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Indianapolis Women's Chorus

Director: Dr. Scott Buchanan

Indianapolis Women's Chorus


It was early spring, 1994. Grotesque, yet strangely melodious sounds rose from the basement of North Meridian United Methodist Church in Indianapolis. Fledgling director Nancy Hayden was leading the fledgling Indianapolis Women's Chorus through some vocal warm-ups. She made them sigh loudly, sing belly laughs and make various mouth shapes and tongue-flapping sounds that would have gotten you sent away from the dinner table when you were a kid. This, and other hard work, led to the chorus' first public performance, wearing matching teal T-shirts and singing many matching notes, on June 4, 1994, at the National Women's Music Festival. Applause was supportive.

By the December concert that year, the chorus' vocal skills had sharpened considerably, as had its attire. At the Unitarian Universalist Church of Indianapolis, members sang a full program of winter songs ranging from early American to the Far East.

The nature of the applause changed from, "Oh, let's clap; the poor things are trying so hard," to "Wow, they're good!" And so they grew, season by season.

Through the years, the chorus has done sweet songs, silly songs, sexy songs. The singers have performed fugues with no melody, melodies with no words, symphonies of chicken clucks and some torch songs that would melt your shoes. They've sung in French, Hebrew, Latin, Latvian, medieval Germanic Latin, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Welsh - and English. They've done tunes sung in 12th-century abbeys and by Elvis, music originating from Tibetan monasteries to Queen, Balkan mountainsides to Broadway, Australia's Aborigines to Indiana's Cole Porter. They've even learned that staging is not a bad thing, and that movement and song can occur at the same spot on the time-space continuum.

The chorus has performed at the Indiana Women's Prison, Greater Gethsemane Missionary Baptist Church, Madame (C.J.) Walker Theatre, the National Women's Conference of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and barefoot (with many singers' toenails oh-so decoratively painted in rainbow colors) on the courts at the RCA Tennis Championships. In June 2003, it was one of three choral groups to perform at the first all-choral Mainstage at the National Women's Music Festival. And now, via the magic of technology, the women are performing for the world - or at least for that part with access to CD players.


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Indianapolis Women's Chorus : To Sing Is To Fly : 1 CD : 

Indianapolis Women's Chorus : To Sing Is To Fly

Review: The 40-or-so-strong IWC is a joyful, magically inclusive family of women from all age groups, ethnicities, religions, sexual preferences and walks of life. Ably led since 1997 by Pamela Blevins Hinkle, the group has performed sweet songs, silly songs, sexy songs, fugues, music from Tibetan monasteries and from Broadway. All in all, they have big fun singing, and they like to spread it around! 20 songs, from the lovely hymn "Indiana," the inspirational "We Are," and a beautiful "The Small Difference," to a kazoo orchestra on the silly "Pink Pajamas" and the deeply felt prayer "Cradle Me," IWC defies being categorized while surprising and delighting their audiences. There is some accompaniment, and a large, interesting booklet with lyrics and information about the group.

Songlist: Chant, Indian (Back Home In Indiana), The Tree of Peace, O Let The Nations Be Glad, We Are, Strange Fruit, The Small Difference, Ave Maria, Past Life Melodies, Mouth Music, I Shall Sing to the Lord a New Song, My Love Walks in Velvet, Come Again! Sweet Love Doth Now Invite, Pink Pajamas, Fair Warning, This Morning, Melodijas, Vow, Cradle Me, To Sing is to Fly

7318c | 1 CD | $15.98 | Primarily a cappella Female Choral CDs

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