The Oakland Chorale European Tour

The Oakland Chorale European Tour
Oakland Chorale members all dressed in black, standing on a wooden floor looking up at the camera
The Oakland Chorale

The Oakland University Chorale is embarking on a European Concert Tour at the end of June, and they have announced a Bon Voyage Concert on June 27 at Sweetest Heart of Mary Church in Detroit. The concert, Power, Passion, and Peace, will feature music from the Renaissance period to today. It is entirely a cappella and will span styles from sacred music that is over 400 years old, to African American spirituals, to contemporary American choral music.

Power, Passion, and Peace will begin at 7:30 pm. Michael A. Mitchell, conductor of the Chorale, said, “Sweetest Heart of Mary is a beautiful old church and a spectacular place for a concert.” The church is located at 4440 Russell Street, Detroit. The concert is free and all are welcome.

Many of the students in the Chorale plan to be professional singers, and the upcoming tour will offer invaluable experiences of European culture and the performance standards of the places where so much great music was created. Future educators in the group will draw on these experiences to enrich lessons for their students.

The group will leave from Toronto and fly to Venice, where they will have the great honor of singing at Sunday evening Mass at St. Mark's Basilica. They will also sing in the Italian town of Pordenone.

The second leg of their tour will take them to Bled in Slovenia, where they will give a concert at St. Martin's Parish Church. The third leg will see them in Zagreb, Croatia, where they will sing in the Atrium of the Klovic Court Gallery. Their final concert will be in the beautiful Baroque Peterskirche, located in the heart of Vienna.

The Chorale will also take tours of each location, learn about the culture of the cities they visit, and the students will have time to explore on their own. Chorale member Caitlyn Bramble is particularly enthusiastic about this aspect of the tour. “What I'm most excited for is the opportunity to stay with host families in Zagreb,” she said. “I think that the best way to experience another culture or location is by spending time with the people who live it every day, and I can't wait to learn more about Zagreb and all it has to offer.”

At all the other stops on the tour the students are staying in hotels, and Zagreb is also the only city where they’re performing with another choir. They will sing one piece with a choir that Professor Mitchell is affiliated with in Zagreb.

“The students are incredibly excited to share their music with audiences in Europe,” said Professor Mitchell. “They have worked diligently all year to raise the funds and prepare the music for this trip. I’m excited for them, and I believe the trip will change their lives.”

For information about the location of Sweetest Heart of Mary Church visit the church’s contact page.