What a Wonderful World
The Contemporary Chorale Celebrates “What a Wonderful World” with Noted Guest Vocal Artist, Denise Lee, and Special Guests, The Dallas Street Choir, Saturday, May 11, 2019 at the Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts
Renowned arranger, Paul Langford, provides commissioned title work for Spring show as choir marks 63 years
DALLAS, TEXAS – May 11, 2019 – Lilting voices with peppery dance steps that emanate love, joy, and hope. And unity. On Saturday, May 11, 2019, The Contemporary Chorale with guest vocal artist, Denise Lee, and, special guests, The Dallas Street Choir, lift their voices and hearts together to celebrate “What a Wonderful World,” at the Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts in Richardson, Texas. Two performances, 2:30 PM and 7:30 PM, are slated for the Spring show.
As the oldest, continuously operating choir in North Texas, The Contemporary Chorale is comprised currently of 70 adults of all ages who love to sing. They perform two main concerts annually, Christmas and Spring, representing music of diverse genres ranging from Broadway to jazz to traditional choral anthems.
The Chorale’s 2019 Spring show is especially noteworthy. In late 2018, the group was honored as one of the 17 recipients of the Ann and Charles Eisemann Arts Innovation Initiative grant. The goals of the Initiative are to help arts take their respective organizations to the next level and encourage synergy and partnerships with other arts groups in the common pursuit of excellence. The appearance by the Dallas Street Choir in “What a Wonderful World” was made possible due to the support of the Eisemann Initiative to the Chorale. Artistic director, Melanie Moore, is particularly excited about the show.
“In my 20 years directing the Chorale, the songs we have chosen for this year’s Spring show resonate and speak to my soul in ways I have not experienced. They reflect unity and empowerment of every individual,” said Moore. “Being honored with the Eisemann grant allowed us to contract with the Dallas Street Choir to heighten these messages and realize our vision.”
“Coupled with having the incomparable Denise Lee, vocalist extraordinaire, perform with us makes ‘What a Wonderful World’ complete!” added Moore.
The signature vocal highlight of the show is the beautiful commissioned work, “What a Wonderful World.” Paul Langford, renowned choral composer/arranger, wrote this special arrangement for the Chorale. An anonymous donor made this commission possible in memory of Ms. Moore’s parents.
“Paul’s arrangement is amazing,” said Moore. “I am humbled and forever grateful for this beautiful honor to my folks.”
Guest artist, Denise Lee, is an award-winning actress and singer with a warm and friendly demeanor, and sassy performance style. Ms. Lee has charmed theater, nightclub, and television audiences in Dallas, Europe, and the Far East for more than three decades. She is thrilled about performing with the Chorale and the Dallas Street Choir.
“Both the Contemporary Chorale and the Dallas Street Choir are exceptional,” said Ms. Lee. “I love to perform with a choir and an orchestra. There is an energetic vibe and joy that radiates from a group that maximizes the experience for an audience.”
The Dallas Street Choir was founded by noted conductor and music educator, Dr. Jonathan Palant, in October 2014. The group strives to offer an otherwise marginalized community of people a place to experience art, and specifically choral music. The members come from all walks of life. To-date, nearly 2,000 individuals have attended at least one of the weekly rehearsals amassing more than 10,000 hours of cultural enrichment.
“We are delighted to return to the Eisemann Center to pair with The Contemporary Chorale under the baton of their fabulous director, Melanie Moore,” said Dr. Palant. “This special collaboration is another example of two diverse communities joined together by music.”
“This further exemplifies our motto, ‘Homeless, not Voiceless,” added Dr. Palant.
Guest Artist Highlight
Denise Lee is the founder and Executive Producer of the Denise Lee Onstage Cabaret Series and the Dallas Cabaret Festival featuring the best in Dallas based and National Cabaret Artists. For her Cabaret shows ‘Divas of American Music’ and ‘Too Old, Too Fat, Too Black – Songs I’ll Never Sing On Broadway” she was awarded Broadway World Awards for Best Cabaret Performer in 2015 and 2016. She is also the first recipient of the Sammons Center for the Arts Cabaret Artist of the Year Award and multiple Dallas Theater Critic Forum and Dallas Readers Voice Awards.
In addition to her work as an Artist, Denise Lee established 'Community Conversation' through her Change the Perception initiative following the tragic Dallas Police Shootings. These monthly gatherings bring people from all walks of life together for respectful open honest dialogue in order to heal racial and community tension. She has been awarded the Rudy Eastman Diversity Award by the Live Theater League of Tarrant County and a Special Citation of Recognition by the DFW THEATER CRITICS In addition to the Dallas meetings, the Conversations are also held regularly in Ft. Worth and surrounding areas.
The Dallas Street Choir has performed at the Winspear Opera House, the Dallas City Performance Hall, the George W. Bush Presidential Library, at both public and private schools, and at a variety of many venues throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area. The choir regularly presents concerts at The Stewpot and the newly-built amphitheater adjacent to The Stewpot,
The Dallas Street Choir's members come from all walks of life: 68% stay in shelters while 23% live on the streets; nearly half are in their forties and fifties; two-thirds have high school diplomas, and 64% are African American. The the tagline for the Dallas Street Choir is “Homeless, Not Voiceless.”
Dallas Street Choir appearance made possible by the generous support of the Ann & Charles Eisemann Arts Innovation Initiative.
- Come Alive - The Greatest Showman
- Bridge Over Troubled Water
- You Will Be Found - Dear Evan Hanson
- Humble and Kind
- Brotherhood of Man - How to Succeed in Business . . .
- Beautiful City - Godspell
- You Raise Me Up
- Be the Hero - Big Fish
- Heal the World
- You Walk with Me - The Full Monty
- You Are the New Day
- I Hope You Dance
- Seize the Day - Newsies
- We Shall Overcome/Lean on Me
- What a Wonderful World