The John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center welcomed the world renowned Vienna Boys Choir on Tuesday, March 6.
The most celebrated choir in the world took stage under the direction of choirmaster Manolo Cagnin. Cagnin introduced himself and welcomed the sold out audience. The choir consisted of 23 prepubescent boys.
The talents of the boys were masterfully showcased in a wide range of classics. The first half of the performance included 12 pieces. Not only could the boys sing, but many of them played musical instruments as well. During one solo, members of the choir brought out a flute, oboe, cello and tambourine.
“Widerspruch,” a German piece written by Franz Schubert, appeared to be a struggle for some boys. Many pieces were not in their native language and some ended up distorting their faces to make the correct pronunciations.
After a brief intermission, the boys were back on the stage. The last half of the performance was more upbeat and interactive. The different sounds that the young performers could make with their voices had the audience on edge and wanting more. “Yell,” written by Yoshiki Mizuno, sounded like hundreds of little bells ringing. In reality, it was the overlap of 23 voices.
“Miniwaka” or “The Moments of Water,” written by Raymond Murray Schafer, sounded like the ribbit of frogs and the drip of water. As the song progressed, the water started to sound like it was rushing and beating up against rocks.
Toward the end of the performance the choirmaster pulled one of the boys for a solo, which ended up being “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” from “The Lion King.” Children and grandparents were seen singing along to the well-known tune.
Many children in the audience were blown away by the age and talent of the Vienna Boys Choir.
“These guys are incredible. It is amazing what God-given talent they have,” said Richard Creasy, 10.
A local sixth grader had a hands-on learning experience. “We are learning how to harmonize in school and this is a great example of that. I was able listen to the different pitches and understand what talent they really have,” said Madison Rodgers, 11.