Voices filled the Sharon Kay Dean Recital Hall in McCray Hall as the Calmus Vocal Ensemble
performed. The German a cappella quintet performed Friday, Jan. 24 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. as part of
the Solo & Chamber Music Series.
According to Susan Marchant, professor and chair of the Department of Music, around 250 people
attended the event presented by the PSU Department of Music.
“Their concert here crossed into many styles, from Renaissance music all the way through
arrangements of contemporary popular music,” Marchant said.
Founded in 1999 in Germany, the ensemble was chosen as the vocal component of this year’s Series.
“We always try to include something vocal in at least one of our six concerts across the year,” Marchant said.
Marchant chose the ensemble as the vocal component for the Solo & Chamber Music Series as she has known them for years and knows of their reputation.
“They maintain a very active performance schedule, and they enjoy an outstanding international
reputation,” she said.
The a cappella style of music was well received by members of the audience.
“I loved it,” said Ximena Bogarín, junior in biology. “I especially like a capella style so it’s complex to
feel all the spaces of the instruments- to me a capella it’s special so I felt so happy I could go…at one
moment they left the stage and walked around the auditorium. So, you could experience the music… you can feel the voices all around you.”
Having a group from another country perform aids in on one of the goals of the Music Department to
present a diverse range of music styles.
“It is an important part of the collegiate experience to be exposed to new ideas and new experiences,” Marchant said. “We strive to present a 6-concert series that provides many diverse instruments/voices, musical styles, colors, and approaches to performance. If a student attends regularly, he/she will have experienced a tremendous variety of offerings. Audience members will likely hear at least some music that they have not heard before, presented by world-class performers, and they will gain knowledge about the traditions and/or the specific works they are hearing.”
Bogarín also thought it was important for students to experience music styles performed from groups around the globe.
“I’ve been hearing very different types of concerts and when they have special guests from other cities or other countries, they are all different and it’s helpful for the music students,” she said. “…so, they can know more styles and they can be more diverse in their styles and also for the community to see how people from other places perform… it’s very enriching for everyone.”
Marchant hopes that people who attend events presented by the Department of Music will have an
experience that is both entertaining and educational and feel connected to the performers.
“The… Hall has a very intimate, comfortable atmosphere, and artists are able to speak directly with the audience to provide program notes and commentary on the music,” she said. “Most of them do choose to do this, and that helps to provide another level of connection between the listeners and the performers.”