Cardinal Singers and Concert Choir perform in Rhea Miller

The Cardinal Singers perform songs inspired by Shakespeare’s works. Vanguard Photo | Bridget Cusick

The SVSU choirs performed on Monday, April 15, at 7:30 p.m. in the Rhea Miller Recital Hall.

The show, titled “The Food of Love,” featured music inspired by the works of William Shakespeare. Choir director Kevin Simons curated a collection of nine songs that were performed by SVSU’s two choir classes: the Cardinal Singers and the Concert Choir.

Adam Coggins, a music junior, sings bass in both choirs.

“I’ve been in Concert Choir for three years and Cardinal Singers for two,” Coggins said. “I love being a part of choirs, so I decided to take both of these classes, and I really enjoy them.”

Coggins is not the only student who feels this way, as many other students are members of both choirs.

The singers were accompanied by three talented instrumentalists.

Susan Mercy and Emily Kinnicutt were featured as violinists on a number of songs, while Kevin Cole, SVSU’s guest musical theater artist in residence, played the piano and harpsichord.

Amanda Stamper was originally supposed to be the featured pianist for the performance, but the musician encountered some family issues on the day of the show.

“Luckily, our artist in residence, Kevin Cole, was available to step in for her,” Coggins said.

Cole is a world-renowned jazz pianist, and he played during the concert as if he had been practicing with the choirs for the entire rehearsal process.

The Cardinal Singers is a choir made up of 15 students, while Concert Choir features about 40 students. Both groups are open to students of any major, but Cardinal Singers is audition-based, while Concert Choir is not.

The choirs flourished under the direction of Kevin Simons, creating an evening of complex and beautiful harmonies and expertly performed solos.

“The most challenging song from this concert was ‘Full Fathom Five,’” Coggins said. “It’s very difficult because it’s so harmonically close, and capturing the emotion of the piece is very important.”

“Full Fathom Five” was a standout number, as it featured dramatic formation changes to elevate the vocal performance.

Audience member Rebekah Wright came to the show to support her coworker and friend, who is a soprano in both choirs. She was very impressed with what she heard.

“The ‘Full Fathom Five’ number was my favorite,” Wright said. “I really thought that was cool how they walked around and moved. It was very impressive.”

The music department will be presenting the Valley Steel Percussion Ensemble in concert on Tuesday, April 23, and a brass quintet concert on Wednesday, April 24.

Both shows are free and open to the public.

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