LOS ANGELES (Newswire.com) – This month, the GRAMMY® Award-winning National Children’s Chorus (NCC), under the leadership of Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer and Associate Artistic Director Dr. Pamela Blackstone, commences Season 2022/23 entitled Resounding Voices.
Inspired by powerful experiences over the past year, the NCC chose to curate a deeply meaningful season that celebrates the power and potential of the human voice. “In planning Resounding Voices, we looked back with reverence at our Lincoln Center collaboration in May with the Ukrainian Zhayvir Choir. Performing Eric Whitacre’s Sing Gently in a half-live, half-digital immersive rendition of the piece that transported the audience to the streets of Lviv, our students from around the country joined hearts and voices with children from thousands of miles away, unified by our artistry and vision for a peaceful world,” said Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer. “In reflecting on that experience, and watching the world around us, our team agreed that voices truly matter; that speaking up is important; and when enough people join their voices behind something great they believe in, it shapes and changes our world for the better.”
2022/23 Season Overview
Beginning a full year of unique and unprecedented artistic initiatives, the National Children’s Chorus in September released its first major album on the Lexicon Classics label, featuring the poignant opera Brundibár, by Czech composer Hans Krása. Captured on smartphones by students and chamber orchestra across the country during quarantine in 2020, this magical recording can be streamed and enjoyed on Spotify and Apple Music. Written in 1938 and performed by youth in the Theresienstadt concentration camp from 1943-1944, the story of Brundibár celebrates the power of voices joining together in the name of justice and righteousness, ultimately prevailing over tyranny through the lens of a children’s fairytale.
Throughout December, students in all seven of the NCC’s Chapter Cities will celebrate the holidays with winter performances in Los Angeles, New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Austin, Dallas, and Boston. Drawing from more than 1,000 choristers nationwide, each performance will feature a mixture of voices from various cities, as the children share their musical achievements and make new friends along the way. A special appearance at Macy’s Herald Square in Manhattan, in addition to debut concerts in Dallas and Boston, headline the chorus’ list of festivities.
Repertoire for the NCC’s advanced Senior Division includes music that will be recorded in the summer of 2023 as the organization creates its first-ever holiday album, offering heartfelt expressions of the season from more than 15 cultures and traditions around the globe. The world premiere of Himig Pasko, commissioned by the NCC and written by Filipino-American composer George G. Hernandez, continues the chorus’ tradition of expanding the art form and solidifies its commitment to presenting music that reflects the rich diversity of its expansive membership. The Junior Division, comprised of students as young as five, will proudly sing eclectic programs, with each level challenged through exposure to new languages, sophisticated voice leading, and harmonic textures.
In February, the National Children’s Chorus excitedly takes the stage at Walt Disney Concert Hall in a tour de force concert performance, presented by the Los Angeles Philharmonic in collaboration with the American Youth Symphony. Under the baton of Maestro Carlos Izcaray, the NCC will sing Benjamin Britten’s colossal and deeply moving War Requiem. This work, completed in 1962, is considered to be one of the most significant pieces ever written for chorus, soloists and orchestra, as it depicts the haunting atrocities of warfare in the hopes of signifying the importance of global unity.
In mid-April, the National Children’s Chorus will perform in the National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade in Washington, D.C. The event will be the NCC’s 4th appearance in what has now become an annual tradition, featuring students from around the country who greatly value participating in one of the city’s most vibrant and exciting community celebrations. Televised across the nation, participants will sing rousing selections under the baton of NCC Principal Conductor Dr. Allan Laiño.
In May, students will bring this journey to a grand culmination of performances, once again in each chapter city, including the Senior Division’s all-city event at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium. Annual scholarship galas in Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. will also take place in 2023, infused with the theme of All You Need Is Love. Aligning with the NCC’s planned recording projects at Abbey Road Studios and AIR Studios in London, the chorus sets its sights on raising record funds for scholarship recipients while lending special tribute to The Beatles and praising the innovation they brought to music that continues to inspire.
