The Rodas Sisters. Kathryn Rambow
The Chipay Iskwew Singers. Kathryn Rambow
Studio 96 was aglow with candlelight and resonant with song on the evening of December 21, as community members and musicians gathered together to sing during “Comfort & Joy.” Not only did local performers sing, the whole audience joined in with carols and seasonal tunes, resulting in a festive “happening” created by everyone there that evening.
Four musical groups offered a diversity of music, starting with the drums and shared voices of the Chipay Iskwew Singers, an Indigenous women’s singing group. Fifteen-year-old Stella Johnson performed next, playing ukulele to accompany her expressive voice singing some dazzling original songs and a few covers.
Things really warmed up when the Rodas Sisters launched into a set of El Salvadoran and Latin influenced tunes. The audience was on its feet, clapping and swaying to intricate guitar rhythms and energetic vocals. Not to be outdone, Essence of Praise activated everyone in the building with their powerful gospel songs and sophisticated harmonies. In the end we were all part of the music making, belting out Christmas carols and clapping along to the gospel tunes.
This celebration of song was the first in a series of events and activities sponsored by e4c and the Wellness Network, to build community through the power of song. Stay tuned and warm up your vocal chords for future musical opportunities, including coffee houses and a regular Pop-Up Choir throughout 2019.
Thank you to e4c, the Wellness Network, and Studio 96 for their support in making this event happen.