In the age of COVID, music festivals are canceling spring and summer events. Earlier this spring, Treefort, the annual indie-rock festival in Boise, Idaho, canceled its March event. Just this past week, both the Grand Teton Music Festival and the Targhee Bluegrass Festival announced that they will not be doing their summer events either. But at least one local organization has moved its festival online.
This weekend, 70 voices from six choral ensembles across the region are coming together for an online festival organized by the local nonprofit Cathedral Voices. The festival includes two virtual choir premieres as well as discussions and interviews with composers and conductors. Virtual concerts may seem a recent phenomenon, though the technology actually evolved in the 1980s, with the first known performance by the Boston Lyric Opera. These real-time simulations record musicians and singers in their homes and are later synchronized to form a single performance.
The festival’s virtual choir is performing two pieces, “Flight Song,” composed by Kim André Arnesen, and “The Music Of Living,” an anonymous text expressing optimism and hope.
The Cathedral Voices festival is May 16 at 6 p.m. and May 17 at 4 p.m. Find more info here.