Harmonía Vocal Ensemble Presents Songs of Love and Life
By Michele Ostrove, photo Tony Baruch
When professional choral director Elizabeth Kimble decided to create a women’s vocal ensemble in San Miguel de Allende, she purposely set the bar high. Vocal talent was just the minimal threshold. Prospective vocalists had to audition, commit to a demanding rehearsal schedule, and know how to read music. What Kimble didn’t anticipate was the exceptional level of quality she would find and the shared desire of her members to be part of something special. In typical San Miguel style, everything harmoniously came together.
Harmonía Fall Concert
Thu, Oct 6, 5pm
St. Paul’s Church
415 152 0387
$200 pesos donation
The result is Harmonía, a 12-member ensemble that is back for an encore following its sold-out spring concert with a highly anticipated performance, 5 pm, October 6 at St. Paul’s Church. Along with accompanist Lorelei Capell, they will present “Songs of Love and Life,” an eclectic mix of musical styles that span the globe and mine the depths of the human experience.
Harmonía members Gerri Baruch and Kate Rowland are well known to local audiences for their theater work and were thrilled to find a professional vehicle to showcase their vocal ability.
Says Baruch: “I love the challenge required to sing well with a group. It’s much more difficult than solo performance, as you have singers of many styles and backgrounds who must sound like one voice. You’re required to listen well and use your musicianship in an entirely different way. It’s such a worthwhile pleasure to be working with a conductor and musicians who are willing to put in the work to achieve excellence.”
“It is pure joy to sing with this talented group of women and to make music that is both high in quality and moving to the heart,” adds Kate Rowland. “I’m deeply grateful to Elizabeth for her energy and devotion to bringing excellent choral music to San Miguel.”
Maxine Graboyes recently joined Harmonía after moving to San Miguel from Vail, CO, where she was a professional singer, cantor, and voice teacher. “I thought I would be ‘retired’ when I moved here,” she says. “I wasn’t expecting to find such a vibrant, exciting musical community, but I went to Harmonía’s concert and was very impressed. Elizabeth brings her professionalism to this group and works us very hard to make us be all that we can be.”
Among the many accomplishments of Atlanta-native Kimble’s distinguished choral career was singing in the symphony chorus of famed conductor Robert Shaw, as well as directing community and college choruses around the US and in Italy. “What kind of music do we sing?” asks Kimble. “Something for everyone. Come enjoy the beauty and joy of choral music and have fun!”
Harmonía’s fall concert will be held at St. Paul’s Church (Calzado del Cardo 6), Thursday, October 6 at 5 pm. Tickets (donation: $200 pesos) are being sold at La Conexión, Aldama 3 and at the door.