by Brian Hathaway
Normally, my “From the Risers” blog entries have been about my experience as a singer in The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay. Often, while standing on those risers, my thoughts go to wondering what we sound like. Countering the joy of singing with The Master Chorale is my wish to hear our ensemble as a member of the audience. It is a wish I must hold in abeyance as I rely on the feedback of others in the audience regarding our sound.
This year, The Master Chorale has created a new ensemble, The Master Chorale Ensemble Singers. Made up of 44 singers who are members of The Master Chorale, the Ensemble Singers are a concept whose time has come. The intent is to offer up a smaller ensemble to further present The Master Chorale brand with a goal of supporting our mission “….sharing the joy and power of choral music with new and existing audiences and singers”. The Ensemble Singers are particularly well suited to this part of our mission. A smaller ensemble expands the number of venues that The Master Chorale sound can fill while demonstrating choral works that are more suited to a smaller ensemble compared to a full symphonic chorus. There are also opportunities to expand the Chorale’s outreach to the community. When new audiences hear the special beauty that choral singing offers, they may be attracted to other performances, such as the ones we perform with The Florida Orchestra or our Master Chorale self-produced concerts.
If you would like to hear The Master Chorale Ensemble Singers, I invite you to attend one of The Florida Orchestra concert presentations of “The Planets” on May 1-3. The women of The Master Chorale will be performing with the orchestra as part of the Neptune segment. A special treat will be the opportunity to hear the Ensemble Singers in a pre-concert one hour before the Orchestra concert. Come one hour early and you will be able to “Let Your Spirit Soar." Trust me, you will find it to be “time well spent”!