Archive for August, 2015

Opening Ourselves to Experience

August 31st, 2015 by arouel16

“This is what choir is meant to feel like.” As cheesy as that nostalgic line may sound, this comment has stuck with me since Chamber Singers completed its weeklong intensive this Friday. After four days of sectionals, team building, vocology training, and straw phonation, the Chamber Singers have transformed into a well-oiled machine, equipped with superb sight-singing skills and prepared to tackle the new year. But apart from the exceptional strides we have made this week in technique and sound, I’m most astounded by how quickly we have been able to form a personal connection with one another. This year we welcomed eight new Chamber Singers to the ensemble, including two first-year students; and in just four days, we became a family. “How is this possible?” you may ask. While I think the cooperative nature of choral singing has certainly brought all of us closer, I believe it’s our vulnerability that has helped form our little community in such a short amount of time. By the end of the week, we were not afraid to miss a note or mispronounce a word because we trusted our fellow singers and, most importantly, because we felt comfortable in our own bodies and our rehearsal space. We opened ourselves to the experience; and in the process, we became a family.

-Adam Ouellet ’16

Choir Week: the Sequel

August 24th, 2015 by jdharris

Hello friends,

Allow me to introduce myself: Phillip, PJ if you must, Chamber Singer (tenor, natch), sophomore, awesome. I have some rather thrilling news I’d like to share with you. In the hopes of being as eloquent as possible, I thought you should know:



Starting tomorrow (“9 am sharp!”), Choir Week will officially begin. It’s the second (and counting) since director David Harris’ reign as choral maestro extraordinaire.

For those of y’all who are in the dark about Choir Week, it’s when your favorite collegiate choral ensemble gathers a week before classes to get to know each other, learn some nifty vocal techniques, and start learning our repertoire for the semester. The basic day-by-day formula goes as such: Warm up-sing-eat-play-sing-sing-sleep. Of course, it wouldn’t be Holy Cross Choirs without a few surprises, so you can count on Dr. Harris to shake things up on the reg.

Choir Week 2k14 was great for me, especially as an incoming freshman. David allotted plenty of time for both work and play, so by the end of it, I’d learned a whole lot about my voice and made more than a few friends to boot. This year, I’m excited to welcome the handful of new members, and explore some new music. I’ll also be leading sectional rehearsals for the first time ever. Pray for us.

Section leaders will undergo a crash course on leadership tomorrow, and the rest of Chamber Singers will join us on Tuesday. So, wish us luck, happiness, and healthy vocal chords.

The Choir’s fall semester is on its way!


~Phil Losquadro ’18

Face lifts and Rep fits

August 4th, 2015 by jdharris


As the summer comes to a close, so does a spate of new renovations on the choir room.  Essentially, the room got smaller so that the neighboring bathroom could get larger, but we did get a new storage area out of the deal, and will add a slightly new visual angle with risers focused toward the south facing windows (to be installed next summer).

I’ve also been hard at work landscaping the repertoire choices for the year.  Among highlights are some catches, madrigals, Brahms waltzes, staged opera and musical choruses, a new Stabat Mater by Jonathan David, some Schutz Passion, Christmas favorites, Bach’s “Magnificat”, Poulenc’s “Gloria”, several tunes from the world of pop culture (a little Cold Play, some Tennessee Ernie Ford, and maybe some Beatles for good measure), a dose of Stephen Foster and William Billings, a touch of Benjamin Britten, and a chance at several other collaborations that are forming in the heat-filled last days of summer.

The thing I love most about planning for this group is their flexibility, their keen insights, broad interests, and the sheer joy of making music with them.  Each concert is themed, of course, and the ones this year will have a more pronounced dramatic arc, giving the singers a little more to delve into, and the audience a little more to hang on to.

New rooms and new chances to explore life and learning through one of life’s greatest endeavors.  What more could an HC singer ask for?

For those of you with calendars out, the dates are:

Oct 23 8:00pm “Pa$$ion” St. Joseph Memorial Chapel

Nov 19 8:00pm “Love and The Fire” Brooks Hall (Chamber Singers)

Dec 10 8:00pm “Lessons and Carols”  St. Joseph Memorial Chapel

March 19 7:00pm  “Reflections” (part of the Major Works Series) St. Joseph Memorial Chapel

April 22 8:00pm “Lights Will Guide You Home” Brooks Hall


~David Harris, Choir Director