UWO Choirs present ‘All Music Must Dance’

Anya Kelley, Staff Writer

UW Oshkosh choirs presented “All Music Must Dance” directed by Director of Choral Activities Shannon Gravelle on Saturday. The phrase “all music must dance” comes from her mentor as a way to say all music must have movement. Whether it’s in the melodic line or the way we are emotionally changed, music must move.

UW Oshkosh’s chamber choir, treble chorus and tenor/bass chorus were featured with music ranging from Claude Debussy’s “Trois Chansons,” a French impressionist piece, to Ben Oaklands Java Jive, a spunky barber shop tune.

The highlight of the night? “Dance a Cachuca” from Gondoliers.

Gravelle said one of her teaching objectives for the semester was to have each student sing in an operette style chorus. An operette is a form of musical theater that mixes song and spoken dialogue with dance. Think of it as a genre of light opera.

The first piece of the night opened the concert with the scene of a wedding. All three choirs laughed and chattered as they made their way onto the stage to watch the wedding procession.

The night proceeded with the treble chorus and the tenor/bass chorus giving the audience a taste of music that truly makes you dance. With “Yo le Canto Todo el Dia’s” Venezuelan inspiration and “Java Jives” barber shop swing, everyone felt the dance-like energy surge through the music hall.

Chamber choir brought the emotionally moving part of “all music must dance” with their beautiful rendition of Debussy’s “Trois Chansons,” a three-movement piece set to the medieval poetry of Charles, Duke of Orleans. Charles’ poetry celebrated love, chivalry and the aristocratic lifestyle.

After closing out the chamber set, Gravelle expressed her gratitude to the audience, thanking them for their attendance before walking off the stage. With that, a jovial piano piece began and the two remaining choirs leapt on stage to set the scene for “Dance a Cachuca. “

A piece filled with singing and dancing, laughing and sparkling champagne flutes was the perfect way to wrap up a concert on how all music must dance.

For more information on when events like this are happening, visit https://uwosh.edu/music/community/calendar/.