People

Paul Larocque – Christmas with Chor Leoni: Angels Dance

i. My name is Paul Larocque.

ii. I am extremely proud to lead Arts Umbrella, a Vancouver-based organization committed to inspiring creativity in young people and helping them to discover their potential.  At Arts Umbrella, we believe that arts education provides young people with immeasurable life-long skills, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and confidence.  This year, Arts Umbrella will serve 24,000 children and youth, with 80% being reached through donor-funded community programs, bursaries, and scholarships.  It is an organization that is making a real difference in our community.

iii. I am also very proud to be a member of Chor Leoni Men’s Choir, one of the world’s leading amateur male ensembles that performs extensively through Metro Vancouver and around the world.  I have been singing with Chor Leoni for 16 years.

Vancouver has been my home for close to a quarter century and I am inspired every day by the extraordinary art community that makes this place so dynamic.

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Chor Leoni. Photo by David Cooper

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iv. On a typical day, you will find me on Granville Island where Arts Umbrella’s core facility is situated.  On a good day, you might also see me running along the sea wall…one of my favourite past times.

v. The name of the concert performance is:  Christmas with Chor Leoni: Angels Dance, featuring dancers from Arts Umbrella’s The Performance Research Program, with Tina Chang, piano; Vivian Chen, harp; Ed Henderson, guitar; and Katie Rife, percussion.  Traditional Holiday music from the Southwest, Appalachia, Europe, and Canada will be performed in this unique collaboration at the Orpheum Theatre.

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vi. The inspiration for this show comes from Chor Leoni Men’s Choir Artistic Director, Erick Lichte, who has wanted to collaborate with Arts Umbrella Dance program for a number of years.  Erick met with Artemis Gordon, Artistic Director of Dance at Arts Umbrella, and the rest is history.  They are both visionaries and have been outstanding partners in this creative process.  Several choreographers are involved in this production, including Lesley Telford, Livona Ellis, Brandon Alley and Rachel Prince.

vii. Combining live choral music, dance and instruments is always a special challenge, one that will undoubtedly result in an exciting performance.  Collaborations are always exciting but this one is so close to my heart.  I’m extremely proud to bring together two organizations that I have been deeply involved in for close to two decades.  I can’t wait to sing and see the resulting magic and I think our audiences are going to love it!

viii. After the show, I am looking forward to meeting with audience members in the lobby to hear their responses to this major collaboration.

Header: Musical Angel. Rosso Fiorentino. 1522

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