Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Auditions - Sing Along Messiah with VoiceScapes 2010

AUDITIONS - Jump start your singing career!
DECEMBER 19, 2010 at 2.30pm Knox United Church, Calgary

VoiceScapes, Calgary’s professional music collective, is holding auditions for Soprano Mezzo-soprano; Contralto; or Countertenor Tenor Baritone; or Bass-baritone to form the DEBUT QUARTET of singers for our Sing Along Messiah.

Qualifications: Singers may either be completing music studies or embarking on a professional vocal career.

Auditions: November 7th, 2010 from 1-5pm in Calgary
To apply and for further information, please contact:
Christina Jahn, Phone: 403-208-6094 info@voicescapes.ca
Application deadline: November 3, 2010

Successful applicants will have the opportunity to sing one or more arias at VoiceScapes’ Sing Along Messiah with VoiceScapes and a chamber orchestra of professional instrumentalists. In addition to an honorarium, Debut Quartet members will receive complimentary coachings on baroque style and interpretation prior to orchestral rehearsals.



VoiceScapes will produce their ninth annual Sing Along presentation of G.F. Handel’s Messiah in Calgary. We will present Messiah in a stylish, historically-informed performance.

A Sing Along Messiah is a performance where the audience is invited to sing along in the choruses. Other selections from the piece are performed in usual concert fashion, without audience participation. It is customary to do only a portion of Messiah for practical reasons, since Messiah in its entirety is typically around 3 hours in length. We will do the Christmas portion of Messiah (“Part the first”) and then highlights of the best choruses and arias from the remainder of the work, for a total of about two hours.

For our production, we have decided that the solo recitatives and arias will be done by 8-10 different soloists, comprising of VoiceScapes members, other professional guest soloists, and a “Debut Quartet” (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) of talented young singers who are currently studying or early in their singing careers.

It is our intent to make the VoiceScapes’ Sing Along Messiah a forum for talented young singers to perform alongside professionals. It is an opportunity for many of these young artists to perform Messiah for the first time in a historically-informed manner and in front of a large audience. Each singer would sing one to two arias (also with recitative, if applicable). Each soloist would be given rehearsal and coaching prior to the performance by the conductor and/or members of VoiceScapes, to help refine his/her performance and to learn more about baroque style, phrasing and ornamentation.

The 2010 VoiceScapes’ Sing Along Messiah will be under the direction of Timothy Shantz, conductor, with the participation of the VoiceScapes chamber orchestra (strings, 2 trumpets, organ). The Sing Along Messiah will take place in downtown Calgary, at Knox United Church, on Dec 19, 2010 at 2.30pm.


Any Alberta singer, who is currently studying or early in their professional singing career is eligible to audition for the Debut Quartet.


If you wish to audition to be a member of the Debut Quartet, please forward the following information to VoiceScapes:
a. your name, voice part, contact information (phone, address, email)
b. your singing resume
c. a brief statement (a paragraph) as to why you want to participate as a soloist in VoiceScapes’ Sing Along Messiah
d. indication of time preference for your audition (choose from the times listed below)
e. indication of whether you will need an accompanist (we provide one) or whether you will bring your own
f. (optional) your photo and / or letters of reference

DEADLINE: Your information must be received by: November 3, 2010.

Send the application information to:
VoiceScapes’ Sing Along Messiah Auditions - Info@voicescapes.ca or
2820 18th Street NW Calgary, AB T2M 3V1 phone: 403-208-6094

Questions can be directed to Christina Jahn at (403) 208-6094 or at the above email address. Emailed information must be formatted in Word or pasted into the body of the email message.


Auditions will be conducted by members of VoiceScapes (www.voicescapes.ca – biographies page). An accompanist will be provided; you may also elect to bring your own accompanist.

Prepare one or two arias (with appropriate recitatives, if applicable) from Messiah. They do not need to be memorized.

Criteria used to choose the Debut Quartet:
a. Voice and vocal technique
b. Tuning
c. Artistry / presence
d. Communication


Auditions will be held at Calgary - St. Peter’s Anglican Church, corner of 75th Ave. and Elbow Dr. SW, Calgary Sunday, November 7th, 2010; from 1pm to 5pm.

Audition timeslots are 15 -20 minutes. Efforts will be made to accommodate time slot requests. Please contact us if you are interested in auditioning, but will not be able to attend the November 7th auditions. Your audition time will be confirmed latest by November 5, 2010. Please arrive 10 minutes before your audition time, so that you have time to check in.


VoiceScapes will notify all applicants with the results of the auditions by November 12, 2010. Should you be chosen, dates for rehearsals and concert are as follows:

Friday, Dec 17th 6.30pm – 10pm – soloists rehearsal with orchestra
Saturday, Dec 18th 1.30 – 4.30pm – dress rehearsal
Sunday, Dec 19th 2.30pm Sing Along Messiah!

You are required to be in attendance for all of the above times. The Friday rehearsal is scheduled in such a way as to minimize any unnecessary sitting around for both soloists and instrumentalists.

In addition, selected vocalists have to complete their coaching at least a week prior to the above rehearsals starting.


Participants chosen for the Debut Quartet in the Sing Along Messiah will receive a minimum of one free coaching (possibly more depending on mutual availability) with VoiceScapes members, a chance to sing with an orchestra, and an honorarium of $75.00 for the performance. This is a wonderful opportunity to showcase your talent to a large audience in Calgary. You will also receive 4 complimentary tickets to the December 19th performance. This is a value of over $200, but the real value comes from the experience and being able to build your performance resume!

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