Every semester, Touch of Blue presents a concert of jazz-based and improvisatory repertoire. During these concerts, we sing several pieces as a group, interspersed with solos and duets by individual members of the ensemble. We perform some repertoire a cappella, and some with our resident rhythm section, so there is always plenty for our audiences to love!
Thanks to Al Arnold for this video!
Thanks to Lila Turner and Amy Helms for these pictures and video!
Aside from our termly concerts, Touch of Blue often schedules additional projects for members. During the Spring 2022 semester, we developed "Shine Bright, Starlight", an original improvisatory graphic score as an ensemble, using a painting by Karen Jane, our Creative Director, as a starting point.
Beginning with a rough outline of chords and lyrics, each member of the group has the opportunity to improvise their own melodies, rhythms and words inspired by the painting. Accompanied by a rhythm section, we recorded a music video of the piece with the professional team in the Duderstadt Center video studio on campus.
Being able to create this video was testament to the hard work of our members: many of our singers were totally new to improvisation at the beginning of the Spring 2022 semester. In this way, "Shine Bright, Starlight" encapsulates what it means to be a part of Touch of Blue -- learning new skills is central to the way we function as an ensemble, and we like to emphasize helping each other grow as artists along the way!
During the Spring 2022 semester, we recorded an original single in the Duderstadt Center audio studio. "A Sky Full of Stars" was composed by our music director, Harry Castle, and is out now!
Touch of Blue aims to record in the studio at least once per year, and we try to record all our original material as part of our dedication to performing and preserving new work.
Before there was Touch of Blue, there was BlueNote Vocal Ensemble! Check out BlueNote’s movie-musical "Let’s Go to the Movies". Produced in the winter of 2021, "Let’s Go to the Movies" uses a variety of different vocal jazz styles to tell a series of love stories. The movie-musical features iconic standards such as "Fever" and "The Way You Look Tonight". Throw your troubles aside and experience some joy and love as you take a trip to the movies!