Grupo de Canto Coral
Monday, 4 August 2008 at 5:30pm • Christ Church Cathedral

Conductor Néstor Andrenacci

Reviewer Ed Farolan

Choral Music has been a big phenomenon these past few years. I remember choral singing as "glee clubs" or "tunas" in Spain. But it has fluorished and what used to be amateur singing groups are now professional choral groups. We have so many of these in Vancouver, and I've reviewed many concerts from Vancouver Chamber Choir.

I saw a lot of similarities with this Argentinian group and VCC. I'm not surprised if the VCC group has been in touch with this group, as VCC has traveled all over the world doing concerts. But the style is, as I said, very similar. For example, VCC always starts off with the old, usually the medieval chants, and ends up with the new. So did this Argentinian group. It started with medieval Spanish poet Jorge Manrique's poems with the religious themes of Death ("No tardes, Muerte, que muero...y con tu venida espero/no tener vida conmigo") and Glory and Servitude to God ("E queda mi corazón / bien satisfecho en serviros...¨). Like VCC, the group ended with contemporary, happy, tunes from Piazzolla´s tangos and milongas, to Leguizamón´s folkloric bailecitos and zambas.

I particularly enjoyed Leguizamón´s folkloric bailecitos and zambas. Chacarera del expediente is a satire against the rich who can do anything they want: "Amalaya la justicia,vidita, los abogados, cuando la ley nace sorda no la compone ni el diablo". ("Darn justice, darn lawyers, when law is deaf not even the devil can fix it").

His zamba, Si llega a ser tucumana, is a charming, humorous tribute to the girl from Tucumán: "Si es redondita y jugosa lo mismo que la naranja, si es noche cerrada el pelo, esa moza es tucumana" ("If she´s plump and juicy just like an orange, if her hair is as dark as night, this girl is from Tucumán).

This was an enjoyable afternoon from this Argentinian group of more than 30 singers led by Néstor Andrenacci who formed this group in 1973. The group has been awarded prizes for performances in Argentina and abroad. They´re performing again at the Chan Centre on 10 August at 8 pm.

© 2008 Ed Farolan