The Kellogg Chamber Singers hosted a Thanksgiving-themed concert for the full-house audience members at the Music Recital Hall last Thursday.
It was a “thank you for today” kind of concert that showcased that concept with a series of themed songs alongside the special guests, the Diamond Ranch High School Stylus Singers, which was the first time they collaborated onstage together.
Cal Poly Pomona alumnus Carlos Cardenas (‘15) directed the Stylus Singers, who performed with director Professor Nike St. Clair’s Kellogg Chamber Singers.
“We’re a little familiar; they’ve visited our school before and we’ve seen them perform,” said Cardenas, who majored in music education and was part of the Kellogg Chamber Singers. “It was really cool because this the first time we were fully incorporated in an actual concert setting.”
The Thanksgiving-themed show entitled “This Abundant Life” kicked off with Diamond Ranch Stylus Singers performing their own set.
The high school group featured a comedy-skit form of performance in one of its set lists that left the audience amused due to its uncommon choir actions such as odd, yet comedic scenarios of the Stylus Singers freeze-framing with silly poses during the frequent halts of the song.
The Stylus Singers also had a highlight performance of a ukulele-driven a cappella performance that was only featured during that group and show.
Diamond Ranch Stylus Singers member Samuel Santos was one of those performers.
“We all sounded really well especially with the combined chamber choir,” said Santos, a senior Diamond Ranch High School student.
“Getting to know all the notes just like learning it because it became a lot of our homework so it was really nice to see our hard work pay off.”
The Kellogg Chamber Singers hosted the majority of the show after a brief intermission. Groups switched from the Diamond Ranch High School group to the CPP group.
The music group tends to perform some concerts for the holidays due to the limited quarter system schedule, but due to the semester system change, it gave them the chance to do this Thanksgiving-themed concert.
Audience members Alegandro Cerano and Robert Kochan got to see the Kellogg Chamber Singers and Diamond Ranch High School Stylus Singers.
“High school choir opened for them and they sang with them at the end which was something unique and they haven’t done something like that before,” said Cerano, a fourth-year civil engineering student. “I don’t think they’ve done a Thanksgiving-themed concert before so that was interesting.”
“This was my first show and again this is spectacular and the full spectacle and just the aero-acoustics here it is unbelievable to see a production like this,” said Kochan, a second-year graduate student in civil engineering environmental resources.
The Kellogg Chamber Singers’ full performance correlates with the theme of the show to the eventual full collaboration of the Diamond Ranch High School Stylus Singers which both groups prepared for and met Wednesday to do an actual performance together before the actual show.
Choir president Nicholas Bratcher was one of the performers.
“We brought out a lot more range and depth and color in this sound on stage today,” said Bratcher, a fifth-year music education student. “This was the first time we had a guest choir join us on stage with us so that was exciting.”
St. Clair connected with the Diamond Ranch High School Stylus Singers before, such as visiting them to give feedback on their performances as well as the eventual collaboration which occurred over the summer with St. Clair asking Cardenas about this idea.
“I am very, very proud of them; they did everything superbly, they executed all our musical ideas superbly; they were totally engaged — I couldn’t have been more proud of them,” said St. Clair, who also performs with the L.A. Master Chorale.
“We made music; it was fantastic.”
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