by Abe Gruber, Choral Manager
On June 25, music in hand, the group left Hawai‘i
on the first of three long flights to Europe to sing in Salzburg
and Vienna in celebration of the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s
birth. They stopped in San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and
Munich, where they boarded a bus to Salzburg. The entire process
of just getting to Austria took about 24 hours, enough to test
even the most seasoned of travelers.
Once in Europe, the fun began.
Most of the 29 singers had never been out of the country before
and were open to the new cultural experiences from the moment
they stepped off the plane in Munich. After collecting their
baggage, everyone headed straight for the food court, and not
a single taste bud was disappointed.
Everything was fresh and delicious,” said freshman Raine
Weiterman. “I would have never expected such high quality
food for such a decent price at an airport.”
Their first real sit-down meal in Europe—and in more than
24 hours— was schnitzel, in Salzburg. While it was not
the group’s normal diet—usually sushi, loco mocos,
and spam musubi—many of the singers were pleasantly surprised
by the traditional meal.
After checking into their hotel, the group finally met the other
festival participants during a welcome dinner at which they were
treated to the “Sounds of Salzburg.” This musical
show included some of the more popular songs from The Sound of
Music performed by a troupe of local thespians. It was an appropriate
welcome to Austria.
The next morning, the HPU group proceeded to its first of many
long and intense practices. As part of the 400-person ensemble,
the IVE rehearsed Mozart’s Coronation Mass and several
other challenging pieces.
We worked hard this summer,” said soprano Vienna Dumlao. “When
we got to Austria, we were well prepared.” Even the festival
conductors agreed. They showered the group with praise for its
preparation and production during all of the rehearsals.
During their week-long tour, the HPU group did more than just
sing. Between rehearsals, as part of the trip, the group was
treated to tours of many beautiful Austrian sights, including
the Salzburg Dome, Mozarthaus (Mozart’s birthplace), St.
Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna, and more.
Tours also included visits to Hellbrunn Palace and Mondsee, both
places featured in the Sound of Music. Being musicians, everyone
especially enjoyed the musical connections of all of the sights.
Rehearsals and tours behind them, the singers got down to business
on June 30, in Salzburg, and July 2 in Vienna, when they performed
in two very exciting concerts—the culmination of all the
fundraising, travel, and rehearsal.
The IVE returned to Honolulu on July 3. Summing up the trip,
baritone Kevin Patoc said: “It was a fun and amazing learning
concert helped fund choir’s travel
by Marquise Brack, Arts & Entertainment editor
On April 30, HPU’s International Chorale and Vocal Ensemble
performed their fourth annual spring concert “A Dance
of Spring,” at the First Methodist Church of Honolulu.
The groups performed 17 songs. Pianist So Jin Kimura, an adjunct
faculty member at HPU, accompanied the choir.
Kala‘i Stern, the interim conductor, chose the themes
for the concert and selected the pieces of world music. The
concert title, “A Dance of Spring,” was chosen
to remind the performers and audience members of their favorite
Silence is the canvas on which we paint,” said Stern,
and during their final performance of the semester, the HPU
group did just that.
The choirs performed “Nani Ko‘olau,” in Hawaiian; “Ave
Maria” in Latin; and “Zigeunerleben,” in
To thank audience members for their support in coming to the
event, and in celebration of Lei Day, May 1, each vocalist
gave a floral lei to guests.
The choir played two songs that were featured in their Austrian
repertoire this summer when they flew to Europe to perform
in celebration of Mozart’s 250th birthday.
The event was free, but donations were encouraged and accepted
to help the fund the trip for the members of the Vocal Ensemble.
HPU’s International Chorale is composed of 30-60 vocalists,
both undergraduate and graduate HPU students, faculty and
staff, as well as singers from the community.
The International Vocal Ensemble is composed of an elite
group of 20-25 undergraduate and graduate HPU students.
Courtesy of HPU Choir
While touring the Mirabel Palace and Gradens
in Salzburg, Austria, members of HPU’s International
Vocal Ensemble came across an old stage that was used by musicians
ago. Inspired by past glories, the group sang a few Hawaiian
tunes, attracting a crowd of listeners.
Ensemble members (l. to r., back) Davinia Yalimaiwai and Abe
Gruber, and (front) Jon Felarca and Rachel Clough, tour a Salzburg
Janos Czifra, director of music for the
Salzburg Dome and co-conductor of the festival choir, leads
member choir in a rehearsal
of Mozart’s Coronation Mass.
Ensemble tenors (back row l. to r.: Jacob Schoofs, J.J. Pangilinan;
front row: Joe Kostas, Raine Weiterman, Saulo Jube, Jon Felarca)
pose near a famous fountain in an Austrian garden.
Members of the ensemble crowd a stairway
at one of the most famous attractions in Salzburg: the Mozarthaus,