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US Presidential Inauguration Jan. 20 to Feature Two Grammy-Winning San Francisco Choruses

January 14, 2009

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ — The stage of President-Elect Barack
Obama’s inauguration will glitter with some of the world’s top performers on
Tuesday, January 20, 2009, and two of the nation’s top choral music groups
will share the limelight with Aretha Franklin, Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman:
the San Francisco Boys Chorus, Ian Robertson, Artistic Director; and the San
Francisco Girls Chorus, Susan McMane, Artistic Director. The Choruses were
invited to join forces for the inauguration by Senator Dianne Feinstein and
the joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies to be part of the
swearing in ceremonies in Washington, DC.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090114/AQW531)

The two choruses were selected for their high level of artistic
excellence, embodiment of the American spirit and promise for the future,
according to Sen. Feinstein. A combined chorus of 86 (43 members of the San
Francisco Boys Chorus, ages 8 to 12 and 43 of the San Francisco Girls Chorus,
ages 15-18) will travel to Washington to perform.

Ian Robertson, Artistic Director of the San Francisco Boys Chorus, and

Susan McMane, Artistic Director of the San Francisco Girls Chorus, said: “This
is the highest honor we could imagine. The impacts of our two organizations
travel far beyond the concert stage — we are active agents for positive
community change, youth empowerment and education. Performing for President
Obama’s inauguration focuses a major spotlight on the power of music and the
arts to affect positive change in our country and the world, and puts the arts
at their rightful place at the epicenter of American civic and cultural life.”

Inauguration Chorus Program Features Patriotic Fare and World Premiere to
Words of Barack Obama

The combined San Francisco Boys Chorus and the San Francisco Girls Chorus
will perform a program of patriotic music in keeping with the theme of
President-Elect Obama’s inauguration: “A New Birth of Freedom“. A highlight
will be the world premiere of a new work by San Francisco composer David
Conte
. Entitled An Exhortation, it is set to words from Barack Obama’s speech
upon his election on November 6, 2008 that concluded with the now signature
words, “Yes we can!” The complete Choral program for the inauguration is as
follows, with the combined Choruses scheduled to perform from 9:50 to 10:10
a.m. EST
:

    Inauguration Program
    San Francisco Boys Chorus, Ian Robertson, Artistic Director
    San Francisco Girls Chorus, Susan McMane, Artistic Director

     America the Beautiful by Samuel Ward, arranged by Nancy Grundahl
     An American Hymn by Holdridge, arranged by Ian Robertson
      Conducted by Ian Robertson
     Hymn to Freedom by Oscar Peterson
      Conducted by Susan McMane
     An Exhortation by San Francisco Composer David Conte WORLD PREMIERE
      written for the combined San Francisco Boys Chorus and San Francisco
      Girls Chorus to words by Barack Obama
      Conducted by Ian Robertson
     Give us Hope by Jim Papoulis
     I Hear America Singing by S. Albrecht and J. Althouse
      Conducted by Susan McMane

In addition to performing at the inauguration itself, members of the San
Francisco Boys Chorus and San Francisco Girls Chorus will perform at Sen.
Feinstein’s pre-inauguration reception at the Library of Congress.

Singing Their Way to the Inauguration

The road to the inauguration has been a long and prestigious one for these
two internationally recognized performing groups, both known for a signature
sound that is powerful, unmistakably youthful yet masterfully professional
well beyond the years of the young singers. The San Francisco Boys Chorus
celebrates its 60th anniversary in 2008-2009 and the San Francisco Girls
Chorus commemorates its 30th the same year.

Planning and logistics for the Choruses’ 86 singers plus the various
chaperones and staff that will travel to the inauguration has been intricate.
Funding has come from many generous donations of individuals, foundations and
corporations across the country, and both organizations quickly met their
fundraising goals to attend. While in Washington, the Boys Chorus will be
hosted by the US Marine Corps, staying on-base not far from the Capitol and
gaining a unique perspective on Washington life in the process. The Girls
Chorus will be guests of the Foxcroft School in Middleburg, VA, a girls
boarding and day high school where the Choristers will meet young women their
ages and give a special concert on campus. While in DC, both Choruses plan to
take in some of the sights of the nation’s capitol.