In July, the National Children’s Chorus embarks on its 7th international tour to the United Kingdom with stops in Edinburgh, Wales and London. In addition to enjoying the cultural wonders of the itinerary, students of the Senior Division will sing in concerts along the way, collaborating with local choirs in dramatic concert settings. In London, the NCC will sing its premier performance of the tour where students will share the stage live with the world-renowned VOCES8. At the conclusion of the tour, the NCC will spend three full days at Abbey Road Studios and AIR Studios recording music for the organization’s planned holiday album that will be released on Spotify and Apple Music toward the end of 2023.
In August, the National Children’s Chorus will host its 3rd Vail Opera Camp, led by NCC Alumnus and GRAMMY® Nominee Johnathan McCullough, who serves as the organization’s Vail Opera and Operatic Studies Director. Students of the Senior Division will perform the comedic opera The Tinker of Tivoli at one of the most beautiful outdoor amphitheaters nestled at the base of the Rocky Mountains. Young opera campers will study acting, stagecraft, prop making, vocal pedagogy, opera history and the music of Rossini in what promises to be an exhilarating experience, combining top-level performance instruction with fun and thrilling activities in the beautiful outdoors of Vail.
“Looking ahead, Season 2022/23 significantly advances the mission of the National Children’s Chorus,” said Associate Artistic Director Dr. Pamela Blackstone. “Now more than ever, our vision is to bring children together with the singular goal of music as the ultimate medium for personal growth and self-realization. We know how important our work is within the lives of the NCC’s young artists, and strive to make our programs as accessible as possible as we continue building our educational programs.”
For more information on the National Children’s Chorus, visit https://nationalchildrenschorus.com
About the National Children’s Chorus
The GRAMMY® Award-winning National Children’s Chorus, under the leadership of Artistic Director Luke McEndarfer and Associate Artistic Director Dr. Pamela Blackstone, has quickly become one of the world’s leading children’s choirs. Among the most exciting and fastest-growing music institutions for youth in the nation, the chorus provides its unparalleled training to talented singers locally and abroad, with more than 35 choirs and 1,000 students based in the chapter cities of Los Angeles, New York City, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Austin, Dallas and Boston. Now in its second decade, the NCC’s groundbreaking Season 2022/23, entitled Resounding Voices, expands on the chorus’ recent success, featuring an array of special projects, demonstrating the organization’s firm commitment to eclectic programming, new music, world culture and extraordinary collaborations.
Source: National Children’s Chorus
SOCAN Foundation Announces Winners of Third Annual SiriusXM Black Canadian Music Awards
Recognizes Black Music Creators From Across Canada
The Black Canadian Music Awards were created to recognize and celebrate the artistic merit demonstrated by Black music creators of any genre. This year, SiriusXM Canada has doubled their support for the award, with the five selected winners each receiving a prize of $10,000 to support their career development
“What an honour to participate in amplifying Black creatives. So many of the submissions were incredible, making this the hardest jury process to date,” said Keziah Myers, Executive Director at ADVANCE Music Canada, and chair of the jury. “I learned of writers and composers that I didn’t know about, automatically looked up their projects, and it inspired me to think of ways to amplify them within the industry and provide more vehicles for opportunity. Congratulations to the winners!” Myers was part of the SOCAN Foundation committee that created the Black Canadian Music Awards, and she has also served as a jury member for the last three years.
This year the Awards had a record number of applications from artists across Canada, spanning a multitude of genres. Winners were selected by a jury and advisory council of prominent Black artists and industry leaders. Jury members include Keziah Myers (Executive Director at Advance), Nicolas Ouellet (Radio Host at Radio-Canada), Lord Quest (Executive Creative, Black Music at SOCAN), Marika Siewert (Recording Artist) and Wayne Samuels (President and CEO at Wired Management Inc).
“We’re so proud to help bring this program to life for a third year and to double the prize money for these incredibly talented and deserving recipients,” said Michelle Mearns, VP, Programming & Operations, SiriusXM Canada. “SiriusXM is committed to supporting Black Canadian artists and I can’t wait to see what these artists create in the future.”
Additional information on the Black Canadian Music Award recipients is below. Press photos for the five recipients are available here.
For additional information on the SOCAN Foundation and its programs, please visit socanfoundation.ca.
