A Columbia College choir has earned the opportunity to export its vocal craft to China.
The 24-student Jane Froman Singers left Sunday for a 10-day tour that includes the Beijing International Choir Festival.
The Jane Froman Singers is one of six choirs chosen through auditions to represent the United States at the festival this week.
“I am extremely excited to do this,” said Nollie Moore, director of the Jane Froman Singers. “Columbia College attracts students from rural towns, and a lot of these kids wouldn’t see China if I didn’t take them.”
Moore said festival organizers requested spiritual American folk music, so the singers have been preparing pieces such as “Old American Songs” by Aaron Copland. They will also perform “Gloria” by Francis Poulenc.
The final concerts of the festival are being held in two of the finest concert halls in China, the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing and the Tianjin Zhong Hua Theatre. The American choirs will also sing Chinese folk songs with the Chinese choir.
“We are all a little nervous about that since we won’t get to practice that part until we get there,” said Moore.
In years past, the Jane Froman Singers, named for the Missouri native and television star who attended Columbia College when it was called Christian College, have traveled to Scotland, England and Canada. The ensemble is made up of men and women who like to sing but are not necessarily music majors.
The singers will be back in time to perform July 22 with the Missouri Chamber Orchestra on the Hot Summer Nights Concert Series.
You can follow the Jane Froman Singers' trip on their blog janefromanchinatour.squarespace.com