Big Sing California Moves to Berkeley!
The Bay Area broadcast of Big Sing California that invites singing enthusiasts to sing-along to a choral concert by conductor/composer Eric Whitacre and the Los Angeles Master Chorale via a live feed, will now be held at the Cal Performance’s 1,978-seat Zellerbach Hall
on Saturday. July 21
. The previously announced venue was the Nourse Theatre in San Francisco.
The move to Berkeley and the larger hall provides more people with the opportunity to take part in the huge, free, state-wide singing event in the broader Bay Area. The venue also remains accessible to people in San Francisco with the Downtown Berkeley BART station located one block away and parking readily available. The daytime event on Saturday, July 21 takes place at 2 PM. Currently close to 900 people have registered for the San Francisco event. Everybody who has registered so far will be automatically changed over to the Berkeley venue.
Big Sing California is a community singing initiative that culminates in a concert in Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. The full 100-voice Los Angeles Master Chorale—the country’s preeminent professional choir—will perform from the stage and the 2,200-person audience in that hall will sing-along to selected works on the program. The concert will be conducted by Whitacre, Grant Gershon, the Master Chorale’s Kiki & David Gindler Artistic Director, and guest conductors Moira Smiley and Rollo Dilworth. Whitacre, who is currently the Master Chorale’s Swan Family Artist-in-Residence—and who has a huge global audience through his Virtual Choir projects, popular choral compositions, and Grammy Award-winning recordings—will also serve as the event’s host. The Los Angeles live event reached capacity in just two days. Live feeds will take place during the concert, connecting the participants in the hub cities to Whitacre and the Master Chorale in Los Angeles and the concert will be livestreamed, enabling people worldwide to join the event.
Zellerbach Hall is one of five satellite venues across the state where more singers will join the performance experience by viewing the concert on large screens and singing from the audience. Hub leaders drawn from the local choral communities have been engaged to coordinate the events and rehearse the singers leading up to the performance day.
People can register online now at lamasterchorale.org/big-sing-california
to attend any of the five hub broadcast venues, to create their own community hub, or register to participate from their home via the livestream. Once capacity has been reached at the venues, a wait-list will be created for each venue and ticket vouchers will be distributed 10 days prior to the performance.
In addition to providing ticket registration for the live events, the Big Sing California website enables participants to order the Big Sing California music book featuring the scores and lyrics for the songs they will sing, giving them the chance to learn and practice them before the event. The website also features video tutorials presented by singers of the Los Angeles Master Chorale demonstrating the four voice parts (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) of the songs. Guest artist Moira Smiley also presents a body percussion tutorial.
The songs selected for the participants range from straightforward sing-alongs such as Lean On Me
, This Land Is Your Land
, and Hey Jude
, to choral works by Eric Whitacre and Morten Lauridsen, and arrangements by Moira Smiley and Rollo Dilworth. The program also features an exclusive arrangement of Pentatonix’s Sing
by Grammy Award-winning arranger Ben Bram (Pitch Perfect
) created especially for Big Sing California.
A rehearsal for Bay Area participants will be held on Thursday, July 19 at the First United Methodist Church, 625 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94301. The performance on July 21 will be preceded by a warm-up at 1:30 PM.
Big Sing California is the largest community project the Master Chorale has ever undertaken. The project was boosted by a $450,000 Exploring Engagement Fund grant from The James Irvine Foundation.
Big Sing California is made possible with lead support from The James Irvine Foundation. Major support provided by Terri & Jerry Kohl and Philip A. Swan. Additional support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Los Angeles County Arts Commission and the California Arts Council.