Black Canadian Music Award Recipient Biographies:
Adria Kain is a Toronto-based artist known for sharing raw and honest lived experiences through soulful melodies and thought-provoking lyricism. She came up through The Remix Project alongside DVSN’s Daniel Daley and Jessie Reyez. With an impressive vocal range and unique tone, the budding talent has garnered acclaim from tastemakers including Complex, Fader and CBC. Adria’s debut album, When Flowers Bloom, landed her a Polaris Prize nomination and a moving COLORS performance of her song “Only With Time“, which blew away the likes of TI, Lena Waithe, Rapsody and Joe Budden.
With a voice like “gravel on silk”, Brampton-born singer-songwriter AHI has learned to balance his instrument’s power across a colourful landscape of tightly-crafted lyrics, driving rhythms and catchy melodies, propelling him to the forefront of the contemporary Folk/Roots scene. From charting on Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon, to delivering captivating performances on CBS and NPR Tiny Desk and touring internationally with Mandy Moore and Milow for his latest studio release Prospect, AHI has quickly amassed over 60M streams worldwide. The album has earned AHI his second JUNO nomination for Contemporary Roots Album of the Year and his first-ever Polaris Prize nod, establishing him as one of Canada’s most exciting new voices.
Desarae Dee is a Toronto-based powerhouse pianist and multi-instrumentalist who has made significant waves in the Canadian music industry as an instrumental fusion artist since 2014. Known as “Toronto’s Queen of Vibes”, her passionate and meaningful sound combines a unique mixture of faith, soul, vulnerability, and divine balance. Desarae has an extensive resume that includes 21 singles and four project releases over the last eight years, regional touring, a feature on the cover of Spotify’s Fresh Finds Jazz playlist with her single “Care For You“, a feature on NPR Music’s Jazz Night On The List Spotify + Apple Music playlists with her single, “Meditation,” national and international media coverage and radio plays, and a recent Top 100 finish in the 2022 CBC Music Searchlight competition. She continues to blaze the trail in the name of instrumental music, while continuing to break barriers and forge a path for current and future Black women musicians in Canada.
Nonso Amadi is an Afro-R&B, soul singer-songwriter and producer from Nigeria. Nonso transformed into a sonic globetrotter after his move to Canada – leading him to fuse the soul and rhythm of Afrobeats with modern soft textures of R&B. With over 100 million streams to date, Nonso stands tall as a constantly evolving, textured lyricist able to translate Alte, Afro-fusion and hip-hop into his R&B-canvassed approach to storytelling, best represented on his 2019 EP Free, which features Afrobeats heavyweights Simi and Mr Eazi. Currently recording his debut album supported by Universal Music Canada, Nonso is determined to shed even more of his creative-skin.
In just a few years, rapper Zach Zoya has become a central figure in Montréal’s flourishing music scene. Raised in rural French-speaking Québec, he learned English by listening to American hip-hop, R&B and soul music. Zoya’s passion for songwriting and performance led him to pursue a career in music. In 2019, he signed with Universal Music Canada and began collaborating with some of the country’s biggest producers for his debut EP, Spectrum, which was released to critical acclaim and several award nominations. With the 2022 release of his sophomore EP No Love Is Ever Wasted, Zach has had two consecutive Top 40 radio hits, was crowned a YouTube Trending Artist on the Rise, and received three nominations at the 2022 Gala Dynastie Awards.
About SOCAN Foundation
Founded in 1992, the SOCAN Foundation is dedicated to fostering musical creativity and promoting a better understanding of the role of music creators in today’s society. The SOCAN Foundation is part of the SOCAN group of organizations, and guided by its own Board of Directors, which consists of composers, songwriters and music publishers, and reflects the variety of concert music and popular music genres as well as the geographic and linguistic regions of Canada. www.socanfoundation.ca
About SiriusXM Canada
Sirius XM Canada Inc., operating as SiriusXM Canada, is the country’s leading audio entertainment company. SiriusXM creates and offers ad-free music; premier sports talk and live events; comedy; news; podcasts; and exclusive talk and entertainment. SiriusXM is available in vehicles from every major car company, as well as on smartphones and all connected devices on the SXM App. For more information, visit siriusxm.ca.
