LPU Cavite Harmonic Chorale Returns on a High Note with Virtual Broadway Afternoon

Foreword by John Encela

LPU Cavite Harmonic Chorale (LPUHC) under the Arts and Cultural Affairs Department held its first-ever virtual show called “Virtual Onstage: The Bright of Musicals” last October 31, 2021. Featuring excerpts from Broadway’s biggest globetrotting shows, the singing ambassadors of LPU Cavite proudly showcased their vocal prowess and that may it be online or face-to-face, the magic of music will sure serenade our ears and hearts in whatever platform it’s on.

We talked to current LPUHC President, Ms. Alyssa Cañete, on what went into the planning and the making of their show.

What and who started this project?

Our first virtual recital, Virtual Onstage: The Bright of Musicals, was inspired by a postponed Broadway-themed concert supposedly for 2020. The planned show never happened because of the pandemic and this caused uncertainty from  most members. With the approval of other members, I decided to initiate the idea of former President Danmark Gaspe about having a virtual recital instead. As the project head, I provided the outline of the preparation and the actual event with the help of our committees, co-officers, and former choirmaster.

Since this project has been a long time coming for the Chorale, how does it feel reviving it?

We felt triumphant and satisfied upon reviving this project. Although it had been a long time coming for us, admittedly, it wasn’t easy for us to carry out a virtual project since we only did it by ourselves: leading rehearsals, the audio and video recording and editing. With only fifteen active members, most of us are not adept at high-quality audio mixing, essential for creating virtual choir presentations but despite all the struggles, our hard work paid off no matter how long it took to implement it.

What was the creative process? Who chose the songs? Who decided on the performers?

We started the project preparation by selecting songs relevant to the theme and finalizing the number of members willing to perform. Some members volunteered to sing a preferred duet, such as  Mccoy Endaya and Ayessa Gomez for ‘All I Ask of You’ and Alyssa Cañete and Nichole Aldea for ‘Take Me or Leave Me’. We also assigned potential members Ericka Argente, Erwin Alla, and Lloyd Nuñez to perform solos such as ‘Journey to the Past’, ‘Proud of Your Boy’, and ‘Go The Distance’, respectively. We also encouraged all participants to perform ‘One Day More’ as our encore. Our former choirmaster, Mr. Warlito Yalung, then approved the repertoire for our virtual recital.

We conducted sectionals through video calls within a week, prepared pre-recorded hosting videos, recorded vocals of all songs within a month, edited the audio within a couple of weeks, and proceeded to video recording and editing the visual for each song. As our editors did their work, our marketing committee finalized publication materials for promotions and raffle draw procedures and processes.

The remaining week was allotted for merging video and audio files into one massive pre-recorded file, and preparing for live streaming.

In staging concerts and recitals, what are the differences before and during a pandemic?

Before the pandemic broke out, we were used to studying music pieces and rehearsing with our choirmaster at least twice a week whenever we’re preparing for a concert. Launching promotions and partnering with a production team were only the minor aspects before but now, staging concerts and recitals have been more complex and challenging since it requires more promotional support and audio and video editing expertise to reach desired engagements via online platforms.

How can your organization encourage the students in appreciating, if not joining, performing arts?

We showcase music with passion, proudly exhibiting that we are capable of making music together through singing. We do this not only for entertainment but also to manifest our spark, love for music, and significant experiences that keep us going, striving, and thriving to live. Through singing together, we interpret stories and inspire people and with that passion for the performing arts, we influence, encourage, and move people completely.

Lastly, what’s next for Chorale? What can we expect?

We will be performing a couple of Christmas carols next month to celebrate the holidays. Also, for those who are interested in joining our growing family and singing their hearts out, we will be having online auditions this coming January 2022. You can expect that the LPU Harmonic Chorale will continue to produce more virtual performances and possible collaborations with other organizations. So, stay tuned!