Made in the 956: The Chorus of the Rio Grande Valley
Joel Lamar Cruz created The Chorus of the Rio Grande Valley because he believes music makes the heart happy.
"The Chorus of the Rio Grande Valley is a local organization, singing ensemble, that's bringing together members from communities all across the Rio Grande Valley together to sing," Cruz said. "To make music and perform for residents across the border."
"There was another organization, many years ago, that started in the 90s, and it lasted about 20 years, and they disbanded in 2011," Cruz said.
Years passed and Cruz moved away, but when he came back, he knew something was missing.
"I decided, you know, there is something in our area that's missing," Cruz said. "And that is choral music."
"This one specifically caters to voices of all kinds, from all walks of life, non-professional," Cruz said. "Maybe they sang in high school, maybe they sang professionally, so it's bringing voices together from all over."
More than 40 different voices are part of the group, and right now, the group is getting ready for their fall performance.
"This season, we are having our first complete season, starting with this debut event of our concert series, Spotlight On," Cruz said.
"So every year, we're going to have a different, every fall I should say, we're going to have a different spotlight on," Cruz said. "This year, it's Broadway music, next year it may be country music, the following year it may be Latin music, so it's going to be more of a pop series. Something that people will know and gravitate toward, and this year, as I mentioned, it's spotlight on Broadway, so we'll have things like Phantom of the Opera, Les Mess, and unknown shows or unfamiliar shows maybe to our audience, like the color purple, in the heights, so taking it back to classics, some classic shows and bringing in some more modern things and themes to tie into our shows."
Cruz says his hopes for the future are that the chorus continues to grow.
"We were established to nourish the souls through music by enlightening and entertaining and inspiring the communities, the members of our communities here in the Rio Grande Valley and beyond I hope," Cruz said.
The Chorus of the Rio Grande Valley: Made in the 956.
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