Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Lo & Flo present: A Transatlantic A Cappella Q&A

A cappella is obviously not limited to the United States. There is a whole world out there rich in vocal tradition. So I decided to discover it! And no better way than to truly do it 21st century style!

After a series of tweets between @vocalblog and @acalosophy (or maybe they were facebook comments), we decided to take a Transatlantic leap into understanding the global community of vocal music. This is a Q&A (question & answer) dialogue between Florian Städtler and Lo Barreiro. Man and woman. German and American. Blogger and Blogette. "These posts will be short and will be uploaded about twice a week on one or both of the blogs. So here we go, let the Lo & Flo A Cappella Q&A start, as a humble step to make a cappella people in the US and the EU aware of each other."

But first, let's learn a little more about the contributors. (I definitely took these right off http://www.vocal-blog.net/)

Florian Städtler lives and works out of Freiburg, Germany. After studies of jazz & pop guitar and working as a band leader, arranger and composer for several years, he slowly but surely moved from the microphone to the telephone. When he decided to found his company SpielPlanVier in 2003, he had worked for the pioneering Jazzchor Freiburg for more than ten years, organizing tours to Japan, South Korea, Russia and all over Europe. Today Florian has established his agency as one of the leading artist management companies for vocal music, working with groups like The Swingle Singers, The Real Group, Rockapella, VOCES8 and The Boxettes. In 2009 he started blogging about vocal and a cappella music via Vocal Blog and one year later started the process of founding the European Voices Association (EVA).

Lauren “Lo” Barreiro (y'all know me) – according to www.casa.org – is “a recent Boston transplant from Tallahassee, Florida”, who started studying voice at the age of eleven and fell in love with a cappella during college. At Florida State University, she studied voice performance and recreation management and directed the FSU’s first and only all-female a cappella group, the AcaBelles. Today she’s a CASA ambassador in Boston and has led workshops, panels, and masterclasses at SoJam 2010, became a team member of The Vocal Company as a consultant, producer, and arranger, and founded the all-female professional sextet Musae (@MusaeVocal). Not to forget, Lo writes about her teaching and singing experience on her own blog Acalosophy.

So, first question up!

Flo's question #1:
What made you join a vocal group instead of becoming the singer in a regular pop band?

Lo's answer #1:
It was a total fluke. Really, in the plan of what my life was supposed to be, I should be in grad school right now training to be the next Met or La Scala diva. Instead, at the beginning of my freshman year of college I was lured in by hot pink flyers that said "Like to sing?". I auditioned (with a jazz standard, mind you), joined Florida State University's AcaBelles, fell in love and the rest is history. I also went to performing arts school for middle and high school with an emphasis in chorus and did things like sing the entirety of Britten's "Ceremony of Carols" by the time I was 15 and at least four Whitacre pieces by the time I left high school, so vocal music was just a more natural fit for me.


Now it’s your turn: Tell us your opinion, give us your answer and let us know what makes US a cappella so different from European vocal music. We would love you to join the conversation, thanks for your comments!

Many thanks to Florian Städtler for this amazing opportunity and learning experience! Check Acalosophy and Vocal Blog regularly for more questions!

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