So, what’s with the Tribune, anyway? Friday, Saturday, Sunday at the PAC was the first ever in SLOTown of the California International Choral Festival & Competition. Place is sold out. PAC is packed. All three days. Before the doors even open there are lines snaking all over the PAC plaza with people walking around asking, “Anybody got any extra tickets, please, please?” Seven Choirs are here, some from Finland, Uganda, the Phillipines, all the way from San Jose. Amazing singers. National costumes, folk songs, difficult competitive compulsories, a lifetime dream of SLO Vocal Arts Ensemble’s Director, Gary Lamprecht, a grand finale Sunday night with the massed choirs AND the ginormous Forbes Pipe Organ rattling the rafters, winners announced. Wooooo!
And on Monday morning, not a peep in the Tribune. Wonder who won the competition? Who knows? Curious for maybe a really swell picture of all the groups onstage? Sorry. Not a word. It’s as if this first time amazing event had never taken place.
On a happier note, the various choral groups, in addition to the formal three day competition, were performing at various venues around SLOtown and environs, including a hastily arranged concert last night at the Los Osos Community Center of the Imusicapella Chamber Choir from the Philippines. Many in the Los Osos Philippine community helped make that event possible and it was a stunner. The Imusicapella choir was the winner in most of the events in this year’s competition at the PAC, and is a young group – youngest is 13, the director only 39 – of students and professionals that regularly sing in their church choir back home in Imus. They were outstanding and it was really a treat to hear them again for a whole program, even though the acoustics in the community center are really awful.
Since this event was the very first one of its kind on the central coast, let’s hope that the template is now in place and maybe every other year the SLO Vocal Arts will play host to the festival again. And this time the Tribune might send a photographer, at least?