On the weekend of May 17-19, a contingent of the Skagit Valley Chorale will take a short “American Journey Tour” to the Olympic Peninsula to sing in Port Townsend, Port Angeles, Forks, and Neah Bay. The Chorale will perform in Forks at the Rainforest Arts Center, Saturday, May 18, 7:30 p.m. All concerts on the tour will be free to the public.
A community choir based in Mount Vernon, Washington, the Skagit Valley Chorale dates back to 1984 and has grown to approximately 120 members. Half of the current membership will make the trip to sing on the Olympic Peninsula. The Chorale is conducted by Dr. Adam Burdick, a 1989 graduate of Clallam Bay High School. Burdick grew up in Pysht and participated in school and community music on the Peninsula from the time he was 11 years old.
As a teen he played alto sax in a very small jazz band in Clallam Bay with Kim Bowlby on trumpet, Bob Bowlby on “licorice stick” (clarinet), and a few other players. Burdick went on to study music at the University of Puget Sound, the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, and the University of Washington. Now he teaches music at North Seattle College, in addition to leading the Chorale and other musical activities.
The repertoire for this “American Journey” includes a selection of American music that is unusually wide in diversity for a choral music concert. It is drawn from around the U.S. and Canada and includes folk, classical, blues, bluegrass, and other popular music. The music tells many stories about the people of our country, with many favorites including “Shenandoah”, “Bring Me Little Water, Sylvie”, and “Rock Island Line”. The Chorale is accompanied on the tour by percussionist Patrick Roulet, a faculty member at Western Washington University. Our own Chorale members fill out the rest of the band and percussion corps, including a little body percussion.
The Chorale will be in Forks the evening of Saturday, May 18, with a concert start time of 7:30 p.m. at the Rainforest Arts Center. Parking has been generously donated in the lot next to the Center. The Chorale will follow up Sunday with a free concert at 2 p.m. at the Makah Community Gym in Neah Bay.
Please visit the Chorale’s website to learn more about the group and this tour.