After a two-year hiatus forced by COVID lockdowns, the Muskoka Music Mix chorus is very happy to get together with a live audience for their 31st “Night of Harmony” performance on August 20 at the Algonquin Theatre.
As always, the chorus brings a top-caliber group to enhance the show. This year, the guest artists are Cruisin’, a five-man a cappella vocal band. Cruisin’ provides audiences with a humorous, enjoyable and wonderfully captivating musical presentation. They give a fresh approach to classic songs that span the range from the golden age of Doo-Wop, Rock & Roll and Gospel right up to the music of the present. Using only five unaccompanied voices, Cruisin’ combines humour, audience participation, and dynamic harmonies to leave its audience smiling, humming and thoroughly entertained! While primarily a cappella, the group will bring out guitars and add percussion for some songs to give a terrific variety performance
“The past two years have been difficult for singing groups, with restrictions on public performances, and even affecting our ability to hold rehearsals,” says Dan Vanderveer, VP Performance for the group. “Our concerns for the health of our members prevented us from practicing together until earlier this year, which has been very frustrating for all of who just want to sing! Music Director Frank Berg added “When we finally did all get-together, we all started out wearing masks, which not only muffles the sound, but it doesn’t allow singers to watch one another to really synchronize voices. Plus, maintaining social distancing makes it harder to hear all of the other voices clearly. But, we persevered, and are now ready to put on a show!”
The chorus had tried practicing virtually using Zoom, but technical issues make it impractical to truly sing as a group. “We did get together via Zoom to sing along with learning tracks, but it is not the same as singing in person”, said Ken Koehler, President. “We are still using Zoom to allow anyone who is away to participate, or to review coaching from each rehearsal session.”
On the bright side, the chorus has been able to fully integrate female singers into the chorus, having made the change from the all-male Muskoka Music Men to become the Muskoka Music Mix. One more reason for the show title, Happy Together!
Tickets for the show are $30 for adults or $15 for students, and are available at the theatre box office, by phone at (705) 789-4975 or online at www.algonquintheatre.ca.
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