Tone Cluster has turned down a prestigious invitation to perform at New York’s legendary Carnegie Hall in February, 2006.
“The board hasn’t accepted the invitation,” says Rob Bowman, the choir president. “We have a Canadian festival that we’re going to in Vancouver that same year, and thinking about the cost of attending both events, we’ve decided to put our energies into the Vancouver festival.
“We really were thrilled to get the invitation,” says Bowman.
This is Tone Cluster’s 11th season. It acquired non-profit status last year and is starting to get fundraising organized.
“It would cost at least $40,000 to attend [the Carnegie Hall event],” says Bowman, noting the choir would have been required to stay in New York for about five days before the actual performance. “We were partially subsidized, but it wasn’t subsidized to the point where it wouldn’t be a significant expense to choir members.
“At this point the board decided that given that we are fundraising for our first recording, plus the festival in Vancouver, that unless we were able to get significant financial support, we wouldn’t be able to do all three things,” says Bowman.
“If we feel that we’ve sufficiently been able to fundraise for the Vancouver choral festival, there is always the chance that we could register with [Carnegie Hall] later on,” says Bowman.
“It’s unfortunate that this invitation didn’t come along, say, in a couple years’ time when we would be in a better position to handle it, but nevertheless we’re really happy with the invitation.”
And Bowman says the choir is excited about attending the Vancouver festival.
“It’s a Canadian festival of gay and lesbian choruses, and we didn’t want to miss that one because we’ve attended in the past and we’ve really enjoyed it. Also, with the festival in Vancouver, we could perform our own program of music, whereas the Carnegie Hall effort would have been performing the work chosen by another conductor, so this gives our conductor a little more freedom in choosing the program.”