This Presidents’ Day weekend, professional chamber choir Collegium Ancora visits Newport to present “All About that Bass… and Treble!”: a program of choral music featuring works for men’s voices and for women’s voices, as part of the Newport Winter Festival.

Artistic director Vince Edwards has assembled a varied program full of familiar and lesser-known works ranging from the 1600s to the 1900s, including composers from Italy (Palestrina), Germany (Brahms, Rheinberger, Schumann), France (Poulenc), Spain (Casals), England (Le Bas, Rutter), Ireland (Stanford), and the USA (Thompson). But despite the concert’s title, don’t expect any covers of Meghan Trainor. 

Now in its 3rd season, Collegium Ancora is among Rhode Island’s newest ensembles, but has already been called “arguably the best singing group in southern New England”. Stylistically versatile and adventuresome, the ensemble’s last local performance was in July, when they closed the 50th Newport Music Festival with performances of Pergolesi’s poignant Stabat Mater and Vivaldi’s exultant Gloria. 

The ensemble prides itself on bring a professional chamber choir not just in, but for the Ocean State.  This season’s remaining performances testify to that commitment.  They are delivering a modified encore performance of Saturday’s program on Sunday 2/17 in Providence, designed to be inclusive to people of all ages and all abilities.  According to director of operations Matt Hall, “We believe that the arts belong to everyone- but sadly the expectations of concert etiquette end up excluding far too many people. This is a chance for audience members of all backgrounds to enjoy the performance in whatever way feels appropriate to them.”  

On May 5, Collegium Ancora partners with Providence’s Temple Beth-El to present Handel’s masterful Israel in Egypt, which has not been heard in Rhode Island for 16 years.  Their season closes on June 15 with a free concert in conjunction with RI’s Pride festival, where they will also premiere the winning entry in their inaugural composition contest. That will be the ensemble’s second world premiere of the season, having debuted Canadian Colin Eatock’s “Five Poems from the Great War” on their November concert, which commemorated the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended WWI.

Tickets for Saturday’s 4pm performance of “All About That Bass… and Treble!” are available at https://www.collegiumancora.org/all-about-bass or at the door, where Winter Festival bracelet-wearers will receive a 25% discount. The concert is at Emmanuel Church, 42 Dearborn St. in Newport. 

Ryan Belmore is the Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.