With the close of 2013–2014 season, we decided to take a look back at some of the highlights from the year with Turtle Creek Chorale veterans as well as newcomers. Some favorites quickly emerged.
“The holiday concerts are my absolute favorite memories for every season,” says new Turtle Creek Chorale Membership Vice President Elect Tri Truong. “We make [audiences] laugh, cry, and feel every other emotion in a span of two hours — it’s pretty amazing.”
That audience connection is what keeps Bob McCranie, a Turtle Creek Chorale member for three and a half years, coming back year after year. “We sang for 20 days straight,” he says. “You kind of do it because you love it.” Recalling a performance for the kids at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, McCranie says that watching their faces light up is one of those moments that make you think, “This is why we’re singing.”
For newcomer David Barnes, who joined the Chorale this January, the recent collaboration with Uptown Players on Sweeney Todd was unforgettable, especially since he got to enjoy the show both as a performer and an audience member.
“I think it really melded the two organizations and heightened the talents of each,” he says.
McCranie also fondly recalls last year’s collaboration with Grammy-winning Christian singer Sandi Patty in June’s “Inspiration & Hope” show. “She became one of the Chorale,” he says. “She was so complimentary and giving, sticking around to take pictures with everyone who wanted one. She made that concert so enjoyable.”
Another big favorite was last month’s divalicious season closer, a show everyone seems to have a story about, both onstage and off.
Truong, who was one of the principal dancers in the show, recalls that every dance rehearsal was “like a sweaty Zumba class at the gym. It’s also hard to get 150-plus guys to learn dance moves for numbers like ‘Son of a Preacher Man and Rehab,’ but Jeremy Dumont did a great job and those two numbers were fantastic!”
Watching the solo numbers, many of which aren’t even seen by the full group until rehearsals, was another highlight. For Barnes, performing Patsy Cline’s “Crazy,” his first TCC solo, was “an awesome honor.” While McCranie remembers seeing Ethan Laurence and Bryan Carey perform their soulful rendition of Whitney Houston’s “I Want to Dance With Somebody” for the first time saying, “We all just had our jaws on the stage. It was stunning.”