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Calmus performs on Friday

BY JESSICA CARBINO | MARCH 24, 2011 7:20 AM

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Traveling to various countries around the world for 70 concerts every year is typical for the members of Calmus —a quintet of singers who do educational programs as well as perform for audiences with different landscapes, food, and hospitality.

Calmus will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the West High Auditorium, 2901 Melrose Ave. Admission ranges from $10 to $35.

Calmus plans to do a workshop at the Iowa Medical & Classification Center in Oakdale, where University of Iowa music-education Assistant Professor Mary Cohen leads a choral program, as well as at both public high schools in Iowa City. The choirs will then join Calmus performing a piece at the concert on Friday.

“[Calmus] offers our audience an opportunity to hear one of the a cappella singing groups,” said Hancher Programming Director Jacob Yarrow.

Robert Cline, the Hancher director of marketing and communications, said he thinks the concert with the local high-school singers is exciting.

“This has been a great opportunity to collaborate with the schools, and I know hearing those young singers perform with this amazing quintet will be a highlight of the event,” he said.

Based in Leipzig, Germany, Calmus is a part of the world’s singing traditions that date back before the time of J.S. Bach. Since 1999, the group has been known for its mix of classical and contemporary sacred music and madrigals, folk songs, and rock, all with each member’s own twist.

Founding member Ludwig Böhme said he strives to have well-balanced sound, good intonation, and a mixture of group sound and individual voice timbre.

“The performance should be natural,” said Böhme, who started the quintet because of his love of singing in a small group.

The quintet has had great success in the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, which is the reason it has been chosen to perform in Iowa City. Hancher has a history of working with the accomplished young artists who win this event.

“Many of them go on to have major careers in music and return to Hancher many times,” Yarrow said.

The group will also perform in Carnegie Hall, the Krannert Center, and Purdue University, among other venues.


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