SiriusXM radios and accessories are available from retailers nationwide and online at SiriusXM. In addition, SiriusXM Music for Business provides ad-free music to a variety of businesses. SiriusXM is also a leading provider of connected vehicles services, giving customers access to a suite of safety, security, and convenience services including automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle recovery assistance, enhanced roadside assistance and turn-by-turn navigation.
SiriusXM Canada has been designated one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies 13 years in a row and is currently a Platinum Club Member.
SOURCE SOCAN Foundation
New Single from Indie Singer-Songwriter Seth Hilary Jackson Shows Age Is No Barrier
“Few artists can put out such a high quality type of message and storytelling into a song” -Rethink Music
CLIFFSIDE PARK, NJ, January 13, 2023 /24-7PressRelease/ — Following his rock anthem “One Great Nation”, aimed at healing his country, indie singer-songwriter Seth Hilary Jackson, shifts to healing the spirit in his new single, “Young Enough to Know Better”.
I started to think, maybe I’m just too old to keep doing this. Then it hit me that I’m too young not to.
Maybe you can’t stop Father Time, but this song makes it clear that Father Time is not going to stop Seth Hilary Jackson from keeping the dream alive. Over a pendulum-like rhythm, the lyric reveals a foreboding awareness of mortality until the chorus announces itself with a burst of optimism leaving no doubt that anything is possible. “Sometimes, it seems like I’ve been following the impossible dream forever,” Seth says, “Coming up on my 67th birthday, I started to think maybe I’m just too old to keep doing this. Then it hit me that I’m too young not to. I hope this song can inspire anyone who has a dream. None of us knows how much time we have left. We might as well make the most of it.” Listen to the song here.
This isn’t the first time Seth has drawn on personal challenges as inspiration for his music. Part of what keeps him going is the hope that his music can encourage others facing similar issues to embrace the struggle and keep moving forward. His song, “Fear”, for example, describes a battle with anxiety. But Seth isn’t easily pigeonholed. His songs range from serious to sad to downright silly. His signature sound is a unique blend of classic rock, pop, and country.
A successful songwriter for more than 20 years, Seth has written for dozens of independent artists, and his songs have been featured in movies and TV shows. One of his proudest moments came when his tribute to a war hero, “Pfc Ross A. McGinnis,” led to a Presidential invitation to the White House.
Visit Seth’s website for more about Seth, his music, and upcoming events.
Row Town Music is an independent publishing company and record label.
Source: Row Town Music
MUSIC FROM THE MOTION PICTURE “WHITNEY HOUSTON: I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY” RELEASED BY RCA RECORDS ON DECEMBER 16
Ahead of the December 23 theatrical release of TriStar Pictures’ Whitney Houston biopic, Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody, RCA Records has dropped the official 35-song soundtrack, serving as a musical memoir of the cinematic voyage.
5-Song Soundtrack Contains Rare, Reimagined Versions of ‘Don’t Cry For Me’
Plus Original Versions & Special Renditions of Whitney Houston Songs Performed by Kygo, Lucky Daye, Samaria, SG Lewis, Jax Jones, and more
LOS ANGELES /PRNewswire/ — Ahead of the December 23 theatrical release of TriStar Pictures’ Whitney Houston biopic, Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody, RCA Records has dropped the official 35-song soundtrack, serving as a musical memoir of the cinematic voyage. Listen Here.
“This totally unique soundtrack album brings many of Whitney’s classics into 2023 and beyond. Contemporary, current and often scorching, if you love Whitney’s music, you must own this album!” says Clive Davis.
Featuring music spanning two decades of Houston’s legendary career, I Wanna Dance With Somebody (The Movie: Whitney New, Classic and Reimagined) includes nearly two hours of remixed and original versions of Whitney Houston songs, with special guest features by BeBe Winans, Clean Bandit, Kygo, Lucky Daye, SG Lewis, Samaria, Jax Jones, Leikeli47, P2J, Oxlade, Pheelz, and more.
