Home | TODAY'S NEWS AND HOOTS | Vox Femina Presents "Half the Sky" Choral Concert 3/10/13 in Hollywood + Concerts in May & June 2013

Vox Femina Presents "Half the Sky" Choral Concert 3/10/13 in Hollywood + Concerts in May & June 2013

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A choral concert celebrating the courage and compassion of women around the globe.

Vox Femina Los Angeles continues its 16th season with Half the Sky: Voices of Women Worldwide, a choral concert celebrating the courage and compassion of women around the globe, on Sunday, March 10, 2013 at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Hollywood.  

The event features Vox Femina's first installment of an exciting musical cycle, which explores culture and stories of women around the globe.  Children from Creative Planet School of the Arts will dance on stage with Vox for "Beneath the African Sky," a choral piece written by Paul Caldwell and Sean Ivory that was inspired by genocide survivor Clemantine Wamariya's childhood spent in African refugee camps.  A new composition by Haitian-American Sydney Guillaume will also be featured.  The event starts at 3:00pm. Tickets are $25 during presale, $35 at the door.  Group rates and student discounts are also available.  Church of the Blessed Sacrament is located at 6657 West Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood, CA 90028.  Public parking is available at lots adjacent to the church.  Limited street parking is also available.  For tickets and additional information, please see www.voxfeminala.org.

Half the Sky: Voices of Women Worldwide –

Half the Sky: Voices of Women Worldwide is the first installment of an exciting musical cycle for Vox, which explores culture and stories of women around the globe.  The book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, written by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, inspired the cycle.  Vox Femina's Artistic Director, Dr. Iris Levine, saw an opportunity to highlight the ways women have created a more beautiful world by, at times, turning oppression into opportunity.

"I've always been encouraged by how women support each other through struggles and celebrate each others' successes," says Dr. Iris S. Levine.

This powerful afternoon of music includes a newly commissioned work by Haitian-born Sydney Guillaume, a distinctive composer who blends his cultural roots with his American upbringing.   His piece, Chapo Pou Fanm, is a lyrical hymn to women around the globe, with an upbeat, martial feeling similar to a military parade march, showcasing women's strength and natural leadership in song.  Including solos and combining lyrical lines with fun-to-sing percussive rhythmic figures, Guillaume had Vox Femina in mind as he wrote the piece.

Over the afternoon, the women of Vox Femina will sing in ten different languages, representing a variety of cultures and ethnicities, as they give voice to women from a global perspective.

Additional Vox Femina Performances  –

Saturday, March 16, 2013 [8:00pm] & Sunday, March 17, 2013 [3:00pm] – Awakenings – with Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles – Vox will join with the fabulous men of GMCLA for two concerts.  First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, 540 South Commonwealth, Los Angeles, CA 90020

Saturday, May 18, 2013, 7:00pm – Definitely Deco – Monte Carlo Night at the Black Bottom Club – An exciting evening of gambling, food, drink, entertainment, and live and silent auctions. Location TBA.

Saturday, June 15, 2013, 8pm – It's Our Party – A sweet/sassy 16 party. Zipper Concert Hall – The Colburn School, 200 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Vox Femina Background –

Vox Femina Los Angeles is a women's ensemble dedicated to the performance of quality choral literature from a world perspective with an emphasis on music by women composers.  The chorus was founded in 1997 by Artistic Director Dr. Iris S. Levine.  The 21 founding members of Vox Femina first appeared on stage as guest artists with the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles in April 1997.  Since that time, Vox has quickly established itself as one of the premier women's choruses in the United States with a demonstrated ability to perform highly eclectic repertoire, some of which can be heard on several recordings.  It actively fulfills its mission through an aggressive schedule of performances, touring and educational outreach. Vox has demonstrated its support and encouragement of living composers through commissioning new works.  Auditions are held every August.

Dr. Iris S. Levine, Artistic Director –

Nationally recognized for her excellence in choral conducting, Dr. Iris S. Levine is the founder and artistic director of Vox Femina Los Angeles, the city's premier women's chorus. Through her extensive experience with women's choral literature and innovative concert programming, Dr. Levine has charted Vox Femina's 16-year journey, building its prominence in the choral community by way of numerous appearances at ACDA (American Choral Directors Association) conventions, and over 100 appearances throughout the United States, Mexico and Canada.

Dr. Levine earned her Doctorate in Choral Music from the University of Southern California under the tutelage of Rod Eichenberger and James Vail, and she holds a Master's degree in Choral Conducting from Temple University in Philadelphia, where she studied with Alan Harler.  Dr. Levine is Department Chair and Professor of Music at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona.  She is also the Artistic Director for the Master Chorus at Stephen S. Wise Temple, where her choral arrangements are often performed.  Dr. Levine is also National Chair of the ACDA Repertoire and Standards Committee for Women's Choirs and is highly sought as a guest clinician and adjudicator for choral festivals throughout the country.

Sydney Guillaume – 

Originally from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Sydney Guillaume (b. 1982) blends his cultural roots with his American upbringing to create a sound unlike anything heard before.  The Miami Herald praised his work for its "impressive maturity and striking melodic distinction."  Guillaume, a University of Miami graduate, has been commissioned to compose new works for many nationally-recognized ensembles including Seraphic Fire, The Miami Children's Chorus, and The Westminster Chorus.  His music has been performed at ACDA, All-State conventions, and abroad.  Beyond choral music, Guillaume also writes film scores for Loyola Productions, a non-profit creative media company, aiming to promote awareness of cultural and social justice issues. Guillaume currently resides in Los Angeles.  http://www.sydneyguillaume.com

Creative Planet School of the Arts – 

Creative Planet School of the Arts is a private arts magnet dedicated to providing a space for accelerated academic training, intensive arts education, creative expression, and community outreach. Creative Planet, a non-profit private elementary school, provides students with personalized, high-energy instruction in both academics and the arts including all areas of dance, acting, music and visual arts. The school offers an accelerated approach to K-8th grade academia that believes all students have the ability to achieve high levels of education when given the self-esteem, discipline, and opportunity to excel in a safe, nurturing and positive environment. Creative Planet holds to the belief that students who are well rounded in the arts have higher levels of self-esteem, become outgoing leaders in high school and college, developing creative tools to tackle whatever they pursue in life.  Students of any race, color and national or ethnic origin are admitted.   http://www.cpsoa.org

Church of the Blessed Sacrament – 

Founded in 1904, Church of the Blessed Sacrament was the first Catholic Church in Hollywood, built by the community on land donated by Marie Drouet in the early 1900s. The first mass was held in the church on September 12, 1904 and was attended by 14 adults and 21 children.  Today, there are 4,500 families in the parish.  The church's mission includes a celebration of  "our individual, family, ethnic and cultural diversity."  As it has for the past century, Blessed Sacrament continues to serve the greater Hollywood community through outreach to the homeless, ESL classes and Legal and Health Clinics.  On February 2, 1986, the establishment of the Archdiocesan Ministry with Lesbian and Gay Catholics was announced with the purpose of serving the spiritual needs of lesbian and gay Catholics and their families.  The Church sponsors a regular music series and Vox Femina is honored to have been invited to perform in this beautiful space. http://blessedsacramenthollywood.org/church/index.htm

Vox Femina –

Vox Femina Los Angeles gives women voice through the performance of quality choral literature.  Diverse in culture, age, race, belief, and sexual identity, Vox is a chorus committed to commissioning new works and raising awareness about issues that affect the family of women.  Through music, the chorus aims to create a world that affirms the worth and dignity of every person.

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