Monadnock Chorus’ Board of Directors recently announced the cancellation of its spring 2020 season.
Concerts at the Peterborough Town House, May 9 and 10, presenting G.F. Handel’s oratorio, "Esther," set to be the culmination of months of rehearsal, will no longer be held.
“This is obviously a sad and necessary result of current concerns about the coronavirus and the need for social distancing,” said Laurie Lewis, president of Monadnock Chorus. “While this is disappointing for our community singers, the reality of canceled concerts is devastating to the professional musicians with whom we work. In recognition of that, Monadnock Chorus is providing a portion of the contracted fee to the instrumentalists and soloists who were engaged to perform with us in May. We feel strongly that we need to support the artists who inspire us, particularly at this very difficult time,” she said.
Although the group is not able to be together to rehearse or sing at this time, Artistic Director Dr. Matthew Leese will be creating weekly on-line activities and vocal exercises to keep the Monadnock Chorus community singing — and connected.
“Making music is more important now than ever,” said Dr. Leese. “I’ll be recording short YouTube videos that will lead singers through vocal warm-up and learning uplifting musical compositions. The hope is that everyone will be strengthened by keeping their musical muscles in shape. And,” he continued, “if we can overcome a few technical hurdles, we will try to arrange a virtual choral experience — with everyone singing — later in the spring.”
Still on the calendar in mid-August is Monadnock Chorus’ Summer Sing featuring a presentation of Dan Forrest’s “Requiem for the Living,” accompanied by a professional instrumental ensemble. The event is planned to include a full day of rehearsals with an evening concert in a southern New Hampshire location to be determined.