Although separate organizations, both the San Francisco Boys Chorus and
the San Francisco Girls Chorus were created decades ago to fill the need for
professionally trained young singers to appear in productions of the San
Francisco
Opera, the nation’s second largest opera company and still a
frequent collaborator with both Choruses. Each Chorus has grown far beyond its
opera engagements to embody its own concert seasons, regular international
tours, recordings that have garnered awards including several Grammies and
motion picture soundtrack work. As a result, millions of audience members and
listeners are familiar with the burnished, energetic sounds of these Choruses.

Members of the San Francisco Boys Chorus and the San Francisco Girls
Chorus come from all over the Bay Area, some traveling up to two hours to
participate in the two to three weekly rehearsals, classes and performances.
Training is rigorous and thorough, with Choristers studying for many years
with professional instructors before the chance to audition into the top
performing ensembles of each Chorus.

Hundreds of children a year audition for coveted spots in the Choruses’
training programs. Once accepted, talented young singers study performance and
learn music, and also receive college-level training in music theory, music
history, movement and stage skills to make them well-rounded artists. The
intellectual and musical self-discipline instilled in the Choristers as a
result makes them exemplary students and gives a high level of team-spirit,
self-reliance and esteem; all excellent preparation for whatever academic,
professional and personal challenges they face in their lives. As a result,
the Choruses have achieved status with San Francisco and the nation’s top
performing arts organizations. At home they frequently collaborate with the
San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Symphony and other organizations in the
City’s concert halls and recording studios.

“The San Francisco Boys Chorus and the San Francisco Girls Chorus embody
the artistic excellence our city is known around the world for,” said San
Francisco
Mayor Gavin Newsom. “They are the sound of San Francisco and as our
international ambassadors, they will represent the best of San Francisco and
the nation at this historic inauguration.”

About the San Francisco Boys Chorus

The Grammy Award-winning San Francisco Boys Chorus (SFBC) was founded by

Gaetano Merola and Madi Bacon in 1948 to provide trained boy singers for the
San Francisco Opera, and is today led by Artistic Director, Ian Robertson who
also serves as Chorus Director for the San Francisco Opera. The San Francisco
Boys Chorus is regarded as a leading music organization that provides
transformational life experiences for boys age 5 to 18 through education,
performances, and international tours. Over 200 singers receive world-class
music education at three training sites in the Bay Area, and the San Francisco
Boys Chorus appears at numerous civic engagements. The San Francisco Boys
Chorus will participate in the Pacific International Children’s Choir Festival
in Eugene, OR in June 2009. For information about the Boys Chorus, visit
http://www.sfbc.org

About the San Francisco Girls Chorus

Celebrating 30 years of extraordinary music with its 2008-2009 season, the
three-time Grammy Award-winning San Francisco Girls Chorus is recognized as
one of the world’s most respected vocal ensembles. Its level of training,
performance, quality and range, passion and leadership in commissioning music
for treble voices are lauded by musicians, critics and audiences. Founded in
1978, the San Francisco Girls Chorus has become a regional center for choral
music education and performance for girls and young women ages 7-18. More than
300 singers from 160 schools in 44 Bay Area cities participate in this
internationally recognized program. The San Francisco Girls Chorus will make
its New York debut at Lincoln Center April 13, 2009. For information about the
Girls Chorus, visit http://www.sfgirlschorus.org

Please direct all media inquiries about the San Francisco Boys Chorus and
the San Francisco Girls Chorus to Scott Horton, 510-735-9200
bluescott260@hotmail.com

For more information about the San Francisco Boys Chorus, visit
http://www.sfbc.org

For more information about the San Francisco Girls Chorus, visit
http://www.sfgirlschorus.org

PHOTOS:

HIGH RESOLUTION, Downloadable photos of the combined Choruses may be
obtained here:
http://photos.shcommunications.org/GalleryThumbnails.aspx?gallery=158036

Downloadable photos of the San Francisco Boys Chorus are available here:
http://www.sfbc.org/press-kit.htm

Downloadable photos of the San Francisco Girls Chorus are available here:
http://photos.shcommunications.org/GalleryThumbnails.aspx?gallery=84631

Photos and video of both groups together will be available the week of
January 12, 2009.

For details about the January 20, 2009, Inauguration of President Barack
Obama
, contact Carole Florman, Communications Director, Joint Congressional
Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, at 202-224-2228.

     MEDIA CONTACT FOR BOTH THE SF
     BOYS CHORUS AND SF GIRLS CHORUS:
     Scott Horton Communications
     510-735-9200
     Bluescott260@hotmail.com

SOURCE The San Francisco Boys Chorus; The San Francisco Girls Chorus


Source: newswire



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