Education

 

Octarium is Latin for “Eight as One,” and the name defines our mission: Eight Singers, One Choral Voice. Octarium is committed to fostering and promoting the development and appreciation of the art of choral music through innovative and engaging programming, seeking to inspire, enlighten and educate.


At the center of this mission is education. Octarium has developed several engaging strategies to light the fire of love and appreciation of choral music in young people.

 

In-School Performances

 

Nature in Music

K-6th
One of the best ways to reach elementary school children is to engage their imaginations; Octarium does this with a short performance and discussion of music that imitates nature. An engaging program exploring how the choral settings imitate elements of nature (an echo, farm animals, a gnat, a cricket), Nature in Music will allow children to engage their imaginations while being exposed to classic choral repertoire, featuring composers like Josquin, de Lasso and Banchieri.

Length 45 minutes



Saints and Angels

7th - 12th
A presentation of sacred choral music lauding and magnifying Saints and Angels. Repertoire includes, but is not limited to, the music of Victoria, Vaughan Williams, Durufle, Britten, Byrd and Schubert.

Length - 45 to 90 minutes


Should Have Been Choral

7th - 12th
A presentation of secular music set in the a cappella choral medium that originated in another medium. Repertoire includes, but is not limited to, a cappella choral settings of movements from symphonies, operatic overtures, music from Broadway shows and pop songs.

Length - 45 to 90 minutes

 

Lecture/Demonstration

 

Should Have Been Choral

7th - 12th
Ever heard voices sing a symphony? How about a sonata? How about your favorite song? Join Octarium and artistic director Krista Lang Blackwood as they demonstrate how to deconstruct instrumental music into its basic parts and learn how the voice can sound like much more than a voice. Includes a question and answer session.

Length - 60 to 90 minutes

 

General Session

7th - 12th
Octarium reveals the tricks of the a cappella trade. Octarium will demonstrate and discuss vocal issues and ensemble considerations such as blend, use of vibrato, phrasing and consonant energy, demonstrating how the individual voice should function within an ensemble and how the ensemble should function in service of the music. Octarium will also discuss communication; how they sing with such impeccable unity without a conductor, thus allowing the music to reach higher levels of transcendency. This session is best for more advanced choral ensembles and includes a question and answer session.

Length - 45 to 60 minutes

 

Workshops

 

Should Have Been Choral

7th - 12th
Following the Should Have Been Choral lecture/demonstration, Octarium’s artistic director, Dr. Krista Lang Blackwood, will listen to and comment on pieces the students have arranged for a cappella voices of music that speaks to them. This workshop solidifies the development of students' discerning ears and ability to think of music in a different way. The artistic director can also make herself available to help form ensembles and direct rehearsals, if necessary.

Length 45 to 90 minutes
Maximum number of participants - 10 arrangers

(audience size unlimited)

 

Master Class


This outreach can be geared for all ages from an elementary school, to high school, college, church or professional choir. Octarium will sing a few pieces for the choir and then lead a master class, working with choirs to offer a new perspective and new insight. Because Octarium works without a conductor, all of the singers contribute, making this a high-energy and entertaining, as well as inspiring and edifying, experience.

Length - 60 to 90 minutes

 


Contact Artistic Director, Dr. Krista Lang Blackwood, for more information.