Lessons from Motherhood: Loving the Audience

by Kala Pierson, SFCA Composer-Not-in-Residence 2013-14 A parent becomes intensely attuned to her baby’s sounds, both for practical reasons (guessing right about a whimper can stave off screaming) and for more abstract ones (communicating outside traditional language can be pretty amazing). For musicians and non-musicians alike, parenthood will probably be life’s most intensive ear-training lesson.

Tracing the Origins of Sephardic Folk Songs

By Joseph Smeall-Villarroel, tenor This concert (Omens, Dreams & Curses) set features a trio of Sephardic Jewish folk songs. As a chorister who claims both Jewish and Latin-American ancestry, I think it worthwhile to give some background on the intersection of Jewish culture with Spanish / Latin-American culture, which is what brings SFCA the songs entitled

Composer Eleanor Aversa Interview

The following is an interview of 2013 Composer-Not-in-Residence Eleanor Aversa by SFCA on February 1st, 2013. SFCA: How come you know so much about science? When did that start in your life? I think that people who read your bio and get to know you as an arts & letters person (language, music, teaching, translating,

Thoughts on "Sound Patterns"

By Deborah Underwood, SFCA singer. When SFCA singers open a new piece of music to rehearse, we expect to see, um, musical notes. So I was a bit bemused to find Pauline Oliveros’ Sound Patterns devoid of specific pitches. Instead, it’s a series of carefully-notated ssshs, clicks, pops, brrrrrrings, and other noises. Some are voiced

Freed From Words

by 2013 Composer-in-Residence Mark Winges. Composers write choral music for a lot of reasons. Leaving aside the immediate practical benefits (instant fame and fortune, the promise of excellent cookies at post-concert receptions), at the top of my list is that I love the sound of a chorus. “Love” in my case refers to both listening

"Where do you FIND all this stuff?"

By Magen Solomon, Artistic Director. “Where do you FIND all this stuff??” is the most common post-concert question I get asked. And there’s a good reason for it: SFCA programs are unabashedly eclectic and quirky, and they always include a few pieces that even the most well-rounded choral musician has never heard. It starts with