Choir Tour—A “Celebrated” Success
Reporter Dan Ponce from Chicago described the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s performance at Chicago’s Ravinia as “one of the most celebrated music experiences on the planet.”
More than 500 Choir, Orchestra and support staff are traveling by bus—11 of them—caravanning across the heartland of America—and singing in cities that haven’t heard the volunteer chorus live in nearly 100 years. Governor Mike Pence of Indiana called them “an iconic institution” when they sang in Indianapolis where he had the honor of guest conducting the final encore.
In the six-city concert tour that began June 12 in Columbus, Ohio and concludes June 20 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the Choir has been applauded with standing ovations and high praise from youth to grandparents. “We want to be an inspiration for all people,” music director Mack Wilberg told one reviewer in Chicago. “That’s the purpose of music. That’s part of our mandate ‘to sing for the people.’”
In keeping with the Choir’s social media presence, audience members had a chance to text or tweet their choice for an encore: “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” “God Bless America” or “Climb Every Mountain.” Columbus, Indianapolis and Milwaukee chose “God Bless America.” Ravinia attendees selected “Climb Every Mountain” and Madison selected “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
For some Choir members, the tour is taking them home to their roots. Choir member Nyoko Iyamba, originally from Minneapolis, gave a radio interview to popular talk show host Jerilyn Steele. At the close of the program Steele gave a ringing endorsement, “That Choir can really sing!”