One might think the Kauai Chorale concerts might get old. Seen one, seen them all. It’s just a bunch of people singing, right?
Through creativity, imagination and yes, dedication to song, this group continues to deliver outstanding performances. This was on full display during the Chorale’s “Fill the Night with Music” spring concert on Sunday at the St. Regis Princeville Resort.
Led by Director Lois Ricciardi, and joined by accompanist Virginia Shepherd (wife of Greg Shepherd, whose Chamber Music Kauai is performing this weekend at St. Michael and All Angels’ Church in Lihue), Kauai Chorale delivered a delightful show that deserved a bigger audience than the 150 or so in the seats.
Coffee cups, pasta, hats and flashlights were part of the inventive program. Kauai Chorale folks don’t simply sing. They act. They dance. They smile. They laugh. In other words, they have fun, and so does the audience.
This talented group never lets things get boring, never gives anyone reason to duck out early. Each number is unique, often spotlighting a different member and giving many their chance to shine on their own. There are twists and turns to songs that always end on a high note.
There are songs packed full of energy and joy, like “Java Jive,” “Pasta,” “Jalapeno Brothers” and “Babethandaza,” a South African folk song that might have been the best number of the night. It was brilliantly done and a pleasure to watch and hear. It made you want to join them and special guest Dan Spriggs on percussion.
Other songs, like “Bright Morning Stars,” and “When I Fall in Love,” (a duet by Millie Curtis and Wes Cronk) are soft, slow and sweet. Cronk, by the way, displays strong stage presense. He has a solid voice and a way about him, an easy, relaxed demeanor, that you can’t help but appreciate and applaud.
As good as the Kauai Chorale is under the direction of a lovely Ricciardi, the Seventh-day Adventist Children’s Choir came close to stealing the show. Director Pastor Douglas Na‘a, joined by pianist Meliana Na‘a and violinist Carlthron Antoine performed six songs including “This is My Desire,” “10,000 Reasons,” and “Me and My House.” This young group poured its heart, soul and faith into each word. They sang with heart and wowed the crowd, earning an ovation when finished. We look forward to hearing more from them.
Kauai Chorale continues to be a blessing on this island. As the title of their performance said, they were all about filling the night with music.
But this wasn’t just any music.
It was beautiful.