Cary, NC — A major contributor to Cary’s entertainment scene before and also a bit during the COVID-19 pandemic are the many non-profit arts organizations in town.
To thank them for their efforts and to highlight upcoming programs, concerts and more in 2021, we’re highlighting a few of these organizations, beginning with the Concert Singers of Cary.
“The arts are a part of the lifeblood of any community, and through arts organizations, a community is enriched and elevated,” said Nathan Leaf, Artistic Director for the Concert Singers.
Mission & History of the Concert Singers
The Concert Singers of Cary was incorporated in October 1991 as an initiative taken at the recommendation of a citizens advisory committee tasked with expanding cultural arts programs in Cary. The first performance took place that same month for the dedication of what is now The Herb Young Community Center.
The goal at its inception was to provide an auditioned, year-round performing organization to serve Cary and provide opportunities for local singers. Still today, the Concert Singers are rooted in their goal of enhancing the community through the performance of outstanding choral music.
“Our auditioned choirs of over 100 voices offer musical performances featuring varied genres and creative collaborations with local and national musicians,” said Leaf.
According to Leaf, one of the greatest successes of The Concert Singers over the years has been its ability to be an active, dedicated and vibrant community organization. As a resident organization at the Cary Arts Center, the choral group is known for frequent collaborations with local cultural organizations and performance artists.
Throughout its history, The Concert Singers of Cary has teamed with The North Carolina Symphony, The North Carolina Opera Company, The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle. Plus, on more than 15 occasions, performances by The Concert Singers of Cary have been dubbed as “Classical Best Bets” by The News and Observer.
What’s in Store for the 2021 Season?
As with all performing arts organizations, the pandemic has completely changed the 2020-21 season for the Concert Singers.
“We had had to completely reinvent the way we handle our primary operations, namely rehearsals and performances. We are entirely virtual — everything is online,” said Leaf.
The next online presentation of the Concert Singers of Cary, “Where We Find Ourselves,” will stream on June 4.
See more on this particular show on the Concert Singers website.
As far as tech goes, the organization has adapted extraordinarily well, taking rehearsals to Zoom and creating a variety of fun and experimental approaches. These include virtual choirs, audio recordings, and a collaboration with the NC State Music Department, resulting in an interactive virtual reality musical performance experience called Brickyard Broadcast.
The Concert Singers also brought great joy during the 2020 holiday season with their 2020 virtual special, “Holiday Pops on the Town.”
Get Involved with the Concert Singers of Cary
“The arts create opportunities for communities to create a shared experience and weave a unified fabric of which all can be a part,” said Leaf.
For anyone wishing to be a part of the choral group, community auditions are held twice a year, in January and August. Leaf also invites everyone to attend concerts which remain online for now, but the group looks forward to in-person when that becomes possible again.
For the rest who don’t necessarily have pipes of gold, the Concert Singers also have involvement opportunities with their board of directors, community engagement and donation opportunities. Being a registered 501(c)(3) organization, the Concert Singers are able to accept personal donations as well as sponsorships from local businesses.
Story by Ashley Kairis. Photos courtesy of Concert Singers of Cary and Duke University.
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