2013 London A Cappella Festival

By Christine Liu

This year’s London A Cappella Festival took place on January 24-26 in King's Place, near King's Cross, organized by The Swingle Singers and Ikon Arts Management.  LACF is relatively smaller in scale comparing to other festivals in the European continent, but that doesn't mean the line-ups are any less, and the size of the festival has been growing over the past 3 years.     

The general schedule for the festival is, Jan. 24 (Thur.), 2 concerts in the evening - Choir of Clare College Cambridge (UK) and Rajaton (Fin) Jan. 25 (Fri.), 2 concerts in the evening - Postyr (Denmark) and The Magnets (UK) Jan. 26 (Sat.), 4 concerts throughout the day (Complete Vocal Technique/Arranging/Recording/Stage Presence), 1 concert in the afternoon - Retrocity (Canada), and 2 concerts in the evening - The King's Singers and The Swingle Singers Throughout the 3 days there are short and performances in the foyer by all kinds of a cappella groups.  

Some cool things from festival, like…

1. London A Cappella Festival App – The organizer has a smart phone app especially for this year’s festival, list out all schedules for concerts, workshop, and extra treats.  Save paper, love the Earth, and become tech savvy.
2. The Single Singers – Started in the London A Cappella Festival in January 2012, Dutch Singers Annemarie Homan and Emily May't Hoen gathered the singers that are coming to the festival without a group, have two rehearsals, and one glorious performance.  This idea has spread out across the globe like a virus, and return to London this year to celebrate its 1 year birthday.  Let’s hope one day the virus reaches Vocal Asia Festival.
3. Woofer – Lead by the bass from the Swingle Singers, Ed gathered this group of basses and performed 4 songs with very low frequency that doesn’t reach anywhere above your knee.  If the source is correct, I think the bass from the King’s Singers just couldn’t help joining this bass force and had to sing and share the bass-pride together.  (Watch the vedio below)
4. At the end of King’s Singer’s performance, the group brought a very special performance of singing Bob Chilcott’s “And so it goes” together with the Swingle Singers.  Two forces of quality music joining together, I was speechless and couldn’t hold my tears…
5. Vocal Jog – I think Vocal Blog Florian started this thing and now it’s all over festivals around the world.  Just pick a day during the festival and start running with your favorite singers.  August is a bit hot in Taiwan, so maybe Vocal Asia Festival can do a Vocal Swim?      

Workshop content:

1. Complete Vocal Technique - Tine Fris, the soprano from Postyr teaches this new singing technique created by Danish vocal researcher Catherine Sadolin. 
2. A Cappella Arranging - American A Cappella rising star, Christopher Diaz shares techniques in arranging vocal music. 
3. A Cappella Recording - American A Cappella album producer Bill Hare and Erik Bosio from Cluster share things to be aware of when producing an album. 
4. Stage Presence - English choral educator Ben Parry shares some on-stage movements and presentation.
5. Melodyne - newly added workshop lead by American A Cappella album producer Danny Ozment, who shares how to use melodyne to make your vocal tracks sound the best.
6. Panel discussion - Vocal Blogger Florian Staedtler invites representatives from the US and the festival figures behind the scene to discuss about a cappella music in the past, present and future.

Let's hope one day there will be a group from Asia performing in this festival!




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