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Allegro Women’s Ensemble spins out of Cascade Foothills Chorale
Getting together nearly a year ago was a lark that has nine female friends singing.
All nine perform with the Plateau’s Cascade Foothills Chorale and found they missed each other during the musical group’s summer break.
A few calls were made, a gathering was arranged and the Allegro Women’s Ensemble was born.
“When we started singing at our first get together there was what I found to be a delightful response,” said Kathee Lundberg, who serves as the group’s accompanist and director. “As we sang, heads started popping up, eyes met and big smiles followed. There was a surprised silence that followed our initial songs and all of the sudden we were talking about more rehearsals and getting more music.”
“When we got together it was awesome,” said Kristen Damazio, with the emphasis on AWE.
An offshoot of the chorale, the nine – Lundberg, Damazio, Lisa Norling, Elizabeth Snodgrass, Heather Burk, Cheryl Forsythe-Wilson, Erin Sando, Katey Lent and Sue Lebow – enjoy each other’s company and sharing their music with each other and the community.
The ensemble has been performing for free at local festivals, assisted living facilities and events. The smaller group works well at the tighter venues that cannot house the larger chorale and the ladies enjoy serving as ambassadors, giving audiences a taste of the bigger production.
As musical leader, Lundberg finds it amazing how in tune they are with each other, considering they perform without a director to provide cues.
“I have come to understand that the ensemble sound and the incredible blend of voices is tremendously enhanced by our friendships,” she said.
She said it’s a combination of choral experience, a desire to excel and grow vocally, love of music and friendships that make it sing.
“None of us are divas,” Damazio said. “Not one person is trying to be the star of the show. We’re tying to make a good sound.”
AWE rehearses weekly when learning new, seasonal program music and then generally every other week adding performances in the community.