“Hello Council”: Mastering the acoustic and visual magic of chorus performances
Online talk with a focus on "Visual Aesthetics in Chorus Performance"
"Hello Council" is the series of live talk and online pedagogical workshop organized by INTERKULTUR China under the support of INTERKULTUR and World Choir Council. The 12th "Hello Council" was broadcasted live on March 24th featuring guest speakers Prof. Yan Baolin, a Chinese national first-class conductor, Ms. Hu Manxue, Art Director and Conductor of Shenzhen Senior High School Lily Girls’ Choir and Ms. Lu Lubin, an aspiring young Chinese conductor. This live focuses on the topic of "Visual Aesthetics in Chorus Performance". Nearly 200 Chinese participants followed the live broadcast, and more than 10,000 people watched the video of the talk.
Choral singing is not only an auditory art, but also a visual enjoyment for the audience. “In terms of visual design, it is necessary to consider the predefined technical conditions such as the venue, and then design different formations and movements based on the specific acoustic requirements of the choral work. Special attention should be paid to the use of the sound space. Sometimes the venue conditions are not ideal, and stage design can actually make up for the shortcomings of the existing sound space.” Prof. Yan Baolin shared. His Eight Seconds Choir won the champion in 7th World Choir Games, and its rich and varied stage design and unique choral attire have created a beautiful Chinese style on the international choral stage.
As one of the best female choral conductors in China, Ms. Hu Manxue has unique insights into the visual aesthetics of choral performances: “The design of movement sequences is like a “rapier” that can enhance the effectiveness of choral performances, if used properly, but it can also have destructive effects if this is not the case. I don't agree that many choirs directly use the lyrics of their works to create movement sequences, which still need to be designed based on the trend of music and the needs of artistic processing.”
During the interactive session, one of the scenic statements posed by Ms. Lu Lubin led to discussions: “Does the attire belong to the special trademark of a choir, or does it need to vary depending on the style of the work?” Yan believed that the design of the choral attire should highlight the overall characteristics of the choir, as in the case of the Eight Seconds Choir, which has its unique visual style. Hu expressed a more open concept that, with funding permitting, the choir could choose different clothing based on the needs of different choral works but it would also be important to pay attention not to dominate, as the basic art of choral singing would still be auditory art.
At the end of this live broadcast, project manager Ms. Li Qixuan introduced to the audience the 2023 INTERKULTUR events and the new year's “Hello Council” schedule: “In order to better meet the needs of the Chinese audience, “Hello Council” will launch a series of Chinese editions. It is a great honor to be the presenter today. The selection of topics for the Chinese editions is more focused on the current situation of the Chinese choirs. These live events attract a larger Chinese audience for the fan community, which contributes to the promotion of INTERKULTUR events in China.”