved in a number of significant community partnerships with Verdugo Young Musicians Association, Kidspace Children’s Museum and ArtNight Pasadena, among others.
“These incredible artistic collaborations in conjunction with LACC’s own concert series provide a remarkable opportunity for our young singers to perform an extremely broad range of repertoire with some of the world’s leading conductors,” says Tomlinson, currently in her 22nd season with the organization. “These appearances go hand-in-hand with LACC’s comprehensive music education program that encourages a deeper appreciation of the choral art and the shared experience of creating fine choral music.”
The chorus’s level of excellence is particularly notable because, unlike adult choirs, each fall marks a new beginning – literally – for LACC as its members advance through LACC’s training ensembles to its premier Concert Choir, elite Chamber Singers and innovative Young Men’s Ensemble.
For children interested in joining LACC’s ranks, open auditions for the renowned chorus take place on June 4-7, 2015, at Pasadena Presbyterian Church. No previous training in music or singing or audition preparations are required. Auditions for the Young Men’s Ensemble take place in mid-August.
LACC also offers its popular program First Experiences in Singing, eight- to ten-week, non-auditioned, non-performing classes that introduce six- and seven-year-old children to the wonders and excitement of singing and music. Classes are held at Pasadena Presbyterian Church each fall, spring and summer.
LACC’s 2014-2015 concert season and core educational program are made possible, in part, by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, and the Pasadena Arts & Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division. LACC is also deeply grateful to generous lead patrons Helen and Peter Bing and the hundreds of individual, foundation and corporate donors whose dedicated support sustains the chorus’s annual choral music program for children.
Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, founded in 1986 and led by Tomlinson since 1995, LACC serves more than 400 children through six choirs and a First Experiences in Singing program. LACC, recipient of Chorus America’s 2014 Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence, the nation’s highest choral honor, has toured North and South America, Africa, China, Australia and Europe. It appears on the Los Angeles Master Chorale’s critically acclaimed Decca recording A Good Understanding, and Plácido Domingo’s Deutsche Grammophon recording Amore Infinito (“Infinite Love”). The subject of a trilogy of documentaries by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Freida Mock, LACC is featured in the Academy Award-nominated Sing!, about a year in the life of the choir; Sing Opera!, documenting the production of the LACC-commissioned family opera Keepers of the Night; and Sing China!, chronicling its groundbreaking tour to China just prior to the Beijing Olympics. LACC has performed with John Mayer on NBC’s “The Tonight Show” and has also been featured on BBC Radio, and Public Radio International’s nationally syndicated show “From the Top,” among other credits.
For additional information on LACC, please call (626) 793-4321 or visit www.lachildrenschorus.org.