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Men’s and Women’s Choir join together for collaborative performance


On Nov. 15, the Men and Womens’ Choirs at Texas State will stand side-by-side for a concert in the Performing Arts Center Recital Hall.

Craig Aamot, VocaLibre and Texas State Men’s Choir conductor, said he will be directing the Men’s Choir while Lynn Brinckmeyer, Professor of Music and Choral Music Education director, will be leading the Women’s Choir.

Caitlyn Durkee, music education freshman, is one of the women singing in the concert. She said each performer is looking forward to sharing the stage with their fellow Bobcats.

When preparing for performances, Durkee said she takes all of her nervous energy and channels it into something productive. She also makes sure to express the pieces facially and musically.

Durkee said she is excited for audience members to see the wide variety of songs.

“We have a couple of spiritual pieces which are going to be really cool and they have a really unique style that, personally, I really enjoy,” Durkee said. “We’re also singing Mozart with the Men’s Choir.”

George Sani, pre-music education freshman, said he is excited to perform Mozart.

“It’s Mozart, so it’s light, it’s supposed to be tasteful, it’s supposed to be really classical,” Sani said. “It’s this gigantic piece where both the Men and the Women’s Choir come together, and you’ll get to see every single voice part show off in their own way.”

Sani said the Men’s Choir would also have a few performances of their own.

“We’re working on an Appalachian carol and an Irish piece,” Sani said. “The Appalachian carol is ‘Pretty Saro’ and the Irish piece is ‘Down by the Salley Gardens.’”

Brinckmeyer said many of the pieces the Women’s Choir will be performing were originally written in the twentieth century.

She said each choir has been preparing for the concert since the semester began.

“Some pieces we learn very quickly, and some pieces need to be broken down into little sections and sort of—we call it ‘wood-shedding,’ where we’ll work on notes and rhythms,” Brinckmeyer said.

Brinckmeyer said the variety of voices on stage makes for a truly magical performance.

“The ladies have a variety of different talents and experiences in the ensemble because we have people who are not music majors all the way up to graduate students and women who have been to All-State,” Brinckmeyer said.

Brinckmeyer said the concert will feature five pieces in a different language, which was an obstacle many of the performers had to overcome while learning their music.

“Almost half the concert has different languages, so if the ladies are unfamiliar with the language, then that’s a whole other layer of complexity,” Brinckmeyer said. “So it depends on each song, how we break it down and learn it.”

With each new piece in the performance, Sani said he starts from square one and slowly works his way though the song.

After the performers familiarize themselves with each song, Sani said Aamot will break them into groups according to bass, tenor, or treble sections.

“We start with learning the actual notes of the song, just having the groundwork,” Sani said. “And then we work on things like articulation, keeping it light, making sure that it sounds musical instead of just people hammering out notes.”