[Andover, MA] Andover Choral Society has made the very difficult decision to cancel our May 2, 2020, choral concert due to coronavirus concerns. We have suspended rehearsals for the safety of our chorus members and in compliance with state and federal guidance, and therefore will not have the performance material properly prepared by May.
This has been an especially sad decision because our May concert was planned as a celebration of our 90th year of performing in the Merrimack Valley. To honor that landmark, we commissioned a 15-minute work for chorus and instruments from Demetrius Spaneas, an Andover-based composer. This new work, entitled becoming, explores the Creation story and some of humanity’s oldest questions: Who are we? Where did we come from? Why are we here? In addition to premiering becoming, our May concert would have featured works by two other composers with Andover connections: Kevin Siegfried and Gwyneth Walker. We will look for an opportunity to perform this music in the future.
COVID-19 is imposing many difficult and far-reaching effects on our daily lives. Among these is the devastating financial and cultural impact on artists and art institutions. For the foreseeable future, the ability of choral singers to gather together and join their voices in song has been halted. Singing is a healing act for both singers and listeners, and choral music has been a means by which humans have responded to and coped with difficult events for hundreds of years. The shuttering of concert halls, theaters, and performance spaces around the world has left a profound and echoing silence.
We have to believe that this silence is temporary. Yet from this silence emerges an understanding of just how important the performing arts – and, specifically, live choral music involving many voices and instruments – are to our culture and to us as a species. It is more important now than ever to keep music in our hearts as we look forward to the day, whenever it comes, when we can again join together in song.
About Andover Choral Society
Andover Choral Society is dedicated to presenting exceptional performances, connecting to the larger community, and fostering an appreciation of choral music. Founded in 1929, the chorus performs two concerts per year, with a repertoire that focuses on fine choral and choral-orchestral works from the Baroque era through the present day. Since 1929, membership has been open to anyone with a love for great choral music and a desire to share that love with others. Visit andoverchoralsociety.org for more information.