by CINDY M. CRANMER A Rockford woman is working to turn her dream into reality with an ArtPrize performance that will feature 90 area singers as well as a song entry the public can vote on at the event. ArtPrize, which runs this year from September 19 to October 7, was founded in 2009 and has been restructured over the last four years but still features the world’s largest art prize along with being the largest art competition to decide its awards by public vote. There will be 16 prizes totaling $550,000 that will be distributed in 2012. Of this amount, $350,000 will be decided by a direct vote of attending visitors and $200,000 by a panel of jurors. The top public vote awards will be for $200,000 for first, $75,000 for second, $50,000 for third and $5,000 for fourth through 10th places. For more information on ArtPrize, visit www.artprize.org. “It is my dream to organize a 90-voice choir from the Rockford community to perform at ArtPrize 2012,” said Renee Vande Wege, Rockford Community Choir director. Members of local church choirs, professional singers, high school choir members or individuals who have a singing talent but are not currently involved in any group all are welcome to join the Rockford Community Choir for the performance. “We’re excited. We’re probably a little nervous. We’re feeling all the things you feel before you perform,” she said. The choir that is being put together features a gamut of voices from a fifth-grader through a 75-year-old area resident. Vande Wege took over conducting the Rockford Community Choir from Kayle Clements, a local composer. The ArtPrize entry the public can vote on will be a piece that the Rockford Area Arts Commission commissioned Clements to write. The vote code is 53416. Two Roads is a four-part a capella piece that will be performed at St. Cecilia Music Center at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22. A four-person recording will showcase the entry so the public can vote when the group is not performing. Two Roads uses the text of Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken,” Vande Wege said. “The idea for this song evolved out of my life journey this past year and my desire to draw together the multitude of […]
Band – Rockford area community ensembles have resumed rehearsals in preparation for upcoming concerts. The Concert Band under the direction of Calvin College professor Tiffany Engle, is scheduled to present varied performances this season. In addition to its annual spring concert, the band will also participate in the Forest Hills Community Band Festival and Rockford’s own Start of Summer Celebration. The Rockford Community Concert Band rehearses weekly on Mondays from 7 to 9 p.m. in the band room of North Rockford Middle School. Membership is open to musicians who have previous experience on any band instrument (a minimum of high school playing level is recommended). If you are interested in joining the concert band contact Tiffany at email@example.com. Orchestra – The Rockford Chamber Orchestra meets on Monday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m. in the choir room at North Rockford Middle school. Violin, viola, cello and bass players are welcome to come join them. Members come from all walks of life and represent many generations. All kinds of music is played and they join sometimes with the band to create a symphony orchestra option at each concert. Char Lothian, of Greenville and a former orchestra teacher in that school district is the talented conductor. She also is a talented cellist. If interested call Char at 616-754-6602. Rehearsals begin on Monday, February 2. Choir – For those of you who love to vocalize, our Community Choir has started rehearsals on Thursdays at North Rockford Middle School in the choir room from 7 to 9 p.m. All ages and abilities are invited to join the choir. Kayle Clements, talented jazz musician, plus composer of choral music, is the conductor. Clements commented, “Our focus is not only on learning and performing music but also on having enjoyable rehearsals – and building friendships” All these groups plus many other activities are sponsored by the Rockford Area Arts Commission.