On day 3 the choir and stringers awoke early in the morning to perform in worship at Centenary United Methodist Church. After the service, we ran to the bus to make our way down to Kentucky for an afternoon matinee. On our way, we experienced our first tunnel dance of the year. We soon arrived at the church and quickly warmed up for our 4 pm performance. After a successful performance, we were greeted with an amazing potluck dinner provided by the wonderful congregation of the church. With a longer evening, we were able to visit and get to know our audience and hosts for the evening. With a little more free time than normal, the singers and stringers are currently catching up on sleep and homework before we return to the road tomorrow.
After staying in our first home stays, we started to our second destination at Centenary United Methodist Church in Terre Haute, Indiana. This was an especially fun concert because we were joined by the Northview High School Advanced Choir, directed by Brenda Buchanan. Their choir was working on several pieces for Chicago, one of them being “Nyon, Nyon” by Jake Runestad which the we are also singing. Because of this coincidence, we were able to collaborate and sing together on this fun song. Not only did we have a fun concert, but had amazing home stays with some of us becoming “international performers” in Brazil, Indiana.
On February 24, the Castle Singers and Kammerstreicher set out for the first stop in Davenport, Iowa after a long week of midterms. The Singers and Stringers spent the first exciting day at St. Paul Lutheran Church with Chris Nelson as our host. While the Singers were rehearsing, Kammerstreicher and Dr. Tews visited Rock Island High School orchestra in Illinois to clinic and perform with the students. After a wonderful dinner provided by church members, we performed our first tour concert joined by a select group from the Rock Island Orchestra. The group played two songs they will be performing at Disney in March. One of the other highlights of the evening was the world premiere of Dr. Tews’ “A fishin’ apron cesspool.” This madrigal is written in “mad gab” and at first, glance looks like many random words strung together, but when it is sung, tells the tragic story of a princess and a fish. Kammerstreicher and Castle Singers are currently on their way to Centenary Methodist Church in Terry Haute, Indiana to perform their second concert.
The Wartburg College Castle Singers are not only thrilled to collaborate with members of Kammerstreicher for the second year in a row but also to have the ensemble’s director, Dr. Jacob Tews, traveling, conducting, and performing on their upcoming national tour. As the two chamber ensembles embark on a nine-concert recruitment and enrichment tour through the southeast, they are anticipating two separate programs connected by a late Baroque work, entitled In virtute tua, for chamber choir, two violins and continuo and the world premiere of Dr. Tews’ madrigal for voices and strings. In addition, the Castle Singers eclectic choral program includes Renaissance and modern madrigals, featuring Gerald Finzi’s My Spirit Sang All Day, a global set featuring a raga from South India, and a collection of folksongs, featuring Kenneth Jennings’ arrangement of Rise Up, O Men of God and René Clausen’s arrangement of Softly and Tenderly. The Singers will conclude their tour program with U2’s With or Without You and a Beatle’s set including In My Life, Yesterday, and Eleanor Rigby.