Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Phoenix Boys Choir

Something that always makes me laugh is an episode of the Simpsons where Homer runs into and knocks over a statue of a deer. The dialog goes:
Homer: Doh!
Lisa: A deer.
Marge: A female deer.

I was reminded of that scene recently when I got my CD from the Phoenix Boys Choir titled Drops of Golden Sun, which is, of course, the second line from that Sound of Music song Do Re Mi ... "Ray, a drop of golden sun".

These boys are pretty charming and sometimes they sound like the Vienna Boys Choir, which is probably because their director, Georg Stangelberger, worked with WSK for twelve years as Deputy Artistic Director.

The CD has a variety of songs from Hungarian folk music to Mozart’s Magic Flute. There are four Copland pieces that are nice, including one I hadn’t heard, Zion’s Walls, which they refer to as a Revivalist song.

I really like the song Cantate 2000. It’s very pretty and the harmonies are nice and smooth and it’s about twenty minutes long.

There is also The Lonely Goatherd and Do Re Mi by Rodgers and Hammerstein, and three songs by Peter Marschik. My favorite of all, on this CD is Rutter’s The Lord Bless You and Keep You, a song that isn’t sung often enough.

Two songs are by the Men of the Phoenix Boys Choir, Down in the Valley and Let All Men Sing. The first is surprising good and the second I didn’t really care for. Oh well.

A little something about the Phoenix Boys Choir: Founded in 1947, the Phoenix Boys Choir has programs featuring training in voice, music theory, and performance for boys age 7 to 14. Beginning with the Training Choir, boys can progress to Cadet, Town and Tour choirs, and upon graduation, participate in the Master’s Choir. Currently, there are approximately 250 young boys and men participating, making it one of the largest and most active boychoirs in the United States.
In 2003 they began a Neighborhood Training Choir Program. This expansion made the Phoenix Boys Choir available to all boys, regardless of where they live or their families’ financial situation.

One of their most prestigious awards was received in the summer of 2007 during the European concert tour in July. The choir participated in the Summa Cum Laude International Youth Music Festival at the renowned Musikverein in Vienna in which the Phoenix Boys Choir won first place.
Last year, the choirs appeared in more than 100 performances in Arizona and across in the Midwest United States in front of approximately 50,000 people, impacted 5,400 youth and collaborated with 164 schools.

And this post comes from Me (a name I call myself).


  1. There is another of their cd's that I like to listen to on Patrotic days such as the fourth of July. This cd is called "Let Freedom Ring". They do a bang up job on such tunes as America The Beautiful, This Is My Country, God Bless America, and Battle Hymn of the Republic, to name a few. This cd was released in 2002 under the Summit Records label.

  2. OOPS That should have been "Let Freedom Sing".

  3. Hi Buck,
    Yeah, I like that CD too, and now's the best time to dust it off and get in the mood for the holiday. It may sound corny but I love being an American. Sometimes I wish I was British or something else but at this time of year I get to feeling pretty sentimental about things. I love grilling out with the family, watching parades and fireworks, and especially listening to patriotic songs.
    Happy 4th, to you.