“We are thrilled to be releasing the amazing 35-song soundtrack to the Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody film with RCA Records,” says Pat Houston, President of The Estate of Whitney E. Houston. “We think the fans will be excited to hear some incredible music they know and love, as well as some new never-before-released tracks, including ‘Far Enough’ and the incredible ‘Don’t Cry For Me,’ which ends the film.”
Last week, RCA announced the original soundtrack would include three rare versions of “Don’t Cry For Me” – a never-before-released a cappella, a full-length film version by Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins, and a reimagined recording by record producer Sam Feldt. Houston’s iconic performance of the song was made famous after a striking rendition at the 1994 Aids Project Los Angeles (APLA) benefit concert – a moment that would stun the audience and go down in history as one of the most memorable performances of Whitney Houston’s illustrious career.
“I am extremely honored and proud to have been asked to reimagine a track made by all-time legend Whitney Houston,” says Sam Feldt. “Being a key part of this unique movie’s soundtrack by turning this classic into a 2023 ready dance-pop banger is an absolute pleasure, and I can’t wait for the fans to hear it.”
“I’m beyond excited for the fans and the next generation of fans to experience the greatness of Whitney and what her voice meant and still means to all of us,” says Rodney Jerkins.
One of the most iconic and influential singers in music history, Houston sold over 200 million albums throughout her legendary career, to become one of the best-selling artists of the 20th century. Her self-titled debut album, Whitney Houston was one of the most acclaimed albums in modern recording history, spending 14 weeks at #1 on Billboard Top 200 and selling more than twenty-five million copies worldwide. The streak continued when Houston became the first female artist to debut at #1 on the Billboard 200 with her sophomore album, Whitney.
Together, the two albums spurred seven #1 singles with a catalog of hits that include, “Saving All My Love for You,” “How Will I Know,” “Greatest Love of All,” “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me),” “Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” “So Emotional,” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go.” A run that would lead Houston to become the only Black artist to earn three RIAA Diamond-certified albums.
On February 10, Legacy Recordings, in cooperation with The Estate of Whitney E. Houston, will release the icon’s first two studio albums on vinyl, featuring the original album packaging and an exclusive Target edition – both available for pre-order HERE.
I Wanna Dance With Somebody Soundtrack Tracklisting
- I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Whitney Houston & P2J)
- Don’t Cry For Me (Whitney Houston & Sam Feldt)
- Higher Love (Whitney Houston & Kygo)
- The Greatest Love Of All (Whitney Houston & Jax Jones)
- I’m Every Woman (Whitney Houston & SG Lewis)
- How Will I Know (Whitney Houston & Clean Bandit)
- I Love The Lord (Whitney Houston, BeBe Winans, Great John)
- Don’t Cry For Me (Darkchild Film Version)
- Honest (Heartbreak Hotel) [Whitney Houston & Lucky Daye]
- Okay (Whitney Houston, Oxlade, Pheelz)
- You’ll Never Stand Alone (Moto Blanco Remix)
- Love Will Save The Day (MATVEI Remix)
- Tomorrow (Whitney Houston & Samaria)
- Home (Live from The Merv Griffin Show)
- You Give Good Love
- Saving All My Love for You
- If You Say My Eyes Are Beautiful (Whitney Houston & Jermaine Jackson)
- Far Enough
- I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)
- So Emotional
- Where Do Broken Hearts Go
- Moment Of Truth
- I’m Your Baby Tonight
- The Star-Spangled Banner (Live from Super Bowl XXV)
- One Moment In Time
- I Will Always Love You (Live from The Concert for a New South Africa)
- Medley: I Loves You, Porgy / And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going / I Have Nothing (Live from The 21st Annual American Music Awards)
- Run To You
- Impossible Things (Whitney Houston & Leikeli47)
- Why Does It Hurt So Bad (from the “Waiting to Exhale” – Original Soundtrack)
- It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay
- My Love Is Your Love
- I Didn’t Know My Own Strength (Live from The Oprah Winfrey Show)
- Clive’s Message
- Don’t Cry For Me (A Cappella)
SOURCE RCA Records
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