A cappella meets aboriginal in unique collaboration
You never quite know what to expect at a Camerata Nova concert. That's half the fun.
The end result is wonderful imagery on a canvas of choral sound.- Vince Fontaine, Indian City
They are closing the season with an innovative concert that combines a capella singing with traditional aboriginal drumming and chanting as well as First Nations rock and roll with guest artists Indian City.
Vince Fontaine is the leader of Indian City. He says the idea to do this came from some chance opportunities to work with Camerata Nova artistic director and resident composer Andrew Balfour in the past.
"The first time I worked with Andrew was at the Winnipeg Symphony's Indigenous Festival…. Imagine the pop fusion Song for the Sundancer stripped down and surrounded by wonderful, lush choral vocals," Fontaine described.
"That's the formula. That's the approach. The end result is wonderful imagery on a canvas of choral sound."
Mel Braun conducts Camerata Nova. He says the two groups managed to get together a number of times to work things out.
"I've had the pleasure of going through some of Vince's songs in great detail, figuring out the chord progressions and what we can do to fit in and around Vince's work and make something new out of it," explained Braun.
"Most of our performances are in churches," he continued. "At the West End Cultural Centre, it's a different acoustic where we'll all be slightly amplified. So it will be a different crowd but at the same time it's about reaching out and adding yet another style. Camerata Nova thrives on working with musicians from different traditions."
Fontaine is also excited about future possibilities based on this collaboration.
"We just want to reach out and show that we have a great musical community in Winnipeg," he emphasized. "One that we're all proud of."
Hear Red White & Unplugged on Thursday May 15 at the West End Cultural Centre, featuring Camerata Nova with Indian City.