Palo Alto Weekly: Ragazzi “keeps harmony alive while staying safely apart”

The Palo Alto Weekly interviewed Artistic/Executive Director Kent Jue about our success moving to remote education:

Within four days of the shutdown, Ragazzi’s conductors took up the challenge of keeping their choirs alive. They created audio and videotapes to conduct singers they could neither see nor hear, at first relying on parents and volunteers with sound and video skills to transform individual recordings into a choral performance. “Along the way we produced three virtual choirs,” said executive and artistic director Kent Jue. Among them are a dozen graduating seniors performing “Shenandoah” as their swan song, and a group of 24 singing the rhythmic “Count On Me.”

Chorister Liam Lowitz told the Weekly that he has benefitted from Ragazzi’s online programming:

Hope is what keeps these chorales in harmony, even amid disappointment. In March, when Ragazzi first soprano Liam Lowitz first heard that COVID-19 would force choirs to shut down, “I started crying,” he said. Lowitz, 12, a seventh-grader at North Star Academy in Redwood City, said he “loves singing with my friends,” and not being able to sing together was unthinkable. But tears dissipated when Ragazzi began meeting on Zoom. And when he heard the finished virtual piece of “Count on Me,” in which he has a cameo solo, “something inside of me just lit up. I think it’s really cool that we’re able to do this.”

Read the whole thing.